What Does Covid 19 Mean For Timeshare Owners?

I

think it is fair to say that we would all agree that 2020 has been a difficult year with the world facing never seen before challenges.  In the first few months of the year we were busy as usual assisting owners in getting out of their unwanted timeshare weeks when we began to hear news of a virus devastating China.

At this point, I don’t think anyone in the UK had any idea of the effect that this new Corona Virus would have on the world as a whole. We were amazed when China brought into place a lockdown, news footage of deserted streets seemed unreal, like something from a film and something that could never happen here or in our favourite timeshare holiday destinations.

But It Did...

The virus spread to Europe and severe lockdown was introduced in Italy, swiftly followed by Spain with timeshare owner who were abroad at the time at resorts like Club la Costa, Diamond Resorts, Marriott’s, and Anfi  (amongst others), finding themselves confined to their apartments unable to enjoy their resorts and facing a mad scramble to get back home before the world locked down.  There were armed police on the streets, ordering people back inside.

Supermarkets were cleared as people panic bought, bars and restaurants were closed, hotels closed, people asked to work from home and to stay inside to save lives and above all to protect the NHS from becoming overwhelmed.

Flights were grounded and holidays cancelled…

But, What if you own timeshare? Owners don’t rent their accommodation like those who take package holidays- they purchase the product and pay their annual management fees-whether they use the property or not.  We have been contacted by a number of owners who have asked for advice on claiming their cancelled holidays from their travel insurance and whilst flights should be covered for most, many are finding that their policies will not cover them for timeshare maintenance.

This has left owners at the mercy of the resorts who are currently overwhelmed by requests from members desperately wanting to know what their options are.  Most resorts currently have large numbers of their customer services teams on Furlough (or the similar schemes offered in other countries, such as the Spanish ERTE)- They are slow in responding and when they do often don’t have the answers that their timeshare owners want.

Currently the majority of resorts are open, but with 14 days quarantine required for many countries including Spain (including Canary Islands and Balearic Islands), Malta, a number of Greek islands, many owners can, quite simply not afford to take two weeks unpaid leave upon their return from holiday as we all face an uncertain future.

One thing that is certain is that the time for maintenance invoices is fast approaching!

I have spoken to a number of timeshare owners this week who have been interested in finding out if they will still be receiving maintenance bills for their timeshare, despite the fact that most have been unable to use their weeks this year, and have no idea when they will next be able to travel.

We do have the following information so far….

Azure Island Residence Club

If your 2020 fees are up to date you can pay £100 in lieu of fees for 2021 if you do not plan to use your membership next year.  This must be done by 31st of December

Further details can be found by clicking the following link:

https://www.vcmsmalta.com/club-faqs

Diamond Resorts

We are not yet aware of how Diamond Resorts will be handling maintenance fees this year, but will update as soon as this information becomes available.

Details of their Covid 19 response can be found at the following link:

https://www.diamondresorts.com/covid-19-update

Club La Costa

We are not yet aware of how Club la Costa will be handling maintenance fees this year, but will update as soon as this information becomes available.

Details of their Covid 19 response can be found at the following link:

https://www.clcworld.com/travel-information-covid-19-update/

Marriott’s

We are not yet aware of how Marriott’s will be handling maintenance fees this year, but will update as soon as this information becomes available.

Details of their Covid 19 response can be found at the following link:

COVID-19 | Update and Cancellation Policy

We will keep this article up to date and publish more information on how the different timeshare companies plan to handle maintenance fees during this time.  We are happy to offer you any free advice we can during these difficult times.

If you are concerned about what the future holds for you and your timeshare, please feel free to contact us to find out about our no upfront fee cancellation service, we can also run you through a quick claims check to see if you could be one of thousands of owners who are now entitled to claim their money back from their resort on a no win no fee basis.

As always, our customer service team is on hand to answer any questions you have regarding your timeshare ownership.  We can be contacted by calling our freephone number 0800 060 8729 using our live chat facility or by placing an enquiry on our website.

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