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Old October 13, 2009, 05:48 PM   #1
CSB
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RCI exchange fee

I just started a search with RCI and they were going to charge me $189 exchange fee but when the agent saw that I was Canadian, he changed it to $234 CDN. The last time I paid the fee was in January of this year and it was $181 CDN.

Did the fees go up this year that much? I complained to the agent but was not satified with his reasoning that each country has it's own exchange fee and that is the fee for Canada. He said there was a fee increase in January 2009. An increase of 25% is highway robbery.
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Old October 13, 2009, 06:10 PM   #2
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Cindy...we booked an exchange on Sept 19 and the charge was $203.00 cdn up from around $179 in the spring. The Cdn $ is close to $.98 or almost par with the US $, so there should not be much of an exchange factor. Now have you had a look at the proposed increase in the maintenance fee at Carriage Hills? I think it's up at least 20% from last year. I'm planning on going to the AGM for the first time next thursday at Georgian Downs, Innisfil at 6pm. to hear what this is all about!
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Old October 13, 2009, 06:20 PM   #3
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If you a do a search on the Exchanging board for "Canadian", I think there was a thread a few weeks ago that discussed this. It seems to indicate that exchanges made by phone are separately priced. If you can do what you want online, you'll be charged in US dollars, AFAIK.
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Old October 13, 2009, 06:28 PM   #4
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If you are a Canadian RCI member, you will not be charged in US dollars online. RCI usually updates their exchange rates twice yearly. Sometimes we benefit from this policy but most times they make a good deal of money on us.
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Old October 13, 2009, 06:45 PM   #5
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Sorry, my bad for the wrong info.

Here's what's charged from the RCI website.

How much are the RCI Weeks transaction fees?
Exchange Fees - Transactions made on RCI.com:


US
Canada

Domestic: $164 USD
Domestic: $203 CAD

International: $164 USD
International: $203 CAD


Exchange Fees - Transactions made by phone:


US
Canada

Domestic: $189 USD
Domestic: $234 CAD

International: $189 USD
International: $234 CAD


Interval just charges in US dollars and I don't believe charges differently for Canadian dollars. Annoying that they make $25 to $30 per exchange for the same service but it's been like that for a long time, I believe.
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Old October 13, 2009, 09:53 PM   #6
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Bev, thanks so much for the info. I never try to book online as nothing seems to show up for me but I guess I could have done it since I ended up asking for a search.

Ironwood, I would also love to go to the annual meeting for Carriage Hills. Every year I want to go but something comes up and I have never made it since they moved it to Georgian Downs. I will try this year but I have some family issues and I don't think that I will be there this year.
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Old October 14, 2009, 12:30 AM   #7
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At today's exchange rates $203 Canadian is the equivalent of $197 US, a far cry from $164. After I paid $203 Cdn for my last RCI exchange I vowed never to use them again. I will keep my membership until it expires for Extra Vacations and Last Minute bookings.
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Old October 14, 2009, 08:12 AM   #8
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Cindy...as eal says the RCI cdn equivalent is a far cry from $164! It's too late for me as we've booked our trades for this year, but I wonder if you could ask RCI to charge your card with the US exchange fee...just as you would use a your visa card to make a purchase in the US. Your card company will charge an exchange rate a couple of points higher than the over the counter at the bank, but it should still be quite a savings. At todays Cdn/US wholesale exchange rate, $164 US should cost about $167.50 Cdn, and next week it will be par.....a week later and you can ask for change back!
I plan to go to the Carriage Hills AGM next Thursday, and I'll post the highlights of what I hear.
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Old October 14, 2009, 10:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironwood View Post
Cindy...as eal says the RCI cdn equivalent is a far cry from $164! It's too late for me as we've booked our trades for this year, but I wonder if you could ask RCI to charge your card with the US exchange fee...just as you would use a your visa card to make a purchase in the US. Your card company will charge an exchange rate a couple of points higher than the over the counter at the bank, but it should still be quite a savings. At todays Cdn/US wholesale exchange rate, $164 US should cost about $167.50 Cdn, and next week it will be par.....a week later and you can ask for change back!
I plan to go to the Carriage Hills AGM next Thursday, and I'll post the highlights of what I hear.
I have tried that before and they won't do it The answer you'll get is the same every time which is "It has always been RCI's policy to charge fees in the currency of the country of residence" If you have a US address you can get around this. It makes on sense as we are calling the same number as people who live in the US. None of the other exchange companies do this and recently when I talked to a supervisor at RCI I was told it is because RCI is an international company so I asked him what he thought DAE was. Of course he didn't have an answer for that one! All he could say was sorry but it's RCI's policy

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Old October 14, 2009, 10:20 AM   #10
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Well I just called and cancelled my search and then went online and did an ongoing search using the website. Saved me $31 but took me all morning; waiting for the next window to come up, not being able to figure out how to get to the window for that (had to watch the video because it doesn't offer the ongoing search until you pick a location if your search doesn't work). Then I made the mistake of using the back arrow during my search and nothing would work. Had to call on the phone for web support.

I need a vacation!
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Old October 14, 2009, 11:24 AM   #11
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Cindy...for what it's worth, I just sent an email of complaint to RCI regarding their CDA/US exchange policy. If I get a response, I'll post it.
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Old October 15, 2009, 01:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironwood View Post
Cindy...for what it's worth, I just sent an email of complaint to RCI regarding their CDA/US exchange policy. If I get a response, I'll post it.
Good luck but I doubt it will change. There is no difference between RCI charging more in Canada and the greeting card companies like Hallmark, etc. having a US price and a higher Canadian price or the many magazines that do the same thing, or cars, or just about everything.
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Old October 15, 2009, 01:50 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by BevL View Post
Sorry, my bad for the wrong info.

Here's what's charged from the RCI website.

How much are the RCI Weeks transaction fees?
Exchange Fees - Transactions made on RCI.com:
Where do we find the weeks exchange fees on the RCI website??
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Old October 15, 2009, 04:28 PM   #14
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Where do we find the weeks exchange fees on the RCI website??
If you go into the Help tab on the home page, it's in the FAQ
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Old October 15, 2009, 06:23 PM   #15
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[QUOTE=John Cummings;805250]Good luck but I doubt it will change./QUOTE]

John....I hold no illusions that things will change, but RCI needs to hear loud and clear that their exchange policy is out of touch with the times...and don't get me started on the imbalance in pricing on consumer items between Canada and the US despite currency nearly at par. For instance, did you know that a Honda Civic made about 40 minutes drive from here, has a delivery charge of $1,400 at a local dealership, and that same car, made in Ontario has a delivery charge in California of some $600..go figure! Cars cost 15-30% more here depending on make.
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Old October 15, 2009, 06:47 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Ironwood View Post
John....I hold no illusions that things will change, but RCI needs to hear loud and clear that their exchange policy is out of touch with the times...and don't get me started on the imbalance in pricing on consumer items between Canada and the US despite currency nearly at par. For instance, did you know that a Honda Civic made about 40 minutes drive from here, has a delivery charge of $1,400 at a local dealership, and that same car, made in Ontario has a delivery charge in California of some $600..go figure! Cars cost 15-30% more here depending on make.
I say go for it. It is not right for RCI to charge more. I am well aware pf the differences in prices. All of my family lives in Canada and my wife and I have recently visited Calgary, Vancouver, Victoria, and Toronto. I bought a new Honda Ridgeline last December that was assembled in Canada and would have cost 50% more out the door in Canada.

I read in the news this morning that the Canadian government is worried about Canadians flocking south to buy stuff in the US like they did last time the Canadian dollar was high. They are especially worried because the Christmas shopping season is near. My sister, who lives in BC, buys a lot of stuff from the US online.
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Last edited by John Cummings; October 15, 2009 at 06:55 PM.
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Old October 15, 2009, 07:14 PM   #17
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We were down in "the States," last weekend which was a holiday weekend for us. The outlet mall north of Seattle easily had 50% Canadian vehicles. We're looking at a few larger purchases of items that are cheaper across the line because of the great exchange rate right now. So I think those fears are very well-founded.
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Old October 15, 2009, 09:36 PM   #18
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Ironwood, I sent a complaint to RCI as well. It can't hurt if more people complain.
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Old October 16, 2009, 07:45 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by John Cummings View Post
I say go for it. It is not right for RCI to charge more. I am well aware pf the differences in prices. All of my family lives in Canada and my wife and I have recently visited Calgary, Vancouver, Victoria, and Toronto. I bought a new Honda Ridgeline last December that was assembled in Canada and would have cost 50% more out the door in Canada.

I read in the news this morning that the Canadian government is worried about Canadians flocking south to buy stuff in the US like they did last time the Canadian dollar was high. They are especially worried because the Christmas shopping season is near. My sister, who lives in BC, buys a lot of stuff from the US online.
This exchange has gotten off topic, but to reply to John Cummings, despite the lure of vehicles, even those made in canada, being much cheaper south of the border, in most cases by the time the feds get through with you with customs duties, taxes, and other fees, it comes out almost even and not worth the trouble. Unless you've found something special or some configuration not readily available here. Bottom line is we can't win! Here's a link to a step by step dialogue of how to buy a car in the US.

http://thegarageblog.com/garage/cros...nging-it-home/
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Old October 16, 2009, 11:16 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BevL View Post
We were down in "the States," last weekend which was a holiday weekend for us. The outlet mall north of Seattle easily had 50% Canadian vehicles. We're looking at a few larger purchases of items that are cheaper across the line because of the great exchange rate right now. So I think those fears are very well-founded.
My wife and I lived in Vancouver in 1968-70. We used to do almost all of our shopping in Bellingham and Seattle. The parking lot where we shopped in Bellingham was always full with 90% of the cars from BC. Even in Seattle there was a large number of BC cars. If I remember correctly the US dollar was equal to $1.10 CDN.

Somebody mentioned that the passport requirement this year may reduce the number of cross border shoppers compared to last year. In the blog that accompanied the article, a lot of people said they had applied for passports so they could shop in the US.
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Last edited by John Cummings; October 16, 2009 at 11:23 AM.
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Old October 16, 2009, 11:22 AM   #21
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This exchange has gotten off topic, but to reply to John Cummings, despite the lure of vehicles, even those made in canada, being much cheaper south of the border, in most cases by the time the feds get through with you with customs duties, taxes, and other fees, it comes out almost even and not worth the trouble. Unless you've found something special or some configuration not readily available here. Bottom line is we can't win! Here's a link to a step by step dialogue of how to buy a car in the US.

http://thegarageblog.com/garage/cros...nging-it-home/
The article was referring to shopping across the border for all items, not necessarily vehicles. There is an auto website BBS that has a forum dedicated to Canadians buying vehicles in the US. They discuss all the ways to avoid a lot of the hassles and fees.

By the way, it is very common for the threads to get off topic.
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Old October 16, 2009, 12:09 PM   #22
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John....it sounds like we are of similar vintage! The Cdn $ has been above par with the US$ throughout the '50's, most of the 70's and a couple of times in the past 3 years. We went to Vegas on a trade in the fall of '07 when our dollar peaked at $1.10 US. It's not often that travel stateside is a bargain for us!
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Old October 17, 2009, 10:42 AM   #23
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RCI's response to my complaint and my repost!

Hello,
>
> Thank you for your e-mail.
>
> Fees are charged in the currency which corresponds to the member's
> country of residence. Each market is priced separately, based on the
> cost of goods and services, as well as the costs RCI experiences to do
> business in that market. This is almost never a direct conversion of
> currencies.
>
> Fluctuations in currency valuations such as those which have occurred
> periodically with the U.S. and Canadian dollar have the potential to
> create inequities in pricing for RCI’s Canadian members. RCI’s policy
> is to minimize these inequities through regular review and, if
> appropriate, adjust our fees. In fact, RCI lowered prices for many of
> our services for Canadian members, including transaction and membership
> fees in 2006. They were lowered again on October 1, 2007.
>
> Although RCI reviews fee structures and levels for Canadian members on a
> regular basis to evaluate current economic conditions and determine if
> any adjustments are warranted, this does not mean that pricing will be
> identical to that of the United States. Pricing in Canada will continue
> to be slightly higher than a direct currency conversion would dictate.
>
> Thank you for the opportunity to assist you.
>
> Kind regards,
>
> name removed
> Customer Communications Specialist
> RCI North America

My response to RCI

Thank you for the reply, but the gap between the exchange rate currently used by RCI and spot CDN/US exchange is completely out of sync to the extent that it represents unbridled profitering. RCI needs to adjust it's rate ideally on a weekly basis or at least monthly.
And why shouldn't I be able to pay exchange fees in US dollars. It's just not right, and if you contine to run your business this way, your Canadian members will revolt.

Last edited by TUGBrian; March 10, 2010 at 03:44 PM.
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Old October 17, 2009, 11:41 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironwood View Post
RCI's response to my complaint and my repost!

Hello,
>
> Thank you for your e-mail.
>
> Fees are charged in the currency which corresponds to the member's
> country of residence. Each market is priced separately, based on the
> cost of goods and services, as well as the costs RCI experiences to do
> business in that market. This is almost never a direct conversion of
> currencies.
>
> Fluctuations in currency valuations such as those which have occurred
> periodically with the U.S. and Canadian dollar have the potential to
> create inequities in pricing for RCI’s Canadian members. RCI’s policy
> is to minimize these inequities through regular review and, if
> appropriate, adjust our fees. In fact, RCI lowered prices for many of
> our services for Canadian members, including transaction and membership
> fees in 2006. They were lowered again on October 1, 2007.
>
> Although RCI reviews fee structures and levels for Canadian members on a
> regular basis to evaluate current economic conditions and determine if
> any adjustments are warranted, this does not mean that pricing will be
> identical to that of the United States. Pricing in Canada will continue
> to be slightly higher than a direct currency conversion would dictate.
>
> Thank you for the opportunity to assist you.
>
> Kind regards,
>
> name removed
> Customer Communications Specialist
> RCI North America

My response to RCI

Thank you for the reply, but the gap between the exchange rate currently used by RCI and spot CDN/US exchange is completely out of sync to the extent that it represents unbridled profitering. RCI needs to adjust it's rate ideally on a weekly basis or at least monthly.
And why shouldn't I be able to pay exchange fees in US dollars. It's just not right, and if you contine to run your business this way, your Canadian members will revolt.
I thought RCI made it quite clear that pricing will be higher in Canada because of costs regardless of currency exchange rates. I agree that the best solution would be to allow you to pay in US funds so that the exchange rate is taken out of the equation.

When I booked our train tour in Canada on the Rocky Mountaineer in 2007, they gave me the option of paying for it at the CDN Dollar price or the USD price. Seeing as the price was over $10,000, it made a big difference on which way I chose. It was better to pay the CDN price as it came out cheaper after the exchange rate was applied. In order to protect themselves from up and down fluctuations, they priced the USD price higher than the actual exchange rate dictated.

I would expect that RCI would do much the same if they gave people the option of paying in either currency.
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Last edited by TUGBrian; March 10, 2010 at 03:45 PM.
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Old October 17, 2009, 05:46 PM   #25
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I got a reply to my reply from RCI that the 'exchange differential reflects the extra cost of doing business in Canada' !! What a load of bull....don't tell me RCI's overheads for their Canadian operation cost 25% more than the expense of running their business in the US. There is no Canadian operation....they shut down the Toronto office years ago. Canada is run out of the US.
Just plain gouging!!
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