Monday, July 14, 2008

Investment opportunity - Marriott Vacation Club

Yesterday I attended a presentation on Marriott Vacation Club at Ngee Ann City. It was a 90 minutes presentation and at the end of it, I learn that you need to purchase a one time club points and use the points if you intend to go on holidays in future. Below are some of the benefits taken from Mariott Vacation Club official website.

Exchange your points through Marriott Vacation Club International
Go ahead. Explore. With Marriott, you can exchange your point(s) for a stay at one of the almost 50 other Marriott Vacation Club or Grand Residence Club resorts worldwide.

Exchange your points through Interval International
We provide Marriott Vacation Club, Asia Pacific Members with their first year of membership to Interval International®, making it possible to tap into a vast network of nearly 2,000 resorts in more than 75 countries.

Exchange your points for Marriott Rewards points
With Marriott Rewards, you can use your points for everything from cruises to airline tickets to car rentals.

A Lifetime of Extraordinary Holidays
Experience the peace of mind that comes from owning beautiful, spacious resort holidays every year for the rest of your life. Don't just settle for another trip to just another hotel. Instead, treat yourself to the spaciousness of a villa, and take the holiday you and your loved ones have always dreamed of, this and every year.

Now a question you may ask is how much does a club point cost? As to what the sales promoter mentioned, currently a point costs USD$1.05. Now here lays an investment opportunity which I see may be worth considering. When the club was launched in 2006, a point was priced at USD$0.75.

In other words, the price of its club point has appreciated about 12% per annum. The good things about this membership are that it is also considered as an estate and you are able to transfer or sell the club points to someone else. The transfer fee costs $250 but I am not sure if it is in USD or SGD.

Apart from buying a one time amount of club points (replenished every year), you need to pay an Annual Maintenance Fees (AMF) of USD$0.025 per point. At the current price, the expense ratio of this “investment” works out to be 2.38% per annum. Take note that the minimum number of club points you can purchase is 14,000.

Let us now see it this way. If you really like to travel and looking for an investment opportunity on luxury hotels and resorts around the world, I would say the membership is something to consider. Just imagine each year you get to stay at some of the luxury hotels or resorts around the world, and then you can decide to sell off those points in future if the price of each club point has appreciated. In other words, the free or discounted stays in their hotels or resorts are the dividend payouts of your "investment".

In overall, I would say the presentation was an eye opener to know more about the club. Most importantly there was no hard selling tactics involved and in the end I walked away with a travel voucher which was the main reason that I attended for. Of course I don’t intend to sign up as I am not a frequent traveller.

Please exercise due diligence before considering this membership as a form of investment. Below is the detail of payment for the package that is offered to me if I were to sign up.

14,000 Club Points
Total Cost = S$20,035 (100% payment)
AMF = S$170.14
Deposit = 10% of Total Cost + AMF = S$2,004 + S$170.14 = S$2,174.14
Pay deposit with Citibank credit card of S$181.18 for 12 months
Take a 5 years loan for 90% of Total Cost = S$350 per month
Receive a first day benefit of 60,000 Marriot Reward Points or cash back of $1,803

7 comments:

ss. said...

Hi, Mike

I've purchased a 3days-4nights hotel package for Marriott Orchard and have been told to attend the presentation too.

I'm going to stay there on October 2008 and would like you to describe a little bit more about what this 90 mins. presentation will be like? (ex. how many ppl attend at a time.. will there be any interactive activity going on.. did they force you to sign any paper or purchase something?)

I'm a bit worried about this presentation because I've heard some bad comments about this kind of offer.(like they won't let you go to the toilet, drink some water or even get out of the room if you don't sign somecontract, -- but I believe this is the story of another club that is not in Singapore) At first my sale represent already told me that I don't need to buy any package but I still doubt it. Please help me clear this things up.

Thanks!
ss.

Mike Dirnt said...

Hi SS,

i have already described on your queries.

1) no hard selling (99% guaranteed, 1% probably if you are unlucky to meet a blacksheep)
2) its really an eye opener to know more about the club
3) its more of a private presentation (1 representative for each person or couple)
4) no activities, just listen
5) some refreshments provided

dont worry too much. marriott is a reputable company and im sure they dont resort to those bad tactics that you think of.

have a nice stay!

SS. said...

I can relax now, thanks so much for your help Mike! :)

Mike Dirnt said...

no problem.

pls feedback after the presentation. tell me how much does a point costs to you now.

ss. said...

Sure, I'll make sure to give a feedback but my schedule is on October so you might have to wait for a while...

Lam said...

Mike,

I have attend the presentation & the proposed price is USD 1.25 per point, minimum purchase is 12,000, & AMF is 0.027 per point, or USD 350 (12,000 x 0.027) per annum.

I tried to work out the AMF S$ 170.14 based on 14000 points at the rate of 0.025 per point. Could you elaborate the formula? THanks

Mike Dirnt said...

Lam,

its great to hear. at the point of writing this post, a point costed $1.05 and now it has appreciated by 19% to $1.25.

i think you are right. i cant recall how i got the number S$170.14. its probably a mistake in my calculation. did the presenter show you the calculation for AMF?