Starwood's Sheraton Desert Oasis Excuses (Methinks They Are Asking for Trouble)
Nobody likes change, especially when it is for the worse, seen as unfair, and/or costs you money.
Starwood Resolutions staff has investigated this issue and informed me this is Year 1 of using a predictive model to allocate weeks among Starwood's (what I believe are four?) categories -- SVN points, non-SVN (deeded weeks at SDO), developer/unsold weeks, and rental weeks. The first 2 categories should be the main ones.
In past years, it seems that everyone had fair and equal access to all inventory. Now, if "the model" allocates too many weeks to one category, or more alarmingly, deliberately moves the prime March weeks to developer and rental categories, thereby leaving far fewer weeks for owners, then shortages are certain to occur.
My past experience (up to last year) has been I could call in the fall of the year and still get next March's weeks. This year I called within a few days of 12 months out (the max), and while I was able to make it work, I had to compromise and move around my desired dates. Something is VERY different and not for the good.
Of course I suspect Starwood is diverting the best weeks for their own use and profit. Sound familiar? Nothing that a good class action lawsuit wouldn't fix, right? Oh sorry, I meant to say make worse, while enriching a few attorneys. But what other recourse do we have, except for refusing to pay our annual fees?
I don't know if this apparent manipulation is illegal or actionable, but it certainly sucks for owners. In combo with Starwood's already too-high annual fees, it seems that Starwood insists on diminishing owners while enriching themselves.
I anticipate the problem getting worse every year hereafter. If correct, I see it as a Tugger's sworn duty to make sure that as many people as possible hear that Starwood's management is a bunch of Greedy Old Poopyheads.
Who's with me?