It’s become a bit of a dirty word in the UK. Timeshare.
What do you think of when you hear the word? Not many good things I’m sure.
Well, things have changed. It’s seems the rest of the world has caught up with the change – while we were on a family holiday in Florida last year there were actually queues of people enquiring about timeshare at the Disney Grand Floridian Hotel. For that is how much timeshare has changed. It’s no longer about a half-built white box plonked on a golf course. You can timeshare at Disney!
I was tempted into the arms of timeshare by the people at RCI – a timeshare exchange company which facilitates a holiday ‘swap’ if you fancy going somewhere different on your timeshare break. So if you own two weeks on a Greek island at the height of the school holidays and you fancy changing it to a week on safari in South Africa then they find someone who owns said safari week to swap with you.
Another change in timeshare I had no idea about.
However, this isn’t a post about timeshare as such. I have no real experience of it other than staying in an example of the property that is available and speaking to RCI bigwig Dimitris Manikis (who for the record is lovely and very passionate about the industry he’s been involved in for many many years).
All I will say is, it’s quite clear that timeshare is NOT an investment so it should never be seen as such. You won’t make money from it, you are paying for a share in a holiday. The industry is full of scammers keen to take your money off you if you do ever want to sell up, so do your homework. And go into it with your eyes open; know how much it is going to cost over the period of your ownership (you can own for anything from 5 to 25 years), how much you will save over the years and whether it is indeed suitable for you and your family.
Our timeshare experience was in Devon, in an apartment on a country club on the north coast, not far from Bude.
The picture above isn’t exactly what you’d expect from a timeshare reception! Neither was the actual accommodation to be honest.
We were expecting a two-bedroom self catering apartment. We got a two-bedroom luxury house! The kids did that room to room exploring thing and squealed upon entering each room: “it’s so BIG”, “we’ve got our own bathroom”, “you and dad are on a DIFFERENT LEVEL”.
We were impressed.
When the sun shines you simply cannot beat the south of England. And for a family holiday it’s everything you could wish for.
We headed for Devon with dreams of days on the beach, cream teas, visits to grand castles and mooching around farmers’ markets.
We wanted to spend time as a family – reconnect, recharge.
And Woodford Bridge Country Club gave us all that. Between the apartment and the indoor swimming pool we were in danger of not seeing any of Devon!*
The staff were supremely helpful and friendly, the grounds well kept and pleasant and the facilities clean and spot on for a young family.
AND there was a Waitrose very near by. It’s the little things!
* We saw lots of Devon. We loved it.