Do you think timeshare ownership is just about visiting the same resort year after year? Does the exchange process strike you as complicated and not worth it? As an owner, you should view timeshare exchange as your ticket to travel the world. This process is the best way to get the most out of your ownership, see more sights, and experience more destinations. SMTN want you to understand how simple this process can be and how beneficial it can be for your traveling lifestyle.
How to Exchange Your Timeshare
The exchange process varies depending on the resort you own at, as well as your specific type of ownership. But we will give you the basics on how this whole ordeal works. Timeshare exchange is when you “give up” your week at your home resort for a week at another destination/resort of equal or lesser value. This can be done regardless of whether you have a fixed week, floating week, or a points-based membership.
There are also two different types of exchange—internal and external.
Internal exchange happens within your ownership network. For example, if you own a Wyndham timeshare, you’d have access to exchange within the extensive collection of Wyndham vacation ownership resorts. Internal exchange is typically a simple, but sometimes limited process. You can choose to make a reservation at your desired resort by depositing your timeshare week at your home resort. This gives you a way to experience different resorts and destinations while being able to expect the same level of quality you receive at your home resort.
Examples of brands with exceptional internal exchange options include:
- Disney Vacation Club
- Hilton Grand Vacations Club
This process involves the assistance of an external exchange company. The two largest and most popular are Resort Condominiums International (RCI) and Interval International (II). RCI uses a points-based exchange system (you can still exchange your week for an allotted amount of RCI points), and II offers two different ways to deposit for an exchange.
Both of these companies are affiliated with thousands of resorts, and some resorts are even lucky enough to be affiliated with both. Affiliation is determined by each company’s respective standards of general quality and hospitality. If you own at a resort affiliated with one or both of these companies, it will greatly benefit you to purchase a yearly membership to be able to take advantage of traveling to timeshares within their vast resort networks.
These companies also offer additional travel benefits with ownership including cruises, vacation protection, extra exclusive getaways, travel discounts, and more.
While timeshare exchange gives you the flexibility to see the world, you also have to be flexible. Before you prepare to exchange your timeshare, here are some things to keep in mind.
- Give yourself options – It’s not impossible, but it is unlikely get your first choice when you go to exchange. Decide whether location or time of travel is more important to you and then come up with a list of vacations you would be happy with.
- Understand the value of your timeshare – Know what your timeshare is worth in terms of trading power with other timeshares out there. You are trading for another timeshare of the same or lesser value, so do not expect to get a larger suite in a travel hotspot if you have a small unit at a less desirable resort.
- Be sure to research – Especially before obtaining an external exchange membership, make sure you understand the extra fees and the full process of exchanging your timeshare with that specific company.
See? Timeshare exchange isn’t all that scary. Educate yourself and you’ll discover how to take your ownership to a whole new level. If you still have questions, feel free to contact SMTN at 1-877-815-4227 or your timeshare home resort for all the details and specifics.