The concept of Timeshare as a means of securing years of high quality holidays was invented in the early 1970s. Since then it has grown to the point where over 350,000 families in the UK and over 4 million worldwide now own Timeshares. There are various different kinds of Timeshare but the basic principles are simple.

Developers build high-quality holiday resorts which are open for the whole year. People then buy a period or periods of time from the developer, either on a leasehold or freehold (in perpetuity) basis.

Once you own your Timeshare then you are free to use it in variety of different ways. Many people buy a particular apartment in a particular resort at a particular time of year and use their own timeshare as a holiday home. Other people take advantage of the almost endless options available for exchanging their Timeshare for other timeshare resorts throughout the world. There are over 4000 Timeshare resorts worldwide, in every continent.

The benefit of holidaying by exchanging your Timeshare is that there is an assurance that the accommodation and facilities you will go to will be of a high standard. Alternatively, you can use your Timeshare to give a holiday to friends or family or provide an income through renting it out. In order to maintain your Timeshare to a high standard, all resorts charge an annual fee to look after your property for you. This is variously called a maintenance, management or service charge and the amount varies from resort to resort. It should cover your share of apartment maintenance, grounds upkeep, staffing, insurances and access to leisure facilities amongst other things.

Because you own your Timeshare property it should be considered as an asset and as such it can be sold on at any time. This can help recoup some or all of your initial outlay. However, it is very important to note that Timeshare is not and is not designed to be a financial investment. It is an investment in a very high quality of holiday for as many years as you choose to own it.

What are Fixed and Floating Weeks?

When viewing the availability of timeshare weeks, you will notice that the unit being offered up for sale is generally denoted as either a fixed or floating week. In a fixed week timeshare, the owners will always have the same week each year; for example, week 52 or week 35. Alternatively, with a floating week, your time period is defined by a season and your week is not fixed. You reserve your time period within the appropriate season annually; most resorts have High, Medium, and Low Seasons. Owners of a floating unit at a resort might not vacation in the same physical unit each year. Interval owners may request a specific unit and, if available for that particular week, the resort normally will honour the request.

Hotel Holiday vs Timeshare Self Catering Resort

When you’re traveling with a group of four or more, cramming into a single hotel room or trying to arrange adjoining rooms can be difficult and costly. Most people don’t realise that timeshare units are so much more different than hotels.

Hotel room with a bed and a bathroom
This setup is particularly difficult for families with small children. When the children go to sleep,the parents options are limited, as the whole family is sharing one room.

But, with a timeshare, you typically get a self catering unit.
A typical timeshare offers:

One, two, or three bedrooms
A central living room (usually with a sleeper sofa)
Dining area
A complete kitchen with full-size stove, oven, microwave, and dishwasher, as well as dishes and utensils
Washer and dryer
One, two, and sometimes three full bathrooms

With a timeshare, parents can put the kids to bed in one bedroom and continue to enjoy themselves in the spacious living areas.

Many timeshare resorts offer complimentary children’s activities, such as arts and crafts, pool games, t-shirt making, karaoke, and more, giving parents a chance to spend some quality time together. With swimming pools, water parks, miniature golf courses, bowling, family game shows, and movie nights, just to name a few, activities abound for the entire family.

In addition to the special differences and available activities, a timeshare can open up a host of options that are not available to families staying in a hotel. The full kitchen allows families to eat meals in their unit rather than in restaurants. Many timeshares offer movie rentals on-site and VCRs or DVD players in the units, so families can save money on entertainment as well.

It truly is the best way to go when traveling with groups. You get to spend time together while maintaining your privacy.

Long-term savings over hotels

The basic timeshare concept is simple: you pay a one time purchase fee that entitles you to a week every year (or sometimes every other year) at a resort. Instead of renting your holiday, you now own them. However there are maintenance fees to pay on your timeshare every year which are included in the table below. You will also notice that the example does not include any resale value.


Costs of Renting in a Hotel
Weekly Cost of Hotel Room(based on 2 people) £1,000 (£142 per night)
No of Years Holidaying 30
Total Cost £30,000 (Before inflation)
Costs of Owning a Timeshare
Annual Maintenance Fee £350
No of Years Holidaying 30
Total Cost of Maintenance Fees £10,500 (Before inflation)
Purchase Price £5,000
Total Cost £15,500