Have you ever wondered what happens when you agree to sit down and listen to a time share pitch? After years of turning down time share pitches we decided to give it a shot.
First, this is just a recounting of our time share presentation experience and not really a commentary on time shares in general. If you would like more information about Disney’s version of a time share, Disney Vacation Club, check out Kim’s series of articles here.
Last summer we took a family road trip up the east coast and the last part of trip included a short two day stay in Edisto Island SC. We stayed at a lovely Club Wyndham time share condo. At check in we were asked if we would like to attend a presentation in the morning, breakfast provided. The presentation would last maybe 90 minutes.
Here is where we went wrong. They offered us either a 7 day vacation voucher for a room in their time share network or a 3 day voucher. We should have asked more specific questions about what the difference between these vouchers actually was. In hindsight I would guess the 3 day voucher would have been for an actual Wyndham property, think Wyndham Bonnett Creek in Orlando.
We opted to listen to the presentation and chose the seven day voucher as our incentive.
The breakfast was a small buffet of nothing remarkable. We had our children with us so they set them up in a “kids room” to watch a movie. We then sat down to chat with our “guide”. We talked, and talked and talked…. but not about time shares. He asked us about our trip, our, kids and jobs. No information about the time share program was given. Eventually, my children finished their movie. We tried to get information out of our guide and he explained that he was waiting on numbers to present us from his boss.
My husband and I were sort of bewildered by the general lack of information provided. The only information we received was a result of questions we asked. The kids were restless and so were we. My husband finally explained we needed to get going. We promised to take the kids to the beach. Our guide insisted we then go on a tour of a unit.
So we went on a tour.
Then we came back to wait some more. Elapsed time 2 hours 30 min.
Finally, the “boss” came and gave us a sample package. The cost was around $200,000 for an excessive amount of points. We were actually interested in what a “typical ” contract would look like. Side note: we own DVC. We made our purchase on the second hand market without ever attending a time share pitch. After a few more contracts were presented to us we declined to make a decision on the spot. The deal they offered us was only good for the rest of the day.
In the end we did receive our 7 day voucher which could be used in a network of timeshares around the world. Of course we had a few restrictions: you had to use it within a year, you can only book it 90 days in advance. We did not make a time share purchase.
It was literally one of the strangest experiences we have ever had. I would love to hear if this is typical to time share presentations.
So we finally had occasion to use our time share voucher over the Memorial Day Holiday. The options available to us were not Wyndham resorts. In fact more of the choices were independent time shares that were part of a broader network of time shares.
We stayed at Festiva Resort. It was a very old time share resort in need of some serious TLC. There is value for sure in staying in a place similar to this. However, I can’t say I would recommend this particular resort. I should also mention we had to pay a $20 a day upgrade fee to stay at his resort.
- Great Location. It was 13 minutes from Walt Disney World.
- Great Pool. Heated, zero entry and lots of pool toys available.
- Partial Kitchen with a washer and dryer. Great to stretch the budget at Disney.
- Nice size 1 bedroom unit.
- Old and worn out interior. The pull out bed was not nice.
- The Master bedroom had a VCR.
- Appliances in need of repair.
- Limited amenities
My take away on time share talks. Ask more questions upfront. Don’t be afraid to say no or walk away. It may take a while before we decide, if ever to listen to another time share pitch.
I do however, have a new appreciation for how well Disney keeps up their hotels in general. It takes a lot of work and money to keep a place up to date and clean. The moral of the story is you get what you pay for. In our case a few hours and $20 a day landed us in a less than ideal condo. However, we managed a 4 day/5 night Disney Vacation on a limited budget out of it.
Let us know below have you attended a time share talk? Would you attend one in the future after reading this?