Vacations for Canadians

~by Melissa Erskine

 You’ve booked your holiday and the countdown officially begins to hot weather, sand between your toes and pool-side margaritas. Here are a few tips and tricks we have found helpful on our own all-inclusive vacations.

Pack a Carry-on Bag

In my carry on, I always ensure I pack a swimsuit, at least one or two beach outfits and sandals. Nothing worse than the airline losing your luggage and you are stuck with no clothes or swimsuit. 


The extra clothes are more important/necessary if you have a connecting flight, as your chances for luggage getting lost or delayed is much higher than a direct flight.


If you arrive to your resort early in the day, packing your swimsuit can be a life saver. Check-in is usually about 3pm, and you don’t want to spend hours waiting around with nothing to do. Drop your bags with the bell staff, change into your swimsuit, and hit the beach or pool instead!

Learn About Resort Procedures Early in your Stay

Each resort has intricacies that must be mastered quickly in order to take full advantage of your stay. The most important one is restaurant reservations. Some resorts let you sign up for restaurant reservations in advance or at check-in but many require you to reserve each morning for that evening. If this seems to be the case for your resort, you’ll want to figure out where to make reservations, which restaurants (if any) have a surcharge and what time you can begin to make reservations each morning.


You’ll also want to find out the operating hours of restaurants, pools, bars, kids club, & activities. Ideally, there will be a schedule of activities posted along with a map of the resort.

Bring Lots of Sunscreen

One of my favorite all inclusive tips might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to overlook. Bring lots of sunscreen…the sun is hot, and you’ll burn to a crisp without it. If you run out of sunscreen at the resort, you’ll likely have to pay a premium to replace it. The resort knows that it has a captive audience and will overcharge for toiletries like sunscreen. It’s best to bring more than what you think you’ll need with you.

Bring Enough Cash for Tips

More typically, it’s customary to leave a few dollars for the friendly bartender making your drinks, the restaurant servers, the housekeeping staff leaving you towel animals on your bed every night, and the bell staff handling your luggage.


Plan to bring several USD $1 and $5 bills to support hardworking employees (local currency is welcomed as well).


Overall, the best way to get great service is to be kind. Asking about your server and remembering their name will go quite far to ensure you have a memorable stay.


If you get great service, show it with a few extra dollars but don’t forget a kind smile and a thank you to go along with it!

Leave the Resort

While you’re there to have a relaxing vacation on the beach, it’s always a good idea to see more of the place you’re visiting. All inclusive resorts are gigantic, man made structures, and generally don’t truly represent the country you’re visiting. Use a local guide for an authentic tour to see historical sites, villages or a small town, wander around the markets for free, speak with locals and experience a little bit of the culture. Build it into your budget, and your trip will be that much more meaningful.


By leaving the resort, you’ll get to learn something new, interact more with the people living there, and support the local economy.

Stay Hydrated

One of the biggest things I learned was how important it is to drink plenty of water. When you have so many tasty drinks at your disposal, you can often forget about good ol’ H20. Too much alcohol combined with heat/sun is a recipe for dehydration disaster that can derail your vacation.


One way to ensure you have enough water is to only have water with your meals. It’s also a good habit to start and end your day with a bottle of it. Bottled water is generally readily available at resorts and is highly recommended

We hope these tips will help enhance your next vacation!


Booking with a Vacations for Canadians Travel Agent means you will benefit from our knowledge and travel experience. To find your perfect all-inclusive vacation, contact our experienced team today.