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Is it worth it to use your Hgvc points to trade into a hotel with RCI?

Panina

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Something to think about....Is it worth it to use your Hgvc points to trade into a hotel with RCI?


Recently I used 1997 points to trade into Compass by Margaritaville in Naples, Florida for 4 days/3 nights.


The RCI trade fee was $299 and it stated I had to pay an additional $22 per night resort fee which I was not charged. Was it worth it? For me yes, even if I was charged the $22 daily resort fee.


I figured I saved at least 50% versus paying outright for the room. If I book this again, 4th quarter, I will save at least 65% as rates are higher at that time.


I knew I wanted to go to Naples, Florida for a few days during my birthday. I decided this about a month prior to my birthday not giving me enough time to find a timeshare in Marco Island within Hgvc or a timeshare trade for Naples in RCI. Reluctantly, I decided I would go to a hotel using my points in RCI.


I really didn't expect much as last month when I rented a hotel room in Stuart, Florida for 4 days/3 nights I was disappointed. When I left, I said never again for more than one night. It made me vastly appreciate timeshares.


Compass at Margaritaville exceeded all my expectations. The resort was modern, good location, beautifully set up, best free buffet breakfast (had gluten free too), great outdoor pool area, workout room, and a restaurant on premises. The studio room was nicely set up with king size bed, a kitchen area that had a cooktop, microwave, full refrigerator/freezer and dishwasher. There was no oven. The only thing missing was an outdoor patio and water view but the outdoor area within the hotel was nice enough to relax. It actual felt like a timeshare.


I will be booking another mini vacation here this year instead of paying to roll over my points that I will not use this year.


This resort was worth using points and paying the trade fee. You have to do the math as others are not worth trading into. I have seen resorts I was looking at have fees from $90- $140 a day in addition to the RCI trade fee. They have a mandatory resort fee, a parking fee, etc. Some do have $0 additional fees.
 

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GT75

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Thanks @Panina. Did you compare the price to just book the hotel outright (without using HGVC/RCI)?

I know that I automatically say to not use HGVC points to book Hilton Hotels either. But like you said you really have to do the math. It seems that the math works much better for hotel conversion when it is international and for 5 days (because the 5th day is free).
 

Panina

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Thanks @Panina. Did you compare the price to just book the hotel outright (without using HGVC/RCI)?

I know that I automatically say to not use HGVC points to book Hilton Hotels either. But like you said you really have to do the math. It seems that the math works much better for hotel conversion when it is international and for 5 days (because the 5th day is free).
Yes, I looked everywhere for rates on the hotel including the discount sites as well as the hotel itself and RCI straight rental. Even with only three days I saved about $135 a day. Granted it was over Mother's Day weekend when rates are higher. If I was booking now into the summer it would not be worth doing. Going into 4th quarter it becomes worth it again.
 

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I used last call once, $300 with no points cost. a week long stay in a studio with full kitchen will cost me $1100 if book directly from hotel website
 

letsgobobby

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so the math is your cost for 1997 points plus RCI fee $299 plus daily resort fee vs hotel website price?

are there any other RCI fees?
 

Panina

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so the math is your cost for 1997 points plus RCI fee $299 plus daily resort fee vs hotel website price?

are there any other RCI fees?
No other rci fee. Also taken into consideration was I would have leftover points at the end of the year and didn't want to pay and rollover into next year.
 

escanoe

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Thanks @Panina. Did you compare the price to just book the hotel outright (without using HGVC/RCI)?

Another way that should be priced out before using HGVC (or RCI points) is to look and see what it would cost to rent it in RCI as an “extra” vacation.
IMG_2875.jpeg
 
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Tamaradarann

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Something to think about....Is it worth it to use your Hgvc points to trade into a hotel with RCI?


Recently I used 1997 points to trade into Compass by Margaritaville in Naples, Florida for 4 days/3 nights.


The RCI trade fee was $299 and it stated I had to pay an additional $22 per night resort fee which I was not charged. Was it worth it? For me yes, even if I was charged the $22 daily resort fee.


I figured I saved at least 50% versus paying outright for the room. If I book this again, 4th quarter, I will save at least 65% as rates are higher at that time.


I knew I wanted to go to Naples, Florida for a few days during my birthday. I decided this about a month prior to my birthday not giving me enough time to find a timeshare in Marco Island within Hgvc or a timeshare trade for Naples in RCI. Reluctantly, I decided I would go to a hotel using my points in RCI.


I really didn't expect much as last month when I rented a hotel room in Stuart, Florida for 4 days/3 nights I was disappointed. When I left, I said never again for more than one night. It made me vastly appreciate timeshares.


Compass at Margaritaville exceeded all my expectations. The resort was modern, good location, beautifully set up, best free buffet breakfast (had gluten free too), great outdoor pool area, workout room, and a restaurant on premises. The studio room was nicely set up with king size bed, a kitchen area that had a cooktop, microwave, full refrigerator/freezer and dishwasher. There was no oven. The only thing missing was an outdoor patio and water view but the outdoor area within the hotel was nice enough to relax. It actual felt like a timeshare.


I will be booking another mini vacation here this year instead of paying to roll over my points that I will not use this year.


This resort was worth using points and paying the trade fee. You have to do the math as others are not worth trading into. I have seen resorts I was looking at have fees from $90- $140 a day in addition to the RCI trade fee. They have a mandatory resort fee, a parking fee, etc. Some do have $0 additional fees.
You spent 1997 HGVC points for your 3 night stay. You didn't say if you were staying for 3 nights during the week or on the weekend. The HGVC points that are charged at HGVC resorts are double on weekends. Studios in HGVC are 352 points during the week and 704 on weekends. The $299 exchange fee seems high for only 3 nights. Since you didn't have to pay any extras it seems like a good deal for a nice hotel.

RCI has hotels here in Honolulu that you can use your points for your stay. However, I think they are a rip off. In addition to using your timeshare points they charge like $1300 for 3 nights. You seem like your paying for the hotels outright without the timeshare points benefiting you.
 

Panina

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You spent 1997 HGVC points for your 3 night stay. You didn't say if you were staying for 3 nights during the week or on the weekend. The HGVC points that are charged at HGVC resorts are double on weekends. Studios in HGVC are 352 points during the week and 704 on weekends. The $299 exchange fee seems high for only 3 nights. Since you didn't have to pay any extras it seems like a good deal for a nice hotel.

RCI has hotels here in Honolulu that you can use your points for your stay. However, I think they are a rip off. In addition to using your timeshare points they charge like $1300 for 3 nights. You seem like your paying for the hotels outright without the timeshare points benefiting you.
It was for a weekend stay. The numbers worked.
 

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i find RCI totally bewildering and have never found a place I want to stay.
 

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i find RCI totally bewildering and have never found a place I want to stay.
You aren’t missing much.

Have used it a few times in the past, but only use it if it really makes point sense and you can’t get an HGVC place.

But, since I believe you are a W57th owner, you can get 2 studios for less than 1Br in points. Not sure if it is possible if you can book 2 studios on the same days though.

I have a possible W57th deal in progress, so I’m looking for all the ways to save points…
 
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Tamaradarann

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You aren’t missing much.

Have used it a few times in the past, but only use it if it really makes point sense and you can’t get an HGVC place.
We have a timeshare that is RCI but not HGVC so we need to go there or use RCI if we want to exchange it using our RCI points. It is Misner Place in Florida which is 5000 miles from where we live now so going there for a week is not desirable. However, we used our points to get 2 weeks on Kauai at the Pono Kai resort which was about 4900 miles closer to us and a very desireable resort. HGVC doesn't have a resort on Kauai so it was a win win for us to use our RCI points to go to this resort. We are planning on going back next year.
 

Tamaradarann

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It was for a weekend stay. The numbers worked.
For a weekend stay I think this was a very reasonable amount of HGVC points and they didn't charge you a ridiculous amount of money for the exchange as I mentioned that they are doing for Honolulu Hotels. The reason I mentioned that the $299 seemed like a high exchange fee is that we have RCI points so while we pay about $299 for a week we pay much less for 3 nights.
 

Panina

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Another way that should be priced out before using HGVC (or RCI points) is to look and see what it would cost to rent it in RCI as an “extra” vacation.View attachment 92761
Tax will be added to these rates and I believe the Resort Amenity charge of $22 per night too.

I just did a check of 3 nights, 5 nights and 1 week including the 3 night days and it shows you need to check everything. 5 days was significantly more than 7 days.
 

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SmithOp

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i find RCI totally bewildering and have never found a place I want to stay.

You need to follow the Sightings Forum, I've had some great use of RCI:

W57TH midweek stay
Bay Club WKL
Vino Bello, Napa
Sedona
Laguna Surf
 

Tamaradarann

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You need to follow the Sightings Forum, I've had some great use of RCI:

W57TH midweek stay
Bay Club WKL
Vino Bello, Napa
Sedona
Laguna Surf
I totally agree. You can get some great exchanges with RCI. We have gone to Kauai, Maui, SanDiego, San Francisco, New York City, Vermont, New Hampshire, and New Orleans with Gold Crown RCI resorts over the last 15 years. We have also used our RCI points to extend our HGVC resort stays in Honolulu, Hawaii Island, Las Vegas, Orlando. Our goal from 2009 to 2020 was to vacation the entire winter in Hawaii and RCI along with HGVC enabled us to do it.
 

letsgobobby

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I totally agree. You can get some great exchanges with RCI. We have gone to Kauai, Maui, SanDiego, San Francisco, New York City, Vermont, New Hampshire, and New Orleans with Gold Crown RCI resorts over the last 15 years. We have also used our RCI points to extend our HGVC resort stays in Honolulu, Hawaii Island, Las Vegas, Orlando. Our goal from 2009 to 2020 was to vacation the entire winter in Hawaii and RCI along with HGVC enabled us to do it.
please explain the steps . From the HGVC portal I am already confused.
 

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Using the phone (pretty much the same as a desktop) under membership is a link to the RCI portal.
IMG_8959.jpeg

You will then be at the RCI website, logged in as an HGVC owner.
IMG_8960.png

Search and select resort
IMG_8961.png


Then the clankyest part, searching for availability.

IMG_8962.png


IMG_8963.png


IMG_8964.png
 

letsgobobby

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thanks
what is all the talk about extra weeks, getaways, etc?
 

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They do have a “last call” that is cash like open season, the other stuff I would assume is just salesgoon double speak, likely based on some aspect of RCI. Maybe someone with more experience than I can explain that.
 

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Recently I used 1997 points to trade into Compass by Margaritaville in Naples, Florida for 4 days/3 nights.


The RCI trade fee was $299 and it stated I had to pay an additional $22 per night resort fee which I was not charged. Was it worth it? For me yes, even if I was charged the $22 daily resort fee.
So you paid $299 + 1997 points. My points cost me $0.115 per point (including club fee). That would make $528.66 total.

Was it worth it?
I don't know because you didn't say how much it would cost to book this accommodation with cash.

However, I tried out myself for May 16-19, and the price came out to $560.46. Using RCI would be an equivalent to 6% discount compared to cash rates. However, 6% seems very little - mainly because booking using an appropriate credit card will give you 2-5% cashback, as well as trip interruption and cancellation coverage. So for me, no, RCI wouldn't be worth it for a $528.66 total. But if a different weekend was $650 or $850, it would be worth it.
 

Panina

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So you paid $299 + 1997 points. My points cost me $0.115 per point (including club fee). That would make $528.66 total.


I don't know because you didn't say how much it would cost to book this accommodation with cash.

However, I tried out myself for May 16-19, and the price came out to $560.46. Using RCI would be an equivalent to 6% discount compared to cash rates. However, 6% seems very little - mainly because booking using an appropriate credit card will give you 2-5% cashback, as well as trip interruption and cancellation coverage. So for me, no, RCI wouldn't be worth it for a $528.66 total. But if a different weekend was $650 or $850, it would be worth it.
For the dates you chose it would not be a great value. I went over Mother's Day weekend and the rates were much higher.

Right now Holidays or going into later 4th quarter makes it a good deal. One of the 3 night spans I am considering would cost $909.

I know I will have left over points that I don't want to pay to rollover to 2025, thus additional value, using my points as monetary value toward the room.
 

letsgobobby

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They do have a “last call” that is cash like open season, the other stuff I would assume is just salesgoon double speak, likely based on some aspect of RCI. Maybe someone with more experience than I can explain that.
what is the difference between

RCI Exchange Reservations​

and

RCI Select Exchange​

?

what are Exchange, Extra Vacations, and Last Call?
 

Reddart

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what is the difference between

RCI Exchange Reservations​

and

RCI Select Exchange​

?

what are Exchange, Extra Vacations, and Last Call?
As far as I can tell, “Exchange reservation” is the normal exchange (HGVC points -> RCI booking).

Select exchange is for some specific properties, but appears to just be a normal exchange, maybe with a different calendar availability than the normal RCI exchanges?

Extra vacation appears to be a cash option for whole week reservations, adding hotels into the mix of choices, “When you run out of points, you can still have that needed ‘extra vacation’!!!!”

Last call is analogous to leftover open season cash reservations in a limited window.

Again, I have not used RCI very much so maybe someone else will clarify these points.
 

SmithOp

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When you first enter the HGVC RCI Portal it's not obvious that the default search is to exchange points. To access the cash options, use the drop down. Extra Vacations can be well in advance for cash, Last Call are short term. I chose to search Last Call Orlando because I know there is always plenty of units available. 5 nights in a one bedroom for cash is cheaper than using points + the exchange fee.

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