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Old Monday, September 13th, 2010, 06:53 PM
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Default SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Having worked in the Timeshare business and understanding that the industry has brought so much pleasure to so many families, I still look back and wonder if there could have been a different way to do the same thing.

Some time ago, I wrote the following.

http://bb.visitaruba.com/f36/free-stuff-aruba-7693/

be well
charles
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Old Monday, September 13th, 2010, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Charles,

I have to tell you that while I agree that most time share sales people are like that, I'm guessing that like car salesmen, there are a few that are not. People choose to be one way or another. While I only bought from one timeshare salesperson (and wrote a letter to Marriott to complain), and only listened to two others (both from Marriott), I can tell you that one of them was a lot better than the other. The first post-purchase presentation we went to was in Vegas. Even though we made it very clear that the only reason we were there was to get a tour of the property and not to buy, the guy still hounded us until I said "Look, either you let us go now or I send a letter to JW Jr. with your name on it". The second one in Aruba (don't remember which one) was very cool. Told him we were staying at the Renaissance and just wanted a tour, and he was cool. He said, "listen, if you ever change your mind, just give me a call" and that was it.

Could you have done the same thing a different way? I don't know, I guess it all comes down to whether or not you are happy with how you interacted with potential customers. Just my two pennies~~
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Old Monday, September 13th, 2010, 11:18 PM
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Smile Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Charles, your teacher was correct, there aint no such thing as a free lunch. Words to live by. If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. More words to live by.

I must admit, I was very surprised by all the coupons and ads for freebies on Aruba the first time we went. They give you a bag full at the airport along with some good information. Thought we landed in Vegas by mistake.

Looking for all those deals, discounts, free drinks and appetizers is a young persons game. It can also be time consuming. When you get to be our age, running all over the island trying to save $15 or $20 on food, drinks and entertainment is just not in the plans. We have a very limited amount of time to spend on our favorite island and do not want to waste it trying to find cheap handouts or cash in coupons.

Seriously though, for those that dont know, when a restaurant "gives" you a free glass of wine to get you in, they will charge you more for your entree or appetizer, or both. It is a business. They are there to make a profit, not give away wine. They will make it up somewhere. Same with all the coupons.

Free stuff, like free advice, is worth what you pay for it most of the time.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 12:38 AM
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Default Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

This is a great discussion Charles (I also read your original one from last year) and I agree with what you're saying. It amazes me the effort people go to for cheap or free things and what a consumer age we live in.
I recently got hammered on another forum due to a response I wrote in regards to a jewelry complaint. A young lady bought a diamond and sapphire ring set in gold in Aruba for $50 or something ridiculous like that. On her return to the US she discovered it was fake. Really? Well I understand being caught in the moment and loving a deal but this was crazy! The thread continued for pages and pages with forum members up in arms. They wanted the duped customer to buy a couple if them tickets to Aruba to go fight her battle of the $50 ring. The business was smeared big time, threats of boycots thrown about and satisfaction demanded. Well my question was "where's the customers responsibility in this and who ever heard of a diamond and sapphire ring in gold for that price?if it's too good to be true. then it probably is. Buyer beware. Sometimes our own greed gets in our way. Im guilty too."Well I apparently touched a nerve and had some angry responses and the thread was closed so I couldn't post anymore.
Our culture is always looking for something for nothing and that's contributed to our recession and economic crisis. I get daily emails from Nigeria and other scams. Obviously someone falls for these(then they go on Judge Judy).
I ordered free formula samples online when I had my baby. Now I get my inbox flooded with spam emails and phone calls from formula companies, baby photographers (I can get a FREE 5x7 if I pay the sitting fee of only $250), investment brokers, parent magazines, etc., I don't even know why I ordered the formula, I was breastfeeding! Oh yeah, it was free.
People putting down $5000 on half million dollar homes and then unable to pay their mortgages,credit card debts and the highest # of bankruptcy filings in 80 years are all results of our must have attitudes and thinking we are getting a "deal". I know people who drive 45 minutes to a store with a sale on one item to save $2 but just spent $20 in gas and more in time. Or others who buy thing simply because they're on sale even if they don't need it or ever use it. Coupons can be good but often coupons or discount cards get you to eat somewhere you never would because you feel obligated not to miss out on the deal.I've ended up eating out and paying $100 for dinner because a discount card promised me a free $5 dessert when I could have just as happily spent $40 on dinner, paid for dessert and still been ahead. Oh but I had a COUPON.
I've also been sucked into restaurants or other venues with a promise of 2 for 1 meals/entrance or whatever. There's always a catch. In one case meals were 2 for 1 with purchase of beverage each. Cheapest beverage? Glass of Pop for $5!
Today I was at a national childrens toy store. They have a deal where if you spend $75, you get a certain toy for $10 instead of $24. Well I was there for one thing but I couldn't miss out on this deal, could I? I found enough stuff I didn't need to total $80& went to pay, the $10 special in my greedy grasp. "sorry ma'am but this is $24 not $10, do you still want it?" what? How can that be? Turns out all $75 must be spent in the baby department only. Damn!
That should have been when I put back all the extra junk in my cart, bought the one item I came for and left the store. Instead I paid for everything, including extra for bags. Why? Well I had too much pride apparently. I couldn't let some 16 cashier think I didn't really want that stuff and only wanted the deal could I? Or worse, what if this teenage stranger thought I was cheap or weird? I couldn't have that. No instead I saved the receipt and hopefully will havering to go return it all. I hope she's not working.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 08:54 AM
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Smile Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Quote:
Originally Posted by amarg View Post
This is a great discussion Charles (I also read your original one from last year) and I agree with what you're saying. It amazes me the effort people go to for cheap or free things and what a consumer age we live in.
I recently got hammered on another forum due to a response I wrote in regards to a jewelry complaint. A young lady bought a diamond and sapphire ring set in gold in Aruba for $50 or something ridiculous like that. On her return to the US she discovered it was fake. Really? Well I understand being caught in the moment and loving a deal but this was crazy! The thread continued for pages and pages with forum members up in arms. They wanted the duped customer to buy a couple if them tickets to Aruba to go fight her battle of the $50 ring. The business was smeared big time, threats of boycots thrown about and satisfaction demanded. Well my question was "where's the customers responsibility in this and who ever heard of a diamond and sapphire ring in gold for that price?if it's too good to be true. then it probably is. Buyer beware. Sometimes our own greed gets in our way. Im guilty too."Well I apparently touched a nerve and had some angry responses and the thread was closed so I couldn't post anymore.
Our culture is always looking for something for nothing and that's contributed to our recession and economic crisis. I get daily emails from Nigeria and other scams. Obviously someone falls for these(then they go on Judge Judy).
I ordered free formula samples online when I had my baby. Now I get my inbox flooded with spam emails and phone calls from formula companies, baby photographers (I can get a FREE 5x7 if I pay the sitting fee of only $250), investment brokers, parent magazines, etc., I don't even know why I ordered the formula, I was breastfeeding! Oh yeah, it was free.
People putting down $5000 on half million dollar homes and then unable to pay their mortgages,credit card debts and the highest # of bankruptcy filings in 80 years are all results of our must have attitudes and thinking we are getting a "deal". I know people who drive 45 minutes to a store with a sale on one item to save $2 but just spent $20 in gas and more in time. Or others who buy thing simply because they're on sale even if they don't need it or ever use it. Coupons can be good but often coupons or discount cards get you to eat somewhere you never would because you feel obligated not to miss out on the deal.I've ended up eating out and paying $100 for dinner because a discount card promised me a free $5 dessert when I could have just as happily spent $40 on dinner, paid for dessert and still been ahead. Oh but I had a COUPON.
I've also been sucked into restaurants or other venues with a promise of 2 for 1 meals/entrance or whatever. There's always a catch. In one case meals were 2 for 1 with purchase of beverage each. Cheapest beverage? Glass of Pop for $5!
Today I was at a national childrens toy store. They have a deal where if you spend $75, you get a certain toy for $10 instead of $24. Well I was there for one thing but I couldn't miss out on this deal, could I? I found enough stuff I didn't need to total $80& went to pay, the $10 special in my greedy grasp. "sorry ma'am but this is $24 not $10, do you still want it?" what? How can that be? Turns out all $75 must be spent in the baby department only. Damn!
That should have been when I put back all the extra junk in my cart, bought the one item I came for and left the store. Instead I paid for everything, including extra for bags. Why? Well I had too much pride apparently. I couldn't let some 16 cashier think I didn't really want that stuff and only wanted the deal could I? Or worse, what if this teenage stranger thought I was cheap or weird? I couldn't have that. No instead I saved the receipt and hopefully will havering to go return it all. I hope she's not working.
RTFP!!
Read the fine print! Your response to that coupon is exactly why stores continue to send them out. Many people will still buy even after they find out they were suckered in.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 11:33 AM
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I Love Aruba Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Product and marketing regarding timeshares, Charles?

Speaking for myself personally, an "old timeshare owner," nobody ever chased me down the street offering me the timeshares I bought. In fact, it was me pursuing anyone who had the weeks I was looking for. As I look back in retrospect, I think I made sweet deals, and if I amortized the enjoyment I've gotten back over the years in return, my deals were worth every penny I spent, and I've never looked back with regret.

Does it get expensive when one factors in the maintenance fees, occasional assessments, taxes, airfare, food, etc.? You betacha! BUT, I still believe that with all those costs, my trips to Aruba, owning timeshare, is still a bargain.

That being said, in today's economy, could I or would I buy at the current time... the answer's a definite - no.

As classiclincon said, there is no free lunch, and buyer beware! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 01:42 PM
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Default Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Elaine,
I was never sure what it was that bothered me most.

That the stuff wasn't free at all?
That often the value was over positioned?
That we lured in a customer as opposed to handling them when they arrive.

Short Story: I was sent to Orlando while working for one of the resorts on Aruba and went through the full gamut of introductions. Then they introduced me to my host for the week. It was this poor guys job to baby sit me and make sure I got around in relative comfort. It didn't take long for me to understand why they chose him.

HUGE HUMMER with all the glitz that can fit into a car (TV, Sound systems etc)
Flashing around a black AMEX card like it were an ATM card.
The restaurants he took me to were out of the price range for most US presidents.
And then he took me to his home:
Three story
Enclosed Pool on the second floor
Well manicured Putting range
Tennis courts
Cute little pontoon boat in the back for his kids to play in the lake
Liquor cabinet that looked like a store.
And on and on and on.

The last night I was there, we had dinner at his home and I asked him how he had amassed such wealth at such an early age? He answered:

My wife runs a marketing company for a timeshare resort.
I am a closer for the in-house team at XXXXXXX.

I asked him what his secret was and he told me that he squeezed and squeezed until the client was ready to cry and then would back off. He would repeat this procedure several times over. He then said - A good sale is when the customer looks at me and begs - "Can we leave now?"

His lovely wife started laughing. She then explained that people are suckers for anything free.

In their case, their wealth was built on things being FREE.

Note: I went to Orlando recently and looked them up. they are living in a modest home and he is in construction and his wife is a "Stay-at-home-mom". I asked how this happened and they explained that they got out while the getting was good and scaled their life down considerably. They are much happier now and this change hasn't cost them anything - it was free.

be well
charles








Quote:
Originally Posted by Elaine S View Post
Product and marketing regarding timeshares, Charles?

Speaking for myself personally, an "old timeshare owner," nobody ever chased me down the street offering me the timeshares I bought. In fact, it was me pursuing anyone who had the weeks I was looking for. As I look back in retrospect, I think I made sweet deals, and if I amortized the enjoyment I've gotten back over the years in return, my deals were worth every penny I spent, and I've never looked back with regret.

Does it get expensive when one factors in the maintenance fees, occasional assessments, taxes, airfare, food, etc.? You betacha! BUT, I still believe that with all those costs, my trips to Aruba, owning timeshare, is still a bargain.

That being said, in today's economy, could I or would I buy at the current time... the answer's a definite - no.

As classiclincon said, there is no free lunch, and buyer beware! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 03:27 PM
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Smile Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elaine S View Post
Product and marketing regarding timeshares, Charles?

Speaking for myself personally, an "old timeshare owner," nobody ever chased me down the street offering me the timeshares I bought. In fact, it was me pursuing anyone who had the weeks I was looking for. As I look back in retrospect, I think I made sweet deals, and if I amortized the enjoyment I've gotten back over the years in return, my deals were worth every penny I spent, and I've never looked back with regret.

Does it get expensive when one factors in the maintenance fees, occasional assessments, taxes, airfare, food, etc.? You betacha! BUT, I still believe that with all those costs, my trips to Aruba, owning timeshare, is still a bargain.

That being said, in today's economy, could I or would I buy at the current time... the answer's a definite - no.

As classiclincon said, there is no free lunch, and buyer beware! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Good for you. You went after what you wanted, got what you were looking for at the price you were willing to pay so there was no entrapment or luring or buyers remorse involved. If all people that purchase timeshares did it like you, there would be a lot less problems in the industry.

Charles is speaking of those out there that have done no research or realy dont know what they are looking for, that end up with a week they dont realy want or cant use, because of the tactics and salesmanship of---good salesmen like charles. I have been to many sales presentations and know how enticing and relentless these salesmen can be.

Incidently, there are quite a few timeshares for sale now for a dollar with no closing costs and no resort transfer fee. All you have to do is get your name put on the deed and pay the annual maintenance fee. There are a lot more that you pay a nominal closing fee and a resort transfer fee as well, but still a cheep entry into a resort--assuming it is a resort you want to go to and the right week is available. Even saw a couple on Aruba available at this rate. It was on Ebay, but there are other sites as well.

I suspect the current economy and glut of unsold units is the reason for the fire sale. People wanting out and resorts wanting that annual maintenance fee.
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Old Tuesday, September 14th, 2010, 06:47 PM
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I Love Aruba Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Funny.... I was reading a sign in my bank today that said... "if you think it's a scam, it probably is."

Charles, it's that old "what's valuable to me, may be of no value to you." However, it's sad that people were, and still are squeezed, be it timeshares or any other product. And, shame on those that allow it to happen, however, the buyer has to assume some responsibility for being "taken in or lured." When one doesn't do their homework, shame on them. I know that sounds hard, and cruel, but it's a fact of life.

I'm a bit skeptical of anyone who lived high on the hog, and "by their own choice", got out when the time was right, and now live modestly... but, that's me, an old skeptic.

Bob - if someone tried to sell me a timeshare in Aruba for $1.00, no closing costs, no transfer fees, and only maintenance fees, I'd run like hell in the opposite direction.
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Old Thursday, September 16th, 2010, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: SAME OLD STORY SAME RESULTS (I think)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elaine S View Post
Product and marketing regarding timeshares, Charles?

Speaking for myself personally, an "old timeshare owner," nobody ever chased me down the street offering me the timeshares I bought. In fact, it was me pursuing anyone who had the weeks I was looking for. As I look back in retrospect, I think I made sweet deals, and if I amortized the enjoyment I've gotten back over the years in return, my deals were worth every penny I spent, and I've never looked back with regret.

Does it get expensive when one factors in the maintenance fees, occasional assessments, taxes, airfare, food, etc.? You betacha! BUT, I still believe that with all those costs, my trips to Aruba, owning timeshare, is still a bargain.

That being said, in today's economy, could I or would I buy at the current time... the answer's a definite - no.

As classiclincon said, there is no free lunch, and buyer beware! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Elaine, I guess we are both happy, happy campers. We did the timeshare tours way back when just to get a free meal or a $50 voucher at the casino, etc. etc. But when we got to the timeshare we own now, we bought it and the rest is history. Great history. The best history. Did we get something for nothing? Probably not. But I NEVER would have considered buying a timeshare if we hadn't been after the free meal. The so-called "freebies" led us to the timeshare experience. We had never even considered us in the same class as people who own timeshares. But on that tour, we were shown that we COULD do it. And it was absolutely the best decision we have ever made. Matter of fact, now we own 2 weeks and got 2 other couples to buy 2 weeks the same time as us (thereby giving us some bonus weeks). Not one of us regrets the decision. So, I for one will be forever grateful that I was greedy enough to go after something for nothing. Just call me greedy and grateful LOL.
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