There are a lot of different components when planning a family vacation. After you pick your dates and destination, you still have to choose a hotel, find flights for the whole family, rent a car or research other transportation options, and plan meals, tours, and activities during your trip.
It’s a lot of work, which is why an all-inclusive vacation can be a good option for those times when all the travel prep just seems too overwhelming. Everything will be taken care of and paid of ahead of time, and you won’t need to keep reaching for cash or credit cards during your trip.
If you’re someone who likes to explore a destination and get off the beaten path, an all-inclusive vacation may not be the right choice for you. All-inclusive packages include food and drinks at your resort, so if you eat elsewhere, you’ll be paying extra on top of what you’ve already shelled out. Same goes for tours and activities outside your resort. But if you’re looking for a laidback escape from everyday life where you don’t have to think too much about different options, this can be a good way to go.
Read the fine print to fully understand what’s included and what isn’t. Sometimes things like spa services are an extra cost. Comb through the info and read reviews about dining options to see if included food choices and restaurant styles (like buffet versus sit-down) will work for the whole family, and if you need to make any dining reservations in advance.
If you still have questions, the sites listed below offer tips and advice on planning all-inclusive vacations, plus they often provide ways to connect with agents and experts for some human help.
Ready to book an all-inclusive getaway? Here are our picks for the best travel sites for all-inclusive vacations.
1. Apple Vacations
One of the country’s largest vacation companies, Apple Vacations offers all-inclusive vacation packages to destinations in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. All-inclusive packages booked through Apple include roundtrip airfare; hotel accommodations; roundtrip transportation to and from the airport and your hotel; meals, snacks, soft drinks, and alcoholic beverages; a number of activities at your chosen resort; and all taxes and tips. Choose one of the company’s “Golden Apple” hotels for a resort that’s been especially well-reviewed by Apple Vacations customers following their vacations.
Best Feature for Families: The Travel Protection Plus Plan can be added on to all-inclusive packages booked through Apple Vacations. It includes the ability to cancel for any reason and receive a full refund (minus the per-person cost of the protection plan), post-departure travel insurance, and a Hurricane Travel Credit that provides a refund for unused or interrupted vacation nights if a hurricane disrupts a vacation for 24 hours or more. Also included: a price guarantee. If the price of your hotel or flight drops after your reservation is booked, let Apple Vacations know and the company will adjust your reservation for the lower price.
2. Cheap Caribbean
Cheap Caribbean offers all-inclusive vacation packages (including hotel room, flight, meals, drinks, and activities) to its namesake location, as well as Mexico and Central America, put together by the company’s “Beachologists,” who are experts on planning trips to their destinations. Since the company was founded in 2000, it’s helped more than three million customers travel to 147 cities. Search through the site’s vacation packages by using the “family-friendly” filter to find spots where the little ones will have just as much fun as the grownups. The advertised price for your package includes taxes and fees upfront so you know the full price you’ll pay, and you can break it into monthly installments if you’d like. And if you uncover a lower price for the same vacation package on another U.S.-based travel website within 24 hours of booking, Cheap Caribbean will match that price—and even beat it by $25.
Best Feature for Families: Each package description includes in-depth information about the resort property, including what the company loves about it, what it doesn’t love, and why you should consider staying there. There’s extensive information about hotel dining, amenities, and nearby attractions, and customer reviews help fill in any missing details with first-hand experiences.
You trust Tripadvisor for insightful traveler reviews. You can also trust it as a great website for booking all-inclusive vacations. Choose your destination, click vacation packages, and then filter results by all-inclusive options. You can sort those by best value or price and further filter results by price range, amenities, ratings, and other options. Deals are booked through partner sites like CheapTickets and Travelocity.
Best Feature for Families: You can filter search results by family-friendly options. And when reading through property reviews, you can search by keywords like “family” or “kids” to get information and opinions from other parents who have traveled there.
Travelzoo features deals from more than 2,000 travel, entertainment, and other companies that have been vetted by its on-staff experts. The site’s promise: “We never recommend a deal that we wouldn’t book ourselves.” All-inclusive package options in destinations like Mexico and the Caribbean include flights, hotels, meals, and drinks. The one catch? To see all of the deals you have to become one of the site’s more than 28 million members. Luckily, you can join for free with just an email address.
Best Feature for Families: You can filter your search for all-inclusive packages by family-friendly deals, and then add on other options like “winter fun” or “water activities” to further tailor a trip to your family’s interests.
This popular travel search site offers options for booking both all-inclusive hotel stays and vacation packages that include flights, rental cars, and hotel stays (including all-inclusive options). You can further filter results by property class, guest ratings, and amenities to find your perfect getaway. And if you’re a member of the free Orbitz Rewards loyalty program, you’ll earn points for any travel booked and be able to access special pricing and promotions.
Best Feature for Families: There’s a lot of good info on the site for any hotel properties you’re considering, including a full breakdown of the resort and its amenities along with helpful guest reviews and lots of photos. It’s also easy to find out whether cribs and rollaway beds are available, plus whether the hotel has a kids’ club or other childcare options.
6. Liberty Travel
This travel company that’s been working with vacationers for six decades offers all-inclusive vacation packages to spots like Aruba, the Bahamas, Cozumel, and Los Cabos. Filter your search by both all-inclusive and family-friendly deals to get results that check both boxes. Liberty Travel packages include flights, airport transfers, and rooms at properties where meals, drinks, and activities are included in the per-person price. Listings show the prices from different departure cities and clearly outline all the features of the property, including family-friendly amenities like kids’ clubs and game rooms.
Best Feature for Families: If you’re planning a large family getaway with the grandparents and all the cousins, head to Liberty Travel’s group travel page for info and assistance with a special milestone family trip. The site and its travel consultants can help you pick the best location and customize your itinerary.
This online travel company offers all-inclusive vacation packages to destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean, as well as some U.S. destinations. Filter and sort searches by price, star level, and guest ratings, as well as amenities and location on BookIt.com. Package listings include guest reviews and photos from actual travelers who have stayed at the properties. If you’re a member of the site (membership is free), you get access to special members-only pricing, exclusive email offers, and other perks.
Best Feature for Families: After you’ve found a destination and hotel property that look interesting, you can see the per-person and package rates by dates at different times of the year. So if you have some flexibility in when you travel, you can choose the timing that gives your family a better price.
Related: The 8 Best Vacation Rental Sites for Families
Beth Luberecki is a Florida-based freelance writer who writes about travel, business, and lifestyle topics for a variety of publications and websites. She enjoys exploring destinations close to home and farther afield with her husband and teenage daughter. Visit her website at bethluberecki.com or find her on Instagram at @bethluberecki.
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