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Holiday Inn Club Vacation - Did I Get A Good Deal?

Discussion in 'All Other Timeshare Systems' started by GoodOrBadIdea, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. GoodOrBadIdea

    GoodOrBadIdea Guest

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    So we just got back from a free 3-day stay in exchange for a TimeShare presentation by Holiday Inn Club Vacation (HICV). The wife & I agreed beforehand that we would listen, but no impulsive buys. Lets walk away; we're not interested in time shares.

    With respect to the many reviews/comments we've come across, we didn't feel any pressure or any of the staff being push toward us at any point (I can't say that for everyone else in the room; the table next to us was getting pushed pretty hard to make a sale).

    In short, what was scheduled to be around a 2 hour sales pitch turned into a 7 hour thorough info-session (because we took our time). We asked 1001 questions, had some private time to chit-chat and crunch some numbers with one another, and most importantly ask one of our friends (who owns a timeshare with a different company) regarding his experience and suggestions. Because of this, we addressed several of our questions before the deal, and not after.

    Several hours in, it seemed that the math added up, especially seeing we would be paying a minimum of a third (if not half) of the timeshare purchase price in the next 2-3 trips we planned on taking this year alone. So I think we got a pretty good deal, but I'd love to hear others' perspectives/feedback:

    - HICV, Points-Based system, so can book (through HICV) with Holiday-Inn Resorts, IHG (80% point exchange value), or RCI (50% point exchange value)

    - No black out dates; only that certain high demand locations will require requesting months in advance, and very exclusive areas may require a wait-list (if it's another TimeShare owner's home base, which they can reserve up to 3 years in advance, so they get priority in the reservation over us).

    - Non-weekend reservations (Sun - Thur) are at half-point cost

    - You can take advantage of others' last minute cancellations for even better deals too.

    - Our home base is Orange Lake Resort Orlando. Being that we're Floridians, that's a great value, because we have access to the resort amenities (without using any points or actually booking a hotel/resort room) for free. Unlimited use. So can literally have family/friends from out of town and drive over to the resort and use the park/water amenities, free of charge.

    - The initial sales pitch was for shares @ $00.24/point. The "if you buy today only" sales pitch was $00.21/point. A quick online comparison shows another HICV member selling their timeshare on Ebay on a timeshare resale website for $25,000 for 166,000 points ($00.1506/point). So we initially thought lets wait and shop around to buy from existing owners looking to unload their timeshare.

    - We asked about this indirectly; the HICV staff stated that if you purchase someone else's timeshare, you're stuck in the week-specific timeshare setup (old setup) and aren't allowed to upgrade into the point system, plus they don't extend the partnerships to IHG and RCI for them either. Its their way of making sure they control the sales/competition, and that this applies to ALL timeshare companies. So basically we're told that either you buy new and get the point system giving you flexibility to reserve anywhere, or you buy used and get locked into a specific week at a specific location. Period.

    - My friend warned us about the high maintenance fees, reservation fees, and membership fees (go to through partners like IHG & RCI, etc). It seems that HICV does have its fees, but they really aren't that bad, given their initial buy-in price is a LOT cheaper than say, the #1 rated Marriott Vacation Club (http://vacation-club-review.toptenreviews.com/). And there are NO membership fees (beyond the HICV annual membership fee) to use their affiliates (eg you don't have to pay an annual membership fee with IHG, and another with RCI, etc, as some other timeshare companies make you do). There are higher reservation fees when using IHG or RCI, but that's per use.

    - I'm an IHG VIP Plus member (Platinum Elite) through work, so they were able to open up deals from existing owners trying to sell back their timeshares to HICV. So we were able to get 127,000 points for $18,400 = $00.1448/point. Maintenance cost is $781 annually and $147 for property taxes annually.

    - Additional points (up to 50% of your annual point value) can be purchased for $0.01/point, per year.

    - You maintain IHG Platinum Elite status, and unused HICV points can be rolled over into IHG where they don't expire. Ever.

    - You can rollover one year's point to HICV for the next year, but the points expire after 2 years (if not rolled over the IHG). What you do use the second year will be deducted from the rollover points FIRST, before that year's allotted points, so you can technically rollover that year's unused points as well.

    So again, overall, I think we got a pretty good deal. Obviously you're limited to the 16 HCIV sites within the US, but when you combine them with the RCI options, and IHG reservations (coupled with racking up points via an IHG Credit Card), you can pretty much go anywhere with HICV for minimal out-of-pocket expense. Or at least that's how I'm seeing it.

    I'd love to hear others' feedback regarding this, in particular to the following:

    1) Did we indeed get a good deal?

    2) Are timeshares purchased in the resale market truly limited to the week-specific system, and prevented from being upgrades/changed to the point system after transfer of ownership? Because we're ONLY interested in the point system.

    3) Any pros/cons we're missing by going with HICV vs another timeshare company, based on the setup we have?

    Thanks for your time & help! :)
     
  2. MrockStar

    MrockStar Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I don't own HICV , but resale points in Bluegreen are still points that can be booked and used at all there resorts and they have a lot. Those resale points are given away free here and on craigs list all the time. Just FYI about Bluegreen, which I am a Platinum owner nd very happy one.
     
  3. snickers104

    snickers104 TUG Member

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    Wyndham resale points also can be used at almost all of their Wyndham resorts
     
  4. csxjohn

    csxjohn TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Welcome to TUG. You are probably not going to like this post but you did come here for advice and help.

    $18,000?? A lousy deal in my mind.

    I am not familiar with that particular system but with the MFs you'll be paying it appears this will give you about one week vaca a year.

    This was a total lie, "and that this applies to ALL timeshare companies." I own in Bluegreen and I bought on eBay. I can use my points in any of BGs resorts, no restrictions.

    I'll bet you did more research before you bought you last phone than you did before you signed on the line for this purchase.

    I wish you had stuck with the original plan of not buying on impulse.

    I really suggest that you rescind that purchase then do some homework. If after a couple months of looking into this you still thinks it's a good deal, they'll still sell it to you.

    Rescind now while you can then study, study, and study some more, then buy something.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  5. Tank

    Tank TUG Member

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    I am A HIVC owner with points. 166,000 points = A two bedroom 7 night stay @ Orange lake.
    As your family grows 127,000 points will not get you a 7 night vacation a year.

    $18,000 will buy you 18 years of vacations in Orlando (2 bedroom) renting from TUG or Redweek with no other obligation @ Orange lake.

    IHG points are not a good value most stays for everyday hotels. but a nice way to reserve points you might have lost because you didn't use them. If the math was done , your paying market value for that hotel, just a different way.

    If I had to do over again , finding this web-sight like you just did, I would have only rented what I want, when I want it, with no other obligations. You are lucky !

    It is $94 for each reservation you make with points / with point saver added, $126 membership fee a year , plus MF's a year. These charges alone will get you the week vacation @ orlando.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  6. csxjohn

    csxjohn TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    The OP is only "lucky" if he/she takes action to rescind this purchase and pursue the knowledge needed before spending that kind of money.
     
  7. tschwa2

    tschwa2 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    You forgot to add in the club dues and transaction fees. You are at almost $1100 per year if you stay within the HICV every year and that is for less than a week or during the off season. Exchange through RCI and there is another $160-210 fee.

    Just on your MF and annual dues you would have enough to rent an equivalent vacation be it at a hotel or resort, not to mention the $18,000 which will immediately be worth less than $500 if you need to sell.
     
  8. Tank

    Tank TUG Member

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    You are right
    that was my point
     
  9. falmouth3

    falmouth3 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I took a week's vacation at the Holiday Inn Vacation club in Myrtle Beach in early December. I got a great deal from RCI because it was was off season. I spent $209 for the week for a 2 BR, with no exchange, no points. Just $209 plus taxes of about $35.

    We also went to the sales presentation. I'm an experienced timeshare owner. The numbers they were spewing were meant to confuse and obfuscate. They asked where I already owned and talked about my maintenance fees, and rising costs. The only mention they made of maintenance fees there was that there would be "no increase" because they are limited to 3% per year increase. Everything was complete nonsense. So they just talked about payments on the huge amount of money they wanted us to spend, ignoring the fact that we would still have maintenance fees there - every year until forever. Of course we didn't bite.

    Hopefully OP still has time to rescind and take some time to breathe and research. The deal will still be there after you've educated yourself and if you decide you still want it.

    Good luck.
     
  10. falmouth3

    falmouth3 TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    1. Probably not. Buying from a developer generally is a very bad deal.

    2. I have owned 4 different timeshares over the years. I have only owned in weeks systems. While I am deeded a specific week, all of my weeks have been 52 week floating, which means I can book at any time I want, but I need to call sufficiently ahead of time to get the week I want. Some systems have seasons so you can only book a week in the season that you own.

    3. I can't say.
     
    aacmathvan likes this.
  11. skotrla

    skotrla TUG Member

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    Buying from a developer is rarely a good idea! HICV is a great program, but only if you come in via the resale market.

    For units with low maintenance fees ($5-$6/1K points) at points resorts (Lake Geneva, Smoky Mountain, South Beach), resale pricing is about $10-$20/1K points (including closing), depending on maintenance - 150K points at $900 annual maintenance should cost you $1500 if you want to buy one today. You can buy these at any time or wait for a better deal on Ebay (which could take a few months). These resorts require enrollment in HICV because the whole resort is float and they use HICV to book reservations.

    The resale value of units at any other HICV resorts is generally negative - you can give them away only if you cover closing costs. The $25K you referenced is an asking price of someone trying to get out from under a bad mistake - not a real value.

    You should definitely rescind and purchase something on the resale market at one of the resorts above. HICV points are not tied to a resort, so you can book stays at Orlando any time you want with points.

    As other posters mentioned, HICV points are the best value if used for HICV reservations (especially during the week!). Using them for RCI or IHG only makes sense if you have too many to use effectively at HICV, in which case you need to reduce the number of timeshares you own.

    -Scott
    Owner, HICV Google+ Group
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  12. LannyPC

    LannyPC TUG Member

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    First of all, I'm wondering about this "free" 3-day stay. Add in the fact that you spent practically a whole day at the sales presentation and check-in and check-out times, how much time did you actually have to enjoy the resort amenities or the Orlando attractions?

    When you say "Several hours in, it seemed that the math added up", that usually happens at sales presentations after several hours. After several hours, people are not thinking clearly and will do anything to get out of there (a very popular tactic used by TS sales people). Heck, after several hours of a sales presentation, people will believe you if you say two plus two equals five.

    The other point is about using the amenities. How far of a drive away are you from OLCC? If it's pretty far, ask yourself what amenities OLCC has that you can't find closer to your home such as golf courses and water parks? Even though you might get free usage, would it be worth it to drive all that way to OLCC just to save a few bucks not to mention the $18,000 your plunking down to start with?
     
  13. GoodOrBadIdea

    GoodOrBadIdea Guest

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    Thanks for the replies everyone. A couple of comments:

    For starters, I do not have any problem rescinding my purchase - The 10 day period for rescinding is the only reason we went ahead with the purchase, as it was stipulated in the contract, and we would be doing our research in the next few days to confirm our choice.

    My wife and I did not have any previous knowledge of the TS industry, except that people often feel locked in and are not able to resell. Based on our discussions with the staff (obviously biased), we felt this was a good way to invest into future international travel opportunities at a set price and being that we live in Florida, would always be able to use it towards a staycation should we not have enough time or money for additional flights to other locations.

    So whether or not we return this one and purchase on the resale market, we’d like to understand the pros and cons of the terms of our current purchase to help us make a better decision going forward.

    Our priorities are the following:

    1) International travel is our primary focus. We live in Florida and would only be using our points locally if time is tight. In the long run, local resorts may prove to be more worthwhile for the kids, but that’s not an issue at present.

    2) Unlimited access to the amenities at the Orange Lakes Orlando resort anytime without the use of points or a booking was also a big advantage (not enough of a reason to purchase the TS but was definitely an advantage we wanted to have IF we decided to buy into the TS system). Given that, one can look at the annual maintenance fees much like your annual HOA fees; fees for access to services you will actually utilize.

    3) Point system – In the contract, we specifically selected the point system and not the week-specific system. Using RCI, for example, we calculated needing roughly 166K points to do 3 weeks of trips in Europe and a one week trip in Africa (our plans for this upcoming year). This is why the HICV TS system made sense to us. Is the flexibility of using the points with RCI or better yet, Interval International (II) something we can find elsewhere at a better value if we are strictly looking to use the timeshare model for a significant amount of international travel? And having the flexibility in our schedule to take advantage of staycations Sun-Thurs locally at half the point value?

    A few points we wanted help clarifying:

    A) In the TS world, do the number of points required for travel to each region increase over time? Or is the cost of points fixed? We asked this question, and were told for example it will always cost 21K RCI points for a 7 night stay in Europe (which is 42K HICV points per the exchange). I see a lot of you saying that over time it will only help us get a 1 week stay in Florida, and I’m unclear why? Does the value of the points diminish over the years? We were also told we could purchase up to 50% more of our points at 1 cent/point, allowing us to get up to 190,500 points any given year if we needed them. That would only run $600, and I doubt we’d ever need that much.

    B) Regarding reservation fees, our contract clearly stipulates $59/reservation with points (within HIVC), and it's only $49 if the reservation is made online. Up to $229 if made through RCI. A bit high, but still not that big an issue. Would be under a grand if you took 4 international trips/yr.

    C) In terms of the resale market, if we purchase a resale HICV TS is it true that you are then locked into the week system with NO option of using the points on other resorts? If so, this would mean an HICV resale TS would not meet our needs. And again, if no other company offers you the flexibility of using the point system on international travel, without having to trade weeks then we would be tied to HICV if we are looking to use the TS system to meet those goals.

    D) If anyone else has used the TS system with the primary goal of international travel, could you please recommend a company which allowed you to do so in a more cost effective manner? Or is this overall a poor use of the system? (And why?)

    E) Also, for international travel is RCI the better system to be looking to get involved with or Interval International (II)??

    Lanny, the presentation was at the Cape Canaveral location. Weather was cold, and that's their newest resort, and still being renovated (former Ron Jon location). And we live 1 hour from Orlando.

    TIA!
     
  14. tschwa2

    tschwa2 Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Your not going to get 3-4 European trips out of your points unless your idea of a vacation is some fairly old outdated timeshare in January in the Romanian lakeside resort.

    Good European timeshares during anything other than the off off season are hard to get with RCI and will cost more than 20,000 RCI points, more like 60,000 for a decent shoulder season. Still don't expect this to be in any city or major tourist destination. If you are expecting London, Paris, Rome or such, don't bother. European Timeshares are places where Europeans go to get away from everything. Think lakeside, mountains, countryside, and the occasional beaches and not ones that would be internationally popular.

    II is probably worse than RCI unless you are interested in shoulder and off season in the handful of Marriott resorts in Spain.


    I looked and the points weren't as bad as I thought. Most studio's and 1 br's average closer to 30,000 rci points for the week. Problem is still going to be the were unless places like the Canary islands and the Lakelands in Finland are where you want to go.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2016
  15. TUGBrian

    TUGBrian Administrator

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    Welcome to TUG, looks like you just saved yourself 18,000 bucks =)
     
  16. Sandy

    Sandy TUG Member

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    Try again for resale

    Resale is the way to go. I am a HIVC HICV owner and very happy. I bought my units on line at ebay.

    You can find several resorts in HIVC which also transfer points. I suggest you do a search here on TUG to look for HIVC or HICV (both configurations are listed). There are many threads on where and how to buy a resale unit.

    You are very fortunate to have found TUG in time to rescind. You can get a tremendous value in HICV by learning the ropes. We are happy owners and have used our resorts both for staying at HIVC resorts, IHG hotels, and RCI trades. But our costs in the door only amounted to about $1200 or so for three units totaling 390,000 points! MF = $1800 per year.
     
  17. Tank

    Tank TUG Member

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    I advertise 5 nights $500 Sunday thru thursday in Orlando if enough advanced warning yet others will do better.

    Your right $59 reservation fee, but I always take out the $35 point saver fee so if you, or friends cancel the vacation, you get your points back. this is the $94

    I have not seen points increase for my weeks owned. You can buy After market HIVC Gatlinburg, Myrtle beach, and Lake Geneva and be automatically in HIVC point system and be able to book Orlando and all the other HIVC resorts with points.
    They say you just can't go up a level with after market buying, but your 190,000 points get you no level anyway. 300,000 points is the first real level above general owner.

    I would think that you would have "rights to use" in florida with this after market membership. I can't say for sure on this my membership is thru Orange lake.

    when I had my 332,000 points , I could rent 50% of the 332,000 extra points for a 10 to 1 ratio
    100,000 points cost $1000
    To borrow from next years 332,000 was a 4 to 1 ratio $400 for the same 100,000 points but those points were gone for next year.

    190,500 you talk about would cost $1,905.00 to rent extra,
    borrowing those points from next years vacation would be $762

    I love the HIVC system, happy I have it. I have found a way to make it work for me. It is the only system I know.

    I wish I found TUG like you just did, reading over all the systems and finding the best system to purchase to give you what you really want.

    If you owned three or four after market units @ HIVC , and you went to the presentation you just did, they would have incorporated ALL of the units into the point system catapulting you to a level that could really do you some good for that same money.

    My opinion only , your outcome could be different
     
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  18. kembjkk

    kembjkk Guest

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    We bought a fixed week last November, (week 10) at Orange Lake West Village off eBay for $1.25, vendor paid closing costs. This is for a 2 bedroom backing onto golf course. If placed in RCI a year in advance gives us 27 TPU.
     
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  19. csxjohn

    csxjohn TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    the only points system I own in is Bluegreen and the cost in points for ressies does not change. However, the maintenance cost and taxes increases yearly.

    So I pay the same number of points this year as I did last year for a vaca but those points cost more now.

    I can't answer the question about "day use" but at a resort I own that I bought resale, I get day use there the same as those who bought directly from the developer.

    There are a lot of questions and scenarios you need to go through and it will take time just to learn about this system. Then there are the other systems that you asked about that will take time.

    I still recommend rescinding, then take all the time you need to get all the answers you are looking for.
     
  20. skotrla

    skotrla TUG Member

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    If your primary focus is RCI points, I'd recommend focusing on resale timeshares that have been converted to RCI points and have the lowest maintenance cost/point. The thing to keep in mind with external exchanges is that availability is pretty limited since they are opt-in - the vast majority of timeshare owners who do nothing won't have units showing up in the external exchange companies.

    If you really want access to Orange Lake Orlando amenities, you could consider buying a resale biennial studio unit with the lowest maintenance.

    Points are generally fixed, but maintenance will increase over time, making the cost per point increase.

    Cost is $59 whether booked online or over the phone.

    Not if you purchase a resale unit at Lake Geneva, Smoky Mountain, or South Beach.

    -Scott
    Owner, HICV Google+ Group
     
  21. MagicMedic

    MagicMedic Guest

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    Understanding HICV resale points

    If you want to purchase HICV points on the resale market there are two ways to accomplish this.

    1. Buy your resale at one of the few Holiday Inn resorts that are Points Only and not weeks. I believe that South Beach Resort (Myrtle Beach) is one such resort. These points can be used throughout the HICV system. The caveat is that points purchased on the resale market will NOT count toward progress to the next higher membership level.

    2. Buy one or two resale HICV properties and then buy another property directly from Orange Lake Resorts. Under current HICV rules, you many convert up to two previously owned properties to HICV points if you buy some minimum size property from OL. I did this in November and at that time I had to purchase an OL property for $8500. It has been rumored to me that OL may decide to eliminate this option soon, so I would call them and confirm you can do this before you commit.

    Option #2 provides the full benefit of the higher membership levels in HICV and is was the most cost effective way to achieve my goals. The key when buying a resale property in the OL system is to figure out the maintenance fees per 1000 HICV points. It is MUCH better to pay a slightly higher sales price and to have lower MFs. The best properties to buy are large units in platinum or diamond weeks.
     
  22. skotrla

    skotrla TUG Member

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    Anyone have >300K resale points but no status?

    I've heard the same thing from HICV, but I'm not aware of any owners having >300K resale points but not status. I thought this happened to me, but I think it was just my not understanding how biennial units count towards status.

    Can anyone who has this issue provide details on what they own?

    Thanks,

    Scott
    Owner, HICV Google+ Group
     
  23. Sandy

    Sandy TUG Member

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    I bought my points on ebay and I have over 300,000. My "status" is Preferred. Is this what you are asking?
     
  24. JudyS

    JudyS TUG Member

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    So, is the Original Poster still posting here on TUG?

    If so, did you rescind? You definitely should have.
     
  25. Sandy

    Sandy TUG Member

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    OP seems to have never come back to respond or thank for the helpful thoughts.

    Sorry. I see that OP did post at #13
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2016

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