The new year always gets you thinking about what happened last year and what you would want to do different in the following year. Although it is just a date, it gives you the ability to have a mentally clean slate and make new goals for the year ahead.
For me, each year brings different goals but one consistent goal is always to travel more. Material possessions only last so long but experiences of travel do last a lifetime. The economy continues to improve and as it does, hotels, flights, car rentals, activities, etc. continue to increase in price.
It gets harder and harder to plan vacations as everything becomes exhorbinantly expensive.
The goal of this blog is to show readers how timeshares work and how they can be used to travel around the world for relatively cheap. Timeshares have an awful reputation and while many of these negative attributes are true, timeshares can actually be extremely worthwhile if you understand them, know how to maximize their value, are flexible on your travel plans and like to or can plan far in advance.
In this post, I explained why timeshares became a four letter word.
I continually state that timeshares are not for everyone but for many, they are actually a great way to travel in luxury for much less than hotel.
This blog does not try to sell you any timeshares but rather is meant to educate you on timeshares so that you can determine whether timeshare ownership can be worthwhile for your vacation style. It is also meant to show readers how to use frequent flyer miles, hotel points, credit card points and other loyalty currencies to maximize traveling. My view is that timeshares are overlooked tools in this arena.
For years, I chased credit card sign up bonuses, banking bonuses and various other promotions in order to get hotel points. Many of these required some cash outlay but the vast majority were free. These allowed me to get many, many free or significantly subsidized trips.
My view is that people who enjoy traveling should not overlook timeshares as they can be an important resource for travel planning. The point/mile game has gone through many iterations and the programs continue to get devalued and make it harder and harder to use. They are still extremely valuable but at some point, the effort to get the points and the effort to use the points becomes just too much. I continue to partake in mutiple programs and I encourage you to do the same but using them for great vacations can be challenging.
With current pricing for hotels, it is difficult for most people to stomach paying these rates. Pricing for mediocre hotels are coming in at over $200 per night with luxury hotels coming in at ridiculous rates of over $500 per night if not more. I simply will not pay such rates.
Owning a timeshare is a significant financial commitment so you need to do research before committing to ownership. Renting timeshares can be a good introduction before committing to purchasing. Renting may actually be better than purchasing since there is no further financial commitment. There are various sites that offer timeshare rentals and in other posts, we can look into this in more detail.
I highly encourage readers to take advantage of the various timeshare offerings that are generally advertised by timeshare developers. They offer tremendous value and do not require any purchases. I do warn you that timeshare presentations can be brutal but can also be a good way to learn more about the systems. Many of these presentations are high pressure but many are low key.
Do you research before commiting and do not get caught up in the high pressure sales tactics. Most brand name presentations are decent (Hyatt, Marriott, Hilton, Four Seasons, etc.) but some of the smaller companies can be pressure filled.
I encourage you to look under the Guru Deals for new and existing promotions. It is also a good resource to see various deals and timeshare exchanges. I think that most people will be surprised on the cost of some vacations as well as the quality of some timeshare resorts.
The timeshare world is complex, difficult to understand, constantly changing and littered with a lot of false promises. However, for those people who understand it and know how to maximize ownership, it is a great way to travel in fantastic resorts with extremely reasonable rates.
If you are into the points games and frequent flyer miles and you love maximizing their value, timeshares are a very interesting off shoot of this hobby. I encourage you to subscribe below and learn more.
I also encourage you to ask questions. This resource is new so I want to give you the information that you desire. Follow me on Twitter and Facebook as well!
Looking forward to a vacation filled 2017!