The Myths Behind Hotel Meeting Packages and Meal Plans

Setting up the right resort or package that helps best with hosting a meeting or corporate event can be a little bit stressful. You need to find the right package and hotel that best fits your event as well as know the differences.

An all-inclusive resort or meal plan (when guests only pay for their drinks) is the best fit for non-business related trips. The first all-inclusives were introduced during the 1930s in Great Britain, at Butlins and Pontins Holiday Camps. We all are most familiar with Gerard Blitz pioneering the all-inclusive beach resort at Club Med in 1950. These wonderful all-inclusives were once redesigned for beach resorts so everything was covered for you. This included meals, drinks (even alcohol), airport transfers, and almost all of your activities like golf, non-motorized sports, and horseback riding.

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John Issa, a Jamaican hotelier, even raised the bar on the all-inclusives at Negril Beach Village, in 1976. He supplied his guests with fake shark teeth necklaces and when guests needed to pay for anything (even tips) they’d use the teeth of the necklaces. There was no need to carry cash with you. Issa spread this idea all across Jamaica and eventually throughout the Caribbean and to Mexico. It also became closely associated with Sandals and Super Clubs Resorts.

As for today’s all-inclusive resorts, they include spas, fitness clubs, kid’s clubs, and teen clubs. Some of these resorts even offer a full schedule, for all ages, of activities and daily evening entertainment. Other resorts even go farther than that and offer luxury room categories, butler class service, and suites.

Not all resorts are as handy and luxurious as all-inclusives, but these resorts may offer a variety of meal plans for you. Some of these plans include soft drinks with you meals, which doesn’t include alcohol or snacks and beverages between meals. These meal plans could include:

EP-European Plan – Accommodation Only
BP-Breakfast Plan – Includes Full Breakfast
CP-Continental Plan – Continental Breakfast Included
MAP Plan-Modified American Plan (Known as Half Board or Half Pension in Europe) – Includes Breakfast and Dinner
AP-American Plan – Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

These plans give guests the option of sorting out their ideal costs before their trip and finding the best plan for their lifestyles. Hypothetically, if you were in a large group that plans to see lot of off-site tours or events, your best bet would be to go with the MAP Plan. You don’t want to get a full all-inclusive plan and be stuck paying for meals that you aren’t even going to eat.

The non-all-inclusive resorts may not offer meal plans but they could offer a resort or food and beverage credit that off-set these costs. These credits can range from $100 to $1,000 per room per day.

Depending on what kind of event, resorts will provide a variety of meeting packages for corporate groups, such as Day Meeting Packages, which include breakfast (continental), lunch, afternoon snacks, meeting room rental, and audio-visual. This package is best if you were just planning a local meeting and wouldn’t be staying overnight at the resort. Another meeting package is the Full Meeting Package that includes overnight stay, a full breakfast, and everything the Day Meeting Package offers, as well as dinner. This package is best if you’re holding executive retreats, business meetings, or conferences that aren’t exactly close to home.

There are so many options to choose from when picking the right resort or plan. You just need to know which ones are right for YOU!

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