Timeshare Facts

Who is the average Timeshare Owner?

Timeshare travelers spent an estimated $10 billion during their U.S. timeshare vacations in 2005.With such buying power, it is important to know more about this type of traveler both for timeshare resorts and the destinations they visit. On average, the timeshare travel party contains 3.8 people; this includes 3.0 adults and 0.8 children. Visitors stayed at the destination for just over eight nights, including seven nights at the timeshare resort and an additional night at other accommodations like hotels or friends’ /relatives’ homes. While in the destination, timeshare parties spent an average of $1,768 per trip, with $153 going to the timeshare resort and $1,615 going to other business and attractions.

What are they buying?

The timeshare products are diversified, and consumers are buying! According to the study Resort Timeshare Consumers: Who They Are, Why They Buy, a trend among recent buyers of timeshare shows that the proportion of biennials purchased has slowly grown from just under 22% in 1999 to almost 31% in 2005. Compared to recent buyers that purchased one or two-week annual intervals, those respondents that indicated they purchased a biennial were more likely to have children living at home (44%) yet more likely to be unmarried (76%). Biennial owners were also the youngest among the different product types, 49 years, with the lowest annual household income of $70,000.

What do the Timeshare Properties Offer?

The popularity of timeshare vacations has grown to an $8.6 billion industry. With resorts located across the country, timeshare ownership satisfies geographic and activity preferences for all traveler types. Most timeshare resorts in the United States provide ocean and beach opportunities, accounting for nearly 32% of all resorts. Other popular characteristics among these resorts include as an attraction a regional theme (14%), golf (10%), skiing (9%), and lakes or rivers (9%).

The table below provides detail on other primary characteristics resorts classify themselves as offering:

 primary characteristic  percent of u.s. resorts
 seaside/ocean  31.9%
 regional  13.7%
 golf  10.2%
 snow skiing  9.3%
 lake/river  9.0%
 urban  6.0%
 theme park  5.3%
 casino/gambling  2.1%
 other  12.5%

Timeshare resorts abound throughout the United States, offering owners access to a variety of vacation experiences. Whether it’s relaxing on the beach by the ocean or speeding down black diamond trails, timeshare has it all!

Current Timeshare Owners Want More?

With satisfaction ratings near 80%, it’s no wonder that timeshare owners want more. According to research by PricewaterhouseCoopers, over 30% of new timeshare sales in the United States were to existing owners, illustrating how vacation ownership continues to provide accommodations and services that meet the leisure traveler needs.

What are the Top U.S. Destinations?

Timeshare owners have the world at their fingertips. With so many destinations to visit, where will timeshare travelers venture next? In the U.S., top destinations timeshare owners want to visit include Florida, California, Hawaii, and Arizona, to name a few!

How has Timeshare Positively Affected Owners?

Looking for a way to improve your lifestyle in 2008? Why not consider timeshare vacation ownership? Owners attest that it has enhanced various aspects of their life, from increased anticipation of their vacations to improved communication with family members!

Effect of owning timeshare

Why Consumers buy Timeshare?

The main reasons driving Timeshare purchases are as follows:

  • Flexibility (including location, unit size and time of year)
  • Opportunity to exchange with other resorts
  • Certainty of quality accommodations
  • Credibility of the timeshare company

Why Vacation Ownership?

Vacation ownership is a concept that originated in the French Alps in the 1960s. Now, 40 years later, it is firmly positioned as one of the most popular vacation options enjoyed by today’s leisure travelers. Consumers are embracing timesharing, making it one of the fastest-growing sectors of the worldwide hospitality industry. In fact, vacation ownership has enjoyed a double-digit annual growth rate over the past two decades. Why? Millions of owners have found timeshare’s spacious floor plans and home-like amenities very attractive when compared with traditional hospitality products. Truly a home away from home, vacation ownership provides the space and flexibility needed to easily accommodate families and larger traveling parties. While most vacation ownership condominiums have two bedrooms and two baths, unit sizes range from studios to three or more bedrooms. Most units include a fully equipped kitchen with dining area, washer and dryer, stereo, televisions, VCRs and more. Timeshare resort amenities rival those of other top-rated resort properties and may include planned children’s activities, swimming pools, tennis, Jacuzzi, golf and bicycles as well as spa and exercise facilities. Others feature boating, skiing, restaurants and equestrian facilities on-site or nearby. With vacation ownership, consumers have the opportunity to purchase time at quality resorts offering an array of amenities in popular international destinations. In fact, there are now more than 5,400 resorts in some 100 countries around the world and annual vacation ownership sales are estimated to be in excess of $9.4 billion. Today, 3 million people own 4.9 million weeks at nearly 1,600 resorts in the Continental U.S. alone.

Is timeshare financially practical?

Timeshare offers you a lifetime of luxury vacations, at a price you lock in today. Most people discover that after just a few years of ownership, they have more than recovered their costs. After that, outside of a nominal maintenance fee, your vacation property is paid for and waiting for you with no additional costs!

How does exchanging work?

There are several timeshare exchange companies, the largest and most common being RCI (Resort Condominiums International) and I.I. (Interval International). These two giants of the industry are affiliated with over 5,000 resorts in nearly 100 countries worldwide, giving owners the flexibility to travel almost anywhere with their timeshare. The concept is simple. Exchanging means you trade your week for another owner’s week at another resort. Does that mean you have to find and arrange for an exchange partner? No. That’s where your exchange company comes in. For a nominal fee, your week goes into a common pool, or “spacebank”. You simply make your request, and pack your bags.

What is the difference between deeded, leased and licensed timeshare?

Most timeshares are either deeded or leased for a specific number of years (often referred to as “right-to-use”). A deeded timeshare is like any other real estate purchase, in that you own the timeshare outright forever. A leased timeshare or RTU gives you the exclusive right to a specific week at the property for a specific number of years, typically ranging from 20 to 99 years. When the lease matures, the RTU terminates and normally returns to the selling resort. In most cases, both types of timeshare can be sold, rented, or willed to heirs. The other, less common form of timeshare, is licensing. This arrangement normally involves membership in a vacation club, giving members in good standing the right to use the club and all its amenities.

What is a fixed week?

A fixed week is a specific week during the calendar year, usually identified by a number, starting with the first week of the calendar year, and continuing through the end of December. Most fixed weeks begin on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday. Owning a fixed week gives you use of the unit for that specific week annually as long as you own the program.

What is a float week?

A float week simply means you are not locked into a particular week in the calendar year. This week can be used anytime during the year, based on the resort’s availability.

What are Red, White and Blue, Yellow and Green weeks?

Some weeks at given resorts are more desirable than others, usually based on weather and season. The colour coding simply assigns a desirability rating. Red is considered peak season, and the most desirable time of year to own. White and Blue or Green and Yellow refer to the “shoulder season” weeks, and are often cheaper than Red weeks. The parameters of those seasons are set on resort-by-resort basis.

What does “lockoff” mean?

Some timeshare units offer the flexibility to “lock off” an often smaller secondary living space, with two separate entrances. That unit can then be exchanged or used separately.

What are points?

The point system is a relatively new form of timeshare ownership, and one that is rapidly growing. This system allows the owner to purchase points to be used for travel, accommodations and car rental. The more points purchased, the more flexible the program.

What is a Biennial timeshare?

Biennial (sometimes referred to as bi-annual) simply means you own your week every second year, either odd or even years.

What is a Maintenance Fee?

Timesharing is really cost sharing. Owners share the costs of upkeep of their unit, as well as the common grounds of the resort property. Maintenance fees typically range from $300 to $800 (Cdn) annually. If you own a Biennial program, that fee is paid every second year.