Friday, March 1, 2013

So, Where Is This Change In Timeshare?

Back in 2005 when I was doing research for my second book "Timeshare Vacations For Dummies", I had the opportunity to interview some fairly high level executives at some large timeshare companies.

I was told then that "the days of the 3 day/2 night mini-vac for $99" were over and that the timeshare industry was moving on to "better" marketing methods.

Since then, I've met with lots of other people in timeshare, attended lots of timeshare meetings and read a ton of interviews, articles, Facebook updates and Tweets from high level executives all saying that the timeshare industry is healthier than ever before, due in part to  "better" marketing methods.

I'd like to believe this...I truly would.  But here is the "fine print" for a marketing package that a large timeshare company is currently running in 2013:
* Not Valid with any other offer or promotions.
* No cash value.  No Cash/credit back.
* This offer is available to married couples, co-habitating couples, and single women
* Must be between the ages of 25-72 years old 
* Must be gainfully employed  (And how exactly is this checked?  It isn't)
* Must speak fluent English or Spanish
* Combined annual income of $50,000 or more per year (Again, not verified)
* If married or Cohabitating, must have matching addresses and both must attend presenation
* Must attend a 90-120 minute sales presentation
* Must carry a VALID Major Credit Card( no Debit or Prepaid cards accepted)
* Must not currently be in active bankruptcy, or have declared bankruptcy with in the past three years. (Anyone checking on this?  NO)
* This promotional offer does not include taxes, transportation, meals, or incidentals
* No group travel permitted ( group travel is defined by two or more couples traveling at the same time to the same location)
* 1 voucher per household
* All reservations must be submitted at least 7 days prior to travel
* All reservation date requests must be made within 60 days after purchasing voucher.
* Travel must be completed within 6 months after date of purchase.
* This promotional offer is for the solicitation of a Vacation Ownership Plan
* This offer not valid to residents of FL or CA. Void where prohibited
I dare anyone in the business to tell me what has changed from 2005, 2000, or 1995,  Where is this long-promised change in timeshare?

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