Press Releases

The American Resort Development Association Provides “Time for Togetherness” Tips and Techniques

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2014 – Honoring the long tradition of connecting far-flung families during the summer months, the American Resort Development Association (ARDA) offers “how-to” travel options to help make family reunions fun, affordable and stress-free. “Take Time for Togetherness” is an ARDA initiative that provides suggested reunion activities, location ideas and success tips.

Family reunions continue to grow in importance and according to a June 2014 AAA survey, many travelers will use the summer vacation months to bond with extended family members—with more than one-third (36 percent) planning to take a multi-generational trip in the next 12 months. But traveling with large groups of all different ages can be a challenge, as everyone has different interests and ideas of what they like to do on vacation.

“Family reunions have become more than a picnic in the park—people want to spend quality time with their extended families,” said Howard Nusbaum, ARDA president and CEO. “From spacious accommodations to activities for everyone, many travelers are turning to timeshare products as great vacation options for family reunions. Timeshare continues to provide an experience for large families to be together, while still having some personal space.”

For family reunion planning tips, see our “Take Time for Togetherness” Guide (PDF) which provides travelers with event planning tips—including managing invitations, selecting a location, ice-breaker games, decorations and ways to stay in touch all year long. The helpful hints are available on ARDA’s consumer website, www.vacationbetter.org.

Everyone deserves not just a vacation but a better vacation—especially when it’s a family reunion.

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The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries. Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate. The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

Industry Study Shows Significant Growth 

WASHINGTON – June 25, 2014 –The U.S. timeshare industry enjoyed significant growth in 2013, according to the State of the Vacation Timeshare Industry: United States Study 2014 Edition conducted by Ernst & Young. Compared to 2012, sales volume increased nearly 11 percent, average sales price rose nine percent, and there are 29 percent more resorts planned for the upcoming year.

“With 8.5 million intervals owned and a substantial increase in our key metrics, it’s clear that timeshare growth is back,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of the American Resort Development Association (ARDA). “The results of this study are further proof that the incremental growth that we have been witnessing over the last 18 months is sustainable.”

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There were 1,540 timeshare resorts in the United States in 2013, representing about 192,420 units for an average resort size of 125 units. The sales volume rose from $6.9 billion in 2012 to $7.6 billion in 2013, an 11 percent increase. The average sales price increased/climbed nine percent to $20,460. Occupancy remained steady at around 76 percent, compared to a 621 percent hotel occupancy rate.

Other interesting findings from the study include: beach resorts are the most common type of resort, with urban resorts claiming the highest occupancy. Island resorts have the highest average sales price and Florida has the most resorts (23% of the national total) and highest total sales volume ($2.3 billion). Nevada has the largest average resort size (283 units on average), and Hawaii has the highest average sales price ($27,712) and occupancy rate (85.2%).

The report was conducted by Ernst & Young and commissioned by the American Resort Development Association (ARDA) International Foundation. For more details, see ARDA’s State of the Industry infographic and for a copy of the full State of the Industry Study, visit www.arda.org/foundation.

[1] STR Monthly Hotel Review: December 2013, Smith Travel Research.

 


The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries. Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate. The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

Survey Shows 90 Percent of Respondents Think So!

WASHINGTON – April 24, 2014 – A recent survey by research group Leger of 1,000 vacationers indicates an impressive 90 percent of respondents who had a kitchen on their last vacation said it improved their vacation experience.

“Having a kitchen may be the hidden secret of a great vacation,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of the American Resort Development Association (ARDA). “Timeshare owners have known this for some time. Whether you prefer to eat together as a family or savor small meals throughout the day, in-unit kitchens take away the frustration of coordinating meal time and preference for everyone in your group.”

Kitchens are a welcome option for families traveling with children, those who enjoy cooking, and anyone that wants to save some money. While dining out is a treat many vacationers look forward to, being able to grab a snack or have a breakfast or lunch at your convenience throughout your stay cuts down on costs and allows more time for other activities. It also allows for separate meal times for kids and adults, so adults can enjoy “grown up” meals and conversation.

Survey respondents shared their tips for making the most of the kitchen on your vacation. They recommend bringing go-to recipes to enjoy as well as finding new recipes. Preparing before vacation reduces stress and lets everyone have a great time.

For more, see the full infographic on why kitchens are the key to a happier vacation. For more tips and to learn why timeshare vacations (with kitchens!) make for better vacations, visit www.VacationBetter.org.

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The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries. Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate. The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

 

WASHINGTON – May 24, 2013 – Contrary to popular belief, Americans do know how to unplug, unwind, and rejuvenate on vacation.  A recent survey of 1,000 vacationers, conducted by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG) for the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), indicates an impressive 75 percent of respondents not doing any work on their vacations.

“Our industry has long advocated for taking a true vacation—not just working from a nicer place,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  “Today’s leading health studies reinforce our message—that there are so many physical and mental health benefits that come with really ‘unplugging.’ And we’re happy to see so many people doing so.”

Only 12 percent of respondents admitted working one or two days while on vacation, and 13 percent said they did some work over three days.  But a full 87 percent said they would prefer to vacation without having to do any work.

Vacationers are bringing their technology on leisure travel; however, in most cases, it is for pleasure and not work.  Fifty-one percent brought their laptop, but only 17 percent of them used it for work.  Thirty-nine percent brought their iPad or tablet device, with only nine percent using either device for work.

For more information on why timeshare may be a better vacation for you, visit www.VacationBetter.org.

WASHINGTON – February 20, 2013 – Timeshare exchange programs are an important benefit for timeshare owners, giving them the ability to travel anywhere with the same level of quality and accommodation style as their home resort.  According to the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), the flexibility of vacation products is among the top reasons owners say that timeshare is a better way to vacation—and exchange programs provide owners the opportunity to experience new vacations by giving them the ability to trade or exchange.

“While some timeshare owners enjoy the consistency of their home resort, others want the variety to explore different vacation destinations,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  According to ARDA International Foundation’s 2012 Shared Vacation Ownership Owners Report, 38 percent of traditional timeshare (week or points) owners either “banked” (saved the time for future use) or exchanged their timeshare in the past 12 months.

Exchange programs enable owners to trade their timeshare for comparable accommodations at other resorts worldwide.  Most resorts are affiliated with an exchange company, and many resort companies also offer an internal exchange program within their resort group. The major exchange companies, Interval International and RCI, streamline the process—making it an easy online or telephone interaction.

Some owners use their exchange vacation to celebrate a special occasion and others use it to explore new destinations. Bill Mueller of Michigan met his wife Gina during exchanges over a four-week period at several Interval member resorts in South Florida.  The Muellers went on to celebrate their one-year wedding anniversary with an Interval exchange to Las Vegas, and hope to vacation together in Europe.

Two couples traded in their U.S.-based home resort stays for back-to-back Interval exchanges in Sydney, Australia and Wanaka, New Zealand.  “It was a great trip with wonderful, lifelong friends,” said Roger Masten of Dublin, Ohio, who traveled with his wife Barbara.

RCI members often post their exchange stories on RCI’s blog. The stories range from a member who sent her parents to the Grand Canyon for the first time to celebrate their 50th anniversary, to a family that stayed at a RCI Gold Crown resort on the western side of Baha in Los Cabos, Mexico.

According to RCI, popular trading destinations include Orlando, Las Vegas, the Mayan Riviera in Mexico, Malaga, Spain,  San Diego, Oahu, Puerto Vallarta, and New York City.  RCI facilitates approximately 1.9 million vacation exchanges each year.

“There’s a perception in the market that timeshare is limiting, but this is completely false,” continues Nusbaum.  “Through exchange, owners have the world at their fingertips.”  He recommends that owners develop a list of ideal vacation destinations, be flexible with their travel dates, and understand their product type and exchange program in order to get the most from their trading power.

Search for your next vacation online by visiting IntervalWorld.com or RCI.com.

A Look at the Effects of Timeshare Vacations on Lifestyle, Family, and Finances

August 26, 2013

WASHINGTON – August 26, 2013 – The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) today announces the “Timeshare Effect” initiative—a look at how timeshare vacations have a positive effect on lifestyle, family memories, and finances. Inspired by the “Travel Effect,” a campaign by the U.S. Travel Association, the Timeshare Effect was developed to highlight the link between timeshare vacations and their effect on owners.

“We hear from our owners every day about how their lives have changed because of their timeshare ownership,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  “We wanted to capture this anecdotal sentiment with hard facts for other would-be timeshare owners.”

The Timeshare Effect covers three areas: finances, lifestyle, and family.  On the financial side, it’s clear that owning a timeshare enables families to take annual vacations for much less than what they would pay for a traditional hotel.  For example, a traditional hotel stay for a family of four for one week with roughly three meals out each day will cost an average of $3,000.  After 20 years of annual vacation, that adds up to $60,000. But if that same family had purchased a timeshare for an average of $20,000, included their average annual maintenance fees (on average $700/year x 20 years = $14,000), the total is $34,000.  This represents over $25,000 in savings over just 20 years of vacationing.

In addition to the financial savings, owning a timeshare has significant effects on lifestyle.  Since timeshare owners have essentially pre-paid for their annual vacation, they are much more likely to take that vacation, which leads to many health and wellness benefits.  Owners enjoy beautiful resorts in great locations that offer flexibility and space for everyone.

And there is nothing better than a regular vacation to create lifelong family memories.  Three out of four adults over 55 say they still have vivid memories of their childhood vacations, and 55 percent of adults want to create similar memories for their kids.  A whopping 93 percent of kids say that vacations mean a chance to spend quality time with their parents.

See the Timeshare Effect infographic for more, and for information on why timeshare may be a better vacation for you, visit www.VacationBetter.org.

 

* All statistics from U.S. Travel’s Travel Effect.

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The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries.  Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate.  The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

As Summer Vacation Season Kicks Off, ARDA Finds People Are Not Taking Work With Them

May 24, 2013

WASHINGTON – May 24, 2013 – Contrary to popular belief, Americans do know how to unplug, unwind, and rejuvenate on vacation.  A recent survey of 1,000 vacationers, conducted by The Research Intelligence Group (TRiG) for the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), indicates an impressive 75 percent of respondents not doing any work on their vacations.

“Our industry has long advocated for taking a true vacation—not just working from a nicer place,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  “Today’s leading health studies reinforce our message—that there are so many physical and mental health benefits that come with really ‘unplugging.’ And we’re happy to see so many people doing so.”

Only 12 percent of respondents admitted working one or two days while on vacation, and 13 percent said they did some work over three days.  But a full 87 percent said they would prefer to vacation without having to do any work.

Vacationers are bringing their technology on leisure travel; however, in most cases, it is for pleasure and not work.  Fifty-one percent brought their laptop, but only 17 percent of them used it for work.  Thirty-nine percent brought their iPad or tablet device, with only nine percent using either device for work.

For more information on why timeshare may be a better vacation for you, visit www.VacationBetter.org.

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The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries.  Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate.  The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

Owners Say Top Benefit of Timeshare Ownership is Vacation Flexibility

February 20, 2013

WASHINGTON – February 20, 2013 – Timeshare exchange programs are an important benefit for timeshare owners, giving them the ability to travel anywhere with the same level of quality and accommodation style as their home resort.  According to the American Resort Development Association (ARDA), the flexibility of vacation products is among the top reasons owners say that timeshare is a better way to vacation—and exchange programs provide owners the opportunity to experience new vacations by giving them the ability to trade or exchange.

“While some timeshare owners enjoy the consistency of their home resort, others want the variety to explore different vacation destinations,” said Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  According to ARDA International Foundation’s 2012 Shared Vacation Ownership Owners Report, 38 percent of traditional timeshare (week or points) owners either “banked” (saved the time for future use) or exchanged their timeshare in the past 12 months.

Exchange programs enable owners to trade their timeshare for comparable accommodations at other resorts worldwide.  Most resorts are affiliated with an exchange company, and many resort companies also offer an internal exchange program within their resort group. The major exchange companies, Interval International and RCI, streamline the process—making it an easy online or telephone interaction.

Some owners use their exchange vacation to celebrate a special occasion and others use it to explore new destinations. Bill Mueller of Michigan met his wife Gina during exchanges over a four-week period at several Interval member resorts in South Florida.  The Muellers went on to celebrate their one-year wedding anniversary with an Interval exchange to Las Vegas, and hope to vacation together in Europe.

Two couples traded in their U.S.-based home resort stays for back-to-back Interval exchanges in Sydney, Australia and Wanaka, New Zealand.  “It was a great trip with wonderful, lifelong friends,” said Roger Masten of Dublin, Ohio, who traveled with his wife Barbara.

RCI members often post their exchange stories on RCI’s blog. The stories range from a member who sent her parents to the Grand Canyon for the first time to celebrate their 50th anniversary, to a family that stayed at a RCI Gold Crown resort on the western side of Baha in Los Cabos, Mexico.

According to RCI, popular trading destinations include Orlando, Las Vegas, the Mayan Riviera in Mexico, Malaga, Spain,  San Diego, Oahu, Puerto Vallarta, and New York City.  RCI facilitates approximately 1.9 million vacation exchanges each year.

“There’s a perception in the market that timeshare is limiting, but this is completely false,” continues Nusbaum.  “Through exchange, owners have the world at their fingertips.”  He recommends that owners develop a list of ideal vacation destinations, be flexible with their travel dates, and understand their product type and exchange program in order to get the most from their trading power.

Search for your next vacation online by visiting IntervalWorld.com or RCI.com.

____________________________________________________________________

The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries.  Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate.  The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.

Giving Spirit of Holidays Captured with Guest Services and Community Outreach

December 11, 2012

WASHINGTON – December 11, 2012 – With the holiday season in full swing, timeshare resorts and owners across the country are celebrating in style—and giving back to their communities.  The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) commends its members for the service and spirit they provide all year, but especially during this time of giving.

“There are so many special ways that families like to celebrate the holidays and very often that involves vacationing,” says Howard Nusbaum, president and CEO of ARDA.  “It’s great to hear what our member resorts are doing to accommodate these guests and to also share with their communities.”

Holiday Inn Club Vacations
provides one special example. This past Thanksgiving, they treated a family of longtime owners to a special day. Chef Josh Moynihan spent part of his holiday creating a wonderful family memory for the Ripple family. Chef Moynihan spent the morning in the Ripples’ villa cooking up a delicious Thanksgiving meal, complete with two 12-pound turkeys and all the trimmings. The recipes Josh prepared have been in the Ripple family for generations. In fact, Josh and Mrs. Ripple even made a squash casserole together using a recipe that’s been in her family since 1902.

“I really wanted to make this a special experience for them,” Josh said. “Even though they weren’t at home, I wanted them to experience the feel of the holiday and to be able to enjoy the smell of the turkey, gravy, and all the other great food cooking in the oven. It was also important that they could enjoy each other’s company and not have to worry so much about the work.

The Ripples visit several times a year and come back every other Thanksgiving. Perhaps this will be the start of a new tradition for the Ripples, and for others who visit them over the holidays.

Wyndham Vacation Ownership
(WVO) is thankful to be a part of many of its owners’ holiday celebrations. Last year, Sharon and Tom Grupe used their ownership to bring four generations of their family together for Thanksgiving…all 38 of them! Family members from across the country flew in to Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort in Orlando, Florida for the big event.

“It’s such a gift to have the family come together,” said Sharon. “We spend most of our time at the resort, but each family comes and goes as they like, visiting the parks. I just make sure there’s always dinner ready in our suite in case they want to join us.”  Their Thanksgiving feast had the whole family pitching in, and members of the Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort staff helped secure space for the large family to eat Thanksgiving dinner together. “They were so wonderful; I feel like they’re part of the family,” Sharon said.

Owners at Christie Lodge, located in Avon, Colorado at the base of Beaver Creek resort, also share their holidays with the staff and employees during their annual vacation.  Dr. Jirina Fishman travels to Christie Lodge twice each year from Valley Stream, New York.  At Christmas time, she hosts a family-style meal and party for her guests and staff at Christie Lodge who work to make her stay so memorable.  “She’s been an owner for nearly 30 years, and her stay is always a time we look forward to each year,” said Lisa Siegert-Free, managing director and general manager at the lodge.  The Christie Lodge staff also lends a hand to help set up her dinner party and gathers together extra tables and chairs for her special night.

But ARDA members also take time not only to care for their guests, but also to give back to their local communities.  Christie Lodge has Salvation Army Drop boxes throughout the resort for owners and employees to donate everything from clothing and furniture to packaged food items leftover from their timeshare stay.  The Salvation Army ensures that the items go to those less fortunate throughout Vail Valley and the local surrounding communities.

Interval International
, in partnership with the City of South Miami, sponsors annual holiday events to benefit disadvantaged families in the community where Interval was founded more than 35 years ago.

Each year in November, Miami-based employees raise money to fill Thanksgiving gift baskets with non-perishable food items that are distributed to deserving families. Through the years, hundreds of residents have been helped by Interval employees’ generosity to their neighbors. One of the more meaningful attributes of the outreach is the opportunity for employees to deliver the baskets and meet the families who will enjoy the meals.

In December, Interval’s Annual Holiday Toy Fest benefits deserving children who can visit with Santa Claus and select a holiday gift. Employees will support this year’s 19th annual event by donating gifts and volunteering their time as they do for other community-service initiatives the company hosts throughout the year. During the holiday event, children can also participate in face painting and arts and crafts activities, and enjoy holiday treats.

For more information on timeshare vacations, visit VacationBetter.org.


The American Resort Development Association (ARDA) is the Washington D.C.-based professional association representing the vacation ownership and resort development industries.  Established in 1969, ARDA today has almost 1,000 members ranging from privately held firms to publicly traded companies and international corporations with expertise in shared ownership interests in leisure real estate.  The membership also includes timeshare owner associations (HOAs), resort management companies, and owners through the ARDA Resort Owners Coalition (ARDA-ROC). For more information, visit www.arda.org or ARDA’s consumer website at www.VacationBetter.org.