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Vidanta upgrade

Kathysclown

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Need help/info: we recently(this morning) attended an Update in Cabo Which we generally avoid like the plague but we were interested in the option of no longer paying maintenance fees and assessments if we do not use our weeks yearly. Background. We purchased a 1 bedroom unit at the Grand Mayan Acapulco(on the secondary market thanks to TUG) in 2007. The original contract was from 2004 at $17,000 and our re-purchase price was around $4500. We have used and enjoyed it many times over the years and the years we dont use it we bank our time with SFX. We had heard that many are now given the option to only pay fees if you use it we wanted to check that out. So this morning we attended the “Update” which of course we knew was a timeshare presentation. To cut to it we were offered (7 weeks 1 for 10 years, the rest for 100yrs etc. etc. )Grand Mayan Junior Suite Deluxxe. Of course the regular price of this (an insanely inflated number) was 230,000 but (lucky us)we were able to still get it at a pre-offering price of $203,000 with $111,000 credit for what we now own at GM as well as $70,000 credit in buy backs for our Ambassador program and $12,900 for our deeded week at Club Donatello in SF. Thus bringing our total to upgrade to around $19,000. They showed us how much our current mandatory maintenance fees and use fees each year would costlier the next 10+ yrs.... and how could we possibly pass this value up. We decided to do it knowing after review we can cancel within 5 days. even though we consider ourselves somewhat seasoned in the timeshare arena we do not know (but are suspect) if this is a bad deal. My question is this: Are we crazy to dump the original contract and is there a reason to stay with what we know and are comfortable with? Also, are we opening the door for higher maintenance fees per usage and that just offsets any savings we may gain over upgrading? Because we bought on the secondary market we do not know the % limit on yearly increases in fees nor can I find the new contract percentages for increase. The unit they are offering is certainly much nicer but more like a glorified studio than the spacious 1 bedroom we currently enjoy-although we are assured there will eventually be a door to lock off to the living area. Although none have been built except the one model here on site in Cabo. Please advise???
 

Eric B

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To start out with, even if you are happy with what they sold you in terms of access to other Vidanta properties through the sister resort internal exchange, you should meet with Member Services to rescind the contract and allow them to renegotiate. That's their job and you will always get a better price and terms if you do that.

$12,900 for our deeded week at Club Donatello in SF
The "trade in" of other timeshares for credit towards the purchase of a new one is a longstanding sales tactic. Trading it in is not really what is happening; Vidanta does not want our need other timeshares. What has happened is that they have taken your contact information and ownership information and will be providing it to one of the timeshare exit companies along with the information that you would be willing to pay them to get you out of the ownership. I believe the going rate was something like $1,900 or so last time they tried this with me. Left as it is, you will be contacted by that third party and asked to pay what the piece of paper you signed indicated you were willing to pay and given the option of paying something higher (~$3500 or so) in order to keep what you already own. You can read a fair number of posts here on TUG about this process; in most cases, the timeshares don't get transferred from the former owner who traded it in and they wind up in arrears for past due MFs they thought they would no longer owe. More desirable TS will be sold or given away through timesharenation.com depending on the market, but it's quicker and easier for them to try to sell you back what you already own and avoid having to deal with any transfers. Bottom line - have Member Services "void" the trade in - Vidanta doesn't care what happens to your old timeshare anyway and they'll be happy to do so. If you no longer want to own it, give it away on TUG. In any case, you'll need nomorobo or some other blocking service/app because this will result in getting on some additional telemarketing lists.

Grand Mayan Junior Suite Deluxxe
Whether or not this is a good level to own at really depends on the internal exchanges it can get unless you want to go to that unit type in Cabo. I haven't been there and seen one, but don't believe that has any kitchen facilities such as you would get with a GM 1 BR. It likely would allow you to book a GM 1 BR anyway, but that would be starting at the current usage fee rate as compared to the one you were paying under your old contract, which had limitations on increases. If there is any likelihood that you'll continue to use the contract as you were using the old one, staying in a GM 1 BR or exchanging it, compare the costs and decide which would really be less expensive - my guess is that the old contract would be, but I don't know what the numbers are at that level or what they're offering now.

[W]e were interested in the option of no longer paying maintenance fees and assessments if we do not use our weeks yearly
If your motivation to do the upgrade was just to stop paying the usage and renovation fees, bear in mind that your old 2004 contract would have ended in 2029 unless you renewed it. That would mean that there would be 7 more years of payments plus one renovation fee, which would have been something like 2 usage fees IIRC. (@pittle knows more about how the 25-year contracts were structured, they were on the 10-year ones when I bought with Vidanta.) That means you would no longer have an obligation to pay yearly fees in 2029 after paying the equivalent of 9 years of them. Given the $19,000 upgrade cost, you're out ahead if your annual usage fee is ~$2,000, which seems high for a GM 1 BR, and that's with having the additional 7 years of use.

The unit they are offering is certainly much nicer but more like a glorified studio than the spacious 1 bedroom we currently enjoy-although we are assured there will eventually be a door to lock off to the living area.
If it's not in the contract, it's unlikely to happen. This is particularly true with the unit configurations. There may be variations from resort to resort, but the Deluxxe units they are building are really just renovations of existing buildings rather than new construction and are limited in what they can do. The results wind up having upgraded furnishings, of course, but the one you get under that contract will be a studio type unit.

Are we crazy to dump the original contract and is there a reason to stay with what we know and are comfortable with?
I'm not in any position to judge, having upgraded with Vidanta a few times. I did it because I wanted to stay in the higher level units during the high season, which is getting harder to do even with the upgrades. If you are happy with what you already owned, you can probably bet that keeping it would be less expensive than upgrading.

Also, are we opening the door for higher maintenance fees per usage and that just offsets any savings we may gain over upgrading?
I believe the current Vidanta contracts include a limitation on increases within 5% of inflation in the U.S. The older contracts were at 3% or 5%. The contractual limitation is for your contracted unit, though; if you stay in a different unit type you will pay the current fees for that unit type at whatever rate they set it at for current sales/usage. So I would say that you are opening the door to higher fees; not really sure what savings you're getting through the upgrade - it was $19K to Vidanta plus ~$2K to the timeshare exit company that would take the "trade in" if you proceed with that and get lucky on it actually being transferred.
 

Kathysclown

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Thank you to everyone for the responses. This reinforces our review of the contract and the fact that it does not pencil out. We know that if we want a larger unit at times for family all we have to do is search TUG and there will be someone there willing to rent just what we need. We suspected that the timeshare transfer of our Donatello week would never happen either and you have confirmed that likelihood. We will be heading to member services today to cancel! Thanks.
 

T-Dot-Traveller

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Thank you to everyone for the responses. This reinforces our review of the contract and the fact that it does not pencil out. We know that if we want a larger unit at times for family all we have to do is search TUG and there will be someone there willing to rent just what we need. We suspected that the timeshare transfer of our Donatello week would never happen either and you have confirmed that likelihood. We will be heading to member services today to cancel! Thanks.
Welcome to TUG .
Go rescind & enjoy your vacation. / @Eric B gave you excellent info.
 

pittle

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Eric gave you some amazing advice in his post. :) As he said, with your current GM contract, it has a 25 year renewal clause that most likely is 5 times the current MF. That means that you have 6 more MF and 1 more 5 year fee left to pay. If you do not renew by paying the 5 MF to renew, you are done with Vidanta. Your current contract is a good one that allows you to sell it to someone for the cost of 10% of the original purchase price. The original person that bought that for $17,000 so they (you) had to pay GM $1700 to get it put into your name. They therefore got $2800 of their original purchase price back, Starting in 2005, when you sold a contract, the transfer amount became 5x the MF, so they would have paid GM more of the $4500 to Vidanta. You can keep what you have until 2029 or sell it on TUG. If you did want to sell your GM week to someone, you would sell it, and then send Vidanta $1700 to transfer it to someone else's name. You can always rent from an owner if you want to go to a Vidanta property.

Another reason this is a good contract is that your Registered week will always be a Registered week. With the newer contracts, at the 10 year renewal, your Registered week will become just like a 2econd Vacation Fair week. It will most likely have the same limitations for booking. I am not sure of that yet as our 10 year period does not come up until 2024. VF weeks are called Residence weeks in the newer contracts and when the renewal comes up, we will only have Residence weeks. You still have to pay a 10 year renwal fee. I do not know what the current one is, but it would be that amount for both of your residence weeks. If you want to sell your new Deluxxe contract the cost to transfer it to someone else will be 10x the current MF, So that pretty much makes it impossible to sell. If the MF, are $1000, then it would take $10,000 to give to Vidanta to put into the other person's name.

We have also purchased resale MP weeks and used them over tea past 20 years for family vacations and to use the original purcahse prices to leverage upgrades. But, it is more difficult to do with just 1 week to upgrade. We trades 2 MP two-bedroom units + $$ to get 2 two-bedroom GM weeks. Later, we traded in 3 two-bedroom MP weeks, 1 one-bedroom MP week and 2 two-bedroom GM weeks +$$ to get 2 2-bedroom GL weeks. We mostly did it because we no longer needed 6 weeks a year, even with no-pay unless you go. We had moved to AZ and did not need to go in the winter. We had purchased Buganvilias also, and that is our favorite.

I would rescind and call this a learning experience.

Sorry I was late to the party! I live in AZ and it is 7:30 AM here. I was typing and editing my response and when I posted, I saw your response. I see that you are going to rescind. Good choice.
 
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Kathysclown

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Eric gave you some amazing advice in his post. :) As he said, with your current GM contract, it has a 25 year renewal clause that most likely is 5 times the current MF. That means that you have 6 more MF and 1 more 5 year fee left to pay. If you do not renew by paying the 5 MF to renew, you are done with Vidanta. Your current contract is a good one that allows you to sell it to someone for the cost of 10% of the original purchase price. The original person that bought that for $17,000 so they (you) had to pay GM $1700 to get it put into your name. They therefore got $2800 of their original purchase price back, Starting in 2005, when you sold a contract, the transfer amount became 5x the MF, so they would have paid GM more of the $4500 to Vidanta. You can keep what you have until 2029 or sell it on TUG. If you did want to sell your GM week to someone, you would sell it, and then send Vidanta $1700 to transfer it to someone else's name. You can always rent from an owner if you want to go to a Vidanta property.

Another reason this is a good contract is that your Registered week will always be a Registered week. With the newer contracts, at the 10 year renewal, your Registered week will become just like a 2econd Vacation Fair week. It will most likely have the same limitations for booking. I am not sure of that yet as our 10 year period does not come up until 2024. VF weeks are called Residence weeks in the newer contracts and when the renewal comes up, we will only have Residence weeks. You still have to pay a 10 year renwal fee. I do not know what the current one is, but it would be that amount for both of your residence weeks. If you want to sell your new Deluxxe contract the cost to transfer it to someone else will be 10x the current MF, So that pretty much makes it impossible to sell. If the MF, are $1000, then it would take $10,000 to give to Vidanta to put into the other person's name.

We have also purchased resale MP weeks and used them over tea past 20 years for family vacations and to use the original purcahse prices to leverage upgrades. But, it is more difficult to do with just 1 week to upgrade. We trades 2 MP two-bedroom units + $$ to get 2 two-bedroom GM weeks. Later, we traded in 3 two-bedroom MP weeks, 1 one-bedroom MP week and 2 two-bedroom GM weeks +$$ to get 2 2-bedroom GL weeks. We mostly did it because we no longer needed 6 weeks a year, even with no-pay unless you go. We had moved to AZ and did not need to go in the winter. We had purchased Buganvilias also, and that is our favorite.

I would rescind and call this a learning experience.

Sorry I was late to the party! I live in AZ and it is 7:30 AM here. I was typing and editing my response and when I posted, I saw your response. I see that you are going to rescind. Good choice.
 

Kathysclown

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Thank you for your detailed response. I love hearing everyone’s experience and how they utilize what they own.
It further demonstrates to me that cancelling the new contract is the way to go. We have our current contract pretty much on automatic and its very easy for me to upgrade to a 2 bdrm with San Francisco exchange. We have done that almost yearly for many years. My other issue with the Deluxxe Jr. suite they sold us is that besides being small it would likely not trade as well in the SFX system since it really is just a studio unit which in essence makes it a downgrade With higher MF.
 

Eric B

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Kathysclown

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Thanks again. They are of course trying to tell us our own calculations are incorrect but I know what we pay and what we get for our money now. They have 2 renovation fees calculated over the next 10 yrs as well as the renewal fee and that is the inflated number they used to tally our projected costs. Also MF have been added to the total which of course would be something we would still pay in order to use time in the new contract so that is a moot point. In reality as you mentioned we will have one Reno fee due before renewal comes at which time we will not renew. Thank you for the information that we could just not renew as an option. we were concerned about leaving our children saddled with our obligation(which is why we even considered the new contract) but this makes it easier and cleaner given they may not want it anyway. We do love GM but frankly not sure we lIke the current Disneyland type direction in which they seem to be headed. Just not for us. Our current maintenance fees for our 1 bedroom unit are 995/yr -so much less than we would pay for the smaller GM junior Deluxxe suite at $1450/use. When our contract expires we will just rent from other members here and leave the timeshare behind. It’s been a good run but when its time its time!
 

Kathysclown

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We rescinded/cancelled our Upgrade this morning with No objections. We did get a call from the salesman telling me it was a mistake but he realized I had done my own number crunching and went away politely. There was no effort to sweeten the deal which we would have turned down regardless. Bottom line is the process of cancelling was painless and fast and we have signed document of cancellation. Thanks again to all who contributed info & advice. Happy travels!
 

Zinjanthropus

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We were offered the same deal a Grand Mayan DeLuxxe jr Suite.
They're renovating the entire northern GM tower into DeLuxxe suites. It made better sense for us because we are upgrading from a Cascades/entertainment collection/Mayan Palace studio to a Deluxxe GM loft, which is still a studio, but gives the option of swapping into the other levels. 4 weeks there and We also have 2 weeks per year access to the Jungle Aqua.


We will rescind though, it doesn't make financial sense at this time as we have more pressing expenses to consider. Maybe in a year or so... As it is now, we've been to Vidanta 5 times since we purchased and NEVER via Vidanta, only through RCI certificates that we got from their cruise department, and via RCI trade. I know these tricks will end soon, and we're looking for a more stable solution...just not now. we have a big house renovation AND our son just bought a house.
Life
 

Zinjanthropus

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if im correct, the recision is within 5 days and sunday doesn't count?
 

Zinjanthropus

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Left a message with member services yesterday. Will call again in a moment, If I remember correctly, they will probably offer me a "Better" deal. I'm only interested in waiting until next year, perhaps jan. of 2022.
It's an acceptable deal, just the wrong time to do it. If they say "ok, here's your down payment back, and you don't have to pay anything till next year and we will put it in writing" then I'm good. If not, then i'm off.
 

Zinjanthropus

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Rescinded by email and callled back to make sure they got the email.
The salesman told me that he would “see what he could do” and he would call me back soon.
It’s crazy because the Member services closes at 12:00 noon!!
Good thing we didn’t wait.
 

bjones9942

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Is email the method listed to rescind in your documents? This is one of those cases where you need to cross all t's and dot all i's. If the docs say mail, run and do it by mail asap!
 

Zinjanthropus

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The docs said "contact" member services in person, at the phone number or via email. I called all day and finally got through to a person. The person at member services said to email it, and someone will contact me tomorrow. I'm away from the contract, but just to make sure, where is the rescind note located?
 

Ty1on

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Rescinded by email and callled back to make sure they got the email.
The salesman told me that he would “see what he could do” and he would call me back soon.
It’s crazy because the Member services closes at 12:00 noon!!
Good thing we didn’t wait.
Salesman is the last person you want to talk to. If you sent the email to him, it it will be "never received". Member services won't "see what they can do." If you are within the rescission period, they will rescind it. You might want to mention that you BCC'd Profeco on your rescission email, that usually makes them take it seriously, I hear.
 

Zinjanthropus

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Salesman is the last person you want to talk to. If you sent the email to him, it it will be "never received". Member services won't "see what they can do." If you are within the rescission period, they will rescind it. You might want to mention that you BCC'd Profeco on your rescission email, that usually makes them take it seriously, I hear.
It was member services we spoke with who advised us to email it to member services.
Salesman is going to “ see what he can do” because earlier I asked him if he could hold the deal till Jan of 22.
I shouldn't have even bothered.
 

Ty1on

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It was member services we spoke with who advised us to email it to member services.
Salesman is going to “ see what he can do” because earlier I asked him if he could hold the deal till Jan of 22.
I shouldn't have even bothered.
It's good to bother! I just missed your original comment about holding the deal. At any rate, if you want to the deal in Jan 22, you can walk back in and suggest that offer. I doubt they'll not give you the same deal just to spite you for rescinding.
 

Zinjanthropus

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Is email the method listed to rescind in your documents? This is one of those cases where you need to cross all t's and dot all i's. If the docs say mail, run and do it by mail asap!
Ohh good catch. I found the rescind details and yes, that's what it says...Registered mail or walk in. Just went to the post office jand sent a hand written rescind letter too, just to be sure, so with that AND the email I should be covered. Plus, I miscalculated, tomorrow is the 5th day so i'm covered.
 

Zinjanthropus

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It's good to bother! I just missed your original comment about holding the deal. At any rate, if you want to the deal in Jan 22, you can walk back in and suggest that offer. I doubt they'll not give you the same deal just to spite you for rescinding.
Yes they probably will.
My contract had a lot of addendums about discounted admission to the cascades and also the Kingdom of the Sun, free "Train/gondola" ride, discount golf, and additional upgrades to Grand Bliss during off season and being able to upgrade at the same price as the previous time I went to a presentation.
 

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Did you contact your credit card company to inform them that you cancelled (if you put the down payment on your card)?
 

Grammarhero

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We were offered the same deal a Grand Mayan DeLuxxe jr Suite.
They're renovating the entire northern GM tower into DeLuxxe suites. It made better sense for us because we are upgrading from a Cascades/entertainment collection/Mayan Palace studio to a Deluxxe GM loft, which is still a studio, but gives the option of swapping into the other levels. 4 weeks there and We also have 2 weeks per year access to the Jungle Aqua.


We will rescind though, it doesn't make financial sense at this time as we have more pressing expenses to consider. Maybe in a year or so... As it is now, we've been to Vidanta 5 times since we purchased and NEVER via Vidanta, only through RCI certificates that we got from their cruise department, and via RCI trade. I know these tricks will end soon, and we're looking for a more stable solution...just not now. we have a big house renovation AND our son just bought a house.
Life
@Zinjanthropus We hope your rescission and refund went well. Solely to track TUG rescission savings, mind sharing the purchase price of the TS? As half of tuggers initially bought developer/retail timeshares, there is no shame.
 
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