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POINTS VS TRADITIONAL TIMESHARE

Discussion in 'New to Timesharing? Look Here!' started by Randy1948, Feb 15, 2017.

  1. Randy1948

    Randy1948 Guest

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    THIS IS A VERY OPEN ENDED QUESTION, WHICH IS GENERALLY A BETTER VALUE, POINTS OR A TRADITIONAL TIMESHARE.
     
  2. theo

    theo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    There is really no correct "generallly a better value" answer, IMnsHO. The real answer is that what is "better" is whatever works better for you. Personal preferences, family situations, space requirements, geographic preferences, available vacation "windows", etc. are all different variables and factors for different people. Maintenance fees also vary quite widely and cannot just be ignored as part of any "better value" assessment.

    There are also many different "flavors" of points (e.g., RCI, Hyatt, HGVC, Wyndham, BlueGreen, etc.) None correlate in any way to any other in terms of their "currencies" --- and reservation procedures differ as well within different "systems". People often discuss mf($) to points "ratios", but any such discussions are only useful or meaningful within any given system, otherwise it's just comparing apples to oranges to pears.

    Some people like points for geographic flexibility, as well as for the option (in some systems) to reserve and use partial weeks instead of only full weeks. Otoh, some people like "fixed" weeks for their predictable, inherent date certainty and guaranteed unit availability without any need to ever play the "reservation roulette" game. Numerous factors and personal preferences necessarily enter into any "better value" conversation.

    In short, no simple answer exists. It's a matter of whatever works best for you and where you place your personal "better value" priorities.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
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  3. Jan M.

    Jan M. Guest

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    What are you wanting to do with your vacation time? If your goal is to go to a specific resort during a specific week then a fixed week at that resort for that week is most certainly the way to go. If your vacation time is more flexible or you like going different places then points will be better for you.

    By traditional timeshare I believe you mean a fixed week. There are some Wyndham owners on TUG with old fixed weeks at certain resorts which are great but I got the impression from reading the posts that it isn't easy to find those weeks anymore. Wyndham is primarily points.

    It is so expensive to convert fixed weeks to points at resorts in the RCI program that many people find it cheaper to give away their fixed week and just buy a points week. Points are so much easier to use than fixed weeks when you are depositing your fixed week and trying to trade. Plus I saw in recent posts that fixed weeks got some people less TPU's (trading power units) than in the past.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2017
  4. mpumilia

    mpumilia Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    What Theo said. I prefer weeks because I always vacation full weeks (for us it isn't really worth taking a long ride just for a long weekend- and definitely not to pay airfare) and we also use our fixed (and floater) weeks at our home resort, which is within a 6 hour drive for us. (no airfare).

    We just have to show up. We don't have to reserve our own week and our own unit.

    This said, we have exchanged our floater weeks to go all over the country and never had any issues doing so because we were flexible. I like the simplicity of doing the trade - a week for a week. I can downgrade from a 2 bedroom to a one bedroom easily. I can also upgrade to a 3 bedroom sometimes depending on what I am trading.Same for the season.

    To me, points are a hassle- keeping track of them and their expiration dates. Having to pay to combine points to get something in some cases.

    Most points people have points to mostly exchange as compared to using their home resort, so they are already tied into using the system the points are affiliated with- like RCI or Wyndham or II. With weeks, you can belong to several exchange companies and trade if you want or not.

    In my case, I rarely exchange so I save a lot of money on membership fees and exchange fees. I only belong to exchange companies with free memberships that have lower exchange fees than the big guys, though they have a lot less inventory as well. BUT- I do not have to deposit my week first in order to search and exchange, which is a big plus, because if I don't find anything I can just use it at my home resort or try to rent it out or only then decide bank it for something in the future.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2017
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  5. Randy1948

    Randy1948 Guest

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    VERY GOOD INFO FOLKS, AND I APPRECIATE IT. I GET TWO WEEKS VACATION FROM WORK. SO WE TEND TO LOOK AT BEING FLEXIBLE
    AND TAKING LONG WEEK ENDS. I MIGHT BE BETTER OFF WITH POINTS TO ACCOMMODATE OUR THREE DAY OR FOUR DAY VACATION PLANS.
     
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  6. theo

    theo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    As mentioned already, there are many different "points" systems and no two are particularly alike, nor do their points "currencies" correlate. Make very sure that any points system that you might end up zeroing in on actually provides for partial week / daily usage of allocated points.
    Also, be prepared that daily points charges will generally not just be 1/7th of a full weeks' worth of points, but considerably more than 1/7th. On Planet Timeshare, the devil is always in the details, so I suggest that you keep your magnifying glass handy as you pursue your quest. ;)
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
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  7. Randy1948

    Randy1948 Guest

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    THEO, YOU HAVE CREATED NEW QUESTIONS FOR ME, IS THE MAYBE A POST ON THE BOARD THAT LIST THE QUESTIONS THAT I SHOULD BE ASKING AS I TRAVEL THE INS AND OUTS OF POINTS?
     
  8. theo

    theo TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Not to my knowledge.
    I am sorry to mire you in details; my input merely seeks to help you move forward slowly, well informed and with both eyes wide open.
    Unfortunately, on Planet Timeshare the devil is always in the details, so the details always matter.

    One question to perhaps first ask and answer for yourself is "what is the geographic range in which I might be interested taking those occasional long weekends?" Next, see if a "system" of interest to you actually has multiple properties within that particular geographic area. Just to use an example, many people like Wyndham. However, there is not a single Wyndham timeshare property anywhere in coastal SW FL (although a new Wyndham property is now currently (finally?) being built in Clearwater). This is not a "knock", just a real and specific example.

    If you post a request in the Wyndham-specific forum, I'm betting that someone there could / would at least "point" you toward a Wyndham points chart (maybe even the whole directory), which would help you to see the specific Wyndham points requirements for different places / unit sizes, nightly points vs. weekly points requirements, etc. Wyndham might actually be a good system to look at if they have properties in your geographic area(s) of potential interest. Hyatt, Marriott, DVC, HGVC, Hyatt are all nice systems with points --- but much more expensive. Wyndham properties are not "5 star", but their many properties are certainly all decent and don't require crazy "buy in" money. Good luck.

    Edited to add:
    Just noticed a direct link to a complete Club Wyndham Plus Member Directory over in the Wyndham Vacation Resorts forum. See post #26 in the thread entitled "Wyndham Presentation". Click on the link contained in post #26 and you'll see more than you will probably even care to digest. If I was more computer savvy, I would cut and paste that link and post it right here for you, but dunno how to do so. :shrug:
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
  9. vacationhopeful

    vacationhopeful TUG Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    RCI Points might also work for you. They allow assorted short week stays, work at many resorts ... which are not in a single chain/system. But you need to learn the DETAILS ... the devil in always in the details.

    I own in a large chain whose resorts have some converted to RCI Points units .. VRI (Vacation Resorts International). Each individual owner decides to either USE their owned week or same a different week at the resort (if they find a week available) or exchange thru their 'the chain' resorts owners have not booked.

    So options, start off at 13 months before checkin of your owned unit ... you do NOT book it... the points stay in your RCI Points account. At 12 months before YOU WISH to travel to your HOME RESORT .. you look at BOOK an available week ... pay a small exchange fee to RCI. At 11 months, you get 1 month open booking window at ANY of your chain resorts .. if units are available ... full exchange fee. At 10 months and up to check in day, you can book using your points as currency plus the cash exchange fee ... any RCI points week/time you have enough points to use to book PLUS the exchange fee.

    Within a month or so before checkin, you might find a cheaper points cost for unused stays. Picked over units... definintely, but beauty is in the eye of the user. That fee to RCI does not get cheaper.

    But RCI points does allow LESS than a full 7 night stay.
     
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  10. taterhed

    taterhed TUG Member

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    Hi Randy. No offense (really) but typing in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS is considered 'shouting' and is a sure sign you're not a regular on the boards. Punctuation and capitalization are not the 'highlights' of TUG, but they are appreciated.....

    I'll try and reply to your general questions later.... but consider filling your own 'what to buy for newbies' questions and solicit some answers that way as well! WELCOME!

    http://tugbbs.com/forums/index.php?threads/what-to-buy-questions-for-newbies.208742/
     
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  11. JohnPaul

    JohnPaul TUG Member

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    I'm personally someone who really likes points but I agree that it is all about what works for you.

    Be aware that not all point systems are the same. We own in Vacation Internationale and Worldmark which are true point systems. 100% of their inventory is available to the owners with points as there are no fixed week owners. Other systems like Marriott and Wyndham have much of their inventory tied up by fixed or floating week owners and it isn't available to you with points.

    And points are like foreign currencies - they are all worth something different. My 451 VI points are worth much more than my 19000 Worldmark points.

    Why do I like points? If I want to splurge I can use lots of points on a penthouse. If I just want somewhere to lay my head perhaps a studio will do for very few points. I can start my stay any day of the week and stay as long or as short as I want as long as their is availability and I have points. (Do note that it costs the timeshare more if they have to clean 7 times for 7 one night stays vs one clean for a 7 night stay. Every system has ways they deal with this so it's important to understand. Typically comes under the subject of housekeeping fees.)

    Also, point give you a better deal on low seasons because you typically pay MF based on how many points you have. Low seasons use less points so you are effectively paying less. In many weeks systems a 2 bedroom unit pays the same MF regardless of season.

    Further, I can stay at lots of places with no exchange fee (which typically run $150 or more). VI has 45 resorts. I think Worldmark is around 100 now. Shell Vacation Club is something like 50.

    We also own RCI Points. Be aware that RCI points are something you get with an underlying ownership. We bought in a couple places that give us a lot of RCI points for low MF. However, to use the points requires both paying for an RCI membership and paying exchange fees.

    As mentioned, using points requires some planning. Prime locations and times will book up early. If you are happy going to the same place every year and not having to worry about booking in a timely fashion then a fixed week could be great.

    Good luck with your travels.
     
    theo likes this.
  12. JohnPaul

    JohnPaul TUG Member

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    One other plus about points that can't be done with fixed weeks as far as I know is to save and borrow. For example. if I get 10,000 points a year I can typically save a year and borrow a year to use 30,000 on a splurge in a fancy unit, for a longer stay, or for a couple units if I am hosting others.
     
  13. bogey21

    bogey21 TUG Member

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    Color me a Fixed Week, Fixed Unit guy. As I see it the benefit is knowing when and where one will be going year after year. In addition I also like the familiarity of using the Unit I bought. Having owned exclusively at HOA Controlled Independents I found it easy in most cases to swap weeks internally just by calling the Resort's Manager.

    George
     
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  14. stanleyu

    stanleyu TUG Member

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    I've had it three different ways - points and fixed week for trading, and a floating week for use without trading. Currently we have a week at a Maui resort where you reserve either on-line or call in for a week on a first come, first serve basis, plus points in DVC, plus floating points at a Utah resort. So here are my $.02 worth:
    - for DVC - Disney Vacation Club - it's the easiest. DVC points are pretty much your only choice, so is you want to stay on the grounds at the World, points are your only option. No problem for us.
    - RCI Points at the Utah resort: we've never stayed there, never been there. Only use it for trading. Since it "floats", we get a different week - with different trading value - each year. For us that was a real pain - when we had red weeks it was terrific, and we had some great trades. But the blue or white were hard to trade for something good for us. Switching to points was a terrific option for us. If we have a blue or white week we bank it for next year - or borrow from next year - so that we get a decent trade. So we end up not using them every year, but we always get great vacations!
    - Our Maui week is a new breed for us. We have a fixed unit at a fixed time of every other year, but can essentially book any week of that year. And since we like to go in late April or May, we usually have our choice of the units. Again, perfect for us.

    The point here is that you really have to look at what you want to do and how flexible you are. Since I retired we have a great deal of flexibility. It is not unusual for us to book six months to a year ahead of time. But if we wanted to go to the same place at the same time every year we'd get a fixed week there. As others have said, no real "right" or "wrong" choice - just what works best for you.
     
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  15. Bourgeoisx

    Bourgeoisx Guest

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    So I only been a owner for about 2 years and bought into a point systems. I did lots of research and found that EVERY timeshare is different and every point system is different so I hard to answer which is better since. PERSONALY, I like our point systems and would not trade it for a fix or flex week system. Let me explain my system and you decided how it sounds.

    I belong to the Ridge Tahoe resort in NV and its a privet owned resort. I bought 3500 points a year and my maintenances fees are about $500yr. Now this is a ski resort that 10 min from lake Tahoe and bout 1 hour from my house. Since I am owner I can spend the day there for free and ski and take advantage of the club house (hot tubes, warm pools, tennis and other great things). Its great since I am local. Now I use my point to say at other places via Interval Internationals exchange. There web site say it has about 3,000 resorts to choose from world wide. This give me the options to us my point for short trips (1-5 day), Week long trips, Cruises and the option to buy weeks for cheap (about $300-500). I pay no exchanges fees. Now, a week will run me 800-5,000 points depending on the place and time of year. I try to stay at places during the slow seasons. A 5000 point resort will run about 2000 during the slow season. Last year I went to Ireland for a week and took 4 short trips around the US. Unfortunately my points do not roll over each year so it is a "use it or lose it" deal. But I can borrow points from the next year if need be.

    It is my understanding that with the week systems you can only trade equal to or down. If I own a 1 bed room I can only trade for a 1 bed room or studio(there are exception I am sure). With the point system, I can spend less point for a studio or spend more for a high end room. I love the flexibility!
     
  16. Trudyt623

    Trudyt623 TUG Member

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    Hi Randy,

    First you need to identify which timeshare company you prefer (Marriott, Hilton, Wyndham....) then your answers will become clearer. Each system is different. I own a Marriott week (which can't be enrolled in points) and I love it but I am about to purchase Marriott points because I also want the flexibility to perform in house exchanges and not have to rely on Interval. Depending on how you travel you may be like me and want both.
     
  17. fiat1bmw

    fiat1bmw Guest

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    We have a fixed week and haven't tried points. Stratgically, with a points system, IMO using points allow the management to oversell.
     
  18. BocaBoy

    BocaBoy TUG Member

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    Actually you can if you have one of the relatively few fixed weeks in the Marriott system that is enrolled or eligible to be enrolled in the new point system. Once enrolled, you can choose to convert to points in any given year from a fixed week the same as from a floating week, and those points can be banked or borrowed to do exactly what you are suggesting. Legacy weeks owners in the Marriott system (I happy to be one) truly have the best of both worlds if they enroill their eligible weeks because they can play in points or weeks as they choose, and the election may be made or not made every year.
     
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  19. rosco1e

    rosco1e Guest

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    You really need to consider what you own and how you'll use it. For instance. I own a bunch of timeshares...points, fixed week, etc. One of them is the fourth of July week in northern Michigan by Traverse City. I can float this if I want but only if I give up my fixed week. No one wants to go there in the spring and fall. Most want either ski season or summer for golf. The load on the summer weeks is huge. If this was a full points membership it would very very difficult to pull a summer week out of the whole total because basically you have 12 months of owners vying for only 3 months of units (June-Aug). Now, if you own in a less than desirable month then points may actually help you. For me, after years of dealing with TS's, it comes down to this. If you have a high demand property in high demand time, try to get it as a fixed week. That way you can always use it, or it will trade for high value going somewhere else.
     
  20. MICROZE

    MICROZE TUG Member

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    Totally agree with "Theo" and others that "Value" is based on what works for you.
    However, I have created a formula with a pivot on Monetary-Cost [$$$$/Night] which sums up the total cost [MF, Club-Dues, Lock-Off, II-Membership, Exchange-Fees, E-Plus, Up-Size] of the Accommodations.
    To accomplish this I had to create a Common-Currency [USD $/Night].
    Being owners with Marriott [DCP-Enrolled: Deeded-Weeks + Points] + Vistana [Enrolled Deeded-Weeks that translate to Star-Options] I have created a table that converts my Vacation-Cost [Accommodation-Only] to a $/Night cost.
    Since we also accumulate Marriott-Rewards [Hotel-Points] & SPG-Points [Hotel-Points], I list this as an option too for comparison to our TS and sometimes this works out to being a better option.
    This way I am able to compare which is the best value:
    • TS-Week [Internal-Booking]
    • TS-Points [Internal-Booking] [Varying #-Days]
    • II-Exchange [INTERVAL] [1-Week]
    • Hotel-Rewards [Usually 5-Nights: 5th Night-Free]
    Comparing all 4 Side-By-Side I am able to make a decision on what results in the best value $/Night.
    Note: $/Night is 1 criteria. For others the Convenience/Simplicity/Lack-of-uncertainty/Flexibility may be more important than Cost [$/Night].
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2017
  21. bruceskis

    bruceskis TUG Member

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    I would appreciate the input from knowledgable owners on this aspect of the question about deeded weeks vs. points:
    With deeded weeks there is a finite number of unit-weeks. Only so many owners chasing a fixed number of beds. They can't sell the same unit-week deed to more than one person.
    With points - what keeps a developer from selling an unlimited number of points giving thousands of people theoretical 'access' to a fixed physical asset? The developer is the one who assigns the number of points required to reserve a unit. So, the number of points required to reserve the unit constantly goes up and up..... Kind of like inflation where the Fed Reserve keeps printing money so that it takes more $ to buy that loaf of bread.
    Is this something that sales people are supposed to explain?
    Seems like a real winner for the developer because the MFs you are billed for are based on the number of points you own. With more points floating the cost of maintenance of the fixed asset per point should be lower. Has anyone ever seen the MF per point go down?
     
  22. silentg

    silentg TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    We own an assortment, some fixed, points, and RTU. Each has value and we like the Variety. First one we owned was RTU has run its course no longer have. Second was a SA that we returned a few years ago, great Trader. Third is points thru HIVC we use this thru IHG for stays at hotels generally before or after a timeshare vacation. Fourth is a studio fixed close to family so we have our own place when we visit. Fifth is RTU in Europe. Sixth is one bedroom in Virginia used for trades fixed week, and seventh is a week at Siesta Key, also used for trade, Eight is week in Punta Gorda, FL fixed RTU short lease. As of now we have 6 active timeshares and that's enough. Love ❤️ timeshares but no more sales presentations or purchases.
    Silentg
     
  23. sue1947

    sue1947 TUG Member

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    A couple of your assumptions are incorrect. I just know my own system (Worldmark) but I assume the basics are the same in other systems. There is not an unlimited number of points. The number of points is determined at the time the resort is transferred from the developer. That number of points can't be increased in the future. The number of points per unit has to remain the same. However, the seasons can be shifted around as long as the total points remain the same.
    However, the issue of too many points chasing too few weeks is a real problem. They can develop a resort in a place nobody wants to go or someplace they don't have a sales center and sell those points generated by that resort at a more popular spot. As a result, there are more points chasing the fewer popular weeks. This means: if you want to be guaranteed a holiday week at a popular spot, you are probably better off buying a fixed week. If you want the flexibility of a points system to book different places each year, you need to plan your vacations a year+ in advance. There is more work involved in the latter, especially if you want a school holiday week. If you travel off season, then you can likely get your spot, but you need to pay attention as booking patterns change.

    Personally, I like the points option. I would never buy a fixed week just because it's too restricting. I want the flexibility to go different places for different lengths of time. I travel off season but have also seen the booking patterns change. Places I used to be able to book a few months in advance, now book up a year in advance so I need to pay more attention now than before. However, the vacations I can take are worth the extra effort.

    Sue
     
  24. princessfonzi

    princessfonzi TUG Member

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    We have a points system at Ridge Tahoe Resort, but we haven't been able to get any availability since we bought it a year ago. We have been to France, Poland, Pennsylvania, Chicago, San Francisco, Arizona last year and had to pay out of pocket for hotels because there wasn't any availability. On top of paying for maintenance fees and mortgage. The salesman showed us the resorts in Paris, but when we got our password for the exchange International, those locations weren't part of the trade, but for a discounted rate. Also, we found out, the higher points package get preferential status for reservations, which we didn't have. So, no, I don't think points are a good system so far.
     
  25. gkreuscher

    gkreuscher TUG Member

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    Location:
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    Resorts Owned:
    Marriott Harbor Lake, Orlando, FL
    Marriott Summit Watch, Park City, UT
    Like everyone else, I think it depends on how we use our timeshare owenerships. We have both Marriott points, Marriott weeks within their system, and Marriott weeks that we purchased on ebay, which are not in their system. In the past we alwasy used Interval International to trade our Marriott weeks for other Marriotts. Today we are in the Marbella Beach Marriott in Marbella, Spain.

    The big variable for us has been interval international. Recently Interval (II) increased their policy for trade charging more for trading an efficiency for a two bed room, one bed room and the exchange charge itself. We have also found that it more difficult to trade for Marriott properties than in the past. This has forced us to use the internal Marriott point system more. Like some of you we also have over 400,000 Marriott Reward points, which we can trade for Marriott Hotel/Air packages.
     

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