I’m with and around my children almost every day but I’ll be honest and say that I don’t feel like I have been spending enough QUALITY time with them. If I’m not rushing them out of the house for school in the morning, I’m nagging about homework or settling down for bedtime. It’s not often that they see their mommy relaxed or not stressing about her endless to-do list. It’s tiring to be that mom, but that’s the reality that comes with the everyday responsibilities right?!
We haven’t been able to get away for family breaks as much as I would have liked us to – for a number of reasons, everything from our long-distance family set up, to our work calendar clashes and of course affordability. The first two can be sorted out more easily than the latter – because the truth is that holidaying becomes more and more expensive each year.
That is the reality for most families and one of the reasons why timeshare has been such a valuable option for many families, for many years. Prior to engaging with the Vacation Ownership Association of Southern Africa (VOASA), I didn’t fully realise all the benefits of having timeshare and that’s why I wanted to come back and share them with you.
What is timeshare and how does it work?
Timeshare is basically a property that has divided ownership or use of rights. Owners make a one-time purchase of furnished resort accommodations at a fraction of whole ownership costs and pay an annual maintenance fee. The accommodations are priced according to a variety of factors, including size of the unit, resort amenities, location and season of use.
There are a wide range of timeshare products available are designed to suit many different lifestyles; this was an important factor for me, because we all come from different backgrounds, so a one-size-fits-all approach to how we select our vacations wouldn’t work. Read about them here
And who is VOASA?
They are an industry body that provides consumers like you and I, with assistance when purchasing timeshare to safeguard us against fraudulent business practice. As we know, there are many fly-by-night companies all over the place that could see you losing money and seeing nothing for it. That’s one of the most important principles I’ve learnt about timeshare over the last few weeks and the one I urge you to remember clearly – do your research and ensure that the timeshare organisation is a member of VOASA.
VOASA also serves to ensure that high standards of ethics are upheld by its members, who include reputable companies that have been in the industry since the early 1970’s.
A few weeks ago, my family and I were invited to experience the facilities at a VOASA member resort, called Dikhololo, which is situated in Brits. To say the children were overjoyed would be an understatement. They lost their minds!!!
After all the nagging and travelling on a dusty road, we arrived to a beautiful and tranquil setting, where we were welcomed by the friendliest ladies. Our check-in was smooth and we were given a list of all the facilities and activities available on the resort. We decided to check into our room first, before proceeding to relax on the pool deck and have drinks.
We spent the rest of the weekend relaxing, eating and exploring – most importantly, mommy didn’t have to rush anyone and we finally got to spend that quality family time together.
Our highlights were definitely being greeted by the gorgeous buck in the morning, the heated pool, kids gaming area, the 360-degree viewing decks and our afternoon walks along the dam.
There is so much to do at Dikololo, that we could have spent a week there without getting bored. To name a few things:
Super tubes and both cold/heated pools
- Game drives
- Bird Watching
- Games Room: Kids
- Jumping Pillow
- Jungle Gym
- Lapa / Boma
- Multicourt: Cricket/Soccer/Basket Ball
- Pool Table
- Putt n Play
- Squash and Tennis Courts
So let’s get into the benefits of timeshare?
During our stay at Dikololo, I did an Instagram poll asking parents if they would ever consider buying timeshare and this was the feedback:
There was a clear majority, with 74% of the participants indicating that they would definitely consider buying timeshare for their families. I didn’t expect that there would be so much interest – but when I really think about it, who wouldn’t want to explore and show their children our beautiful country, in an affordable way?!
Allow me to share with you all the benefits of timeshare.
Why is timeshare beneficial for young families?
Guaranteed vacation time
- By purchasing a shared ownership product you can secure a future holiday lifestyle at today’s prices and for the period you need. This is a huge benefit, when we take the current performance of the rand into consideration.
- With vacation ownership, future vacations are already pre-paid, so you are more likely to plan ahead and use your well-deserved time off. As a working parent, you will know when to book your annual leave and you will take that much-deserved break when the time comes.
- Firstly, the option of buying a holiday home is neither an affordable or viable option for the average South African family, however, the access to a variety of holiday destinations becomes easier and affordable with timeshare. Hotels costs add up quickly and increase each year, making shared ownership a more affordable option.
- A variety of feasible vacation ownership options and price points are available to fit almost any budget
- Since you would have already paid for the accommodation, you will not have a big bill to pay at the end of your stay. Vacation ownership allows you to travel without the stress of needing cash to pay for accommodation on the spur of the moment.
Flexibility, variety and exchange
- It offers a home-away-from-home holiday accommodation with full kitchen facilities, which mean even more savings with the cook and eat option. We were able to bring our own food, including the children’s much-loved porridge (that they eagerly expect around 7am). We were then able to spoil ourselves to dinners at the restaurant.
- You and your family are never locked into one destination. Of course, you will have some family favourites over the years, but as your children grow and family needs change, you will appreciate having lots of variety when it comes to accommodation. You don’t have to go back to the same place at the same time year after year, instead you can holiday whenever and wherever you want – and more regularly. There’s lots of choice in where and when to travel locally or abroad, the duration of your vacation and the size of your accommodation.
- There is a variety of exchange options should you choose to holiday at an alternate to your home resort, you can get further rental holidays as well as international exchange options.
- Vacation ownership accommodations have fully equipped sizeable living areas, kitchens, private bedrooms and balconies.
- Vacation ownership offers all comforts of a home in a variety of different settings.
High quality service and credible members
- Vacation ownership resorts are professionally managed and maintained, so you know you can expect consistent high quality standards of hospitality and service.
- There are over 100 resorts to choose from in South Africa and thousands worldwide if you work through an exchange company such as RCI.
- Global brands such as Marriot, Hyatt, Hilton, Sheraton, Disney and Wyndham and in South Africa Tsogo Sun, Sun International and Legacy Hotels and resorts are among the brands that actively engage in growing this industry beyond its current owners of 750 000 owners.
There is no gambling with your accommodation
- Exploring new destinations can be a gamble if the accommodation does not live up to its promises. But with the consistent quality of shared vacation ownership, your home-like accommodations with full facilities is a sure bet allowing plenty of space for togetherness and room for privacy. We stayed in a 6-sleeper, as my mom and sister came with us and we felt comfortable with the space.
- The vacation ownership generates employment to about 27 000 people especially in South Africa. It also contributes billions of rand to the GDP, according to a Grant Thornton survey undertaken by the VOASA.
What you need to pay special attention to:
The credibility of the timeshare/organisation
I mentioned earlier that there are a lot of fraudsters out there. This is the exact reason why the VOASA recommends that one strictly does business with its registered members; these can be viewed on their website. When you do this, you will have the peace of mind that the vacation club you choose is credible and verified. VOASA has put together some guidelines, with the view of empowering the consumer with the knowledge needed to ensure a peace of mind purchase. To view the full list of purchasing guidelines, please visit this page
Regardless of how many exciting things I’m doing in my life, the most precious time is that spent with my family. This experience has really given me so much peace of mind around timeshare and I feel so much more empowered. I started this blog, because I’ve always wanted to share and engage all my readers as well and I hope you found this piece useful.
*Disclaimer* this post was powered by VOASA however, all research and opinions expressed are my own. Remember to do your own research and take the time to ask lots of questions. I hope the guidelines and benefits outlined will be of assistance to you. Visit VOASA to get more information.
Are you ready for the most amazing giveaway?! This has to be my biggest and most luxurious giveaway ever **drum roll**…
I will be giving away a three-night weekend getaway in a 2-bedroom self-catering unit at a choice of 30 country-wide properties within the First Group portfolio of resorts, hotels and chalets.
PS: T’s and C’s for both the venue and my blog apply! The prize is redeemable in off-peak season only. You can view the available accommodation at First Resorts
HOW STUNNING GUYS?! You can never say I don’t love you!
To enter this FAB giveaway, leave me a comment telling me about YOUR timeshare experience.
Do you have timeshare, if so, what do you love about it?
If not, why would you consider investing in timeshare for your family?
This giveaway will close on 31 October 2018
Wishing you all the best!
Modern Zulu Mom