The all inclusive option of vacation is a popular and convenient option if you want to enjoy a relaxed holiday. It ensures you do not have to worry about small time bills that might slow you down during your vacation. And you have full access to a variety of amenities without any extra charges.
However, the term ‘All Inclusive’ vacation seems a bit ambiguous to many new or first time holiday seekers. Your understanding of the term will depend on many other considerations as well. For instance, it will depend on the nature of the vacation you have in mind – cruise, adventure, luxury, wildlife safari vacation etc. It may also depend on holiday destination – Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, or Asia etc.
To some, an All Inclusive vacation package might suggest that all the aspects of your holiday are included in the package upon the payment of one single fee. That may or may not be the case. For example flights may or not be included, travel insurance is normally not included. Your travel agent or Safari outfitter making the travel arrangements on your behalf will explain what is included in the all inclusive vacation package. It is important that you clearly understand the contents of the deal as offered by the travel agent. Otherwise a feeling of being short changed might ruin your holiday, if you expected something, just to be told upon arrival that you have to pay for it!
For an all inclusive vacation to Africa with the family, the major concerns would not only be about what is included, but also the balance of interest between all the members of the family. For example for the children, you certainly need to worry about activities that will keep them busy and interest during the entire vacation period. Most of the activities, for both adults and children would be included as part of the package. But would still be activities that are left out of the package for various reasons. Hot Air balloon excursion over the African savannas would be an example of activities that would not be part of your package.
In very general terms, the all inclusive Safari vacation to Africa would include the following items:
Air Tickets: Return flight from your country into Africa and back. The flight portion is normally part of your all inclusive package. It may be that it is one of the items not included but would be included only after your have asked the travel agent to include it. And, if you are purchasing a package that requires internal or regional flights within your destination, it is important to agree with your travel agent in advance to either include or exclude these portions.
Local Transportation: This includes your arrival pick up from the local airport to the hotel when you arrive at your holiday destination. On local transport, any movement to and from tours and excursions that are included in your all inclusive package will be covered. But in most cases, local excursions and tours are not included. Should you decide to take up any of these tours during your vacation, you will settle this bill. Your transportation during the safari in the African wilderness is certainly part of the package. And of course, your transportation back to the airport, on the last day, would normally be guaranteed as part of the all inclusive package.
Meals: Full board and snacks. This means all your meals – 3 meals together with snacks in between are included in the amount you pay for the package. In some hotels, the meals are taken at specific times of the day. Guidelines will be given either in advance of on arrival at your destination.
Drinks: These would normally include soft drinks, bottled water, teas, coffees, local beer, house wine with meals and national spirits. If you take a high end luxury package, your laundry services might be part of the package.
Activities: All the activities offered at the facility would be accessible to you. If are taking an all inclusive vacation beach, these would include, for example, water sports, beach volleyball, water polo or table tennis – assuming the hotel question has the facilities. If you package includes a safari, these might include bush walks, visits to the local villages, camel rides, bush breakfast or dinner etc. There would however be some activities that would not be included – like Hot Air Balloon flight.
Entertainment: Daily entertainment would be part of your all inclusive package. This might be in the form of traditional dances or music while at your hotel or lodge. Other types of performances may be in form of acrobatics or lectures on the local way of life.
However, an exhaustive list of items included in or excluded from your all inclusive African Safari Package cannot be made here. It should be made clear to you at the time of purchasing your package.
By: Solomon Okila