Time Share Trivia

A Point of View, Travel | | February 3, 2007 at 15:25

When you live in Las Vegas, sooner or later you are going to get that invitation to listen to a sales pitch for timeshares, vacation condos, hotel condominiums etc etc etc. With promises of free plane tickets, free gambling, free dinners for two, who can resist giving up 90 minutes of free time in exchange for such free goodies?

We spent one such morning with the Starpoint Resort Group, carefully corralled at a table complete with colored balloons and a sales rep who drew lots of numbers, arrows, circles and words on a legal notepad. After viewing a video showing beautiful people in beautiful resorts, all blissfullly ecstatic and aglow by the sea or in the snow, we were calmly asked to commit to mortgaging $40,000 to be able to spend a couple of weeks a year being those folks in the film. But when asked to present a brochure or a business card, none was forthcoming. We explained carefully that we couldn’t possibly give them any amount of money without knowing more about WHO they were.

These repeated requests for standard business materials came after original numbers were scratched out with a flourish and replaced with ever-lowering amounts of financial commitment. Their reaction was to gather up and safeguard all the sheets of scribble, numbers and crossouts and lead us to a cubbyhole office for our gifts. The free airline tickets, which would actually cost $50 per person, were not available just that moment, and they certainly wouldn’t want us to wait. They will be mailed to us? The dinner for two at Outback turned out to be $25 Visa card. I haven’t been to Outback in a while, but don’t imagine $25 would go far. The gambling was 100 promotional slot play credits at Casino Royale and Hotel. Haven’t tried yet; we could win a jackpot and really make it all worth our while, or it could be that it’s not worth the paper it’s written on.

p.s. We did go out to lunch with the Visa, so if nothing else, we earned $6.25/hr each, which is better than miimum wage, I think.