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Westin Lagunamar - How Much Should We Charge Our Friends?

sherilah

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Any ideas on how much we should charge our friends to say with us at Westin Lagunamar for a week in July? We will be staying in our 2 bedroom lockoff unit and are wondering what sounds reasonable to charge our friends to stay with us for a week. We are not bringing our kids, so it will just be ourselves and one other couple.

Any thoughts?

Thanks!

Sheri
 

Fletcher921

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We have never charged our friends when they stay with us for our timeshare stays. They always reciprocate by popping for more of the groceries and covering a few extra meals though.
 

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I would charge them enough to cover the MF on the side of the unit that they will be using. You can find the 2009 MF's in the Owner Resources Sticky under Sept. 2008 Developer Pricing.

I would be the most comfortable, if everything was laid out from the beginning and everyone knew what their cost was - it might save misunderstandings on the trip.
 

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I too have never charged friends or family, and never expect anything in return. They have always bought a few meals etc.....and given a hearty thank you. If I needed the cash at the time.....I would have no problem asking them to pay the maint fees for that side as that should be alot less than renting their own week.
 

LisaRex

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We asked for nothing but they insisted. I think they gave us about $700 for their half of our 2 bdrm OF at WKORV-N. We both think we did well. :)
 

GrayFal

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I put between an $800-$1,000 'value' on my weeks - so 4 work friends are going to Harborside next fall - we will split it at $250 each.

My DH and I are going to Marriott Marbella next summer - we invited friends (3 people) to join us and do not expect anything in return...they will probably take us to dinner once or twice and pick up the charges at the resort.

It all depends on the 'circumstances' :hi:
 

sherilah

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Thanks everyone....I was thinking $100 a night, which would be $700 for the week. If we were just going away for the weekend, we would never charge them....but our feeling is, why should they get a free week of vacation in Cancun?
 

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Thanks everyone....I was thinking $100 a night, which would be $700 for the week. If we were just going away for the weekend, we would never charge them....but our feeling is, why should they get a free week of vacation in Cancun?

That sounds fair - and then there won't be any hard feelings or misunderstandings later if it's all worked out upfront. When we have taken friends to our timeshares, they also paid the equivalent of our cost per night and everyone was happy with that.
 

thinze3

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If my wife and I invited another couple to join us on a trip to a timeshare which we owned, I would not feel right asking for a payment in return. I also would not expect anything other than an equal split of expenses once we got there. Now, if they offered to buy the groceries on the initial shopping trip, or offered to pay for a nice dinner out on the town as a symbolic "thank you", then I would probably agree and make it clear that we split everything from that point forward.


Terry
 

DeniseM

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This is such an interesting thread! I wonder what the difference is? Regional custom? Income level?

Let me ask it another way - If you invited guests on a trip and you were staying in hotel rooms, would you pay for their hotel room? Or if you rented a vacation home/condo/cabin for you and your guests, would you pay the full amount on your own?

Maybe I'm just weird, :D but I wouldn't feel like it was fair for my friends to pay for my accommodations for a week.

Don't get me wrong - there is obviously no "right" answer here - I'm just interested in the differences in custom.
 

sherilah

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It has been super interesting, reading all the different responses to my question. I agree with Denise...it's a fairness issue. Why should our friends get a "freebie" vacation? Financially, we don't need the money...but like my husband said, if the tables were turned, we would never expect or accept staying in someone else's TS and not contribute.

Again, if it were for a few nights, locally, in Palm Springs or AZ, we wouldn't ask for $$$...also, if it were family, we wouldn't ask for $$$...
 

vacationhopeful

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I have usually split the cost of the maintenance fees with my guests. If I take a niece or nephew (under 25), I don't ask my siblings (their parents) for anything except the expectation that the child has some spending money.

My sister gave the 13 yo $40 as his money and $260 to me for incidentals (as I provide the FF airline tickets, too) --- I returned $60 to her and had used the $200 for his admission on tours for him.

My other sister sent the 18 yo with $165 and told her the money was for her food for the week. That sis had spent $650 for the airline ticket and the 18 yo was a college student with a PT job. I brought a couple of meals and stocked the refrigerator.

Friends - I ask for half of the MFs. It is amazing how fast they start to expect their own bdrs & baths. One was pissed to get the 2nd bdr with 2 full size beds (and their own private bath & LR) while I had the MBR (King size bed) & bath .... Another single wanted to go away with me for a holiday week and when I said I had a 1bdr, he told me he should go free as he would have no privacy sleeping in the LR (I let him have all the privacy he needed - sleeping at his house).:D
 

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Earlier I said half of the maintenance fees, and that was half true. It depends on the week/vacation. For example, In June we are going to WSJ and have two units, ours and another we got from a friend. We are giving the other unit to our friends at no cost, since the other unit really didn't cost us anything. In August we are going to Harborside and taking our neighbors. We are using our 3 bedroom unit. We are charging them $1000 to split the cost of the maintenance fees. They are happy to only spend $1000 to stay ay Harborside and we are happy to get that extra money for the maintenance fees. When we went to WKORV in Oct, we took our neighbors and charged them nothing. The WKORV unit I had gotten with an II exchange, using a free week that came with a resale unit....total cost was $139 exchange fee.
 

LisaRex

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We own a lake cottage in Kentucky and on occasion invite friends along for the weekend. It has never occurred to me to charge anyone for staying there, even though the price of maintaining it isn't free. The way I look at is is that I'd have to pay for that maintenance whether they accompanied me or not. I have similar feelings about my timeshare.

We initially refused our friends' offer to split our MFs in Hawaii. They insisted. However, I wouldn't have held it against them had they offered nothing or simpy taken us out to dinner.

I think it depends on how you present the idea. If you "invite" someone somewhere, it's kind of assumed that they are your guest and you will pick up the tab. If you say up front, "Are you interested in splitting the cost of our timeshare for the week?" then that's another matter.
 

thinze3

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We own a lake cottage in Kentucky and on occasion invite friends along for the weekend. It has never occurred to me to charge anyone for staying there, even though the price of maintaining it isn't free. The way I look at is is that I'd have to pay for that maintenance whether they accompanied me or not. I have similar feelings about my timeshare.

We initially refused our friends' offer to split our MFs in Hawaii. They insisted. However, I wouldn't have held it against them had they offered nothing or simpy taken us out to dinner.

I think it depends on how you present the idea. If you "invite" someone somewhere, it's kind of assumed that they are your guest and you will pick up the tab. If you say up front, "Are you interested in splitting the cost of our timeshare for the week?" then that's another matter.

I 100% agree with this post as I was assuming thy were invited guests. :)


Terry
 

sherilah

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By the way, not sure if I mentioned that we are getting the entire 2 bdrm lockout. Our friends will have their own entire unit at Lagunamar. I think it would be different if they were sleeping in the living room! I looked on line, and the going rate around the time we are planning our trip is $199 + tax if you were to call up and pay w/o owning. We figure, if we are going to use the enitre 2 bedroom lockoff, and it's discussed upfront, that is fair. If we don't end up bringing another couple, then we will only use the one bedroom side, and we would conceivably have another vacation week of our studio side.
 

djp

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We own a lake cottage in Kentucky and on occasion invite friends along for the weekend. It has never occurred to me to charge anyone for staying there, even though the price of maintaining it isn't free. The way I look at is is that I'd have to pay for that maintenance whether they accompanied me or not. I have similar feelings about my timeshare.


I agree with above post.
To me it comes down to this issue....do you look at your TS more like a vacation home that you own, or more like renting a hotel for a week. Tsharing is definitely a hybrid of these. I have a friend who owns a lakehouse.....he invites us from time to time, he would never expect to receive any money, and would likely be quite offended at the offer, he is inviting me because we are friends. Now I have other friends, who we say....hey lets all go on a cruise, or a weekend getaway to a hotel....and it is clear that we are all getting our own place to stay and so we all pay.
I have always looked at my timeshare more as something I have and will pay for no matter if I use or let my friends and family use it. One of the reasons that (I use to justify the fact that) we now own multiple weeks is the ability to share and invite friends and family along. Personally if I dont need the cash, I find the ability to give to one I care about, and get to make memories with them, and receive their heartfelt gratitude to be worth more to me than a few hundred $$$. Plus if I "charged them", I would feel some pressure that everything at the resort be perfect, and would wonder if they felt like they got a "good deal".
 
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sjuhawk_jd

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Depends!

This is such an interesting thread! I wonder what the difference is? Regional custom? Income level?

Let me ask it another way - If you invited guests on a trip and you were staying in hotel rooms, would you pay for their hotel room? Or if you rented a vacation home/condo/cabin for you and your guests, would you pay the full amount on your own?

Maybe I'm just weird, :D but I wouldn't feel like it was fair for my friends to pay for my accommodations for a week.

Don't get me wrong - there is obviously no "right" answer here - I'm just interested in the differences in custom.

I go by the financial means (and how much they like to spend on vacations on their own) of the friends/relatives that I am asking to come along. One of our relative usually go camping and do not stay at fancy places. We like their company and when I ask them to join us, it is free! Another couple that we know spend money on fancy clothes/dinning/vacations/electronics all the time. When I ask them to join us, they have to pay a fair share. They were suppose to join us at Atlantis during prime summer week this year (they had to back out at the last minute due to work conflict). I was asking them to pay $1500 and it was fine with them.
 

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I too think of my friends/relatives' financial means. I would never consider asking my SIL and family to pay. They have newborn twins, a 4 year old and one very small income to make it on in West Los Angeles. NOT easy. They never take vacations thanks to the crazy family schedule and lack of money. Boy do they need a break.

On the other hand, I asked my parents to pay 1/2 the fees for our upcoming WKORV trip. I know they can afford it easily and would be happy to contribute....

K
 
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grgs

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I think it depends on how you present the idea. If you "invite" someone somewhere, it's kind of assumed that they are your guest and you will pick up the tab. If you say up front, "Are you interested in splitting the cost of our timeshare for the week?" then that's another matter.

I agree with Denise that there is no right or wrong on this. I think Lisa's statement above is the critical piece. If you're expecting/assuming any kind of cost-sharing that had better be stated right up front--otherwise, you're taking a big chance on all kinds of misunderstandings.

Glorian
 

Blondie

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We don't like the exchange of $ with friends, so we have them get the groceries and the rental car. It is more than fair and it is easy for us all.
 

CatLovers

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This is on my mind right now!

I find this thread very interesting as we have recently purchased a beachfront villa in Mexico. Suddenly our beachfront home has become the hottest ticket in town with all our friends! So we found that we had to come up with some ground rules.

My husband and I agreed that if our friends join us while we are at the villa, then we consider them our guests and would never ask them to pay anything. We have 3 bedrooms and 3-1/2 baths so we have plenty of room! If they choose to take us out to dinner or buy us a "host" gift, then we'll accept with pleasure, but there is absolutely no expectation on our part. On the other hand, if our friends would like to borrow the house when we are not "in residence", then we have decided that we will charge them a nominal fee of about $50 per night, intended to cover the maid service after they leave, costs of getting someone to let them in, close up after them, contribute towards our HOA fees, other costs, etc. Plus, we will be clear with them that this is not like staying in a hotel, so they will be expected to clean up after themselves, run a dishwasher load and laundry load when they leave, etc.

Most importantly, we decided that we will be upfront and clear on our "policy" with our friends - I am a firm believer that clear upfront communication avoids misunderstandings, and I still want to be friends with these people after all is said and done!

Now, having said all this, we won't be applying this rule to immediate family -- there's no way that I would ask my parents or in-laws to pay a penny. Ditto for my brother and his family. Cousins, we'd probably charge them.
 
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sjuhawk_jd

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How is this different from splitting the restaurant check?

We don't like the exchange of $ with friends, so we have them get the groceries and the rental car. It is more than fair and it is easy for us all.

I don't know how you get by without exchange of money with the friends. My kids sell "cookies" to our friends and they give us the money. My daughter recently asked all of our friends (family invitation) that were invited for her birthday party not to bring gifts but money that can be donated to her favorite charity "Smiletrain." We went out to dinner with another family, I charged the entire amount on my card and they gave us the cash at the restaurant. I asked our Korean friends to pick up some "groceries" for us from the Korean store and we gave them cash afterwards, etc. etc.
 

Catazog

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We own a lake cottage in Kentucky and on occasion invite friends along for the weekend. It has never occurred to me to charge anyone for staying there, even though the price of maintaining it isn't free. The way I look at is is that I'd have to pay for that maintenance whether they accompanied me or not. I have similar feelings about my timeshare.

We initially refused our friends' offer to split our MFs in Hawaii. They insisted. However, I wouldn't have held it against them had they offered nothing or simpy taken us out to dinner.

I think it depends on how you present the idea. If you "invite" someone somewhere, it's kind of assumed that they are your guest and you will pick up the tab. If you say up front, "Are you interested in splitting the cost of our timeshare for the week?" then that's another matter.

I agree with LisaRex too. We are inviting friends for the first time to come with us to WKORV next October. We'll use our full 2BR lockoff. We figure we are already paying the maintenance fees whether we bring friends or not, and since this is probably a once in a lifetime (or a very rare) occasion when we can all get together in Maui, we don't want to charge them anything. I imagine they'll pay for some groceries and take us out to dinner, and that seems quite fair to me. I should add that if we were feeling the pinch financially we would probably ask for some of the maintenance fees, but as several people have written, we would make sure to make that clear up front.

This is a fascinating thread!
 
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