In Thailand I always book accommodation on a B&B or Room Only basis. There is just so much good cheap food available that you would be denying yourself some wonderful dining experiences by booking full-board (all inclusive) and eating all meals in your hotel :-)
Do not go AI in Thailand! Support local eateries which are wonderful and great value.
Don't know what you have been reading but most of the hotels in Khao Lak are certainly NOT All Inclusive. Sadly prospective visitors from the UK and Europe may get that impression because TUI (Thompson Holidays) and Tomas Cook have featured three or four resorts on an AI basis presumably to appeal to those used to AI in other parts of the world. AI is not a popular feature and in the view of those who know Thailand totally unjustified and a waste of both money and the opportunity to dine around and sample the world famous Thai cuisine cooked the real Thai way and in real Thai locations not artificially created ones where you are captive in a particular resort because you have been seduced into thinking it is good value for money. Just use Booking.com for your dates and budget and meal preference and see that the vast majority of accommodation is not AI at all. Even at resorts that do offer it is not exclusively AI. There are no completely AI resorts in Khao Lak and from personal experience in restaurants near to resorts offering it guests on AI have dined outside the resort when they have realised that is so much better.
I started researching a week ago for my first trip to Khao Lak.
Used this forum and the hotel reviews and search button for old posts before deciding on a hotel on BB basis.
We booked flights and hotel separately.
No need to go through a travel company like Thomson IMO.
AI would be an expensive mistake given the numbers of good beach restaurants in KL.
Some lovely hotels out there!
Thanks everyone thats what we hoped people would say now we need to find a flight thanks again Mats.
In Khao Lak center there are plenty good and affordable restaurants with Thai food ! See TA restaurants in Khao Lak.
So, when your hotel is in walking distance to the city center I suggest to take B&B, but if you stay on the outer sides of Khao Lak you have to take (pay) for a taxi each time you have lunch or dinner.
Some of the hotels say they are IN Khao Lak, meaning...15km away !
Don't wait too long to book your airplane tickets.
Enjoy beautiful Khao Lak !
Agreed with all don't go All-Inclusive to Thailand to many good restaurants, At a very good cheap price compared to the hotels
We just booked flights through sky scanner,for £450 flying with Emirates from Manchester.that is flying Jan 31st landing on Feb 1st.
Happy with that price,as I like Emirates,although we flew with air China this year for only £330,but they changed the layover time at Beijing,to 4 hrs so it was quite a long journey,but we got there in the end.
Also managed to get upstairs in economy,on the A380,only another 2 seats were booked upstairs,when we booked ours.
Maybe worth a look
Tracy we booked directly with Emirates for December 7th to 16th for £499 from Manchester - we also got upper deck seats.
A few left still - maybe people miss the upper deck when booking seats ;)
The other 3 planes are triple 7s and we booked 47A/B which are the two seaters at the back.
Hi Bonzo, I don't recommend all inclusive. Thailand is a country that you can just land and wing it all the way. There's lots of accommodation and eating from the streets is safe, I've been going since early 80's and have never been sick from street food. We are a bit older now and pre-book via the internet for peace of mind. If you have kids that the way to go. We do include breakfast, its the only meal we will eat at the resort, besides pool side snacks. The benefit of booking as far out as you can, is getting a good deal. Hope this helps.