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HGVC Points for a Cruise?

jlm77

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I would like to know your opinions on exchanging points for a cruise. When we bought our first HGVC (yes from the developer back in 2005), I negotiated enough bonus points to get a cruise--so I never viewed it it terms of point value, but rather a free cruise.

Has anyone done the exchange? Is is worth it? Are some cruise lines better to do a trade with versus others.
 

Passepartout

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There have been dozens of threads about just this. Bottom line, it is a math exercise. Is the discount worth more than the MF on the points, plus the cost of acquiring them, plus the exchange fee? Compare that number against the cash price available at a cruise discounter like vacationstogo or crucon. Also, remember that those discounts are not applicable to every cruise.

There may be exceptions, but usually timeshare points are best used for timeshare stays.

Jim
 

presley

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It can be worth it if you don't mind spending time comparison shopping. The good news is that they can take 3 years of points if you plan it out. If you choose a 2016 cruise, they will take your 2015, 2016 and 2017 points if you need that many.

I never booked a cruise that way, but there was one time that I almost did. It was Disney and it was the week the schedule came out. At that time, the cost was comparable to what I'd pay if I paid cash for the cruise. The price went up and up and up after that and wasn't worth it to me to book it later on.

You won't find a bargain, but if you don't plan on using the points for HGVC, it's better than not using the points at all. You factor in the cost of your MFs + whatever extra charges there are for booking. Then, look up same cruise on the cruise ship's website to see what you'd pay if you didn't use points. Many times the cruise ship's website will offer extra specials like free drinks or free gratuities. So, factor those in, also.
 

JSparling

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It is a math exercise.

Ultimately true. But as we've seen with other ways to spend points, bonus points especially, the best way to spend your points as far as "bang for your buck" is with traditional stays booked through RCI or HGVC. You can pay your MF's with bonus points but that's a total waste of money if you compare the value those points could have returned if you used them to stay for a week in Hawaii.

I'd love to do one of the cruises. Especially a river cruise! But it will be tough to pull the trigger one day because I know I'll be giving away value.
 

janckenn

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I have done the HGVC member cruises several times. I use a minimal amount of points (500 points) and then pay cash for the rest. I am very excited about the European river cruise in 2016.
500 points translates into $50 towards your cruise price. Similar conversion rate for bonus points into maintenance fees.
Because the conversion is so low, I use my HGVC points at HGVC resorts primarily or for a great exchange in RCI.
 

venom550pm

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I've only used points for a cruise once and it was in 2006. We had extra points we were going to lose if we didn't use them so we applied them to our cruise after it was booked. It took some money off the cruise but we believe it isn't worth it in general, but it was better than losing the points.
 
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Jason245

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I would like to know your opinions on exchanging points for a cruise. When we bought our first HGVC (yes from the developer back in 2005), I negotiated enough bonus points to get a cruise--so I never viewed it it terms of point value, but rather a free cruise.

Has anyone done the exchange? Is is worth it? Are some cruise lines better to do a trade with versus others.

Your best value for points is stays at HGVC, everything else is generally not the best use of your points and MF dollars. If you can't use it, it might even be better to rent your ownership (value per MF dollar) That being said, sometimes people find value in variaty and lack of hassel.
 

hurnik

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So out of curiosity, I went to the website and made a fake booking for the Jan 2016 Celebrity Southern Caribbean Cruise (balcony).

The website (remarkably similar to OVS - our vacation store--which SFX and ICE/Registry Vacations use) came with a total price of about $3,888.00

I then said:
use 5,000 HGVC points. My point cost I estimate to be approx. $0.165/point.

The website came in around $3,000 after the points, so about $890 for the "value" of my 5,000 points.

By my $0.165/point, that is fairly close ($825 vs $890)

So I guess in that case, it's not a "bad" use of points??

Or at least evens out (maybe a little more since I'm not paying the $60 online reservation fee for Hilton?)
 

Jason245

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So out of curiosity, I went to the website and made a fake booking for the Jan 2016 Celebrity Southern Caribbean Cruise (balcony).

The website (remarkably similar to OVS - our vacation store--which SFX and ICE/Registry Vacations use) came with a total price of about $3,888.00

I then said:
use 5,000 HGVC points. My point cost I estimate to be approx. $0.165/point.

The website came in around $3,000 after the points, so about $890 for the "value" of my 5,000 points.

By my $0.165/point, that is fairly close ($825 vs $890)

So I guess in that case, it's not a "bad" use of points??

Or at least evens out (maybe a little more since I'm not paying the $60 online reservation fee for Hilton?)


How much would the reservation cost via alternative means? sometimes other travel agents can get you a better deal than the price of that one.

Any time that you are getting less value then you are paying is a losing proposition.
 

hurnik

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How much would the reservation cost via alternative means? sometimes other travel agents can get you a better deal than the price of that one.

Any time that you are getting less value then you are paying is a losing proposition.

My mistake, it was the Sky Suite, for the Jan 9, 2016 Celebrity Summit sailing (S2 level).

Most of the websites I've seen have it for approx. the same list price: $1849/person plus taxes/etc.

I don't know if this is typical or the same for other cruises, I Just picked one at random.
 
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