ORLANDO, FLA. - [July 1, 2002] - A study released last week by the industry trade group ARDA (American Resort Development Association), reveals that 89 percent of timeshare vacation owners plan to stay at their home resort over the next 12 months or exchange their week for one at another resort, regardless of the travel distance involved. The findings support firsthand experiences of major developers such as Marriott Vacation Club who have long found vacation owners to be consistent, determined travelers.
“This research suggests that vacation owners are one important segment of the traveling public just as likely to travel across the country as they are to drive across town for vacation,” said Howard Nusbaum, president of ARDA.
The survey also found that 10 percent of owners who were not considering buying additional weeks prior to September 11, have since considered doing so. With an estimated three million vacation owners in the U.S. alone, that would amount to over 300,000 new purchases.
“These findings quantify a real commitment to vacations,” said Marriott Vacation Club International president Stephen P. Weisz. “We hear this everyday in speaking with our owners and recognize that roughly 40 percent of our business comes from these owners either purchasing directly or referring their friends and family.”
Gladys Schoolkraft, a retired nurse and grandmother of ten from Mt. Laurel, N.J., never hesitated traveling to Florida for her family’s annual vacation. “This is the only time each year I get to see some of the grandkids. I wasn’t about to give it up,” said Schoolkraft, a Marriott Vacation Club owner since 1995 with weeks in Orlando as well as Hilton Head Island, S.C. “Coming here has become a family tradition.”
When 12-year-old granddaughter Krista Shaw expressed fears of flying this year, Schoolkraft had confidently reassured her. Watching her family play poolside at Marriott’s Grande Vista, where Schoolkraft and her late husband purchased years before, Schoolkraft explained “You just have to go on living.”
Marriott Vacation Club International is the recognized leader in vacation ownership worldwide with over 215,000 owners and 6,000 units around the globe.
or additional information on vacation ownership with Marriott, see www.marriottvacationclub.com or call (800) 294-0690.