Reader Z asks:
Seriously though – can someone who likes all inclusive explain why? I think I would get claustrophobic. I´m all for not cooking but do not understand the attraction of the all inclusive concept.
As a huge fan of all-inclusive resorts, I can say the following:
An all-inclusive resort is my favorite kind of vacation. I don’t have to do anything, except lie on the beach drooling. It’s total relaxation because everything is resolved and done for you. There is also a very well-defined rhythm and a clear structure to life at such a resort. Chaotic environments (which, of necessity, accompany any kind of a more active vacation) make me very tired. I can only feel rested within a rigidly repetitive and structured framework. If you think about what my life has been since its very early stages, you’ll understand where this comes from (fall of the USSR, 100% a day inflation, bandit wars, multiple changes of the entire currency system, entrance into capitalism, emigration, immediate divorce and becoming a de facto guardian of a teenager on the day of the divorce, poverty, living between two countries for 5 years, a long-distance relationship, another emigration, packing and moving many times, traveling between countries every two months.)
People say, “What’s the point of a vacation where you don’t learn or see anything new?” I have to say, folks, after all of this change I’ve experienced and witnessed, I’m really into giving myself a couple of weeks a year simply to digest all of it without having any new information come my way.
There is nothing like this a Caribbean all-inclusive resort in the US, unfortunately. Every vacation involves either renting a car or staying in a city which is not at all relaxing. I find that only complete inactivity really helps me rest.
Last summer we had a great vacation in Florida, but:
1. There were only 2 restaurants with eatable food within the walking distance. And only one of them requested formal attire. A resort has 10 and they all insist people dress formally for dinner.
2. There were cars streaming behind our backs as we sat on the beach. This is hardly relaxing. And the need to inhale noxious fumes as one sits on the beach is very annoying. Plus there was a construction going on close to our hotel, and we kept hearing construction site noises.
These are grave defects.
And to people who want to giggle at my love for this type of vacation (I don’t mean reader Z, I mean other people who know who they are), I can only say that I wish you were at least 20% as self-aware as I am and as capable of creating restful environments for yourself that would be based on your psychological makeup and personality type.
Obviously, this is not a vacation for everybody. But people who have lived their lives in the state of constant upheaval and insecurity are perfectly suited for it.
I also want to say to any well-meaning fool who is likely to blabber about the “exploitation” of 3rd World people. Do that on my blog, and this 3rd World person who has no time for your ridiculous self-aggrandizement at the expense of 3rd World people will bite your head off.