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Most economical way to pay Maintenance Fees?

fizzysoup

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I am sure there are many answers to this questions depending on many factors.

However for Marriott's Phuket Beach Club, one can ONLY pay in Thai Baht, and via telegraphic bank transfer; cheque (in Thai Baht only); or credit card (Visa/MasterCard/Amex). Many owners who do not have a Thai bank account find this restrictive and inconvenient.

Alternately if one owns Asia Pacific Points as well (as many PBC owners do), payment must be made in US$ into Citibank in Singapore. Again a cheque or bank draft in US$ is an option or by Visa/MasterCard/Amex & JCB in this instance.

As I have a HSBC Offshore US$ account I went online a few days ago and paid a bill of just over US$90 to 'Club Resorts No.1 Asia Pacific Pte Ltd' US$ account held in Citibank in Singapore and was staggered to find that once the transaction had been completed, the full charge came to an outrageous US$130.68 comprised of the addition of ‘Commission’ of US$23.52 & Other Bank charges of US$15.68.

Obviously this does not make economic sense, and I need to look to other options next time around.

I would be interest to know how others in such a situation make payment without incurring such awful charges.
 

basham

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I've been a member of TUG for some years now, usually stay within the forum confines of ownership with occasional forays to the TUG Lounge for general interest topics. Occasionally run across topics which are of some interest, yours is one.

Seems your beef is with HSBC.

The credit card option seems good, may have to pay up to a 5% foreign currency fee and receive an unfavourable exchange rate. But in the end, so what. That is normal. I can understand maintaining a chequeing account in local currency and have done so, but that is hard to do over a long period of time, and really necessitates a source of local income
to fund an account, but probably is the best and cheapest alternative.

I'd suggest the many owners who find payment terms restrictive are living in la la land.

It seems the resort has a number of payment options, some not so attractive,
some more so.

Probably, I'm not understanding.
 

Carolinian

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Most US based credit cards charge a 3% ''foreign transaction charge'' regardless of what currency the payment is in. Some only charge the 1% Visa or Mastercard charge while most add on an additional 2% junk fee for themselves for doing absolutely nothing. A few, like Capital One, do not add on any fees. That is the best bet as far as cutting out local bank fees on such transactions.

Then there is the problem of extra fees on the other end. Outside the US, the prohibition on charges by merchants for accepting a credit card that is in their merchant agreements in the US does not apply, and even in Europe, you run into airlines, timeshare management, and many others adding on a fee to use a credit card. The only way around this is to not use a credit card.

My UK resort charges an extra fee for using a credit card but my South African resort does not. Interestingly, the UK resort can accept a check on a US bank in dollars and the fee for that is less than using a credit card. However, what I have been doing the last few years is getting a British colleague to write them a check on his UK account in Sterling and mailing that to them. I then give him the equivalent in local currency in cash.
 

fizzysoup

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Yes 'basham', the beef is really about the charge versus the actual amount owed & therefore I have taken it up with HSBC, I was curious to find out the preferred method of payment by other owners of PBC/MKB.

I guess owners living & owning in the US don't have a problem.

A 3% add on for CC usage and an exchange rate loss is to be expected but for a bill of 90 US$ and charges of 40US$, that is just taking the mickey!

I guess not many people visit the lounge. Ho hum!
 

DeniseM

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A lot of people visit the lounge, however, I moved your post to the Buying, Selling, Renting forum, because the lounge is for non-timeshare posts.

223 people have actually read your post, but I think your situation is fairly rare, so not too many people have advice. I take it that you live outside the US?
 

MALC9990

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I am sure there are many answers to this questions depending on many factors.

However for Marriott's Phuket Beach Club, one can ONLY pay in Thai Baht, and via telegraphic bank transfer; cheque (in Thai Baht only); or credit card (Visa/MasterCard/Amex). Many owners who do not have a Thai bank account find this restrictive and inconvenient.

Alternately if one owns Asia Pacific Points as well (as many PBC owners do), payment must be made in US$ into Citibank in Singapore. Again a cheque or bank draft in US$ is an option or by Visa/MasterCard/Amex & JCB in this instance.

As I have a HSBC Offshore US$ account I went online a few days ago and paid a bill of just over US$90 to 'Club Resorts No.1 Asia Pacific Pte Ltd' US$ account held in Citibank in Singapore and was staggered to find that once the transaction had been completed, the full charge came to an outrageous US$130.68 comprised of the addition of ‘Commission’ of US$23.52 & Other Bank charges of US$15.68.

Obviously this does not make economic sense, and I need to look to other options next time around.

I would be interest to know how others in such a situation make payment without incurring such awful charges.
Hi Fizzy.

This year I paid my PBC and MVCIAP MFs using my Marriott UK Rewards Mastercard issued by Creation Finance. This charges a forex fee of 2.99% but the exchange rate used is the published Mastercard exchange rate for the date the transaction is processed. This rate is much better than that offered for customers over the counter. Also I get MR points for the transactions.

I agree that the situation is not great but I believe that the use of a credit card that offers something back - like MR points is about as good as it gets.

Incidentally - I also do this for my MFs for my weeks at Son Antem and Playa Andaluz and get the MR points for the transactions.
 

fizzysoup

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Thanks Denise. Yes I live in Malaysia.

My situation cannot be rare because thousands of people own at PBC & MKB, and the vast majority of them live outside of Thailand.

Difficulty in paying the MF at PBC (because it has to be in Thai Baht) proves difficult for quite a number of Owners and is quite a common complaint to the PBC Advisory Board.

Malcolm, I like the idea of the Credit card, but I guess it would not be available to me as I do not have a UK address anymore! The MR points sound good though. Approximately how many points do you get for say 1 weeks MF payment at PBC?
 

MALC9990

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Thanks Denise. Yes I live in Malaysia.

My situation cannot be rare because thousands of people own at PBC & MKB, and the vast majority of them live outside of Thailand.

Difficulty in paying the MF at PBC (because it has to be in Thai Baht) proves difficult for quite a number of Owners and is quite a common complaint to the PBC Advisory Board.

Malcolm, I like the idea of the Credit card, but I guess it would not be available to me as I do not have a UK address anymore! The MR points sound good though. Approximately how many points do you get for say 1 weeks MF payment at PBC?
Hi Ray - yes you need a UK address and a bank account and a UK credit history to get a UK credit card. The issue of a UK Marriott Reward Credit Card has been a hot one on the Marriott Rewards Insiders forum for a few months recently - all started by the sudden withdrawal of the previous card run by HBOS.

The current card gives 2 pts for each GBP spent at a marriott in the UK and 4 points per GBP outside the UK. The card account does not itemise the points per transaction but I pulled in about 23000 MR points for my total MFs - covering 8 weeks and also 30,000 AP points. I guesstimate around 2400 points for a weeks MFs for PBC.

We are still here at PBC and depart now on Friday. I will email you with some input on the refurb of the units and my overall reaction to the resort this time.
 

fizzysoup

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OK Thanks Malcolm,

I look forward to your feedback Enjoy your remaining few days. I am currently in freezing London!!
 
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