Is All-Inclusive Worth It in Puerto Vallarta? Pros and Cons Explained

When it comes to planning a vacation in Puerto Vallarta, one of the biggest decisions travelers face is whether to choose an all-inclusive resort or not.

While all-inclusive resorts can offer convenience and cost savings, they may not be the best option for everyone.

In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of all-inclusive resorts in Puerto Vallarta to help you make an informed decision for your next vacation.

Why Should You Pick All-Inclusive?

On the one hand, all-inclusive resorts can be a great choice for travelers who want to relax and unwind without worrying about the details of planning and budgeting for meals and activities.

With everything included in the price, you can enjoy unlimited food, drinks, and entertainment – who doesn’t want that?!

It can also be very good value for families and large groups, with tons of activities and amenities for everyone to enjoy.

On the other hand, all-inclusive resorts may not be the best fit for travelers who want to explore the local culture and cuisine of Puerto Vallarta.

With meals and drinks included in the price, you’re less likely to venture out and try local restaurants and bars.

Not only that, these mega properties can sometimes feel like a bubble, isolating you from the surrounding community and limiting opportunities for cultural immersion.

And one last point, all-inclusive resorts may not always be the most affordable option, as you may prefer to choose your own activities and meals based on your interests and budget.

beautiful beach and hotels of Puerto vallarta
beach resort in Puerto vallarta

Pros of All-Inclusive Resorts

Cost Savings

Why not enjoy all the same sun, sand, and tourist destination without any hidden surprises that can break the bank?

Whether you’re a frugal shopper or just appreciate some cost savings on your vacation, an all-inclusive resort won’t disappoint – every meal, drink, and activity is already taken care of with just one set price.

Talk about a tropical paradise that won’t break the piggy bank!


Another advantage of these resorts is the convenience factor. Everything is located on the resort property, so you don’t have to worry about transportation or finding restaurants and activities in a new place.

This can be especially helpful for travelers who are unfamiliar with the area or who don’t want to spend time researching and planning their itinerary.

row of tropical cocktails on table sp
tropical cocktails

Unlimited Food and Drinks

All-inclusive resorts in Puerto Vallarta come with the added perk of unlimited eats and drinks.

A dream come true for travelers who take pleasure in experimenting with flavors or want to treat themselves to a gourmet meal without spending a fortune.

Even better, you can ease your conscience knowing that it’s all included in your trip. How convenient!

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Activities & Entertainment

All-inclusive resorts in Puerto Vallarta often offer a wide range of activities and entertainment options, from water sports and fitness classes to live music and shows.

This can be a great way to try new things and stay entertained without having to leave the resort property.


Unless you’re staying at an adults-only resort, all-inclusive properties are like a dream come true for parents – they can finally experience the carefree bliss of vacationing while the kids have just as much fun!

With organized activities and events perfect for all ages, these family-friendly facilities make it so easy to relax and enjoy even the wildest of getaways with your tribe.

Who said you need to sacrifice your sanity when going on holiday?

Cons of All-Inclusive Resorts

Lack of Local Experience

One of the major drawbacks of all-inclusive resorts in Puerto Vallarta is that they can be quite isolated from the local culture and experiences.

You may find yourself spending most of your time on the resort grounds and miss out on the rich and diverse cultural offerings of the city.

This could include local festivals, street food, and other unique experiences that can only be found outside the resort!

Puerto Vallarta Beach
Crowded Beach in Puerto Vallarta

Limited Dining Options

Although all-inclusive resorts offer a wide range of dining options, the quality of the food can be hit or miss.

You might find that the food is not as fresh or flavorful as you’d like, and there may be limited options for guests with dietary restrictions.

Not only that, you may find yourself eating at the same restaurants every day, which can become monotonous and boring over time.

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Crowded Pools & Beaches

The pools and beaches can become overly crowded during peak season, which often leads to competing for much-needed space to relax.

Between the noise from the pool and beachgoers, you may find yourself less relaxed than you had anticipated.

If serenity is what you’re looking for even while on vacation, perhaps an all-inclusive resort isn’t the right fit!

If there’s an option, you can upgrade to a swim-up suite instead; although they cost more, you won’t have to fight for lounge chairs.

Hidden Fees and Extra Charges

While these resorts may offer a range of fun-filled amenities and services, you should pack extra cash for potential hidden fees or extra charges.

That after-dinner whisky might be pricier than expected if it’s taken from the premium resort bar.

Fancy a relaxing massage? Spa services are usually not included in the package deal.

Oh and those jungle canopy ziplines? Don’t forget to factor those into your budget!

All jokes aside, caution is required when booking an all-inclusive resort in Puerto Vallarta (or any destination really) as you don’t want your postcard home featuring a hefty bill along with beautiful sunsets!

Final Thoughts

Deciding whether to stay at an all-inclusive resort in Puerto Vallarta can be a tricky decision.

Yes, there are plenty of amenities and services to please practically any type of traveler, but they may not fit in with what you want out of a vacation.

When making a final decision, it’s important to take your time and really think through your options – consider if the pros outweigh the cons and ensure you’ve done enough research so there’s no nasty surprises on arrival.

After all, why book something unless it will ultimately provide you with an experience you’ll treasure for years to come?

Also, Puerto Vallarta isn’t the only destination with all-inclusive properties! Make sure you check out our equally informative guide on staying at an all-inclusive resort in Cancun.