I got a call from a friend this weekend who wanted me to join her for a Mexican vacation. She’d just booked a deal that was a one day only special so I’d need to act fast! For just $399, my husband and I could stay at a luxury resort in Cabo San Lucas for 5 nights. Even better, it was all inclusive with food, drinks, and entertainment for BOTH of us at that one low price. But there’s just one small catch – I’d have to take a timeshare tour.
Now, I’m an old pro of taking timeshare tours. I love seeing how the condos are decorated, and I love the freebies even better. In the past, I received a free weekend of skiing in the Poconos, an hour of jet ski usage around Marco Island, and even free passes to Disney World. I still wear my Marriott logo flip flops I got once as a parting gift, and I’ve never come away as a new timeshare owner.
But usually the promised 90 minute tour turns into a few hours of hard sell techniques that can wear the average tourist down. I actually get a strange pleasure from arguing with the salesman about the value of a timeshare purchase, but it makes my husband cringe. Would my friend be strong enough to say no repeatedly? Anyone considering taking a timeshare tour should read this USA Today article on How To Avoid a Timeshare Scam and leave your checkbook at home. Most importantly – don’t ask any questions during the tour that would indicate even a shadow of interest or you will be subjected to the high pressure, hard sell techniques that will feel like the equivalent of water boarding.
Of course, this particular one day sale is actually offered every day of the week for any willing caller ready to book the trip. Timeshare sellers rely on impulse buys and time sensitive deals, with the sales team (you will always have to meet with at least a few different sales agents before you can escape) telling you that you MUST sign the sales contract at the meeting or the deal is off. As long as you know for sure that you are strong enough mentally to not give in to the sales pitch, you could follow the lead of a traveling teacher who blogs about her wonderfully cheap trips, all thanks to having to endure a timeshare tour.
So will I go to Cabo? I’m still undecided. But if I can find cheap airfare, you may be reading about my Mexican adventure in an upcoming blog post.