Timeshares Vs Travel Memberships – Are You Really Getting a Good Deal?

There is a lot of conversation in the travel industry around timeshares and discount travel memberships; which one is better, how much they cost, what are the real differences. I would not be surprised if you had never heard about discount/luxury travel memberships or destination travel packages since many of them are sold exclusively through network marketing companies.

I found out last week while at a family reunion that most people have no idea what a discount travel membership is or why they should investigate the differences. We were using a time share property someone owned which also happens to be destination package offered by a luxury discount membership as well.

The timeshare owners love the timeshare concept and having a location they can vacation at each year. However, they wanted this family reunion to be special so they had to wait well over a year to get access to this particular location. There ownership purchase was for one week a year at any of the resorts, and their yearly maintenance fees provide so many points to use at a location. This is a very typical timeshare arrangement.

So they used up all their points to get access to this great location and extra rooms so they could have all their family with them. They originally paid $12,000 for the fractional ownership of the property and their yearly maintenance/property tax fees amount to $758.

Had they been a discount travel membership owner they would have been able to book this 5 star resort location less than 30 days in advance at a cost of $699 per two bedroom suites. The one time original cost to members is $3,000, there are no annual maintenance fees and every member can choose from over 5000 resorts worldwide. There is no limit to how often you use these resorts and you will never pay more than $699 for an 8 day 7 night stay.

Both the timeshare and the discount membership are willable and all family members can use them.

So you be the judge…both have their benefits depending on your personal perspective. But the one thing the discount travel membership has over the timeshare is its ability to make you money while you’re spending time at these exotic locations.

Whichever you choose destination vacation travel is increasing. Even with an economy in turmoil people continue to travel. And as the baby boomers retire travel memberships will grow due to their economical value.

To end my story, there was no conclusion to which was better; everyone had their favorite points for each. But they all agreed it was cheaper than staying in a hotel.

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