Before, timeshare ownership was regarded by many as the ultimate way for a great vacation. However, as several who are trying to get out of their timeshares testified, there are a number of disadvantages with this kind of vacationing. But seeing the vacation business as a multi-billion dollar industry, there are always new alternatives and concepts coming out. One of these latest concepts is the destinations club memberships.
According to the travel industry experts, there’s an estimate of 6,500 people that belong to destinations clubs. With an initial fee ranging from $70,000 to 450,000, annual dues and a minimal charge per night, the destination club members can already access to homes dotted around the world for a limited numbers of days each year. In contrast to timeshares in which investors buy set times at a resort each year, destination clubs are similar to country club membership.
According to Rich Keith, co-CEO of Ultimate Escapes, the first publicly owned and publicly traded destination club, destination club membership is a nomadic traveller’s product. The number one driver for these offers is its ability to have a sense of wanderlust and be nomadic. Keith also believes that even in the U.S. and Canada, the expansion potential is enormous and the current members represent only a tiny fraction of the potential market.
Today, there are thousands of owners who are trying to get rid of their timeshares. Some of them even hire a timeshare transfer company such as the Transfer Smart just to get rid of it. On the other hand, destination club membership is well-received by a lot of consumers as a great alternative to timeshares. However, some critics warn that destination clubs are not without risk and the industry is self-regulated. There have also been bankruptcies and law suits filed against clubs.