A Cruise or an All-Inclusive Resort?

A Cruise or an All-Inclusive Resort?  You Decide

You decide it’s time to take a vacation and you have finally narrowed it down to either a cruise or an all-inclusive resort. But how do you decide between the two? Both include accommodations, food, entertainment, and activities (although some cost extra), but there are differences between the two.

cruise or an all-inclusive resort
Princess Cruises

A cruise might be the right choice for you if…:

*You love the water and being on the ocean plus love the ship, don’t ever underestimate how much you will enjoy relaxing to the sounds and smells of the water. If you have a balcony cabin, you can sit out any time of day and look out over the water with a drink and a loved one and enjoy the view.
*You prefer structure in your vacation, you can pick up the daily newsletter that the ship provides and have your entire day organized for you the night before. Everything from meals, activities, shows, and more.
*You prefer to relax, you can simply spend the entire day lounging by the pool, spend time in one of the bars or lounges and listen to music or dance, or go the casino or the spa. Do what you want when you want – it’s your vacation.
*You enjoy visiting different areas vs. staying in one place, a cruise is a great choice for you. Different ports every day gives you the opportunity to explore without getting bored in one location.
*You don’t like getting stuck in bad weather. If the captain sees bad weather ahead, he can outrun a storm and change ports to enable you access to the best ports and great weather. At an all-inclusive resort, if there is bad weather, including hurricanes, you’re stuck where you are.
*You like change. Because of the different ports, your environment and scenery is constantly changing and therefore, your vacation changes daily.
*You have children or teenagers, the programs available on cruises allow kids to instantly make friends and have someone to hang out with at all times. This makes their vacation more enjoyable and ultimately will make yours better, too.

cruise or an all-inclusive resort

An all-inclusive vacation might be right for you if…:

*You like being in one location. If you have a dream vacation in mind in one area, then you might not want to explore different cities or ports. An all-inclusive allows you to stay put in one place.
*You prefer the ability to step outside when you choose and you don’t have to wait until you arrive in a port.
*You like larger accommodations. Granted, there are suites on cruise ships, but in general the cabins and bathrooms on ships tend to be on the smaller side.
*You like to party and drink alcohol, an all-inclusive definitely works for you. With the all-inclusive alcohol, you won’t have to worry about a bar tab.
*You like learning about where you are and getting into a routine and are ok with the a conventional vacation. Some people prefer the familiar on vacation and all-inclusives can work for these people. You will get more time on the beach and to explore the history and culture of your resort area than you would on a cruise.
*You want a romantic, couples only vacation. Some resorts are “couples only,” which means they are a no kid zone. Although cruise ships may provide you with privacy, they can’t guarantee there won’t be any kids near you on your cruise.
*You want a family friendly vacation with activities for everyone. Some all-inclusive resorts have great children’s programs and an abundance of activities for every member of the family. At some resorts, all activities are included, which means less money out of your pocket.

cruise or an all-inclusive resort

Keep in mind that these are general comparisons because cruise lines, cruise ships, and resorts vary widely. Accommodations and food quality can vary widely within resorts as well as cruise lines so a head to head comparison is difficult. Additionally, privacy is hard to define since it might depend on how much more you are willing to pay for your vacation. There are gorgeous Millionaire Suites at the Sandals Regency La Toc in Saint Lucia, complete with English butler service where you can have complete privacy and total pampering, but not everyone will want that. Well maybe me, but not everyone.

cruise or an all-inclusive resort
The sun sets over the water

Focus on what is important to you when deciding between a cruise and an all-inclusive resort. Maybe this is the vacation where you let loose with your friends and go out every night. Maybe that means an all-inclusive resort. Or maybe you want to explore the history and culture of a few of Southern Caribbean cities. That sounds like a cruise vacation. You might visit one of those ports, fall in love with an island and decide later to visit an all-inclusive resort there. There are so many possibilities and no wrong answers. In the end, you probably would want to see a beautiful sunset like this.

Which do you prefer? A cruise or an all-inclusive resort?