Recap: Timeshare Premise
For those who are unfamiliar, a timeshare is a deeded ownership to a property, usually consisting of one week at the property or a bundle of points to be spent on a combination of nights. Also, they are typically sold in a presentation format, where they show you the benefits of ownership, including a tour of the resort, finally culminating in the sales pitch and options by associates and managers. You may also pre-purchase a timeshare presentation (also called a package) and receive a refund once it is complete.
This article will focus on the key timeshare tips to remember before and during your presentation. See my first post on why, where, and how of timeshares, and my second post on what to expect during a timeshare presentation.
My Time at Timeshares
While I assume there are many who are more experienced in attending timeshare presentations and dealing with timeshare companies, over the past year I have attended more than a handful, learning about the industry and applying a critical eye to the entire process. I have broken down what I feel are the five key tips to both a smooth and fruitful timeshare presentation experience. These should help travelers of all types when considering or participating in timeshare presentations.
5 Pro Tips of Timeshares Learned in 2016
Understand that everything is negotiable.
The initial gift offers are quite flexible, as the selling agents are highly motivated to get you to the presentation. They have a lot of leeway in terms of gift options and amounts, and you should feel comfortable using Art of the Ask to push for a different or higher offer.
More gift cards? Dining credits? Extended vacation duration? A different set of gifts? Flexible visit time? See what you can get.
Additionally, if you are able to build a repore with the selling agent, they would be more willing to help you. By asking and knowing the selling agent commission, which varies from $20 to $75, you can know how far you can eat into it. On a whim, I once got an agent to purchase ice cream for us, on top of my negotiated timeshare tour package! That was an incredibly tasty, delicious waffle cone.
Separate agents at different selling areas can offer different timeshare gift packages for the same touring company!
Same company, different selling location, same city, more gifts? Yes you read right. I experienced this in Las Vegas, where a kind and helpful selling agent told me the best places to find better offers. You will usually find the more run-down or shadier resorts to have agents offering better touring packages than those in nicer casinos. This is to compensate for the quality of people, he told me. They simply have to offer more, and thus have greater flexibility.
So, to maximize your potential offer, explore your area, and see if there are multiple selling agents working for the same travel company. If so, see what offers you get from different areas.
Don’t think that it has to be miserable.
Selling presentations are by nature adversarial, and it is no different during timeshare presentations. They will be friendly, hoping you purchase from them, perhaps offering basic food and drink to you. One of the key things I learned is to keep an open mind. Maybe a timeshare currently fits your travelling lifestyle, or perhaps later in life.
Or, if you are absolutely against it, don’t let it come out too much. Remember, these marketing and sales agents are just doing their job, and are human as well. You may learn something new, or be able to teach the selling agent about your travel experience.
Read everything with a careful eye.
Regardless if you are purchasing, read everything carefully. Anything signed requires especially close review. This was a painful lesson for me, as one of our first experiences was exceptionally negative when I failed to careful review a credit form. The company ended up pulling the credit of me and my lady, dinging our scores for two years. It was a disastrous timeshare experience overall, and I was sure to communicate as such during my feedback and to their corporate management.
Pay attention and take the time, even a few seconds, to ask questions, and make sure you are fully aware of what is going on. This is a serious, high-priced transaction, much like purchasing a car or a house. Even if you do not purchase, be sure that everything you sign is on the up and up.
If you’re interested, take notes.
If interested, take notes on the presentation. What was offered, what are the capabilities and benefits, and what were the prices? They may change in the future, but this will allow you to compare experiences and companies. This continues off the previous point to read everything with a critical eye. Make sure that you hold the company to the promises and claims made.
Note-taking may come in handy even if you are not interested. In my previous timeshare issue, it was helpful to write down everyone I had spoken to (my marketing agent, sales agent, presenter, manager, etc.) to be able to more accurately provide feedback. If you encounter any issues with timeshares as you go about your travels, your notes will serve you well.
Timeshares are time-tested product that may be a fit for a certain demographic of travelers. Also, these tips are handy for current or future timeshare presentations. Negotiate (using Art of the Ask) for the best tour package, much like you would for a car or a house. Shop around (if possible) especially in a place with a high concentration of timeshare properties. Come prepared, with an open yet critical and sharp mind. Pay attention to everything that goes on, and make sure you leave a winner. Lastly, no matter how sweet the deal is, take time to do your research and think it over.
As always, explore your timeshare opportunities near you or when you travel, and please feel free to let me know about your experience!
Other articles in this Timeshare Presentation series include:
- Timeshare Presentations Intro: Why, Where, and How?
- Timeshare Presentations: All About The Experience
- 5 Pro Tips to Know about Timeshare Presentations
- Timeshare Presentations Finale: 4 Common Sales Tactics
Featured image from Pixabay, of a resort in Cancun, Mexico. Timeshares in Mexico are an interesting bunch. Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links which, should you click through and/or make a purchase, grant me a commission. Also, I only post in the best interest of my readers. Lastly, thank you for supporting my blog and my travels.
What do you think of my analysis? Let me know in the comments, or reach me directly at TheHotelion@gmail.com! Like my posts? See more here, on TravelUpdate! Follow me on Facebook (The Hotelion) or on Twitter and Instagram: @TheHotelion