10 Reasons To Rent A Timeshare

View from Heavenly in Lake Tahoe

For many people, buying a Timeshare is like buying an annuity:
The sales folks make them seem awesome but in the end, you feel like you got stuck with something expensive that isn’t right for you.

Owning a timeshare has worked well for us, see Our Timeshare Trading Successes, but I admit there are many people for which the cost or planning constraints are too great. I have even discouraged several friends from buying them for those reasons, much to their surprise, given my own satisfaction.

Still, there is a great way to get many of the benefits of Timeshare ownership without the cost and planning hardships: Rent One.

Why Rent a Timeshare?

1 – Lower Cost Than A Hotel

Many timeshares can be booked like hotels, but the $$/night can be quite high given these are typically in desirable locations. For example:

The Marriott Timber Lodge in Lake Tahoe
This very desirable property from a high-quality provider has a fantastic location, just a few steps from the Heavenly Gondola, the casinos, the lake, and many shops and restaurants.

Booking 7 days over Christmas will cost you a pretty penny – $3440 for a Studio, $4684 for a 1 Bedroom Unit and a whopping $7815 for a 2 Bedroom Unit.

The $6816 price shown for members does not even include $999 in taxes and fees. However, on www.redweek.com, there are currently rentals for the same rooms over the same period starting from $3500 for a 2 Bedroom unit!

2 – Space

Look at the room description above: 2 Bedroom Villa, Bedroom 1: 1 King, Bedroom 2: 1 King, Sofa beds: 2, Bathrooms: 2, Fireplace

How about that comfy looking lounge chair or the table for 6?
Timeshare units are generally designed for people staying for a week, so they often have more space than standard hotel rooms. This can be a godsend towards the end of a vacation when familiarity can breed contempt.

3 – Privacy

A 1- or 2-Bedroom Suite is just that, a suite… with doors. Being able to close a door can make sleep much easier and help with the familiarity thing.

4 – A Full Kitchen

Many suites come with a full kitchen, complete with a full-size fridge, stove, oven, microwave, toaster, dishwasher, blender, plates, utensils and cookware. Usually, a dining area is provided as well. A quick trip to a nearby supermarket can save a lot of time, hassle and money overeating every meal out, which you usually have to do when you stay in a hotel. This benefit is really important if you have little kids. We frequently stop at a grocery store just before arriving at a resort so we can settle in from the moment we get there. Some resorts even offer a shopping service, too.

5 – In-Unit Laundry

Many suites also come with an in-unit washer, dryer, and detergent. No need to send out the dirty clothes or monitor the public laundry down the hall. We typically plan on laundering clothes mid-week to minimize how much we need to pack and sometimes save money on airline baggage fees and we can often rent a smaller car. Another super important benefit if you have little kids. All sorts of things can happen to their clothes when you travel.

6 – Location, 7 – Resort Amenities, and 8 – Resort Activities

Since these are typically resort properties, they have resort amenities, activities and locations.
The Kaanapali Beach Club is ON beautiful Kaanapali Beach in Maui. A 1-Bedroom over New Years Week is available for $1900. Trip Advisor is showing the same room/dates for $3940. Aside from the beach, it has pools, easy access to many restaurants, golf, water sports, a kids club, etc.

9 – Less Planning

As an owner, I often have to reserve my unit as soon as it is available, frequently at 6:00 am PST on a Thursday 1 year in advance. Even then, I often fail to get the reservation I really want.

If you rent a timeshare directly from an owner, they have already done that work for you. You get to sleep in or do whatever else it is you need to at 6:00 am and you don’t need to have your plans sorted exactly a year in advance. You can see what is available when you are ready to make plans.

10 – No Long Term Contract

In this scenario, you don’t own the timeshare. When your rental is done, just go about your life. No commitment.

For more information about renting a timeshare, see How to Rent a Timeshare.

What experiences have you had trying to rent a timeshare?

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