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Thread: Westgate travel club: does it make sense to buy?

  1. #1

    Westgate travel club: does it make sense to buy?

    We went to Westgate travel club presentation today, they offered us membership for $3500 enrollment fee + $199 annual fee. This gives 1 westgate week per year, 1 interval week plus access to their highly praised by them reservation system allegedly allowing to make discount reservations of airtravel, hotel packages, cruises, etc.

    Are they really able to give airfare discounts? They claim they have wholesale price vs. retail price that most websites like orbitz.com and kayak.com have. Is this really true?

    If everything they say is true, it maybe makes sense to buy into the program. But I am very doubtful such program works.

    Anybody has an experience with this kind of company?

  2. #2
    No it's not true

    None of it other than they take your money and run

  3. #3
    Diamond Club Contributor rikkis_playpen's Avatar
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    Travel clubs can be a viable alternative to timeshare ownership, since it basically allows members to pay for only those vacations that they actually they use. The important thing behind a travel club is the fulfillment company (this is the part of the organization that actually handles all the reservations and is responsible for obtaining inventory for members to use). Most likely, Westgate will be using Interval International for fulfillment. Interval's Leisure Time Passport travel product has been used as an exit product by Westgate for years, and was traditionally sold with a free week to a Westgate resort. This appears to be the same basic product, just repackaged and sold as new.

    With vacation club memberships, you want to pay the lowest enrollment fee possible (this is the profit the marketing company makes) and you want a reasonable annual fee. As an alternative, I offer a travel club membership that has no enrollment fee and monthly maintenance less than $10. Vacation-Times.org- Travel Club - VACATION-TIMES.org

    Ultimately, though- the final value of any travel club will be the vacations you actually take. Just like timeshare, if you own it and don't use it- it will be a waste of money.
    my travel website: Vacation-Times.org.

    "A vacation is what you take when you can no longer take what you’ve been taking."
    ~Earl Wilson

  4. #4
    Goomba & Super Moderator tonyg's Avatar
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    Believe nothing from an outfit with the name Westgate. And that was true even before they ran into financial problems. Most travel clubs make their product sound like a bargain, but the model is usually financially unsustainable. Two weeks a year sounds great- but for $ 199 would be hard to afford. Even if there are fees (and I assume the II week would be a bonus week with a minimum fee of $ 149 in addition to the yearly club fees), the supply of weeks would be difficult to sustain and the weeks available would undoubtedly be off season and at less desirable places. If the Westgate weeks are foreclosures and unsold inventory, that supply would also be subject to the same shrinking quantities and quality. If Westgate could rent a week for $ 500 do you think they would throw it into the club pool.

  5. #5
    Regardless of who or what actually owns them stay away from any group with the name Westgate (aka Wastegate or Westhate) as they are convicted crooks. No vacation club is worth over $3k no matter who runs it anyway.

    Run far away from this "deal"!

  6. #6
    But what about the airfare part of it?
    They claim they make it possible to buy tickets for much less than kayak price due to some kind of "wholesale prices".
    Can such thing be true and is there really such a thing as "wholesale prices" on airfares?

  7. #7
    Goomba & Super Moderator tonyg's Avatar
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    Probably not.

  8. #8
    The best vacation club is one that does not charge any fees.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by jerrry94087 View Post
    But what about the airfare part of it?
    They claim they make it possible to buy tickets for much less than kayak price due to some kind of "wholesale prices".
    Can such thing be true and is there really such a thing as "wholesale prices" on airfares?
    Every time we've looked at these "discounted rates" they were invariably higher than we could find on our own on the web. Just like the alleged discounted cruises these claims always seem to be bogus. Certainly not worth paying for.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jerrry94087 View Post
    But what about the airfare part of it?
    They claim they make it possible to buy tickets for much less than kayak price due to some kind of "wholesale prices".
    Can such thing be true and is there really such a thing as "wholesale prices" on airfares?
    I don't know anything about Westgate other than the mention of them on these forums.

    From a generic stand point, it is possible for them to offer discounted fares, but I am not saying that they do. I know when I used to be a member of Interval International 15 years ago, I frequently used their Travel department to book airplane tickets and car rentals even of it wasn't for a timeshare trip. They often had substantial discounted contract fares. I saved over $5,000 one year on airfare and car rentals. I don't know if II still does this as I have used SFX exclusively for the past 14 years. I just used II as an example of being able to offer discounted airfare.
    John

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