You can find checklists whether you’re shopping for a new car, a new house or a new pair of eyeglasses. Many of us need something like that when searching for our next family vacation. All-inclusive resorts fill in a large part of the checklist by combining lodging, food and most of the entertainment. But what should you look for in all inclusive family resorts?
Activities and Amenities for Your Children’s Age Groups
You don’t want to take teenagers to all inclusive family resorts Caribbean destination only to find that the children’s programs peter out once your kid is seven or eight. That splash pad and little kids’ playground will drive your teens mad with boredom over a foreign city full of exciting adventure. Conversely, a family resort that is aimed at school aged and older kids but short on amenities for toddlers will drive Mom insane trying to keep control of the little kid and ensure that they’re safe. If your children have a wide age range, select a resort that can cater to everyone. This means a place with a toddler safe play area, babysitters and activities the older kids can enjoy. Ideally, they’ll have supervised events for each age group so that you can trust the kids are safe as they each go to their own activity.
Safety and Security
Safety and security are related but not the same thing. High walls to keep out panhandlers and purse thieves and on site security guards provide security. Safety for your family includes proper supervision for children, life guards and babysitters that can handle medical emergencies for families, and an environment that is relatively safe for young children. You can’t demand that they baby-proof the whole resort, but a safe place for your kids will minimize many potential hazards.
It goes beyond a toddler-friendly play space. It will take the form of child-sized life-vests for kids on boat trips, car seats for young children on the bus and barriers around the hot tub so a toddler won’t fall in. They won’t just say not to use the pool after 10 PM, but they’ll have fences around it so that a young child can’t drown accidentally because there are no lifeguards around. They should have procedures in place to immediately locate a lost child and deal with a kid who lost their identifying wristband
The best all-inclusive resorts make things simple for parents. They have diaper changing facilities in all the bathrooms, and they sell diapers in the store. They can take formula or fever reducing medicine to your room if you order it via room service, and they serve child-friendly dishes at every meal. You don’t have to wonder how you’ll clean baby bottles and sippy cups, and they’ll have parental controls on the TV. Note that you will have to pay a premium for anything you order whether it is sunscreen or aspirin, and you’ll probably be expected to tip room service. However, the ability to stay in the room with a sick child while someone else
finds it and brings it to you is invaluable.