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It's nice to have options

dougp26364

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So, my on again off again thing with legacy points is back on again by necessity. Unfrotunately, my wife has just enough set backs to keep her paid-time-off balance lower than we need it to be. This time it's a poorly timed nasty cold a co-worker brought to work and gave to her. Thus, it will be necessary to look for Thurs/Thurs stays if we want to take full weeks off fo a year or two. We work 12 hour shifts, 3 shifts per week. Thurs/Thurs reseravtions allow us to get a full week in before we leave, then get Friday and Saturday in when we get back, requiring we only take one day of paid-time-off.

I'm still not thrilled, nor will I ever be, about the points difference in what we recieve as legacy owners and what we pay to make a reservation but, it's better than cutting vacations short or skiping them completely.

Ironically, my paid-time-off situation is just about the opposite of my wife's. I'm getting back into a situation of use it or lose it. Thus the desire to continue to take full week vacations that allow my wife to minimize her time off.

Why post this at all? I know we still have some on the fence and, as I said, sometimes it's good to have options. One just never knows how things will work out in the future.
 

MabelP

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Remember that some of the timeshares have Thursday checkin. I know that Desert Springs Villas II and Ocean Pointe do. There must be others.
 

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Remember that some of the timeshares have Thursday checkin. I know that Desert Springs Villas II and Ocean Pointe do. There must be others.
Oceana Palms and Crystal Shores also have Thursday check ins.

Doug, I hope your wife gets better.
 

dougp26364

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A few have Thursday check in's, including Ocean Pointe, which is convenient since we own and stay there. I have already used the DC to change, at no cost, our reserevation to a Thursday check in. I believe you can add Willow Ridge Lodge in Branson to the list as well

Unfortunately there are not enough resorts that offer Thursday check in and, those that do, I have to have someone deposit a week with that check in day for exchange. My experience in online searchs has been that Friday/Saturday/Sunday dates are more popular. Of course, that's looking online. Perhaps an ongoing search would have yielded better results but, then I'd have had to watch I.I. very closely to be certain they only accepted exchanges for that one particular check in day.

Fortunately Marriott has developed online searching with points and I'm hoping this will make life easier on me. Since I keep rather odd hours, hate being on hold and prefer to handle my own reservations, this is a major plus for me.

As to my wife's health, the thing is, what originally made her ill has been cured. It's been the after affects that have been an issue and, the fact it depleted all her paid-time-off from her account. We had vacations set up in advance every other month. She was gaining a little in the paid-time-off account but, it was always tentative at best.

Now, one of her fellow employee's who couldn't afford to take off (to many mental health days when the weather was nice I suspect) brought a cold into work and has knocked out several employee's along the way, including my wife. She caugth this very nasty cold at just the wrong time and had to burn 24 hours of time off pay. Thus, we're short again.

Fortunately I had already juggled vacations to some extent but, we'll be cutting a couple of vacations short this year and coming home early. Working with weeks was just to much hassle for 2013 so, points it will be. We are lucky in that Marriott, Diamond Resorts and Hilton all allow the flexiblity to book any day of the week as a check in day using points. By utilizing Thursday to Thursday check in/out weeks, I can cut it down to requiring only 12 hours of paid-time-off be used vs 36 hours. This should allow my wife to replenish her time off account over the next two years and, if that works out, this won't be an issue anymore and we'll be back to business as usual.

Having the option to go to points and the flexiblity has now become well worth the price of admission to us.
 

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As I stated when I enrolled, it is not about liking and really looking towards using points, it is buying myself possible future benefits like flexibility.

Hope all goes well with your vacations, Doug and send well wishes to DW
 

dougp26364

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Part of this process is also turning loose of traditional ideas, embracing new ideas and learning to deal with the compilcations that come with the flexiblity of points. Granted I'm somewhat accustomed to dealing with points since DRI and HGVC are both points based reservation systems but, I'm finding that keeping all the rules straight between all the clubs is getting confusing for his old brain. It's getting so that putting together a vacation plan for the year is like completing a complicated suduko puzzle or crossword puzzle.

Sure it's a nice problem to have but, I'm still stuck on maximizing our value while traveling to all the places we want to see. Over the years we've gone to many of the places we had on our list, which only complicates things just a little further. There are so many we enjoy that it's tough to pick where to go back and what new places to explore. Toss in which points based reservation system to use or which weeks based exchange sytem to use and thing really start to get muddy.

Typically, once we choose one or two destinations or resorts, things begin to fall into place. Right now we have 2 of 6 pinned down with owned resorts we prefer to use rather than exchange. It's the other 4 weeks that are getting tricky to plan and book. Keeping track of the loose odds and ends of points and finding uses for them through saving, nightly stays and/or other options offered by various clubs has complicated my planning to the point it takes several days to get everything to fall into place. Add to this the fact I had things reasonably planned out when life intervened and I really feel like this is becoming more like tax planning than vacation planning. :doh:

Still, options are good. Otherwise things would really get tight if I had to rely on weeks alone plus, we'd lose value by having to cut 7 night vacations down to 5 night vacations and just give up/lose a couple of nights where the unit would just sit empty.

What's really crumbling my cookie is the thought that I can take broken week/nightly vacations in the same locations spread between two companies. For instance, the thought occured to me I can use Marriott DC points combined with DRI THE Club points for a 7 night stay broken up into a few nights in Scottsdale and a few nights in Sedona. I think my brains about to fry considering all the options we have before us through the various ownerships from which we have to choose. I REALLY like seeing different resorts so thoughts of spending a few nights at Beachplace Towers combined with a few nights at Oceana Palms is also an attractive option.
 
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GregT

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What's really crumbling my cookie is the thought that I can take broken week/nightly vacations in the same locations spread between two companies. For instance, the thought occured to me I can use Marriott DC points combined with DRI THE Club points for a 7 night stay broken up into a few nights in Scottsdale and a few nights in Sedona. I think my brains about to fry considering all the options we have before us through the various ownerships from which we have to choose. I REALLY like seeing different resorts so thoughts of spending a few nights at Beachplace Towers combined with a few nights at Oceana Palms is also an attractive option.
Doug,

I agree with this completely -- I've also think that the Brave TUGger can further complicate this (and stretch points) using a companion system and seek to maximize each system. I could see booking Friday/Saturday at Elysian Beach in St. Thomas and then going over Sunday-Thursday to Frenchman's Cove when Marriott points are cheaper.

Same philosophy applies for HHV on Thursday/Friday/Saturday and then going to Ko Olina Sunday - Thursday for a nice 8 night trip. This is pricey weekend time for HHV, but cheaper time at Ko Olina.

We will see what comes from here -- thanks for posting the thoughts.

Best,

Greg
 

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Marriott sucks. I dumped all my Marriotts units. If I want to stay at one, I'll just rent it.
As long as you're happy, that's all that matters. :)
 

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Doug, I imagine it can't be easy for you to be thinking about all this "fluffy timeshare stuff" when you've been so involved with your wife's illness and lingering effects. Obviously your priorities are in the right place.

I hope that as time goes on and you're able to successfully navigate the new Marriott stuff in ways that work for you, then all the finagling becomes as second-nature to you as Weeks used to be and as your other point systems currently are. Thanks for sharing with us what you're learning - I hope also that the sharing helps you as much as it helps the rest of us.

Best wishes to your wife. :)
 

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Marriott sucks. I dumped all my Marriotts units. If I want to stay at one, I'll just rent it.
Other than being intentionally inflamitory. I see little purpose in this post. I certainly don't see it as helpful unless you intend to invite others to say similar things about timeshare interests you own.
 

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Other than being intentionally inflamitory. I see little purpose in this post. I certainly don't see it as helpful unless you intend to invite others to say similar things about timeshare interests you own.
I think of BocaBum now as the Peanut Gallery - every so often he'll do a drive-by to see if he can rile us up. Just smile at the angry man, he'll move on.
 

dougp26364

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Doug,

I agree with this completely -- I've also think that the Brave TUGger can further complicate this (and stretch points) using a companion system and seek to maximize each system. I could see booking Friday/Saturday at Elysian Beach in St. Thomas and then going over Sunday-Thursday to Frenchman's Cove when Marriott points are cheaper.

Same philosophy applies for HHV on Thursday/Friday/Saturday and then going to Ko Olina Sunday - Thursday for a nice 8 night trip. This is pricey weekend time for HHV, but cheaper time at Ko Olina.

We will see what comes from here -- thanks for posting the thoughts.

Best,

Greg
What I'm thinking about is booking a full week @ Canyon Villa's now. Premier status allows this apparently as I can see the week I want. Then waiting to see if I can get 3 nights in Sedona with DRI & changing the Canyon Villa's reservation back to 4 nights. If not, then I'll still have my full week @ Canyon Villa's & we'll be happy with that reservation.
 

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Isn't DC really just the new shiny object that people are buying because of the "options" it supposedly provides? Granted, I've only skimmed (no pun intended) some of the thread exchanges about the merits of DC, but I just get the sense that folks are paying for the an option which, if exercised, decreases the aggregate value of their timeshares had they just used or exchanged them in their original full week intervals. I'm sure there are exceptions, but all in all it does seem like an expensive option.
 

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Isn't DC really just the new shiny object that people are buying because of the "options" it supposedly provides? Granted, I've only skimmed (no pun intended) some of the thread exchanges about the merits of DC, but I just get the sense that folks are paying for the an option which, if exercised, decreases the aggregate value of their timeshares had they just used or exchanged them in their original full week intervals. I'm sure there are exceptions, but all in all it does seem like an expensive option.
It definitely doesn't work for everyone, that's for sure. But it also definitely works for some. Doug here is like many people whose lifestyles have changed since they first purchased Marriott Weeks, and the flexibility of using Points fits into their new lifestyles. Some of us like it because it offers more exchange value for our particular Weeks than II does. Some find that with the way they use their Weeks, it's cost-effective to enroll in the DC while continuing their same usage patterns.

But I don't think anyone, on TUG at least, chose it simply because it's a shiny new object. We've analyzed this thing all ways from Sunday for quite a while now.
 

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Doug,

I agree with this completely -- I've also think that the Brave TUGger can further complicate this (and stretch points) using a companion system and seek to maximize each system. I could see booking Friday/Saturday at Elysian Beach in St. Thomas and then going over Sunday-Thursday to Frenchman's Cove when Marriott points are cheaper.

Same philosophy applies for HHV on Thursday/Friday/Saturday and then going to Ko Olina Sunday - Thursday for a nice 8 night trip. This is pricey weekend time for HHV, but cheaper time at Ko Olina.

We will see what comes from here -- thanks for posting the thoughts.

Best,

Greg
I also heard that you can use even bonus points to pay for insurance. We had a few points left over but not enough. What I like is that you can keep changing your mind with no extra fees so flexibility is very nice to have. We have changed things around a few times already.

This post really worries me and would like to know if this is true or the salesman is telling a story?

http://tugbbs.com/forums/showthread.php?t=164016

PS. Doug, I hope that your wife will be feeling better soon so you both can enjoy your vacation. :)
 

dougp26364

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Isn't DC really just the new shiny object that people are buying because of the "options" it supposedly provides? Granted, I've only skimmed (no pun intended) some of the thread exchanges about the merits of DC, but I just get the sense that folks are paying for the an option which, if exercised, decreases the aggregate value of their timeshares had they just used or exchanged them in their original full week intervals. I'm sure there are exceptions, but all in all it does seem like an expensive option.
Value is often in the eye of the beholder.

I've held since day one that I can get more vaction time value and larger units utilizing the weeks exchange program and, I can get monetary value by elimintating the ala carte fee's (we own two lock-off's and where generating upwards of $485 in fee's/year).

However, as I've pointed out earlier in this thread, situations have dictated that I modify our vacation plans so that are arrival departure days are Thursday, which is not available at all MVC resorts. Without the option of points, it's entirely feasable I would lose value by not being able to use our ownership weeks.

Points has a learning curve in order to glean the most value from them. It's important to understand that, with legacy weeks, you can walk between both worlds depending upon which world provides you the best value in any usage year. I had not planned on ever using points. Life situations changed that sooner than what I thought and, points became an important option for us sooner rather than later.

Keeping options open can be important. You just never realize how important until life jumps up and smacks you square in the face.

This may be a minor point as to value but, for those who prefer full week vacations and can travel Thursday to Thursday, airline prices are often better on Thursday than on the traditional check in days of Fri/Sat/Sun. Especially the Friday or Sunday flights. Business travelers often crowd the Friday bookings while weekend vacation travelers often crowd the Sunday flights getting home to go to work on Monday. Granted not everyone can book a Thurs/Thurs vacation but, for those who can it can shave a few dollars off airfare, adding to potential cost savings when utilizing points.

Sometimes I believe I spend to much time overthinking all these options but, I guess everyone has to have a hobby. :D
 
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dougp26364

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But I don't think anyone, on TUG at least, chose it simply because it's a shiny new object. We've analyzed this thing all ways from Sunday for quite a while now.
Boy is that an understatement. ;)
 

dougp26364

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OK, so after spending the morning and afternoon studying my options and, for those who care to see what value, or lack of value, here's what we're planing on doing.

MGC 3 bedroom Plat = 4,625 points

Feb: Canyon Villa's 1 bedroom one week for 2,725 points (already reserved)

June: Summit Watch 1 bedroom one week for 1,175 points (will need to wait to reserve)

Save remaining 725 points to 2014 and use to book 1 week Streamside Douglas Buidling one bedroom for 725 points.

Total points given: 4,625
Total points used: 4,625

3 exchanges from one owned week: Savings on exchange fee's (I think they're still $109 per exchange outside the DC) $327. Lock-off fee saved $79. Total saved in ala carte fee's $406.

I know we'll use our Ocean Pointe week but still need to decide if we'll occupy the entire unit or, will we lock it off and use the weeks exchange system to try to trade up our studio unit. So far, we've always managed to trade up to a 1 bedroom unit from the studio and, we typically don't need the studio unit unless family/friends want to travel with us. If we lock-off that unit and exchange the studio, we'll see an additional $188 in savings for a total of $594 in ala carte fee's saved, less the $199 DC dues fee or, $395 in one years savings vs the old method of weeks exchanges with ala carte fee's.

PLUS, I can take advantage of week night check in/out days and save up to 24 hours of paid time off for each vacation week, which for 2013 will save us at least 72 hours of paid time off. Combine this with our DRI ownership, which will also allow us to book Thursday check in/out and we can save another 24 hours but, since we're planning on using DRI to go to Hawaii and, since the flight home is typically an overnight flight, that trip will only save us another 12 hours rather than 24. Still, it will allow my wife to gain critical ground back in her vacation bank and give her breathing room to take days off when she's not really feeling well enough to be at work.

All in all, I feel I've done well enough in keeping value in vacation time, monetary consideration and lifestyle changes that buying into the DC has been well worth the money and the effort, even if it has taken me the better part of a day to think about, research and begin the reservations processes necessary. Now if we can get the additional reservation into Summit Watch for June of 2013 I'll be a happy camper with our Marriott ownership.
 

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OK, so after spending the morning and afternoon studying my options and, for those who care to see what value, or lack of value, here's what we're planing on doing.

MGC 3 bedroom Plat = 4,625 points

Feb: Canyon Villa's 1 bedroom one week for 2,725 points (already reserved)

June: Summit Watch 1 bedroom one week for 1,175 points (will need to wait to reserve)

Save remaining 725 points to 2014 and use to book 1 week Streamside Douglas Buidling one bedroom for 725 points.

Total points given: 4,625
Total points used: 4,625

3 exchanges from one owned week: Savings on exchange fee's (I think they're still $109 per exchange outside the DC) $327. Lock-off fee saved $79. Total saved in ala carte fee's $406.

I know we'll use our Ocean Pointe week but still need to decide if we'll occupy the entire unit or, will we lock it off and use the weeks exchange system to try to trade up our studio unit. So far, we've always managed to trade up to a 1 bedroom unit from the studio and, we typically don't need the studio unit unless family/friends want to travel with us. If we lock-off that unit and exchange the studio, we'll see an additional $188 in savings for a total of $594 in ala carte fee's saved, less the $199 DC dues fee or, $395 in one years savings vs the old method of weeks exchanges with ala carte fee's.

PLUS, I can take advantage of week night check in/out days and save up to 24 hours of paid time off for each vacation week, which for 2013 will save us at least 72 hours of paid time off. Combine this with our DRI ownership, which will also allow us to book Thursday check in/out and we can save another 24 hours but, since we're planning on using DRI to go to Hawaii and, since the flight home is typically an overnight flight, that trip will only save us another 12 hours rather than 24. Still, it will allow my wife to gain critical ground back in her vacation bank and give her breathing room to take days off when she's not really feeling well enough to be at work.

All in all, I feel I've done well enough in keeping value in vacation time, monetary consideration and lifestyle changes that buying into the DC has been well worth the money and the effort, even if it has taken me the better part of a day to think about, research and begin the reservations processes necessary. Now if we can get the additional reservation into Summit Watch for June of 2013 I'll be a happy camper with our Marriott ownership.
Doug,

That looks like a good plan, I'm glad its working out and that DClub is part of the solution.

Are you still thinking about trying to swap out some of your Canyon Villas nights for DRI nights, or just stay with Canyon Villas?

Good luck and enjoy the travels -- and I hope all returns to normalcy.....

Best,

Greg
 
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Good Stuff, Doug. Well thought out and looks like you maximized on what you had to work with. Enjoy your vacations!
 

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Doug,

That looks like a good plan, I'm glad its working out and that DClub is part of the solution.

Are you still thinking about trying to swap out some of your Canyon Villas nights for DRI nights, or just stay with Canyon Villas?

Good luck and enjoy the travels -- and I hope all returns to normalcy.....

Best,

Greg
I think what we'll do for convenience is keep the 7 nights at Canyon Villa's but still book 3 nights with DRI in Sedona. The savings if I cancelled those last three nights would be 825 points. Sure I could find a use for those points but, it's a long drive from Sedona to the airport and I don't want to be locked into an afternoon or evening flight back home. I think it will be easier on both of us if we drive back the evening before we leave and have a place closer to the airport to spend the night. Yes we burn 825 points but, we're not rushed at the end of our vacation. After all, a vacation is suppose to remove stress. It's not a good thing to add stress on that last day trying to make a flight. Sometimes it's worth a little extra to be able to take your time and relax rather than try to rush and create stress/worry.

And I have thought about changing the reservation to 4 nights, then add 1 night the day before we leave but, the savings would only be 550 points. I don't want the hassle of checking out at a specific time and having to wait until after 4 PM to check in again. For 550 points I prefer to keep my options open to come and go however we see it.
 
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