Finweek English Edition - - INSIGHT: LOCAL -

Talk­ing to con­sumers, you f ind that some are very happy with the va­ca­tions they bought, while oth­ers are re­ally un­happy. One of the re­ally un­happy con­sumers is Chris­tine Botha. She had time­share, and the com­pany then con­vinced her that it is bet­ter to use points. “I def­i­nitely did not get value for money when I con­verted my time­share into points. You never get the place you want be­cause it is al­ways fully booked.

The points you have to use for a week ’s hol­i­day is ridicu­lous, such as us­ing 16 000 points, equal to R16 000, for a week’s hol­i­day in a place sim­i­lar to a three star. And on the f irst day of my hol­i­day I get a call from the mar­ket­ing agent to find out if I want to up­grade my points!” an an­gry Botha says.

She says she sel­dom gets the place she wants even if she calls on the day the book­ings open.

In ad­di­tion, she has to pay a levy of R12 600 a year, which she also f inds ridicu­lous be­cause it would be cheaper for her to go to Mau­ri­tius for a week, plane ticket in­cluded. “They also charge ridicu­lous prices for places in sea­son, which forces you to use third-rate places or go on hol­i­day out of sea­son. I have tried to sell my points, but no­body wants to buy them and I am sit­ting with an in­vest­ment of R100 000 with no value. I can­not even give it to my chil­dren, be­cause they can­not af­ford the levy. If I sim­ply can­cel my mem­ber­ship, I have to do it be­fore May and then I lose all my

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