Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Bye, Bye Red

Ah, the “good old days” of categorizing timeshare weeks by color.  Remember hearing “Orlando is all red, all the time” or “the reason you can’t trade your week is that you own a green week”?
If you’ve owned a timeshare for any length of time, you may yearn for these times, or worse, not know that neither RCI nor Interval International uses color codes anymore.

RCI used to use a red/white/blue system, where red weeks were the highest in demand.  Interval International used red/yellow/green, where again, red weeks were the highest in demand.
While color codes were simple, the truth of the matter is that they were far from accurate.  Resorts located in Orlando, Florida and in the Bahamas for instance, all used to be “all red, all the time” when anyone who has been to Orlando in September or Las Vegas in July clearly knew that was not the case.  In reality, Orlando in September was white or yellow at best, while the Bahamas in August may have really been a blue or green week.

Interval International was the first to stop using their red/yellow/green designations in favor of their vastly improved Travel Demand Index.  Now, weeks are rated on a numerical scale where 100 means “average demand”, so that week 51 in Orlando is rated a 150, while week 39 in September is rated a 80.  Similarly, the Bahamas range from a 70 during weeks 37 and 38 to 150 weeks 9 through 14.
Several years ago, RCI discarded their red/white/blue weeks classification system in exchange for their TPU (Trading Power Unit) system which assigns a numerical value to each week based on several criteria including; the classification, demand, supply and use for your specific week, the resort and the region it’s located in, the size of the specific timeshare unit and how far in advance of the usage week you have deposited it.

NOTE:  The numerical “point” value assigned by RCI applies only to week-based timeshare and must not be confused with the “points” assigned to RCI point-based timeshare.  They are two completely different systems and TPUs do not apply to point-based timeshare.
All of these changes are crucial to both getting the most out of your timeshare and when considering a timeshare purchase on the secondary market.

If you’re confused about timeshare weeks, Timeshare Insights suggests you call an Interval International or RCI rep and have them talk you through it.
If you are considering buying a timeshare on the resale market, and the company/broker/individual/platform advertises a “red week”, this should be considered a warning flag that the seller is not operating with the most recent information

Friday, February 6, 2015

Millennials and Timeshare

First of, two disclaimers:

1)  I am NOT a millennial, no matter how young I like to think I am.  I am a baby-boomer.
2)  I have NOT employed a research company and spent a fortune coming up with this.

Now  then...there's been a LOT of talk lately about what the timeshare industry needs to do to attract millennials.  And while it is true that millennials do want some amenities in a timeshare that some older people might not find all that useful, i.e. Wi-Fi, and more electrical outlets, my contention is that when it comes to timeshares, millennials are no different than baby-boomers, Gen Y, or any other nifty name that researchers like to throw around.

So if timeshare developers want to attract millennials and every other buyer on the face of the earth, here are my suggestions:

*  under promise, over deliver on everything
*  say what you mean, mean what you say
*  understand what true hospitality is
*  fire anyone caught lying
*  use the product yourself
*  be truthful in everything you say
*  treat people with dignity
*  understand what empathy is and hire people who understand and demonstrate it
*  limit the product to those who blessed your organization with their trust and money and became owners
*  communicate open, honestly and frequently with your owners
*  tout the actual features and benefits of the timeshare product and don't focus so much on the benefits of vacation which can be experienced with or without timeshare
*  work on the perceived and actual value of the product both on the primary and the resale market
*  stop offering incentives for people to come in and listen to a sales pitch, or at least offer incentives tied to the purchase of the product

That's a start...Now, let's go out there and do our very best to insure that timeshare is a desirable product for many years to come for people of all ages!