How to Enjoy Your All-Inclusive Escape

David Coffey, CAA North & East Ontario’s Managing Director of Travel Services, shares his best secrets for how to make the most of your winter getaway, once you actually get there.

by Mary Wimmer and David Coffey

Kick back and relax? For some of us, it’s not necessarily second nature to let the good times roll. If you’ve been lucky enough to enjoy every vacation you’ve ever been on, you might be in the minority. That’s because vacations can sometimes be stressful; being away from familiar surroundings can be disorienting and having an action-packed itinerary can leave you feeling like you need a vacation from your vacation.

But worry not, help is here. Last week, we got the inside scoop from David Coffey, CAA North & East Ontario’s Managing Director of Travel Services, on how to pick the best all-inclusive package for you. He’s back again to let you know how you can make the most out of your winter getaway, once you actually get there… 

Dave’s Top Tips for Enjoying Your All-Inclusive Trip

If you remembered to invest time pre-departure to consider your priorities (and selected a destination and resort based on those) then by the time you arrive at your destination you have already done the hard work and it is time to relax and enjoy! However, there are a few things that can help you avoid unnecessary headaches:

  • Reset Your Internal Clock.  Relax, you are now on “island time.” In most of the Caribbean, life moves at a different pace than what we are used to in Canada. That’s why we go! But it can be frustrating when direct questions are met with vague answers and arranged times are treated more as a guideline than a commitment. There’s usually more upside in going with the flow than trying to fight it, so breathe deeply of that warm Caribbean air and focus on how lucky you are to be there while the rest of Canada is shivering in wintery misery.
  • Talk to Your Hotel Representative. Unless you have preplanned all your activities, know the resort and are familiar with the schedule, do take the time to check in with a local representative. Usually there is an initial meeting time communicated on travel documents or when checking in. These local representatives are a great source of information both on and off-resort, they can arrange local trips if you want, and they can be the reinforcements you call in if you do have some kind of unresolved issue with the resort – so make friends with them early! Also, they usually have all the details relating to your return trip, which leads me to my next point…
  • Get Your Return Details. It may sound counterintuitive to focus on your return arrangements (I just got here, isn’t it time to hit the swim up bar?), but often there are vouchers to collect and your company’s local rep may only be onsite for limited hours or specific days so getting your details nailed down early can save you multiple trips trying to connect with them later on.
  • Make Dinner Reservations Early. You will know in advance which restaurants require these, and often space is limited and can disappear fast, so if there are some must-do dining experiences that require reservations, make those reservations early. You’ll be glad you did so when you have your pick of dining experiences to choose from, as opposed to having to go to the same restaurant a few days in a row.
  • Savour the Moment. Then go do what you came here to do! Seven days of action-packed adventuring on and off-resort? Late mornings and afternoon siestas? Learning to scuba dive? There’s no ‘right way’ to enjoy an all-inclusive package except to do it your way. Remember not to pack your itinerary too tightly and be sure to leave plenty of time to do what you came here to do: unwind.

Lucky for you that the bleak midwinter is the best time to lock-down a last-minute deal. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to say goodbye to snow bluffs and hello to the warm sand: it’s as easy as visiting your nearest CAA Travel Store or calling our team of dedicated CAA Travel Professionals at 1-800-267-8713.