Earlier this year, my husband and I were invited to a timeshare presentation in exchange for a free stay at 3-night stay at one of their resort locations. If you are not familiar with these presentations, it’s about a two-three hour long process of a salesperson(s) pitching the idea that you need to purchase a timeshare in order to lock in your vacation stays at a discount price.
Now I know what you may think: “how did she end up at a timeshare presentation? Everyone knows to avoid these things! It’s a big waste of time.”
Yes, yes… I have heard all of these things before and was fully prepared to sing my “no, no thanks, not at this time.” But to be frank, I wanted that free 3 night stay!
As much as I offered one refusal after the next, there was one thing the salesperson said that stuck with me.
“You have to make a plan for your vacations.”
Vacation is Important; Timeshares are A Bum Deal
Makes sense, I thought! Vacation is an important part of our lives, and you do have to plan for it.
However, timeshares just did not seem that appealing. And here’s why:
While you would have the capability of locking your stay at a discounted rate, you are still required to purchase:
- Travel (I.e. airfare, car rental, fuel, etc.)
- Food (I.e groceries, dining & snacks)
- Activities (I.e. amusement parks, state parks, concerts, etc.)
- and whatever else you want to do on vacation.
In other words, it would be similar to purchasing a membership at Costco’s or BJ’s; even though you have the membership, you still have to purchase all of the amenities. [For all of that money spent, I would rather book a trip to an all-inclusive resort in Punta Cana, DR!]
The salesperson continued to show us examples beautiful resorts, condo stays, painted dreamy pictures of new views and times of relaxation. He then went on to explain that these vacations would be taken for one or two weeks at a time, on a yearly basis.
And that’s where I pushed the breaks.
Live Your Best Life In The Present
My friend, we’ve all made money missteps. In the past, I have put so much money towards gym memberships, hoping that one day, I would get on a routine. But I don’t throw away money on just hopes anymore. There was absolutely no way I could commit myself to a vacation routine, booking my one-week getaway, every year!
From one year to the next, priorities change.
One year, you can spend most of your days studying in the library cramming for exams. In another year , you can be caring for a sick loved one. The following year, you might be preparing for a new born.
The point is, life happens. Tomorrow can be unpredictable.
Would I love to take a week or two long vacation every year? You bet!
However, I live some distance from many of my loved ones and most of my vacations usually goes to making time to see them. On my list of priorities, family ranks higher than getaways… so there goes most of my vacation days!
Out of the year, we may spend a four-day weekend on actual vacation time. But that works for us, at the moment. And besides, who says you must go away to a tropical island to find relaxation and happiness?
Instead, I try to live my best life a little each and every day. I incorporate some activities I actually enjoy. Here are a few examples of how you can do the same:
- Visit your local theater and see a play.
- Join a dance class and learn some new moves.
- Book a coffee date and catch up with an old friend.
- Visit your local state park.
- Visit a museum and learn something new about your city.
- Host a movie night with friends.
- Read that book you’ve been meaning to get around to (our resource page has some rec’s!)
The list can go on and on! There are so many things you can find right under your nose. Vacations are wonderful! But, how lovely would it be to find a mini-getaway right where you are?
Learn to live those 365 days and those two weeks won’t seem so appealing.
Daysha runs a personal blog where she shares her financial journey, life happenings, bloopers, and things she’s learned that may help someone else.