In 2020, I traveled to Mexico twice--once to Cancun and once to Cabo. Both times, I had wonderful experiences and had opportunities to visit or stay 6 different resorts (see previous posts). If the world were free to travel, who knows where I would be going, but that is not the case. To be honest, the budget also isn't quite the same as it would be during "normal" times. Also, I'm grateful to this time for learning about all-inclusive resorts. My opinion of them previously wasn't very high, but now I know that there are some excellent options for all sorts of people. Now I have fallen in love with a few resorts for different reasons, and I can make recommendations!
Prior to the CDC's COVID testing requirement for passengers entering the United States, I was planning a trip to Costa Rica. It was going to be beautiful, and I will recreate it as soon as possible! As I learned more, I realized that there were a lot of added expenses adding up related to COVID and specific to Costa Rica (and some other countries). None of the expenses were large (specific COVID insurance, car rental insurance, and COVID test), but considering the enjoyment I would get for the money spent, it seemed like this was not the time for Costa Rica.
As updates came in about what each resort or brand was doing regarding COVID tests for Americans flying home, it became evident that Mexico would be much friendlier to the budget. Some would argue that Costa Rica is a better option and that the added expense would be worth it, and I respect that. However, I would argue that Mexico is not a free-for-all. The resorts are going to great lengths to keep guests and staff safe, and with the perpetually warm weather, there are abundant opportunities to socially distance outside!
Nearly every resort in Mexico is offering free COVID testing. Some provide this for every guest, and some require guests to stay a minimum number of nights. Additionally, most resorts are offering up to 14 nights free if a guest tests positive and needs to quarantine! Also, most resorts in Cancun are 15-45 minutes from the airport, which is much easier than the exploration of several regions that I would enjoy in Costa Rica. For now, ease, relaxation, and peace-of-mind are what is important to me.
Even my Mexico plans were altered at the last minute. I was scheduled to stay at two different resorts over five days. The first resort is with a brand I know, love, and trust, while the second resort was with a brand that is new to me. Considering COVID testing, I had to make a decision of where and which day to be tested. Not only that, but if I tested positive at the first resort and had to quarantine, then I would have to cancel the other one. Ultimately, I decided to extend my stay at the first resort and cancel the other one.
My thirst for knowledge and varied experiences will have to wait, and that is OK. I will learn what it is like to spend 5 days at Sun Palace Resort in Cancun, and I will experience all it has to offer, while also getting to know the staff. "Forced relaxation" is a term, right? I believe things typically work out for the best, and this seems best. Please follow my journey February 28-March 5 on Instagram and Facebook, and check back here later for my full report once I return home!