How to plan Sunny Vacations for Less Than $2000

We always try to find the best deals especially when it comes to vacations. We both wanted to travel to a warm and sunny place for one week in May/June this year that is somewhat close by to Toronto so we did our research and found the options below:

  1. All inclusive vacation somewhere in the Caribbean – this would cost anywhere between $1,300-2,000 per person including flight, accommodation and food. The total would be $2,600-4,000 depending on the resort.
  2. Caribbean cruise – this would cost approx $2,500-3,000 for 2 people for the cruise alone (which includes all food) and $500 per person for the flight. The total would be around $4,000.
  3. Somewhere warm in the USA – this would cost approx $500 per person for flight and $150-200 per night for hotel. With food, the total would probably be around $3,500.
  4. Hawaii – this would cost approx $600-700 per person for flight and $200-250 per night for hotel. With food, the total would probably be around $4,000.

As you can tell, the cheapest option is the all inclusive vacation. But for us, one of the most important things when it comes to vacations is the food. We’ve been to an all inclusive before and we know what to expect when it comes to the food. The quality of the food at a resort is pretty standard and it does get boring over the course of the week. We like the freedom of being able to control what we want to eat.

We ended up booking a flight and hotel package with Air Canada Vacations to Playa Del Carmen in Mexico which costed us $744 per person (includes round-trip airfares, bus transfers and hotel stay for 7 nights). The hotel was a few steps away from Fifth Avenue which is similar to the “strip” of Vegas and they offered free breakfast. Since breakfast was covered, we only spent $500 CAD (~7,000 pesos) on food and other things so all together, we spent less than $2,000 CAD which is still cheaper than an all inclusive vacation.

The best part of this vacation was that we could eat whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted. We tried a lot of different foods from super gourmet to local cheap eats with the most expensive meal costing us as much as $100 CAD and the least expensive meal costing us only $12 CAD. Everything we ate tasted great. This experience goes to show that all inclusive packaged vacations are not always necessarily the better deal and it’s important to weigh your options.

Here are some photos from our wonderful vacation:

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