RCI Points to be or not to be?

Started by charlie1, February 15, 2013, 22:28:46

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charlie1

In my opinion RCI Points does not give value for those.

1) Who own pure points too expensive in terms of maintenance and no resale value.

2) Those who were convinced to cede a low season week to points when they want to access prime time.

3) If you have a high maintenance week this will give you a poor points ratio cost per point.

4) If you don't like planning ahead to book prime weeks.

5) With few exceptions Points Partners seems to give poor value.

It can work for those that have the following.

1) For those who have a low maintenance week and own in prime time will achieve a high points value for a smaller points ratio cost. They prefer holidaying in low too mid season. By owning one week in summer school holiday time they could take 2-3 weeks out or more in low season.

2) Those who are happy to take low season weeks. Especially if they can access an RCI Points resort and stay in the same apartment will be charged £208 regardless of the duration. So a month could just cost you one exchange fee of £208 for the duration.

3) They don't mind planning ahead 10 months to the day for a special holiday

4) They are able to take short notice holidays and are not to fussy where they holiday for just 9,000 points if taken within 45 days.

5) They are prepared to take the time out to work and understand the system.

There seems to be two distinct camps. I still feel there is good value with RCI Points if you own in the right way that's cheap maintenance in ideally summer school holiday time, you know how to work the system and are not looking for summer school holiday time.

Dare I ask if anyone else has anything to add?  ;)
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charlie1

Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Carolinian

For the UK, there is another factor.

The UK was seriously screwed on ''TPU'' or ''points lite'' values given in RCI Weeks when they went to a ''points lite'' system of valuation.  Values for UK timeshares in RCI Points, however, are more realistic and honest.  I have quit giving my UK weeks to RCI at all as a result of ''Points Lite'' and the absurd values it now gives them.  At the same time, I have no desire to ''buy air'' by ''converting'' to RCI Points.

A good example was given by a US owners of Allen House on a North American timeshare board.  RCI ''Weeks'' (''Points Lite'') would only give him 39 TPU for a late Spring Allen House week deposit but wanted 60 TPU for just about any week at Manhattan Club in New York (a handful of deep off season weeks in studios were 58 TPU).  That is a travesty because Manhattan Club weeks are frequently availible online at RCI, but Allen House never is, showing that Allen House has a much stronger supply / demand curve.  RCI's number stand supply and demand on their head to the detriment of the UK.  That Allen House owner reported that he deposited his week with DAE instead, which gave him 2 deposit credits for it.

Of course, I suspect that not too far down the road, RCI will merge its two points systems, RCI Points and RCI Weeks (Points Lite) into one system, and it will likely be like an airline merger's impact on ff programs - both will likely be devalued.  That prospect is yet another reason to stay as far away from RCI as possible.  There is just too much instability there to have any confidence in the system going forward.
 

charlie1

Hi Guys can we try to stay on topic with RCI Points and perhaps TPU or points lite could be a separate thread for later. It may well be that RCI Points and RCI Weeks may merge but we don't really know. This was just a thread based on where we are now.

Is there anyone whose finding that RCI Points is working for them?
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Carolinian

My point is that if a UK timeshare owner insists on using RCI instead of an independent exchange company, then their trading power is likely to be more realistic and therefore better in using Points rather than ''Weeks''.  If one is considering just those two systems, that is an advantage to Points.

A disadvantage to Points is that a points owner is not able to use the independent exchange companies, which is a huge disadvantge, while a member of ''Weeks'' can choose to give each week to either RCI or an independent exchange company, which gives greater flexibility.
 

charlie1

Thats a very valid point regarding access to Independent Exchange Companies if your an RCI Points member. I know in the past some RCI points members have been able to join as long as they owned a week that was ceded to points. They obviously could no longer trade the week as it was in points. However they were allowed to access the bonus weeks.

Out of curiosity I have emailed Dial and UKRE to see if that facility is available to access bonus weeks if they own a week although its in the Points system and cannot be traded. I will update the thread

Certainly if you own a low season week in the RCI Points system and you find that you are not able to obtain the holidays you require especially at mid too high season than they should review the Independent Exchange Companies and consider there options.

If RCI does not work for you or you have had a change in holiday style and it no longer caters for this then there is 12 months notice required to surrender from the system, if there are exceptional circumstances you may be able to exit earlier.

However if you own at a RCI affiliated resort in very high season and prefer holidays mid to low season and can take last minute holidays than RCI is worth exploring.

For example if you have a high season week worth 80,000 RCI Points and you like last minute holidays or are retired and your flexible where you want to holiday than you can pick up weeks for just 9,000 Points so that could be eight holidays you could take by just owning one week! This is a little extreme, but just demonstrates what can be done. However if you prefer a 2-3 bed apartment in high season in the UK that could cost you 90,000-120,000 Points so the system is clearly not suitable for you.

Its just a case of doing your homework.

I find many owners locked into the wrong holiday system thats just not compatible to their holiday style or the product they own. They end up compromising their holidays stuck in the wrong program. A conscious effort needs to be made to do a little homework to see if there are other alternatives or additions that might be available to them. Theres plenty of material to play with on this forum.

There are hundreds of thousands of RCI points members. I feel to get value you have to own a low maintenance week in prime school holiday time and ideally like to holiday in low to mid season weeks. This is a system that I believe you have to fully understand the club rules rather than just go with the flow.

However all those in RCI Points now are not all weeks owners owning in prime time with high points values. Perhaps its just different strokes for different folks or they just take advantage of the last minute weeks at just 9,000 Points.

It would be interesting to hear from some RCI Points members. Is it working for you?

Quote from: Carolinian on February 16, 2013, 12:55:36
My point is that if a UK timeshare owner insists on using RCI instead of an independent exchange company, then their trading power is likely to be more realistic and therefore better in using Points rather than ''Weeks''.  If one is considering just those two systems, that is an advantage to Points.

A disadvantage to Points is that a points owner is not able to use the independent exchange companies, which is a huge disadvantge, while a member of ''Weeks'' can choose to give each week to either RCI or an independent exchange company, which gives greater flexibility.

Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Morpheus

RCI Points did work for a great many members, ourselves include, for many years. We exchanged all over, and often used points for car hire or other extras which saved us a lot of money as well as giving huge flexibility.

Sadly, the extras like car hire were watered down and reduced to the point of not being available at all latterly.

One major bugbear we did have was the limited availability of weeks in places that you wanted to go to - explained later on when we heard of RCI's rental schemes for high-demand weeks, which diluted the exchange pool dramatically.

The real killer for us was identified at our resort in Tenerife about four years ago, however. Chatting by the pool one day, we were drinking (Happy Hour of course) with a guy who actually turned out to live in a nearby private development. This property is very similar to one of the three timeshare resorts in the same area of Los Cristianos (no names, but I am sure many will guess).

It turned out that we were paying a sum in weekly maintenance (i.e. for each week we owned) which was about half of what this guy paid annually. We compared what his maintenance covered, and it included pool, gardeners, reception, maintenance (but not individual apartment maintenance), security guards, tv etc. As we owned three weeks at that time, we were paying 50% more per annum than this guy paid for 52 weeks ..... that made us sit up.

If we wanted to stay in the resort this guy owned in, the likely weekly rent of a unit the same size or larger than we owned at the timeshare was about 50% of the maintenance we paid per week. So we could have rented six weeks there for the maintenance we paid for our three weeks. I remember the "dropping elevator" feeling this caused us all too well.

Well - obviously the major extra benefit to us was in the ability to exchange our weeks to go elsewhere - then the guy dropped his bombshell, he deposited a few weeks each year in DaE (the first time we had heard of DaE) and exchanged through them at a fraction of our RCI fees.

So - it became obvious to us that the great benefits which we had received from timeshare, and particularly from Points, had been eroded by a combination of RCI greed and resort management greed to the point of moving to being actual liabilities.

The result? We sadly sold our three weeks of timeshare at the resort up the hill, and actually now own a small apartment in the development across the road from the timeshare. And are off to Australia next week to use three weeks that DaE have found for us to exchange into!

Do we regret buying timeshare when we did (1984?). No, we did very well out of the system for most of the time, and stayed in places we could simply have never afforded at the time.

Do we regret leaving timeshare two years ago? We miss RCI and resort annual invoices as one would miss a toothache. But we have many, many happy memories of places and people!
Long time member of MORPS (www.morps.org) the RCI Points owners group.
Experienced timesharer

If you LIKE the advice any member gives, please feel free to click the "APPLAUD" by their name and details on the left. It makes us feel valued.

charlie1

Hi Morpheus thats a great way of maximising the benefits of the apartment you own. Especially when comparing the maintenances of the three resorts you refer too.

I have recommended for many years to those that have an acceptable property they own to deposit weeks that they either don't use or rent into the Dial An Exchange system. This works very well you just need some one to prepare the apartment for a new guests arrival. For those that ideally own a second holiday property this is a great little system.

The three weeks you deposited via your apartment with Dial has secured you a great deal that's 3 weeks accommodation in Australia  for just over £300!

RCI points in my opinion works cost effectively for those who own weeks in prime time with a LOW maintenance. They are not looking for school holiday time themselves and require low to mid season weeks and are flexible where they wish to holiday.

For those wishing to have a better opportunity of accessing prime popular time success has been found by RCI members who have booked online 10 months exactly. I have known some timeshare owners to be very happy with this, booking online 10 months exactly by the clock, a couple of minutes past mid-night!! I am not saying that prime time has to be booked this way, but certainly if the time is available in the system your first in.

It has also worked well for some owners who own at a particular resort they enjoy where there are a number of Points members. By owning at that resort they get the extra month to book ahead of anyone else to book at there home resort.

With what would appear as a diminishing pool of weeks available in prime time at popular locations RCI points members need to really understand and work the system.

As said there are many hundreds of thousands of RCI Points members still working the points system. We all have different holiday styles and have our own idea of what a great holiday means to us. One of my requirements is to look at it from a cost point of view this may not be part of someone else's criteria.

Most timeshare owners though that I have met are just not aware of the options that are available to them. I have said before there should be an online course for owners to learn how to work timeshare to suit their needs, maybe one day...


Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

charlie1

Hi Morpheus my son sent me this very useful link of a map of Australia. Reviewing this I can now understand how you managed to obtain such cheap accommodation in Australia  ;)  http://www.stickboydaily.com/laughs/funny-aussie-map/
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Suebe

Like Morpheus, we have been in the RCI Points system for a good many years and have done well out of it.  Our peak season weeks give us a good number of points which we use to holiday at other times of year when points values are lower.  We have usually managed to get 3-4 weeks (or more) of holiday from two weeks of timeshare.

Our timeshare has quite high annual maintenance fees but being in points justifies its payment as we do get more than a week for week exchange.

Much of the dissatisfaction with RCI Points comes from people who have been encouraged to buy into the points system by unscrupulous sales people who promise the earth in terms of what they can get with their points - especially those who have low points value weeks.  I have heard from people who have been told they can get two peak exchange weeks for 30,000 points!!!!  It also comes from people who don't really understand what they have bought into and how to use the system to their advantage.  RCI are aware that people don't know how to use the system properly and have been organising events throughout the country to try to help educate people on booking weeks, etc.  It is amazing how many people pay maintenance fees and don't use their timeshare to exchange or use themselves.  What a waste of money!!

There can be problems with availability - but there is in the RCI Weeks system as well, and other exchange companies, including Dial an Exchange (I do have another week banked with them so do make use of them).

I doubt, Carolinian, that RCI's 'two' points systems will merge.  Surely, they are too different.
Sue B

charlie1

Hi Sue I agree sadly theres a number of timeshare owners who seem to have just virtually given up. They were miss-sold and have a product thats not suitable to their holiday style. They just don't know where to look and end up confused forming a part of the growing army of timeshare pessimists.

RCI Points work, Interval works and so does Dial An Exchange, UKRE, SFX, Infinity Points, CLC, DRI, and the list goes on. They however don't all work for everyone they all have their pros and cons according to how we holiday. Where can the timeshare owner take real advice and be steered towards a suitable vehicle to get the best out of there timeshare. If your in front of a salesperson most will just try to either sell you an additional product or rubbish what you currently own so you can have their bigger better shiner product.

The salesperson usually has only one product to sell and one exchange company to promote so they got to make it fit your holiday style regardless! Thats why I believe there are a percentage of unhappy timeshare owners. Those timeshare owners may just have a product that does suit but they don't know how to use it or its not right for them they should not have been sold this product.

Most unhappy timeshare owners can all improve their holidays if they put in a little homework and took control and worked out how to use what they got or went out and improved their timeshare. New prospective timeshare owners with some research would go out there to buy on their terms, not to be sold too!

The concept works but you have to own the right product and work the product and adjust on route as your lifestyle changes. After a while it all comes easy and you end up having great holidays, sometimes it takes you out of your holiday comfort zone and you end up holidaying in some great places that you might not have considered if you were not timesharing. Now that can't be a bad thing.
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Carolinian

Sue, you seem to forget that RCI Points itself was created by the merger of RCI's ''Global Points Network'' (GPN) product and the CRI points system of Europe (CRI Points of South Africa was left out).  The result was a blend but closer to the GPN product.

In a future merger of RCI Points and RCI ''Weeks'', one has to remember that ''Weeks'' (a/k/a ''Points Lite'') is the newer product, and I suspect that merged program will look more like it.

When is a merger likely?  Who knows but I suspect it is still some years off.
 

Carolinian

Charlie, I think you are right that there is a timeshare product that will fit the needs of most people, but that the way timeshare is sold, buyers are usually only offered one product and it may too often not be the right one for them.  That results in a dissatisfied customer.
 

charlie1

I also believe that a merger is likely but years away. I also sadly suspect that it will move more towards the Points lite product.

I hope not as the RCI Points product is more stable than the new RCI Weeks (Points Lite) product in terms of its resort valuations. The RCI Points member know where they are and can plan ahead with confidence as the RCI points values representing all RCI Points resorts will not fluctuate except in rare exceptional circumstances. Its very rare for a RCI Points resort to have any movement in its points values.

Quote from: Carolinian on February 18, 2013, 23:10:42
Sue, you seem to forget that RCI Points itself was created by the merger of RCI's ''Global Points Network'' (GPN) product and the CRI points system of Europe (CRI Points of South Africa was left out).  The result was a blend but closer to the GPN product.

In a future merger of RCI Points and RCI ''Weeks'', one has to remember that ''Weeks'' (a/k/a ''Points Lite'') is the newer product, and I suspect that merged program will look more like it.

When is a merger likely?  Who knows but I suspect it is still some years off.
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

charlie1

The Industry needs licensed educated Independents steering prospective timeshare owners into a suitable product that will cater for their holiday style. Then they got an ongoing job trying to put unhappy owners either in the right product or educate them how to use their timeshare effectively. Well I can dream  ;)

Quote from: Carolinian on February 18, 2013, 23:12:56
Charlie, I think you are right that there is a timeshare product that will fit the needs of most people, but that the way timeshare is sold, buyers are usually only offered one product and it may too often not be the right one for them.  That results in a dissatisfied customer.
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

charlie1

I am way off thread now but this is where we are so you must blame Sue B  :D

The Timeshare Industry is like looking back in time. This is where I was over 20 years ago in the Financial Services Industry we had similar problems. This improved with Independents charging a set fee and there was no commission and therefore no conflict of interest. Independents advised Companies as well as individuals.

This is ONE of the reasons as I see it why we have dissatisfied timeshare owners. The salesperson usually has only one product to sell and one exchange company to promote so they got to make it fit your holiday style regardless! Thats why I believe there are a percentage of unhappy timeshare owners. Those timeshare owners may just have a product that does suit but they don't know how to use it or more likely its not right for them they should not have been sold this product.

Timeshare owners could be easily advised when there holiday style is identified. They could be shown how to use what they currently own more effectively if they had a suitable product or pointed in the right direction armed with knowledge what is the right product for them. With new technology utilising the Internet for individual timeshare owners this could be mainly done online. Even such tools as skyp could be used for "face to face" meetings. Online simple courses for prospective owners and existing owners.

Perhaps eventually there would be a big enough data base where owners could simply transfer timeshare products between themselves. An RCI Points owner may transfer with a Seasons owner their respective memberships and benefits.

One day perhaps a body may merge with the experience to start advising the hundreds and hundreds of one off individual resorts (regardless whether they are committee driven or Developer owned) There has been enough material to make a start on this just with some of the past threads on the Timeshare Talk forums.

This is how I believe the Industry could be turned around at grass root level. At the moment we have self regulatory companies that hold conferences not attended by those who really need personalised advice. The message is not getting to the people who really need this. So this will go on for years were talk about exit programs, scam companies, how to sell in the secondary market and how resorts can adjust to cater for its members and run effectively in the 21st century and so on. The timeshare Industry created its own problems I believe that it has the means to apply solutions that will work and gather momentum.

However this is not really debated beyond what seems to come out of the various conferences that take place. There does not seem the will at the moment to think outside of the box and so we trudge on. Maybe this year we might see something different emerge I wait with baited breath. Of course this is just my opinion.  :-X

Any way back to RCI Points

1) Did you know as posted on another thread that RCI Points owners can join Dial An Exchange freely and access their bonus points http://www.timesharetalk.co.uk/index.php?topic=17422.msg53032

2 Were you aware that you can also as a RCI Points member request up to two years ahead? If you identify an RCI Weeks resort that you would like to access you can request this up to 2 years ahead. Now that the message is filtering down that it pays RCI Weeks members to deposit their weeks earlier some are just doing that. So if you have a special anniversary or occasion sometime away, why not plan ahead and request a RCI Weeks resort. You never know its just another tool to use that might get you a result.
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

Suebe

Quote from: Carolinian on February 18, 2013, 23:10:42
Sue, you seem to forget that RCI Points itself was created by the merger of RCI's ''Global Points Network'' (GPN) product and the CRI points system of Europe (CRI Points of South Africa was left out).  The result was a blend but closer to the GPN product.

In a future merger of RCI Points and RCI ''Weeks'', one has to remember that ''Weeks'' (a/k/a ''Points Lite'') is the newer product, and I suspect that merged program will look more like it.

When is a merger likely?  Who knows but I suspect it is still some years off.

I don't think you can call what happened in the early days of RCI Points can be called a 'merger'.  RCI Points USA and RCI Points Europe are still quite two separate systems that interlink.  The CRI Points values were 'brought in line' with the GPN system when the CRI points values were multiplied by a factor of 30. That was the only change - there are still differences in the way members can use their systems.  RCI Points are not truly a global system - as RCI professes. 

Now to get back to the subject of RCI Points. Those thinking of moving into RCI Points should remember that they don't have to do so at their own resort - assuming that their home resort is affiliated to RCI Points.  You can shop around and find the best price for transferring.  They do differ widely between one resort vendor and another.  Via the MORPS website and Forum, that I am involved with, people have managed to save a couple of thousand pounds by choosing the right deal.

The most expensive deals are usually to be found at resorts in the Canaries and Spain.  They could be asking in excess of £3000 to cede timeshare week(s) and buy some additional points.  You should be checking out UK points resorts and seeing what they charge.  RCI makes a charge of around £250 for each new affiliation, so anything else a points vendor charges is administration and PROFIT!!!  Your contracts, when you do join the points system, is NOT with RCI but with the resort you are joining at.  Do not be taken in by RCI logos all over the documents and at the resort - these only mean that the resort is affiliated with the RCI exchange system!!!  The resorts are not owned by RCI!!

RCI Points also offer deals with sometimes up to 50% off points values for certain resorts.  These can be found on the website.  There are also points discounts if you book exchanges close to the exchange date - a month before you can get 25% off and a week before it is 50% off.  Some members make use of this but there may be limited availability - it probably works well in places such as Spain and Canaries where there are a good many timeshare resorts.

Sue
Sue B

Gail2005

As charlie1 has pointed out, the most efficient way to be in RCI Points is to own peak weeks at low maintenance resorts and want to holiday off season.
This is exactly what I have done. I own 5 weeks totalling 469000 points and when I retire next year, I intend to use all those points and get up to 10 weeks holiday a year.
We are quite open minded about where we go to and we are currently planning Las Vegas, The Rocky Mountains and Hilton Head in South Carolina next year.
I also have the advantage of being a former CRI owner so I pay no exchange fees for Points exchanges and get 2 'Weeks' exchanges fee free. I do pay a higher membership fee though.
I am also a member of DAE and occasionally book Bonus Weeks.
To move away from RCI Points, I would feel cheated if I put a week in for an exchange and took a week without getting any 'change'.
For me, RCI Points works extremely well.
 

charlie1

This is ideal and the perfect product for you due to the foresight you had in obtaining RCI Points on this basis. The cost ratios are obviously very good for you and if you work the system then this should work very well for you.

Quote from: Gail2005 on March 30, 2013, 20:12:54
As charlie1 has pointed out, the most efficient way to be in RCI Points is to own peak weeks at low maintenance resorts and want to holiday off season.
This is exactly what I have done. I own 5 weeks totalling 469000 points and when I retire next year, I intend to use all those points and get up to 10 weeks holiday a year.
We are quite open minded about where we go to and we are currently planning Las Vegas, The Rocky Mountains and Hilton Head in South Carolina next year.
I also have the advantage of being a former CRI owner so I pay no exchange fees for Points exchanges and get 2 'Weeks' exchanges fee free. I do pay a higher membership fee though.
I am also a member of DAE and occasionally book Bonus Weeks.
To move away from RCI Points, I would feel cheated if I put a week in for an exchange and took a week without getting any 'change'.
For me, RCI Points works extremely well.
Timeshare Weekly is an Independent website working with those who share similar ideals. We are here to guide the consumer make the very best of timeshare. We encourage positive change and solutions. Your either living in the problem or your living in the solution. Contact graham@timeshareweekly.com

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