{Tips from the Pros} Destination Wedding Decision: Is An All-Inclusive Resort Right For You?

Congratulations, you have decided on a destination wedding!  Planning a destination wedding adds an extra dimension of fun and adventure. Your first decision is which location matches your dreams and budget and we strongly advise that you work with an experienced destination wedding specialist to make sure this a well-informed decision. The next question is: do you want to go with an all-inclusive resort or a “European Plan” resort?  The two largest factors that play into this decision are budget (both yours and your guests) and vacation “style.”

If your heart is set on a wedding venue that is outside a resort (i.e. a museum or historical site) that requires an event fee and catering, and you plan on “eating around town” at your destination, then a European Plan resort is an excellent fit for you. Just be aware that this approach is often more expensive and you and your guests should plan accordingly, when it comes to budgeting.

For the couple who doesn’t want their guests to open up their wallets once they set foot on the resort (except for tips) and love the idea of having their wedding a short walk away from where they are sleeping, then an all-inclusive resort is the way to go! Many couples love all-inclusive destination weddings because they are stress and decision-free. The biggest decision you and your guests typically have is beach or pool, and which on-resort restaurant to dine at.

But, what does the terms “all-inclusive” really mean when it comes to your resort? Here’s what a typical all-inclusive resort includes in the price:

Accommodations: your room and hotel taxes.
Food: All food including room service, pool snacks, fine dining, and late night dining. Once you have decided on your resort, be sure to check with your wedding specialist to find out which restaurants require reservations and how far in advance they recommend you make them.
Drinks: All alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included. Guests enjoy unlimited drinks at bars around resort; with meals, at the swim-up bar, etc. Mini bar and any alcohol in the room are also included.
Activities and Entertainment: Non-motorized water sports, children’s activities, fitness center, night clubs and nightly entertainment are all included. Spa services, motorized water sports, greens fees and excursions are usually not included.
Tips: Gratuities are typically included in the price but most guests bring along some bills to show their appreciation to staff and servers.

In addition to being a wonderful place to stay, couples who book their destination wedding at an all-inclusive resort sometimes receive a “free wedding” package and often receive many additional perks, such as resort credits and complimentary cocktail parties (depending on how many guests they bring). Here are two fantastic examples:

{On renowned Maroma beach in Mexico’s Riviera Maya, El Dorado Maroma, a Beachfront Resort, by Karisma provides a secluded, enchanting setting for those looking to escape.}

Perks of Booking: When 10 to 14 rooms are reserved for your wedding, the wedding couple receives $500 USD added value towards their first anniversary return stay. Or, reserve 20 to 30 rooms and the wedding couple receives $1000 USD added value towards their first anniversary return stay.

{Located on one of the most beautiful beaches on the Easternmost tip of Dominican Republic, this new all- inclusive property offers luxurious accommodations and extravagant resort amenities to create a spectacular haven from care.}

Perks of Booking: When a wedding couple reserves 10 to 19 rooms, they receive one private function with open bar and hors d’oeuvres for two hours, turn-down service, special petit-fours and a personalized wine bottle. Or, reserve 20-40 rooms and the wedding couple enjoys one complimentary private function for three hours (may be cocktail reception or dinner), turn-down service, special petit fours, personalized wine bottle, beach bag and bathrobes.

Still trying to decide which fit is right for you? Come explore all your options (and see amazing resorts!) with us over at Destination Weddings! Happy Planning!

Destination Weddings Travel Group is comprised of four, full-service planning sites that specialize in celebratory travel across the globe. By combining the personal service and expertise of more than 200 certified specialists with resort partnerships in over 42 countries, customers are afforded a premier one-stop experience. From destination weddings, honeymoons and vow renewals to birthdays, anniversaries and family reunions… we have your perfect destination.

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