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newbie advice

pacman

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i guess i'm lucky in that i don't own a timeshare yet, so can get all your expert advice BEFORE i buy. from doing some research, i am leaning towards an RCI points based TS. the flexibility is what attracts me the most. Is there any downside to the points based TS? Where do I start if i want to go this route? Do i go buy a timeshare somewhere? what do i look for? I am close to Whistler, BC, and know quite a few people who have their "home" TS there, so that would probably make the most sense to me. There are one week (floating) TS available at Whistler for under $5k, with about a $500 MF. if i do buy a TS, the places i most would want to use if for would be Hawaii and Mexico. I would really appreciate any advice/feedback that you can give me. thank you
 

aliikai2

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Living in the Great NW

owning one of the NW based points resort groups would make better sense than owning something that you can only use through RCI. :rolleyes:

Both WorldMark and Vacation Internationale have resorts that you can drive to, in locations like Whistler, the Oregon Coast, California, Washington, etc.

Plus since you make your reservations directly with the club, you don't need to pay RCI's annual membership fee or the exchange fees.. :D

THe upfront cost to purchase a weeks prime time in WM is about $7500 US on the resale market, with annual fees of about $500. For this you will get 10K in annual points. Look over their site WM Here

With VI you can find a 105 annual membership for around $2k with annual costs of about $600. This will get you a prime 1 bedroom for a week anywhere they own, or more depending upon your travel habits. Their site VI

Best of luck on your search. :D Greg


pacman said:
i guess i'm lucky in that i don't own a timeshare yet, so can get all your expert advice BEFORE i buy. from doing some research, i am leaning towards an RCI points based TS. the flexibility is what attracts me the most. Is there any downside to the points based TS? Where do I start if i want to go this route? Do i go buy a timeshare somewhere? what do i look for? I am close to Whistler, BC, and know quite a few people who have their "home" TS there, so that would probably make the most sense to me. There are one week (floating) TS available at Whistler for under $5k, with about a $500 MF. if i do buy a TS, the places i most would want to use if for would be Hawaii and Mexico. I would really appreciate any advice/feedback that you can give me. thank you
 

Bill4728

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I agree with Greg,

If points interest you, and in the price range you're looking at, I'd look at Worldmark (trendwest) and Vacations Internationale. Both have resorts at Whistler and all around the western US, Hawaii and Mexico.

One word about VI. Most points are on a contract which will expire. Some older contracts may expire in as little as 20 years. So be sure of what you're buying. Some VI contracts don't expire and aren't much more to buy.
 

irish

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from everything i read on these boards, i would stay as far away from RCI as i possible could
 

rickandcindy23

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RCI points is a pretty good system.

We own ten timeshare weeks, two Australia RCI Points weeks and four that we have used for PFD. We also own two in Hawaii that we never exchange and have actually had great success renting via redweek for a profit over MF's. We also have two great weeks that trade with II.

We have only owned points for about four months, but the availability is there when weeks availability is not. We are also staying an extra few days at a GC resort in Orlando with just 12K points (RCI gave us 15K points for our first transaction, so we consider this free), $49 trade fee and a $20 housekeeping fee, which makes those two days pretty cheap for us. So Points are a good option for nightly stays.

The problem (that we noticed already) is that our mountain weeks we are using for PFD are pretty valuable as weeks, so we have historically gotten every trade we wanted. This particular resort is just an awesome trader. But when we check points for weeks in Hawaii, we have to use two weeks worth of points to get a great trade, the same kinds of trades that we always got with a single week. So we are probably not going to use PFD unless we need to for a last minute week. But those are not as common as the salespeople would like to make you think, plus you have to pay the $149 trade fee with the points, so Last Call is a better deal, anyway.

With a good trader, you can do better than RCI points. I would go with something that trades with II because points are going to make RCI a difficult company to deal with as a weeks owner. Worldmark sounds like a great option and the MF's are very low. You can get to Hawaii with a small investment in WM.

Hilton is another that you might consider. Orlando HGVC resales are a bargain and their system will get you anywhere you want to go. I would buy Hilton if I was starting out with my first purchase.
 

Lee B

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As you are reading, TUGgers have lots of opinions and also a language of our own. Read these boards and the Advice areas for awhile.

A Westerner really should consider VI and WM. VI practically (or really!) invented points flexibility. Their resorts are good and pretty simple, not like Marriotts or Westin, of course. VI is older than WM and has plenty of experience serving members first. You will probably find the equivalent points membership in VI to be less costly than WM, both to buy and to maintain.

WM has great properties and happy members too, but their management clearly maximizes its bottom line. Nothing wrong with that, but it tends to make members suspicious sometimes. Investigate both, see if VI will work for you and, if not, then lean toward WM. If you reject WM too, plenty of other choices are out there.

Either of these clubs would save you big bucks and anxiety over RCI Points. That's not to discount that many TUGgers love RCI Points. They really do.

Keep reading and asking.
 

sfwilshire

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irish said:
from everything i read on these boards, i would stay as far away from RCI as i possible could
I'm a happy RCI Points member, so not all will agree with this statement.

Sheila
 

Lizyyz

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Is it really 15K?

rickandcindy23 said:
(RCI gave us 15K points for our first transaction, so we consider this free)
I thought it was 5K? I made my first booking two weeks ago and haven't seen the bonus points yet.
 

aliikai2

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But I think you would agree

that if you could make reservations at resorts close to you and in Hawaii and Mexico like the OP said they wanted, without paying fees to a 3rd party trade company, that you would save money and remove some aggravation, right?

I bought RCI points when they came out and used them successfully for 3 years, I have since sold that ownership and now use other ownerships that don't require a 3rd party like RCI or II.

fwiw, :D Greg

sfwilshire said:
I'm a happy RCI Points member, so not all will agree with this statement.

Sheila
 

pacman

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wow

wow, thanks for all the great responses. I will definitely look into VI first, and then WM. It does make a lot of sense to me to use direct resorts if possible, and not use a third party (RCI). Thanks again.
 

ladycody

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I'm a WM owner and gotta say...there is no downside to it in my book. I truly think it was one of the best purchases I've ever made. (ok...done gushing now) :D
 

pacman

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home ts

ok, after all this great advice, and doing the research on the 'net, now i'm strongly leaning to HGVC. Their resorts appear quite high quality. So my question is, does it really make any difference what ts I purchase, as in what particular resort? Should I just buy the cheapest one i can find? I will probably end up buying 2, as I want 10,000 points so i can have 2 weeks every yr in a 1-bdrm. It seems the Orlando Seaworld or one of the Vegas Hiltons are the best buy. Does it make any difference which one i choose? I plan on using the ts almost exclusively for the HGVC resorts in Hawaii. This won't be a problem will it?. Advice please. Thanks. ps. after writing this, i'm joining TUG, as i've got way more that my money's worth from just this forum!!!!!!!!!
 
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Bill4728

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pacman said:
ok, after all this great advice, and doing the research on the 'net, now i'm strongly leaning to HGVC. Their resorts appear quite high quality.
HGVC is a great TS company and if their locations work for you, then go for it.
FIRST you must read the TUG advice on HGVC. Here is the link
So my question is, does it really make any difference what ts I purchase, as in what particular resort?
If you're planning to visit your home resort during your home season alot, then location in HGVC can makes a difference. (You'll pay no exchange fees) BUT, otherwise location doesn't matter much.

Should I just buy the cheapest one i can find?
Buying the cheapest sound good BUT price / point and MF /pts both need to be considered. A 1bd in vegas has the same MF all year long, but silver season is worth 2500 pts and Platinum is worth 5000 pts. So with the platinum purchase you get the MF at 1/2 the cost per point.

I will probably end up buying 2, as I want 10,000 points so i can have 2 weeks every yr in a 1-bdrm. It seems the Orlando Seaworld or one of the Vegas Hiltons are the best buy. Does it make any difference which one i choose?
No it doesn't matter but the LV Flamingo doesn't have ROFR so if you find a great deal HGVC can't steal it from you.

I plan on using the ts almost exclusively for the HGVC resorts in Hawaii. This won't be a problem will it?.
The hawaii resorts sell for alot more than the mainland resorts, which allows the hawaii owners to book their vacations earlier (12 months). But if you can be flexable in your travel plans, you should be able to find space in Hawaii at the 9 months, during the open booking period.

Good Luck
 
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funtime

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Check ebay and buy a lot cheaper

Once you state that you might end up buying two timeshares you are starting to talk significant money. Check ebay and keep reading tug. There are several strong red traders that you can get for under 1,000 on ebay. If in a few years that does not work for you you can sell it for about the same amount of money and buy higher end but there is no necessity that your first timeshare be a "perfect" high end unit when you really do not yet know what all of your options and future needs will be. In other words, even if you make a mistake with an ebay purchase it will be a more forgiving mistake than the purchase of a high end timeshare which loses a lot of its value soon as you sign the contract.
 

pacman

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I still don't about the trading part. The bottom line is that I want to spend 2 weeks in Hawaii or Mexico. I could start with buying a one week first and see how it goes. good advice. But my main point is that I assume any old "red trader" will not get me to Hawaii (unless it is a very low quality TS). Back to HGVC. If I started out with only one week, say a 4800 point ts in Orlando or Vegas (selling for about $6k right now), what are my chances each year of getting into HGVC at Hilton Hawaiin VIllage or HGVC in Kona. I have read the TUG review on Hilton, and I realized there is that 3 month window where the home TS people can book first. At what point can the trading exchanges (RCI) start trading in to HGC resorts? ie 9 months also?
 
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