In today’s episode, I will be talking to another one of my clients, Altie, and she is going to tell us about her experience staying at the Royalton White Sands Resort with her husband, two kids, and her brother-in-law and his wife.
None of them have ever flown out of the US or stayed at an all-inclusive resort, and today we are going to get her opinions on all-inclusive resorts versus cruising, and some tips and tricks for when you want to book your all-inclusive resort vacation.
[03:22] Altie’s travel history.
Altie only started traveling after she had her kids, initially only for sports games.
It was only much later that she went on her first real vacation cruise to the Bahamas.
[06:13] Getting her first passport.
Going on the cruise, all Altie needed was her birth certificate. Since getting her passport, she feels liberated, and now she doesn’t have to worry about going places for the next 10 years.
Altie started her major travels through cruising.
With cruising, when you’ve paid for the cruise, that’s all you need to do, and you get to see multiple places on one trip.
[11:28] Flying to another country.
Flying out of the US and in to another country is much less stressful when you work with a travel agent (hint hint).
[14:32] Club Mobay.
Club Mobay is Jamaica’s Airport Concierge Service.
Altie purchased Club Mobay for both arrival and departure trips.
At the arrivals, there were already staff waiting with the names of the whole family, and they were escorted past the lines of waiting people to customs and then to the lounge.
For the departures, your luggage is taken care of, there is food, there’s a place to shower, you can have a massage, there are yoga rooms, and you can even order your alcohol.
For $80 total, you could book yourself the Club Mobay experience both ways. For the experience, the money should not be a consideration.
[22:55] Arriving at the resort.
Arriving at the resort, Altie felt like a celebrity with the staff waiting outside for her and her family,
Most people expect resort food to only be from a buffet.
At the White Sands, there was a Hibachi Grill, an Italian restaurant, a Mexican restaurant, a steakhouse, a sports bar, and a Jamaican food hut.
Usually, people prefer the specialty restaurants, but Altie enjoyed the buffet, and her favorite specialty restaurants were the Hibachi Grill and the steakhouse.
[28:28] The Royalton White Sands Resort.
The resort is a bit older, but they’re planning to do some upgrades and renovations.
Despite this, the money paid to stay at the resort was well worth it, and Altie got upat 6AM every morning (even though she is not a morning person. That’s how good the resort was).
[31:10] All-inclusive resort vs cruising.
Even though you can visit different places on a cruise, you don’t have the same level of freedom to move around and visit places the way you can at a resort.
There’s also the beach at the resort that you don’t have on a cruise ship.
For Altie, cruising is not as relaxing as a resort.
[34:38] Leaving the resort.
Another perk of staying at a resort is that you get to do excursions outside of the resort whenever suits you.
Altie recommends climbing the Dunn’s River Falls and doing the ATV dune buggy rides.
[36:51] Picking another resort.
When going to a destination multiple times, many people tend to choose the resort they’ve already stayed in before.
Altie wants to try out different resorts when she takes her next all-inclusive resort trip to Jamaica, and the next resort better have a lazy river and a swim-up room.
[41:48] The rooms.
Altie stayed in a suite, with an ocean view, that was bigger than a room she paid for in New York, and she paid about half as much for the resort room.
The ocean view and listening to the sounds of the ocean from the comfort of your room, is the best thing you could do for your own relaxation and mental serenity.
[45:19] The food.
The resort boasts a buffet as well as a whole host of specialty restaurants, which Altie took advantage of, as she visited a different restaurant every day.
The best restaurant experience was the steakhouse.
For those who drink alcohol, you’re able to drink as much as your heart desires at no extra cost. If you do not drink alcohol, they can make you virgin drinks of whichever drink you choose so that you don’t have to miss out on the experience while your group is enjoying their drinks.
The only complaint that Altie has, and I’ve experienced this everywhere I’ve been outside the US, is that you need to really beg them to bring you some ice for your drinks.
[51:07] Resorts vs cruising.
Altie has been converted. She will now be choosing all-inclusive resorts over cruises for her next vacations.
To stay on the resort vs leaving the resort depends on what you want to experience. If you’ve experienced everything on the resort, then going off the resort will only improve your overall experience, and vice versa.
If you’ve done an excursion, Altie doesn’t recommend doing it again. There will always be another excursion that you haven’t done yet.
[55:03] How long to spend at a resort.
Altie spent 5 days at the resort, but next time she will spend 7 days at the resort to get the full experience of events happening across the entire week.
[58:02] Altie’s number 1 travel tip.
“Listen to your travel agent.”
[59:55] Start early.
If you start early with your planning and payments, by the time you need to go on your vacation, everything is paid for and you can just focus on having a good time.
This was a great episode with Altie. She dropped some gems in this episode that I hope helps all of you make the right decisions when booking your stay at an all-inclusive resort.
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