In 2006, I went to Florida and stayed at the Quality Inn near Silver Lake Resort. The purpose was to do a tour of this resort. My sister and I walked over to the Resort and was brought to the main building from the security gate. Upon entering, I saw how well kept the grounds were. It looked very posh and extremely well kept. We entered the building and were greeted by a warm host who took our names and asked us to sit and relax until our tour representative could join us. The lobby was beautiful. They had lots of Disney "toys" we could receive for our tour, if we so choose. I wanted the Mickey clock or phone.
We were greeted by this "easy to look at" representative named Jerry. He was from Costa Rica. We found him to be a no-bull person and gave us straight answers when we asked questions. After explaining the Time Share with RCI a long with the points or weeks we would receive, we then went on a tour of two "apartments" or showroom apartments. I couldn't believe my eyes! They were exquisite! The furniture, the layout, the kitchen, the bedroom and bathrooms were incredible. The TV was a flat screen mounted on the wall. There was a private, open netted balcony with furniture and a door that led out to the grounds. The kitchens had dishwashers, fridge, nice cupboards and lovely kitchen furniture. The decor, pictures and accessories complimented the entire apartment. I stared in awe. It was more than I could believe. This is the kind of place I could live in until I die.
We returned to the main reception area so we could further discuss the time share and its options. I ended up buying a timeshare and becoming of RCI. We enjoyed two complimentary nights in one of the 900 block apartments and I have to say, I was not disappointed. My sister and her granddaughter stayed in the connecting 1 bedroom apartment. It had a large bedroom with a huge kingsize bed, with a small kitchen facilities and regular bathroom but it did have its own balcony like ours. Our apartment was very large with its own full kitchen, livingroom, dining room, balcony, good size bedroom with a king size bed and a large bathroom with jaccusi. We were in heaven. I didn't want to leave. But we did eventually.
In the meantime, we visited Disney World, toured so many places in the Magic Kingdom. We got the fastpass, ate lots of food, rented electric carts because both my sister Jeannette couldn't do the walking involved. The kids went on all the rides. We were exasted at night and crawlled home at night to crash. There is so much more to this first trip we took but I'll have to add more to this blog at another time.
One of the drawbacks of owning a timeshare is the yearly "maintenance fees" that they thrust upon an owner and goodness forbid if you don't pay this on time. They sent my name to a Collection Agency last year. I am sure I hadn't received my notice. I had to pay an additional $300 dollars to the Agency. I was appalled that Silver Lakes would do this. Some people rent out their timeshares for a lot less than what a person would at any other resorts. I can rent a resort anywhere in the world, that RCI has timeshares. I can go to any resort that RCI has which is over 4600 world wide.
I think if you are going to buy a resort timeshare, make sure you want to use them. They can make a trip a lot less costly. Example, I took 5 female friends to Hawaii with me and the resort was only $168 for the entire week in 2011. So that paid off for me big time.
If you look at lots of different sites on vacations, you can get a great deal like we did for Cabo this year. It was only $450 (all in) for the 3 of us for 6 nights and it was all inclusive in March 2012. This was a great deal but we had to do a 90 minute timeshare consult, which by the way always ends up at 2-4 hours later. But we also got great deals on attractions such as the parasailing for the two kids, a boat ride for snorkelling for all of us and a glass bottom boat tour, all for $100 US dollars. It was a great deal. A friend of mine just returned from Cuba for 7 nights including airfare and all inclusive for $400 !!!! Yes she did so she took her mom and little daughter. She found it on SellOffVacations.com so if you want to find great deals like this, keep checking at Sell Off Vacations and you may be very lucky. So I hope I helped some of you consider whether a time share is worth it for you.
Thanks for reading.