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How to compare points systems [merged]

CydeSwype

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Like the OP, I'm trying to figure out what the exchange rate/relative value of points are. I'm under the impression that if I have enough II points from different TS units, I can have a lot of flexibility with where I travel. But I think what you're saying, vacationhopeful, is that rather than just accumulate II points (and figure out where I want to go later), I should instead figure out where I want to travel and then find a property that matches that. Is that right? And is it right that the main reason for going that route is because there's a lot of overhead in swapping points into II/RCI vs. staying inside the network where you bought the points/week TS?
 

vacationhopeful

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.... But I think what you're saying, vacationhopeful, is that rather than just accumulate II points (and figure out where I want to go later), I should instead figure out where I want to travel and then find a property that matches that. Is that right? And is it right that the main reason for going that route is because there's a lot of overhead in swapping points into II/RCI vs. staying inside the network where you bought the points/week TS?

YES ... that overhead is YOUR dollars plus YOUR time to hunt down and try to get exchanges.

FOR EXAMPLE: If you KNOW you are going to travel mostly in the Southwest .. look at Shell vacation Club or Worldmark (as 2 examples I know a little about). Look at the RESALE restrictions for ANY chain you are buying into ... (like Westgate's are rumor to be total crap with booking ONLY inside the 60 day from checkin date).

I own Wyndham (points and fixed weeks), Shell Vacation Club points (as my siblings have moved to Western US), and the Ft Lauderdale Beach Resort (fixed weeks and RCI points (VRI advantage)). I have booked Hawaii, DVC, NYC, Chicago .... and have reservations in San Diego (family wedding) plus all my normal haunts. My DVC points get rented every year ... but I still get the DVC discounts when I visit WDW (rented at a profit with little hassles).
 

GrayFal

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Hello. I hope someone can help with some or all of the questions I have.

I am looking to buy a points-based TS, as it appears to be most flexible. I would probably only use the home resort periodically.

My questions are:
1. Is there a conversion ratio for Marriott, Hilton, or Starwood to their respective exchange programs (RCI or II)? I have read that the answer is no for Hilton, so how do you know how much your points are worth at a non-Hilton property?
2. If I want x points from a program, since I'm going to bounce around, should I just look for a combination of the lowest price/lowest maintenance cost? Does it really make a difference which property I buy at?
3. If I buy a week, rather than points, in Marriott or Starwood, would they be convertible to points? If so, how do I know how many points it would convert to? Am I better off just buying points?

Thanks in advance for any guidance.

Like the OP, I'm trying to figure out what the exchange rate/relative value of points are. I'm under the impression that if I have enough II points from different TS units, I can have a lot of flexibility with where I travel. But I think what you're saying, vacationhopeful, is that rather than just accumulate II points (and figure out where I want to go later), I should instead figure out where I want to travel and then find a property that matches that. Is that right? And is it right that the main reason for going that route is because there's a lot of overhead in swapping points into II/RCI vs. staying inside the network where you bought the points/week TS?


Go to this thread and following the directions - answer the questions.

It will make you think about what you want and will allow others to offer better suggestions.

http://www.tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=208742

Welcome to TUG :hi:
 

ronparise

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Like the OP, I'm trying to figure out what the exchange rate/relative value of points are. I'm under the impression that if I have enough II points from different TS units, I can have a lot of flexibility with where I travel. But I think what you're saying, vacationhopeful, is that rather than just accumulate II points (and figure out where I want to go later), I should instead figure out where I want to travel and then find a property that matches that. Is that right? And is it right that the main reason for going that route is because there's a lot of overhead in swapping points into II/RCI vs. staying inside the network where you bought the points/week TS?

There is overhead to consider, but there is also availability to think of... Where you want to go, when you want to go there, wont always be available to you through the exchange companies

I own a fixed week at a resort in New Orleans because I want that week in New Orleans every year. And I bought into the Wyndham points system because I have family in the Washington DC area that I visit and Wyndham has the only two timeshare properties in the area. All three trade through RCI not II and two of my three are seldom available. If I hadnt bought where I want to go and focused on exchange companies, I would have been unhappy with my timeshare purchases

You will have your own must have list, I would match it up against the resorts in the systems you are considering and buy accordingly. I would use use the exchange companies when you are looking for something your own system doent have


So to the question...is there a conversion ratio or exchange rate table to use when trying to use the points in one system with an exchange company. Heres the way it work with the points systems Im familiar with.. Im guessing its similar with the others. There is a Wyndham to RCI exchange chart posted on the web site

Worldwide External Exchange Points Chart
Demand Unit Size
Studio 1 BR 2 BR 3 BR or More
Prime 90,000 126,000 205,000 300,000
High 77,000 105,000 165,000 232,000
Value 52,000 77,000 126,000 159,000
Quiet 35,000 63,000 77,000 112,000

Its not an exact conversion because Wyndham has 4 seasons and RCI only 3 and RCI often offers sales, but you can get an idea of what an RCI vavation will cost when priced in wyndham points looking at the chart

To see the exact numbers, Wyndham provides a "portal" to RCI on their website and when you use it to go to RCI you will see available RCI vacations priced in Wyndham points, so there is no conversion necessary... its been done for you

At least thats the way it works Wyndham to RCI. Im betting its the same sort of portal system from the timeshare system you choose to RCI or II
 
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CydeSwype

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Points guide (Hilton vs. Welk vs. Mariott, etc.)

I'm new to timeshare ownership and trying to get my head around the different points systems. I get that Interval and RCI have a "common" points system where a point is a point in their system, but each resort network has its own points too (which I assume convert to II or RCI points... probably with some dillution?). Is there an overview article or a guide somewhere that describes roughly what points will get you at the various resorts in that network? I've been to Welk presentations and I'm familiar with what you get for at each of their resorts for different point levels, but I want to learn more about the other networks (without having to go through sales presentations to learn about each network and its pros and cons).

I've also heard on this forum that some networks don't keep points if you acquire properties through resale. I'd love more information on which networks support points via resale vs. which don't allow that.

Thanks!
 
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DeniseM

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That is a very good question - but far to broad to answer easily.

I would start out by reading the stickies at the top of the forums that you are interested in - most of the major systems have their own forum on TUG, and then ask questions about what you don't understand.

One clarification: II and RCI have completely different points systems, and RCI itself has 2 completely different points systems.

In most cases (but not all) there is no direct relationship between a resort's point system, and an exchange company's points system.

I would think of the various point systems as the currencies of different countries - they can be exchanged, but have no direct relationship.
 
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CydeSwype

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Thanks Denise, ronparise, vacationhopeful and GaryFal for the info and guidance. Very helpful! I filled out my newbie TS profile. The short version is that I'm looking to travel a bunch of different places (mostly outside US) with just my wife and I have a lot of schedule flexibility (no kids now or in the future).

The theme I'm seeing emerge is that even if I want to travel a bunch of places and don't have an affinity for a home resort, I should start a target destination list (even if it's a very big one with a lot of countries) and then start seeing which network(s) best support that. Yes?

I get that all the points systems are different, and I don't mind the time required to find and do the swapping, but I get that there's a cost in the "exchange rate" and less of a guarantee around availability. Those two factors make me think I should try to find a network or two that matches international travel well and then attempt to stay "in-network" when possible and use RCI/II when necessary (when I want to go somewhere not in my resort network).

These answers give further weight to the suspicion I had that there's little "trading power" relevance when it comes to points. Welk was pushing a points product (seems like most developers have switched to points vs. weeks as the default product) but they were still saying that Welk had more trading power... that seems like an outright lie. Weeks have "relative value" and so I can see how there's trading power when the product is a week, but points are points are points. Right?
 

Passepartout

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The problem with 'Points' is that each point system is proprietary. A point is not a point. An II point is worth nothing in RCI's or HGVC's or Marriott's, or Wyndham's o Blue Green's or Welk's system.

So what you have to do is study each system, become knowledgeable of where their resorts are, and what each system charges for an exchange.

There is no shortcut to acquiring this knowledge. Oh, and what is a great point/cost ratio this month/year will change. It'll be different next day/month. Hanging around TUG long enough will give you the secret handshake.

Jim
 

Beefnot

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I own a fixed week at a resort in New Orleans because I want that week in New Orleans every year. And I bought into the Wyndham points system because I have family in the Washington DC area that I visit and Wyndham has the only two timeshare properties in the area.

This has changed now that Marriott has converted some hotel units into timeshares. They can be had via exchange in II. Although I think they are only studios.
 
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