"Tourists don’t know where they’ve been, travelers don’t know where they’re going."
- Paul Theroux

AIRDA NewsDesk

Message of the Month

August 2015

I have always been fascinated by timeshare vacations that unite large families. In today’s world of busy schedules and hectic lifestyles, it is really nice if you can bring everybody together for good times, and more.

Timeshare is probably the only vacation format where you can bring together large families from different time zones and locations – at costs that are affordable. I once saw 18 people from three large families, having the time of their lives. All made possible if you can ask a good friend to share his unused week with you as buffer accommodation – that’s in addition to your own annual week. This is something you need to work out with the resort, in terms of extra rooms and actual availability – which needs persistence and planning.

Fact-of-life tips on planning your vacation.

  • Fact of life # 01 – The early bird needs to gather the flock
    Start your calendar countdown early – useful to plan in advance, and you would be the best judge on that. If you’re dealing with large families, you could have working professionals with busy schedules, young couples with small children, and senior citizens who need to work around health issues. To make things simple, use a smartphone networking platform to share information and obtain feedback, in a quick and efficient manner.
  • Fact of life # 02 – Good luck won’t coincide with holiday seasons
    You may have to start with month & date options and narrow that down, to get everyone within the same holiday window. Believe me, this is the most difficult part because you also need to plan around room availability at the timeshare resort. A change in dates can ground your holiday because you’re looking for multiple rooms in the same week. If you can get a green signal on dates, make your confirmations – that’s the first hurdle crossed.
  • Fact of life # 03 – Rooms come in all shapes and sizes
    Sometimes people are not too comfortable with the room assigned to them – and this can create a bit of a problem. Of course, everything can’t be just perfect on a holiday, but you can minimize the groans and grunts. Plan room allotments and share resort pictures well in advance. You will also need to explain how you have arrived at the allocation, keeping in mind senior citizens in the group, or families with small children.
  • Fact of life # 04 – There’s always someone who’s poor at math
    If you are responsible for planning and sharing information on costs, charges and incidental expenses, try and figure out a sharing formula. If your room is free, because you are a member at the resort, the additional rooms will come at a price – take this into account along with F&B costs and related charges. These days you can download an app that can help you divide the expenses according to presets, and distribute notes to group members on their contributions. The app will also send timely reminders.
  • Fact of life # 05 – There will always be something you’ve left behind…
    On group vacations it always helps to make notes and checklists – for important items such as medicines, health supplements, sunscreens, lotions and other must-carry-with-you items. This is important, because the shops and drug stores near the resort may not have what you could be looking for.

I’d like to end this post with an excerpt from an interview with Srikala Bhashyam, featured elsewhere on this website. Srikala is a journalist, investment consultant, and a regular timeshare user. She usually goes on annual vacations in a large group of family members…

“Timeshare encourages you (and enables) going on holidays with your extended family. And there’s always something happening at the resort location for dads, granddads, grandmoms and yes… grand children as well. The younger mid-thirties segment of course, will find lots to do and many ways to unwind in terms of outdoor and high-energy activity.”

B. S. Rathor
Advisor & Member - Executive Committee

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