Why I Bought Timeshare Points after a Horrible Experience

Published on September 16, 2011 by

If you have a negative experience, it pays to complain to the people who can make it right

If you search for information on timeshares, you will find a great deal of negative comments. Some people talk about how they never use their timeshares and can't sell it for anywhere near what they paid for it. Others tell you they can never get the vacation location they want. Still others tell you about an absolutely horrendous experience with one of the sales folks. This article is about the later experience and what I did about it.

First, I want you to know that I own time shares with two companies and work for neither. One is Marriott and the other is Diamond Resorts. I bought into Marriott before they began having the point system as an option. When I bought into Diamond Resorts they were Sunterra in the process of being bought by Diamond Resorts. I thoroughly enjoy both and use them regularly since I happen to be one of those that loves to travel.

I had a horrid experience with a sales person at Diamond Resorts. I finally got up and walked out in tears. Since I had had several other positive experiences I decided to complain about this negative one. I wrote a 2-page letter to the president of this privately owned company. Within two days I received a telephone call from the corporate offices and then a call from the head of sales at the particular location. They were very concerned, very sympathetic and very helpful. I was given a $100 gift card, a certificate for a weekend vacation, a promise that the sales rep would be counseled with another promise to follow-up with me on the results. I felt listened to and I was satisfied.

Almost a year later to the day, I checked into another Diamond Resorts in the same city. The concierge wanted to schedule me for another "owner's update." I told her I was reluctant to go because of my last experience. She appeared genuinely horrified and insisted that could not be my last experience. She's very good at what she does and I did schedule another visit.

When I met with the sales rep I told him my story and my reluctance to do this. He assured me that he would give me the owner update and offer me a deal to buy points, as we all knew "owner update" was also a sales presentation and an update on what has happened with the company. In addition, he talked to the sales supervisor of this resort. I told my story again. I then met the sales supervisor of the other resort who had responded to my complaint. He was now a regional supervisor.

Either because of my story or because that's how they do it, they were very accommodating. I was offered an excellent deal on buying some more points. The proposal was simply presented to me and I was allowed to make my decision without pressure. I did choose to buy.

Why did I buy after my experience the previous year (even though I could get resale points for much less)?

1. I like to travel and was interested in buying more points anyway, except I was considering the resale market.

2. They treated me with respect and dignity.

3. Because of what had happened the year before, the resort sales supervisor and regional supervisor put together a deal better than I would have received normally.

That's my story. I know many people have negative stories, but I wanted to share mine so people would know there are alternatives to what you read from people who are dissatisfied... and, no, I really don't work for them and I didn't receive anything from them for telling you my story.

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