Visiting an all-inclusive resort can make for the perfect vacation. You pre-pay one set rate, and then everything at your luxurious resort property is up for grabs. Right? Well, not always, and not everything.

There are plenty of instances of resorts not delivering on their promises, but knowing what's included and what's not in "unlimited" packages involves reading the fine print. To that end, here's what's not actually included at all-inclusive resorts in Mexico (and elsewhere, for that matter!).

Certain Resort-Specific Sports Are Extra

Your room, food, and drinks (including alcohol) are likely going to be included in your all-inclusive package, confirms OysterHowever, that still leaves many things off the table, like motorized water sports. Unfortunately for travelers who are venturing to Mexico to go zooming around on a jetski or cruising on a yacht (even a small one!), those perks probably aren't part of the base package.


Market Watch confirms that places like Club Med (there are the Ixtapa Pacific and Cancún properties in Mexico, to name two) charge extra for "motorized sports." Of course, the CEO of Club Med retorted that guests are only paying "minimal" amounts above their all-inclusive rate because "so much is already included." We're not buying it, Xavier Mufraggi.

You'll Pay More For Premium Entrees

Sure, most resort packages include all food. But some, well, they skimp a little on fancier dishes. For example, Market Watch confirms that Marriott's CasaMagna Cancún Resort charges extra beyond your three-per-day meals. That means if you want to order lobster or a beef filet ("premium entrées"), you'll be paying a premium price.

Plus, kids have to order from the children's menu (for under-12's) to avoid overage charges. Clearly, this rule couldn't apply at places with buffets for every meal, but at CasaMagna Cancún Resort, it's everyday practice.

You should also check to see whether room service is included in your fee structure. While meal plans often stipulate three meals per day, there might be specific requirements as to when and how you consume those meals. After all, per-person fees mean per person; you can't share a burger and fries in your hotel room without management knowing about it (and billing you accordingly).

Getting To And From The Resort Property

Again, "all-inclusive" doesn't really mean everything is covered. Many a traveler has found themselves stranded (and broke) after not realizing that their resort experience didn't include provisions for transportation to and from the property. While you're standing at the airport with your luggage in hand is not the ideal time to learn that your resort is twenty miles away and won't send a complimentary shuttle to pick you up.

Instead, you'll be paying for a cab or an Uber to get to your resort, and the staff there won't care one bit. For example, one TripAdvisor reviewer explained that they chose Oleo Cancún Playa All Inclusive for a south-of-the-border trip because the rates purportedly included transport to and from the local airport. But when they arrived, that wasn't the case.

Those Resort Fees That No One Likes To Talk About

Have you ever noticed city, county, or "tourist" fees added onto your bill at a hotel? It's exceedingly common in the United States, but you would expect that if your hotel in Mexico is billed as "all-inclusive," you wouldn't be paying extra fees beyond that base price.

But that's unfortunately not the case, especially when it comes to those ubiquitous "resort fees." Resort or convenience fees are basically BS, says Market Watch, because they apply to things like newspapers, pool access, and the gym. Some resorts also charge for Wi-Fi access, which seems supremely silly and downright rude when you're already paying hundreds of dollars per day for accommodations.

Spa Experiences Aren't Always Part Of The Deal

Another essential at many all-inclusive resorts that aren't part of the deal is the spa experience. Per Market Watch, spa experiences are an add-on that consumers will need to pay extra for. This applies to resorts all over the globe, of course, but it's also true of those in Mexico.

Part of the reasoning involves the cost of the products you use while in the spa. Clearly, getting your nails done multiple times per day could mess with the resort's bottom line. But even at places where spa services are included, they'll likely be limited to a certain number or type per day or per stay.

So, if you thought you were getting a relaxing massage and facial mask each day while staying in Mexico, you'll need to think again. And if those perks are especially important to you, definitely read the fine print before booking your next Mexican resort vacation.