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Not quite understanding why Interval Ongoing Search (almost) failed

Discussion in 'Exchanging' started by GetawaysRus, Jan 2, 2018.

  1. GetawaysRus

    GetawaysRus TUG Member

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    Sedona Summit
    I'd appreciate some help figuring out why my OGS didn't lead to a call from I.I. As the TV detectives like to say when they sum up the case, "here's what happened:"

    My wife and I are interested to go to Thailand in late 2018, so I put in an OGS (via the phone, with an I.I. agent) last summer. I offered a 1BR Master unit at Marriott DSV2 and requested one of the Marriott resorts in Phuket (Phuket Beach Club or Mai Khao Beach). I knew that these resorts only have 2BR units and that I would have to pay an upgrade fee if my search was successful. I remember going over that with the I.I. agent who placed the request for me. Our desired dates in Phuket were for an early December 2018 check-in. I expected that if there were a match, Interval would phone and offer us the room so long as we agreed to pay the upgrade fee.

    After placing the request, I would get a call from I.I. about once a month telling me that there was no availability. But I knew that it was more than 1 year ahead of our desired dates, so not to worry. The last phone call was in early December, within 1 year of our targeted trade dates - no availability yet.

    A few days ago, and while I was waiting for a match, the date for our desired flight to Asia opened up. Using American Airlines miles, I placed a 5 day hold on a Business class award ticket from the USA to Bangkok on Cathay Pacific. (That's our first planned stop in Thailand. Phuket comes later in the trip.). But still no call from I.I.

    Today I realized that the deadline to finalize the Cathay Pacific award flight was fast approaching. I did not want to lose the award flight. The I.I. website showed Getaway availability at Mai Khao Beach. So I figured that if there was no timeshare match using my week, I could cancel the OGS and instead purchase the Getaway. I called Interval earlier today. Lo and behold, there was plenty of availability at Phuket Beach Club on a variety of dates in early December 2018, so I completed the trade. Asia, here we come!

    I asked today's I.I. agent why I did not get a phone call offering me the trade. His answer was that since I had made the request using a 1BR for the trade, I.I. was searching only for a 1BR unit. And of course that match would never occur because both Phuket Marriott resorts are 2BR only.

    Is this how Interval ongoing searches are supposed to work? I had thought that Interval would automatically call me and offer me a 2BR if one became available (so long as I agreed to the upgrade fee). Am I wrong? Can someone please explain how OGS works when the requested resort only has larger units that the customer can offer I.I. in trade. Does the customer need to call I.I. and stay on top of them?
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2018
  2. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    From my experience, an II agent has to be reviewing your requests if the available unit size is larger than the one being used to trade, the agent would call you and make their commisson. The on-going search system does not automatically match otherwise. I suspect no one was reviewing your request to see that they could have called you for the match, collect upsize fee and their commission.
     
  3. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    I have received matches to larger units and have received the calls.
     
  4. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I have too... but I do not believe that the system matches and flag the agent to call. I believe enthusiastic agents look through on-going requests and manually match/hold them while they contact the person.
     
  5. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    I think the opposite. I think the system matches and I am call by automated process as at times there is a delay to the person speaking to me and once I was told “let me see “. This also occurs when I am offered an alternate that wasn’t on my list.
     
    pedro47 likes this.
  6. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    The fact that II calls me every week through an automated call system tells me any agent wanting to make a bit of commission just puts in members with an ongoing request onto a call queue, which is not very different from scammers' system. The system makes the call according to the numbers put into the system. More often than not the agent would fumble and say "Let me see what you have as an on-going request."

    When an agent called me to offer Marriott's Newport Coast (2BR) in the summer against my studio Marriott's Desert Springs for 2018, no way no how the system would have matched it. The trading power gap is too wide. However the agent called and offered it to me. In the same call she went about to also try to sell me extended membership etc.
     
  7. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    No one has tried to sell me anything. Next time I get a call for a larger unit I am going to ask lots of questions to figure out how it came about.
     
    klpca likes this.
  8. GetawaysRus

    GetawaysRus TUG Member

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    We bought our timeshare in 2004. I follow TUG regularly and have learned a lot here about how timeshares work. I have some understanding of the "trading power" of my weeks and the Travel Demand Index. But the mechanics of exactly how I.I. works remain mysterious.

    So far I have learned here that I.I. agents are paid at least in part by commission. So that would explain why I am asked if I want to renew or upgrade my Interval membership every time I have a phone conversation with an Interval agent. It also would explain why, on a few occasions, I have been offered a trade while on the phone with an agent that I could not see or make if I had searched the available exchange inventory myself.
     
  9. lmkucala

    lmkucala TUG Member

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    This is interesting. I always thought they called also if you had an OGS with a 1BR and a 2BR popped up, and in fact I was hoping for that since several of the resorts in my current OGS are 2BR's (and I exchanged a 1BR).

    I'm wondering - if I call II once a week or so and ask if there is anything available against my current search, am I going to have a better chance of having an agent who will start manually looking at my request to help me find something?

    I'm getting a bit anxious as well since we have a request for several resorts in the last 3 weeks of June this year, which we've had in since last March, and nothing yet.
     
  10. hudshut

    hudshut TUG Member

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    Lmkucala:
    What do you own, and what are you requesting ?
     
  11. lmkucala

    lmkucala TUG Member

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    I own a July 4th week (2BR but I split it into 2 1BR's) at Izaty's in Minnesota. Not the best resort but is a fairly good trader. I usually see Marriott's and other high-demand resorts in Hawaii and other places so I expect it's decent anyway. This particular week expires July 4th of this year so I need to use it before that.

    Originally (in March, 2017) I requested the following, for anytime between June 7 and July 1 2018:

    HYI - Hyatt - Carmel, CA
    RWP - Resort at Whale Point - Depoe Bay, OR
    WAG - Worldmark Gleneden - Gleneden Beach, OR
    RCS,WSE - Worldmark Seaside - Seaside, OR
    BEW - Beachwoods Resort - Kitty Hawk, NC
    PSH - Pacific Shores, Vancouver Island
    SRX - Sunrise Ridge, Vancouver Island
    SKH - Sooke Harbour Resort, Vancouver Island

    Recently I added the following to the request - some about 2 months ago and a couple just yesterday:

    OBB, OUB - Outer Banks Beach Club - North Carolina
    DVL, TDU - Dunes Village Resort - Myrtle Beach, SC
    MOW - Marriott's Oceanwatch at Grande Dunes - Myrtle Beach, SC
    SOO, WSC - Schooner Landing - Newport, OR
    EBR, ERC - Embarcadero Resort - Newport, OR
    BCM - Beachcomber Resort - Ocean Shores, WA
    PBN - Point Brown Resort - Ocean Shores, WA
    CCK - Cottages at Cape Kiwanda - Pacific City, OR

    I know these are all high demand areas in the summer but I was really hoping since I requested so early we would get something. Yesterday I did call Interval and they told me that many of the resorts will be releasing inventory over the next few weeks (late January/early February) for the summer months. Not sure if that was just a line or really true but I'm thinking I will wait until about mid-February and if nothing pops by then grab something that looks good that I find via manual search. (I do look almost daily that way also). I also asked and he said they do ALWAYS call if a 2 BR pops up and you deposited a 1 BR. I asked him about 3 times :)

    I'm open to other suggestions if anyone has them. Resorts to add in these locations or other coastal beach areas. We like nature, hiking, etc. We are fairly active so don't like to just stay at a resort all day every day or sit on the beach, but do appreciate the amenities of at least the Silver if not Gold rated resorts. I would really LOVE to get something in either coastal Oregon or Vancouver Island. This is the 2nd year in a row I've requested these with no luck.

    Thanks!
     
  12. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    Briefly first, I think you would benefit from buying resale Worldmark points if you are willing to buy another timeshare and maybe give yours away. Worldmark has about 90 timeshare locations, all in the west coast and in the places that you have listed. At 13 months out, you are able to book them, no booking fee and exchange fees. So if you usually want to go in summer or anywhere that is considered peak season in the west coast, owning Worldmark contract is the best timeshare that you buy. Contracts go for 30 cents to 40 cents a credit, with 40 cents for fully loaded contracts. Low maintenance and just a very owner-friendly system, even for resale owners.

    Secondly, a look at your list, many of these resorts will almost never be deposited into II for the summer: Hyatt at Carmel, Worldmark along the coast in summer. I am not familiar with others but I bet that many of them do not ever deposit into II during the summer. Good luck, but you may have to look into plan b.
     
    hudshut likes this.
  13. GetawaysRus

    GetawaysRus TUG Member

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    And that's exactly what DID NOT happen for me. We got a little beyond 3 weeks after our desired check-in date in Phuket before I finally called Interval. Lo and behold, there were several dates available.

    ALWAYS may have a different meaning than we think. Or maybe I was lucky, and my desired dates had just been deposited on the date I called them? (This makes me think that the next time I play the state Lottery, maybe I should call the Lottery after the drawing and ask them if I've won.)
     
    VacationForever and lmkucala like this.
  14. goldenfleece

    goldenfleece Guest

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    Interval's ongoing search, which you pay upfront $189.00, is a broken system. I, too, have deposited smaller units and requested trades into only 2 bedroom resorts. Most of the time the units show up in a manual search, and the system hasn't matched the ongoing search. The fact that Interval is set up for agents to telephone you is archaic. Why can't they program their system to send a text?? It's a broken system set up for maximum profit, not what is best for their customers. Even with all the difficulties, Interval does usually come through with quality trades for us.
     
  15. Panina

    Panina TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    This week I got two calls from interval offering me larger units at different resorts then I requested. The second agent was able to mark I will only accept what I requested, do not call for other things. The second agent also said I have lots of time and there is a good chance I will match. Both times they did not try to sell me anything for extending or upgrading.
     
  16. VacationForever

    VacationForever Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    If you had accepted the other resorts that you did not want, they would have made their commission, hence they called you.
     

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