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Old January 9, 2006, 04:29 PM   #1
RonaldCol
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Location: Chicago
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Resorts: Bluegreen, Shell, Fairfield, and Royal Holiday Club resorts.
Joined Interval International

I've decided to extend my exchanging universe by joining Interval International (II). As to whether or not II is "better" than RCI, DAE, SFX, and the many myriad smaller exchange companies, will yet to be seen. I do know that my exchanges will not be held "captive" by any one exchange company.
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Old January 9, 2006, 06:03 PM   #2
cdziuba
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Welcome to II. If your experience is like ours, you will be extremely happy with II over RCI. We just love II, and think their Customer Service is wonderful, and they have a great selection of resorts.
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Old January 9, 2006, 10:38 PM   #3
ripshion
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdziuba
Welcome to II. If your experience is like ours, you will be extremely happy with II over RCI. We just love II, and think their Customer Service is wonderful, and they have a great selection of resorts.
I have to agree! I have been a member just over a year and have gotten great exchanges. Great customer service and online search capabilities. You will be happy!
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Old January 9, 2006, 10:55 PM   #4
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Resorts: Now Cypress Pointe w/Diamond Club,Cove@Yarmouth Former: RCI Points Rayburn Country, DVC/Wyndham - Wastegate gone gone!
Plan ahead and avoid II issues

Be aware of a few tricks they pull.

- You will get calls if you have an ongoing search asking "How many people are traveling?". Don't answer with the real count unless that equals what you gave up in deposit. For example we always deposited a 2 or 3 bedroom even though we travel as a family of three. But we often have friends or family at the resort while we are there and we bought 2 & 3 bedrooms because that is what we like to have. Far too often they would hear "3" traveling and start asking us to take a studio or 1 bedroom. Not what we wanted or asked for.
- They will most likely call with other areas, dates and resorts you never asked for. They love to offer places up to hundreds of miles away from your requested location AND always an unranked resort. They always have plenty of off season junk but not much of the real high value times and units.
- They will bug you to "upgrade" to their so called enhanced memebrship. It is a rip off and gets you nothing
- They will continually want you to add years to your membership because of upcoming price increases.
- NEVER do an ongoing search or you will get all the above in spades and end up taking some junk time just to avoid losing your deposit. Give them nothing and only use request first to have any chance of a reasonable exchange. They will continually tell you that ongoing is "more likely to get results". Don't fall for it as once they have your week it's like an up front fee for a resale - they already got what they really wanted and you're out of luck.
- Finally if your resort/week qualifies sign up for SFX with it as after you get tired of waiting for the request first week you'll most likely never get you can take your week to SFX and get what you want. In fact after one or two tries you may decide being a member of II makes no sense if you really want quality time/resorts SFX does a much better job at it. We dropped II three years ago and have not missed them for one moment.
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Last edited by timeos2; January 9, 2006 at 11:35 PM.
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Old January 9, 2006, 11:58 PM   #5
Amy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timeos2
Be aware of a few tricks they pull.

- NEVER do an ongoing search or you will get all the above in spades and end up taking some junk time just to avoid losing your deposit. Give them nothing and only use request first to have any chance of a reasonable exchange. They will continually tell you that ongoing is "more likely to get results". Don't fall for it as once they have your week it's like an up front fee for a resale - they already got what they really wanted and you're out of luck.
I have exchanged many weeks via II the past 5 years using my Marriott weeks. I have always done a "deposit first" since (a) I knew I wanted to deposit for an II exchange and (b) I wanted to maximize my trade power. I've had great exchanges come through, including Maui Marriott week 52 1BR. While we have received the calls you mentioned, I wouldn't say I've gotten them "in spades". Whenever asked if I would take resorts I did not list I give a firm "no" and I've never been pressed. Same with upgrade to Gold membership. So I do not agree with the advice that folks should "NEVER do an ongoing search" via deposit first method. By all means don't deposit first if you are not certain if you want to exchange the week via II, but if you are, seriously consider deposit first to maximize your trade power; also, on the extremely odd chance that "all else is equal", I seem to recall Craig said a deposit first week would beat out a request first week.
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Old January 10, 2006, 07:23 AM   #6
Dave M
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amy
...also, on the extremely odd chance that "all else is equal", I seem to recall Craig said a deposit first week would beat out a request first week.
Good memory!
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Old January 10, 2006, 08:31 AM   #7
gmarine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldCol
I've decided to extend my exchanging universe by joining Interval International (II). As to whether or not II is "better" than RCI, DAE, SFX, and the many myriad smaller exchange companies, will yet to be seen. I do know that my exchanges will not be held "captive" by any one exchange company.
I think you will be happy. I have been with II for over 11 years. Have gotten many good trades.

Pay no attention to what John said. I think II is kind of like DVC to him.He hates both. His comment that you shouldnt put in an ongoing search is likely one of the reasons why he didnt like II.

One thing that doesnt work well with II is trying to use mediocre resorts in off season to trade into high quality resorts.

If you are trying to trade into a high demand resort always put in a ongoing request. High demand resorts will rarely be just sitting in inventory waiting for instant confirmation.

I think you will enjoy the ability to use request first. Good luck.
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Old January 10, 2006, 10:36 AM   #8
Dani
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmarine
I
One thing that doesnt work well with II is trying to use mediocre resorts in off season to trade into high quality resorts.
Very true. Also, II will work very well for you if you have a resort with a relatively high quality rating. If you own at a resort with a low quality rating, you will not be too pleased with II. For myself, I am extremely happy with II.
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Old January 10, 2006, 10:57 AM   #9
Judy
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timeos2
- NEVER do an ongoing search or you will get all the above in spades and end up taking some junk time just to avoid losing your deposit. Give them nothing and only use request first to have any chance of a reasonable exchange. They will continually tell you that ongoing is "more likely to get results". Don't fall for it as once they have your week it's like an up front fee for a resale - they already got what they really wanted and you're out of luck.
I disagree. II gives priority to ongoing searches. What you find online is only the left-overs after ongoing searches have been filled.
You can put in an ongoing "request first" search if you don't want to give up your week before getting a confirmation. The downside of that is that if you were to change your ongoing search from request-first to deposit-first, your trading power would be based on the date you changed your search, not on the date you started the "request-first" search.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dani
II will work very well for you if you have a resort with a relatively high quality rating. If you own at a resort with a low quality rating, you will not be too pleased with II. For myself, I am extremely happy with II.
If your goal is to exchange into high-quality resorts, that's true. But if your goal is to have as many choices in location as possible, you're actually better off with a mediocre quality resort. I always get more exchange choices with my lower-rated resorts than with my high-quality ones, although my high-quality resorts are alleged to have excellent trading power. There are simply fewer high-quality resorts in the system and II's quality filter restricts exchanges with high-quality resorts to other high-quality resorts.
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Old January 10, 2006, 10:58 AM   #10
Dani
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Judy
I disagree. If your goal is to exchange into high-quality resorts, that's true. But if your goal is to have as many choices in location as possible, you're actually better off with a mediocre quality resort. I always get more exchange choices with my lower-rated resorts than with my high-quality ones, although my high-quality resorts are alleged to have excellent trading power. There are simply fewer high-quality resorts in the system and II's quality filter restricts exchanges with high-quality resorts to other high-quality resorts.
Also very true.
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Old January 10, 2006, 11:22 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timeos2
Be aware of a few tricks they pull.

- You will get calls
When this becomes bothersome for me I take care of it by changing the phone number in my II profile. Once my trade comes through I change it back. Simple solution that works.
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Old January 10, 2006, 11:59 AM   #12
timeos2
 
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Resorts: Now Cypress Pointe w/Diamond Club,Cove@Yarmouth Former: RCI Points Rayburn Country, DVC/Wyndham - Wastegate gone gone!
Now I know why Westgate switched to II

Quote:
Originally Posted by copper
When this becomes bothersome for me I take care of it by changing the phone number in my II profile. Once my trade comes through I change it back. Simple solution that works.
No wonder Westgate went with II - they both irritate customer/owners!

A couple other notes. Don't compare what you get as a Marriot or DVC owner with II as that is a diffent world than most other II deposits see. In fact the cozy arrangements that II used to gain those two groups work to purposely block those resorts from the "average" II user.

I'll repeat that my tests with II utilized both full deposits as well as request first. The very fact that the weeks were "SFX acceptable" tells you these were not some low quality resort or off seasons. My point is that once those weeks went into the downgrade he** of II ongoing searches they seemingly had the value of a OBX winter beach week or less. But used as request first they did OK if used with patience or, to avoid all the screwing around, I found by just going with SFX in the first place II wasn't even required in the picture. And SFX can get those Marriotts/DVC in season that II hardly ever has.

I'm sure II does meet some owners needs or they wouldn't exist. In my case I found them wanting but your mileage certainly may vary.
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Old January 10, 2006, 12:26 PM   #13
melschey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonaldCol
I've decided to extend my exchanging universe by joining Interval International (II). As to whether or not II is "better" than RCI, DAE, SFX, and the many myriad smaller exchange companies, will yet to be seen. I do know that my exchanges will not be held "captive" by any one exchange company.
We belong to both RCI and II. If I were to drop one it would be RCI because II has nicer resorts in the areas we prefer to vacation. Depending on where you like to vacation RCI might suit some better.

I like the fact that II lets me seach online whithout first depositing while RCI will not let you seach online whithout making a deposit first.
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Old January 10, 2006, 02:23 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timeos2
- They will most likely call with other areas, dates and resorts you never asked for. They love to offer places up to hundreds of miles away from your requested location AND always an unranked resort. They always have plenty of off season junk but not much of the real high value times and units.
You have really had some terrible luch with II. How long ago was it that you were a member with them?

I have been with them about 6 years now and my experience is not at all like yours . My deposits are 5 star rated with II so maybe that was the difference.
Lower quality resorts have never been offered to me and I assume this is due to there quality filter.
They have called and offered me other 5 star rated resorts in the same area I have requested specific resorts.
I have simply told them I want only the one specific resort and that was the end of it.
I have always received a exchange into the resort and dates I requested using deposit first within a couple months. I prefer shoulder seasons so that may be the reason.
I did do request first one time and also received my requested week
I use deposit first to take advantage of the AC certificates I get with my deposit. I have never had a single AC go to waste yet and all have been used at very nice resorts.
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Old January 10, 2006, 05:39 PM   #15
timeos2
 
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Lets compare notes

Quote:
Originally Posted by JEFF H
You have really had some terrible luch with II. How long ago was it that you were a member with them?
I dropped my paid membership in 2003 but I can still use II thanks to the loose association they have with Club Sunterra. Our only trade using that connection to date resulted in a Carriage House unit in Las Vegas which was the worst Las Vegas resort we have ever stayed in despite a good location. But we have another (see below) that may change our opinion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JEFF H
I have been with them about 6 years now and my experience is not at all like yours . My deposits are 5 star rated with II so maybe that was the difference.
Lower quality resorts have never been offered to me and I assume this is due to there quality filter.
They have called and offered me other 5 star rated resorts in the same area I have requested specific resorts.
I have simply told them I want only the one specific resort and that was the end of it.
I don't own any resorts that aren't at least RID or higher with RCI and the deposits I made with II were all at least 2 BR, 5* resorts in high demand periods. How high? SFX took them and gave us bonus weeks when II couldn't find an acceptable request first trade. It is not a deposit quality issue it is a size and quality availability issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JEFF H
I have always received a exchange into the resort and dates I requested using deposit first within a couple months. I prefer shoulder seasons so that may be the reason.
I did do request first one time and also received my requested week
Now you have hit the key. As long as you are willing to take off peak times they can do OK - but still not as good as RCI has done if we accepted that lesser time. But I don't want shoulder I need the same Holidays and summer as the majority of owners need which is why they are the highest demand times of year in almost any area with timeshares. II simply doesn't deliver the resorts we want in those times while RCI (points) & especially SFX do. I finally realized we don't need II but if I want to use them we can fall back on the Sunterra connection (we did get a week at the new Las Vegas Marriott using that so maybe I'll feel better about II after that stay?).

Quote:
Originally Posted by JEFF H
I use deposit first to take advantage of the AC certificates I get with my deposit. I have never had a single AC go to waste yet and all have been used at very nice resorts.
The AC's are OK - again if you want non-peak time. SFX also gives bonus weeks and they are exactly the same as a regular deposit so I like them even better. And no mandatory annual fee with SFX either.

I like the fact that II exists and offers another option but we just haven't found them to live up to the hype. Many things in lfe don't so we move on.
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