Yes, I really believe that. After dealing with my parents timeshare, sitting in on a few sales pitches and doing some research I have come to a reasonable conclusion – that I will NEVER buy a time share. Here is the cold hard reality of the downsides of owning a timeshare:
- Many timeshares only allow you to stay in a selection of specified hotels and of course the nicer ones are going to be filled up a year or two in advance. Then (this is how ours works) if you want to stay somewhere other than the seven hotels in their chain you have to pay an additional $250. Our Orlando timeshare works out where it would be much cheaper, more convenient and carefree to simply stay at one of the Disney Resorts.
- Many timeshare weeks evaporate into thin air two years after they have been purchased, if you have not used it by then (even after you PAID FOR IT!)
- They are a pain to have to deal with! With a certain amount of points, certain hotels that cost more, deadlines, paper work, etc… they are a hassle just to deal with, taking the fun out of vacationing
- They are nearly impossible to get your money back out of, especially in todays economy. They are very hard to sell, usually your best bet is to sell it back to the company you bought it from at a fraction of the amount you paid for it. My parents spent $10,000 on their timeshare back in 1993 and I can’t even get $3000 for it today (I posted an ad on Craigslist for $3000 and didn’t get one single decent response, just spam) and If you are planning on buying a timeshare then you should definitely get a “used” timeshare and not buy it from the money steelers themselves.
- Many people don’t even use the kitchen and extra space and amenities that their timeshare includes
We recently stayed at the Polo Towers in Las Vegas and told the concierge that we wanted to see the Beatles LOVE show at the Mirage. But she told us that she could give us a $25 deal, for two people, where we could see another Beatles show (instead) and get a meal at one of three restaurants at the Planet Hollywood. We ended up eating at the Planet Hollywood’s Spice Market Buffet, which we really weren’t very impressed with (especially after eating at the Cosmopolitan’s delicious Wicked Spoon buffet the day before). And we ended up seeing Vegas! The Show instead of the Beatles show, which was a fantastic show, I would see it again in a heartbeat. …but getting the show and meal for two for $25 came with a catch, we had to spend an hour and a half or so listening to a sales pitch.
They were trying to sale us a 96,000 timeshare with monthly fees and weeks that expire. I just sat there quietly imagining how that 96K could be invested, instead, and paying people plenty of interest money to stay at the nicest hotels on the strip. The sales guy claimed that he had met all the celebrities and they he had been the casino manager at one time or another at all of the nicest hotels on the strip. We got the impression that he tooted his own horn a little to much, especially after he went into the talk about how he could be retired right now but that he is a timeshare salesman just because it gives him something to do.
Then when I asked him about the best way to sell a timeshare, he said – sell it back to the company (for a reduced rate of course).
So is it just me or are timeshares a complete ripoff? I’m sure they work great for many people but they definitely aren’t right for me. Timeshare owners, I would especially love to hear from you. Feel free to comment!