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Archive for November, 2010

FAQ #15: Shades of Gray Nov 08
Q: Why is there so much variation with so-called “all-inclusive” resorts?
(We went to one & were very disappointed.)
A: The all-inclusive concept is wonderful in theory but varies quite a bit in reality.
Accommodations and meals are a given but any or all of the following may or MAY NOT be included: beverages; land activities and water sports; spa or golf , service fees and gratuities. A few resorts and ships are truly ultra all-inclusive, many are definitely not!
Also, all-inclusive is NOT synonymous with high quality. Glossy advertsing can create unrealistic expectations.
If you are envisioning upscale accommodations; a la carte meals with menu items cooked to order; soft drinks, espresso drinks and premium cocktails; 24 hour room service and resort activities to all be included but instead find basic accommodations; 3 daily self-serve buffets, generic alcohols from a wall dispenser, limited room service and resort activities fees, then you are at the wrong place and will definitely feel let down.
This is a very black-and-white example but there are many shades of gray. Get some expert advice before you commit your vacation time and money.
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FAQ #14: Protect Your Investment Nov 01

A:  An unexpected accident, illness or injury before or during travel can derail the best laid plans. Cancellation fees and medical expenses can add up quickly. Insurance protects your financial investment. Any prepaid, non-refundable components of your trip should be insured.

Also, most U.S. health insurance plans do NOT cover international travel. Some provide reimbursement upon your return but it is your responsibility to have and submit the appropriate paperwork. It is very important to have a policy that includes an emergency assistance hotline, medical coverage and medical evacuation.

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