The Grand Mayan Riviera Maya – Time Shares…Oops, excuse me, I mean “Fractional Ownerships” – Kamloops Destination Wedding Photographer

We arrived unawares…ugh, The Grand Mayan is a Time Share resort.  When we’d checked in and made it to our room and finally tracked down my brother, Mike and his wife, Molly, he informed us that we were going to a Time Share presentation the following morning.  I’d never been to one before, so I was actually interested to see what the presentation was all about, but Mike already owns a couple TS’s, so he only wanted to go because it would give us 10% off our bill, a $50 US credit and a free breakfast.  Woo hoo.  Bring on the Time Share Presentation!

Ugh, what a nightmare.

The presentation was supposed to be no more than 90 minutes, but it lasted closer to three hours.  In her defense, our “presenter”, Julie, was very pleasant and knew her job very well.  She continuously included each of us in the conversation and made a point of making a lot of eye contact and speaking to us all on an equal level.  However, after she had gone through the entire presentation and all of us had insisted that we weren’t interested in buying a TS, which she insisted was not a TS at all, but a “Fractional Ownership”, it just got worse from there.

After we’d said no, she tried again, this time repeating her explanation of how their system worked and how their prices were based on a Global Distribution System.  The difference was, this time she used hand actions to describe it.  She said, “but our pricing system is based on a Global (she made a circle with her hand as though circling a globe), Distribution (she made a motion as though she were dealing cards out of a deck), System (she spread both of her hands toward us as though she were saying “Ta Dah”).  Yes, Julie. We understood that the first time you said it without the actions.  As she did this and I looked around at the rest of our group, it was all I could do not to burst out laughing.  Molly was obviously biting her cheek and avoiding eye contact so she didn’t laugh. Mike was staring past Julie with his eyes twinkling and slight smurk. And Greg was kicking me under the table and squeezing my leg. It was probably a “you had to be there moment”, but it made us laugh hysterically later!

After her second attempt, in which she offered to consolidate Mike’s other Time Shares and knock the price down from $53,000 USD to $42,ooo USD and he gave her another, resounding “no thanks”, she told us she was just going to get her manager to come over and make sure she did a good job (typical sales tactics). The Manager came over and practically went through the entire spiel again.  Arrrrrgh. Once again, we all said we weren’t interested. Okay, we’ll just bring over our Customer Service guy and he can really make sure Julie did her job thoroughly…

The CS dude was a slimy, slippery, final sale freakazoid who was not interested in listening to the word NO.  It was ridiculous and I was pretty much done with the guy. I was ready to stand up and smack him upside the head, screeching, NO MEANS NO, YOU JERK. Mike, on the other hand, was super diplomatic about it and told Mr. Customer Service that he appreciated the time they’d taken to present the opportunity to all of us, but none of us were interested and it was high time he signed off on our presentation so we could get our 10 % off and other comps and let us go.  He told Mr. Customer Service that he was being disrespectful by not honoring our wishes and the guy STILL wouldn’t let us go.

He even gave Mike the old, “What do I have to do to get you to walk out of here with a Fractional Ownership” speech.  LOL. Mike told him that he could give it to us for free and the guy laughed and said, “How about I give you a $1400 USD flight credit for the next 25 years.” Hmmm…NO THANKS. “Okay,” Mr. CS said. “How does $9000 USD for the entire deal sound?”  WHHHHAAAT? Just like that, he’d dropped $33,000 USD off the price that Julie and the manager had offered. This perked Mike’s interest.  “Let me get this straight,” he asked. “You’re going to give me two rooms in any Grupo Maya resort or anywhere else I choose, at any time of the year I want, and a $1400 USD flight credit each year for the next 25 years for $9000 USD?”

“Yes!”

And just like that, my brother had got a smokin’ deal on pretty much any Five Star Resort in the world, plus flight credits, for 25 years for only $9000 USD.  The rest of us sat there, mouths gaping in wonder at how much they had dropped the price.  My first thought was, “Geez, how many people have they hosed out of $53,000 just because they were naiive enough to pay the price that was offered?”  It made my head spin.  To make his deal sweeter, the deal included bankruptcy protection for the Grupo Mayan Fractional Ownerships so Mike wouldn’t lose his initial investment if the company folded and he kept his other two time shares and didn’t have to cash them in.  How crazy is that?

It was my first, and hopefully, my last experience with Time Share (pardon me, I mean, Fractional Ownership) sales and it made my stomach turn a bit to know how much money they were swindling people out of.  On the other side of it, though, I was ecstatic for my brother because he scored an awesome deal.

That was how we spent the first part of our second day in Mexico and I’ll remember it forever.  Global. Distribution. System. LOL.

Here’s another sneak peak of Mike & Molly’s wedding pics. They are nearly ready for posting and I’ll be throwing them up on the blog soon.

Stay thirsty my friends.

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