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Frequent travelers looking to purchase timeshares

Discussion in 'New to Timesharing? Look Here!' started by PubLife1759, Nov 10, 2019.

  1. PubLife1759

    PubLife1759 Guest

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    Hello there! I am so thankful to have found this resource. I have spent the last few weekends researching timeshare options, and you all have provided invaluable information. We are hoping to acquire at least one of our desired units in the next few months, but I thought it was time to sign up and ask the experts.


    1) Is there a vacation destination you wish to visit most of the time or on a regular basis? if so where?

    Not in a useful manner - there are a few locations we make it to nearly every year, but those are all for long weekends, not week long trips.


    2) Do you want to visit your home resort at least half the time, or do you want to trade more than half the time?

    I expect to trade 90% or more of the time.


    3) What are your 5 top trade destinations?

    Truly difficult to say, we enjoy exploring new places. In the past few years, our week long vacations have been to Munich, Moab, West Yellowstone, San Francisco, Seattle, and a lovely week in a run down Tennessee cabin.


    4) How many people do you usually travel with - total, including yourself?

    Usually just my husband and myself, sometimes another couple will join us. It would be nice to occasionally book an inexpensive week at a Florida property with fun pool amenities and have some of our friends with children join us.


    5) Can you travel any time, or are you locked into the school schedule?

    We are completely flexible, except that we do not travel over any federal holidays.


    6) Can you make firm plans 12 or more mos. in advance?

    For our week-long trips, this is essential - we bid in September for the following year of travel. As long as we avoid holiday weeks, we will always get our requested weeks off. For our monthly long weekends, a handful of them are bid at the same time, but most are set 1-8 weeks out.


    7) Can you vacation for a full week at a time?

    Technically we can take several full weeks per year, but we tend to prefer to take two week-long trips and many long weekends. We try to get away at least once a month.


    8) What level of accommodations do you prefer on a scale of 1 to 5 stars?

    We enjoy the occasional luxury stay, when we find a good deal, but usually we stay in modest accommodations. If the place is clean and the bed is comfortable, we're content.


    9) How much can you afford to spend upfront, without financing?

    We don't intend to spend much, though that has little to do with budget. For the ownerships I am eyeing, I expect to spend less than $3000, and hope to spend considerably less.


    10) How much can you afford to spend every year for a maintenance fee that will come due right after Christmas, and increase each year?

    Spending about $2000 between maintenance and membership fees would be ideal. Additional costs throughout the year for last minute reservations are expected and not a problem.


    11) Are you a detail oriented planner?

    Yes and no. We do not tend to plan activities in advance, but for the travel components - transportation, accommodations, rental cars, and the like - I am perhaps overly organized.


    12) Do you understand that once you buy a timeshare, it may be very difficult to sell or give away, and you are responsible for all fees, until you do?

    Yes. We hope to mitigate this by not spending much up front, and choosing popular weeks so that giving them away with perhaps some prepaid fees will be a viable exit plan.


    Thank you all! My current plan is to wait patiently for a high value Grandview, Woodstone, or Regal Vistas week, to get us into RCI points. We would also like to find a reasonably low MF (studio-2
    br?) high season week that trades into II. That should reserve us our two scheduled weeks away annually, leave some points for a few pre-planned long weekends, and give us access to both programs' last minute cash offerings. We are happy to leave a few nights on the table if the week only cost us ~$300.

    Again, I am grateful for your knowledge and advice. Do you think we have a good plan for us? Or are we crazy for thinking that timeshares could actually save us money while affording us great vacation options?
     
  2. pacman

    pacman TUG Member

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    Have you considered Worldmark? Lots of resorts in the west. Trades in RCI.
     
  3. PubLife1759

    PubLife1759 Guest

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    I had looked into them briefly, but assumed (possibly incorrectly) that the current good II value proposition could end at any time, since they're owned by Wyndham/RCI. Is that not a legitimate fear? Otherwise, they seemed appealing, despite being a little more expensive than my original plan.
     
  4. Passepartout

    Passepartout TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    You don't say what area you live in, and some TS companies are stronger in different parts of the country. I really like having a 'core' TS ownership that's within reasonable driving distance, both for those quick long weekend getaways, and for exchanging within a group. You express a desire to exchange, but when you add exchange fees (currently RCI is $239 PER Exchange) and transportation costs to incresing annual fees- if you need to fly, rent a car, etc. it casts an ever expanding shadow over low entry price. This makes point systems- like Wyndham if you're based in the East, or WorldMark or VRI in the West, and have internal exchanges that cost a whole bunch less than RCI or II.

    Another benefit of a relatively nearby resort is the possibility of low cost low cost getaways for those impromptu long weekends.

    (Here's the arm-twisting) For the paltry sum of $15, you can join TUG and have access to the reviews of thousands of resorts worldwide, as wel as unlocking the last minute distressed and rare sightings forum to alert you to interesting availability. As a Member, you can extend your membership by posting your own reviews, and be recognized as committed timeshare user.

    Welcome to TUG.

    Jim
     
  5. PubLife1759

    PubLife1759 Guest

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    I apologize, we live in Southeast Florida.

    I am somewhat hopeful that we can find an ownership either in Ormond/Daytona or SW Florida that offers reduced rental rates to owners - we visit both areas frequently, sometimes just for a night or tw . Daytona is often really, really cheap when we go, so SW Florida is probably going to be a better bet for trading or renting purposes. Realistically, though, from what I've read, we'll usually have a good bit of availability for last minute cheap weeks between RCI and II.

    Regardless, we're as likely to fly to Denver as we are to drive to Daytona, so we'd likely consider anything that's a nonstop flight from FLL or MIA to be a suitable home resort. Something in Florida would only be preferable for day use or discounted rental stays.
     
  6. Marathoner

    Marathoner TUG Member

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    Since you want flexibility, I would suggest a points based system. You mentioned Moab and West Yellowstone so that naturally points to Worldmark given there are no others in those locations. Moreover, it fits your budget. Finally, trade values are high in II.

    I've owned Worldmark for several years and their flexibility and exchange capability is excellent. So, I highly recommend. I've made more than a dozen exchanges in II.

    Yes, II exchange agreement may disappear over time but it may not. You can only make decisions based on the facts known today and not on speculation and fear. You can protect yourself by knowing their existing resort locations which you will always be able to use.

    Good luck!




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  7. SmithOp

    SmithOp TUG Member

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    I think you should wait a bit and read up on the various timeshare systems here on TUG. Florida resorts are given away here free all the time, you won’t pay much but the transfer fees. Find out which system fits your needs.

    I took a free unit here at Vistana in Orlando, that let me join Interval and RCI. I then passed it on here but kept the exchange accounts, so I still use them but pay cash for cheap getaways. We like Interval the best, will probably drop RCI when its up for renewal in Feb.

    Check out Bargain Deals forum for ownership, or Last Minute forum for just taking a cash stay within 45 days. You can also use Rentals Wanted and people will make offers.


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  8. DaveNW

    DaveNW TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    Welcome to Tug. You’re in the right place.

    WorldMark is your best option, I think. I used to own a number of Weeks ownerships, and eventually sold everything specifically to buy WorldMark. I travel like you do, and it was the best fit for me.

    Don't confuse WM with Wyndham. They are very differently operated. WM is pure points, without underlying resort maintenance fees. You pay a flat rate based on how many points (credits) you own. There are WM resorts in the places you named, including a new one being built in Moab. WM also has assorted booking options (Monday Madness is one) where you can pay with money instead of credits, which can extend your ownership to a larger range of reservations. It trades in both RCI and II, also. I currently have two weeks in Hawaii booked through II that I got as WM trades.

    So do a bit more research. You may find it’s a good fit for you. Be sure to check resale prices. My 12000 credit WM account only cost me $1500, and it had three years worth of credits in the account.

    Dave
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2019 at 11:42 AM
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