A vacation club is a membership-driven organization offering travelers the chance to be a part of a network owning a wide array of vacation properties. Vacation clubs come in all shapes and sizes, allowing members to reserve vacations and access preferred properties.
Is a vacation club right for you? Let’s take a closer look.
What a Vacation Club Membership Means
In contrast to timeshares, vacation clubs offer more flexible vacation offerings for members. Members share ownership of accommodations and often certain features and amenities, especially at resorts.
Vacation clubs take a lot of the stress and guesswork out of planning large vacations, especially for families. They’re also appealing to those who take frequent vacations.
Travelers always know their options by joining a vacation club and can reserve times and locations that fit their schedules and individual budgets.
Many vacation clubs also feature the perks of travel cubs, including special discounts on airplane travel and car rentals and deals on visiting popular attractions.
How Vacation and Travel Clubs Work
Members typically join a vacation club by paying an initial membership fee. Cost is then either monthly or yearly, depending on the club, and sometimes includes paying for maintenance.
Clubs provide members with discounts from a group of available destinations and dates of travel. Travel clubs operate in the same way but typically have members travel in groups together and receive group rates.
Vacation clubs provide more flexibility for travelers; they aren’t restricted to requiring payment for a certain block of time at a specific place.
Where, when, and how long you stay is dependent on how much you pay into the club. However, they accommodate travelers who want a quick weekend trip or an extended stay.
After the initial membership fee, vacation clubs typically allow members to purchase “points.” Such points can be redeemed for an array of destinations each year.
The higher the points, the larger and more luxurious the location, but even lower-point resort destinations are in desired locales and at highly regarded hotels and resort areas.
Saving Money and Time
Vacation and travel clubs can help members save money, especially on top-rated hotels and on airfare to typically expensive destinations.
Members can also frequently save money in various other ways. Many clubs include all-inclusive resorts, which means food and drink and certain activities are also included in the price.
Vacation clubs also include great discounts on whatever you’d like to do where you travel, everything from scuba diving and museum visits to tickets to plays and help with restaurant reservations.
Like to shop during your vacation? Members often receive discounts on stores wherever they visit.
There is also often flexibility if your travel plans need to change. Vacation clubs don’t block you into a set vacation time a year, and many are accommodating if you need to cancel a particular trip for a better time due to an unexpected event.
Who Offers Vacation Clubs
Most major hotel and resort chains operate their own vacation clubs. Members of hotel and resort chain vacation clubs are typically limited to staying at properties owned by the chain.
One prominent example is the Royal Holiday Vacation Club, operated by Mexico-based organization Royal Holiday, a subsidiary of Park Royal Hotels and Resorts.
Royal Holiday’s vacation ownership program includes properties and resorts in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, and South America. It includes multi-property club options, as well as membership at such individual properties as Park Royal Cozumel, Park Royal Ixtapa, and Doubletree Grand Hotel Biscayne Bay.
Additionally, condominium and resort chains often run their own off-property network of vacation properties independent of an official organization or hotel group. These facilities can be found in large cities around the world, in resort areas, or through cruise lines.
There are also vacation clubs run by specific attractions, such as amusement park companies, and clubs that cater to specific travelers, such as members of the military and their families.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many vacation clubs have instituted strict safety measures to protect their members. For example, the Royal Holiday Vacation Club and others have created safe guest programs.
The safe guest program ensures the safety of guests from the moment they check in. Social distancing is enforced, and sanitizing gel is available throughout. Rooms are cleaned according to Cristal International Standards, and disinfection products are certified through Ecolab.
Cleaning with Ecolab products is regularly performed for vacation club members. Chairs and tables are cleaned and disinfected after each use, and common areas, such as entertainment spaces and pools, receive the same comprehensive cleaning treatment.
Vacation club members can also feel safe while enjoying fantastic meals. Physical menus and digital tablets on menus are cleaned and disinfected, and every table and seat are cleaned after each service.