Timeshare resorts are usually affiliated with one of the two major exchange companies, Resort Condominiums International (RCI) and Interval International (II), but they aren't your only options for exchanging your timeshare. There's a variety of independent companies that also handle timeshare exchanges and you may find you get more value out of using one of them than using your affiliated exchange company.
So check out some of these independent timeshare exchange companies before you make your next exchange. You could well end up with an extra two weeks vacation out of your one week depending on demand and current bonuses being offered.
Independent Timeshare Exchange Companies
Dial an Exchange (DAE) - Dial An Exchange doesn't have a membership fee so it makes them quite economical to use alongside your RCI or II membership. You simply pay the exchange fee when your exchange request is accepted. You can either deposit your week first for a 3 week credit or search first for an exchange you'd like and then deposit your week.
San Francisco Exchange (SFX) - The SFX timeshare exchange program has two membership options, one free and one paid. As a paid Platinum member, you can a substantial discount on the exchange fees (currently $30 off) and get free guest certificates. You can also search for an exchange before depositing your week and get an 18 month request window. Free members must deposit their vacation week first and have a 12 month request window. For both types of memberships, one you deposit your week, you have up to two years to complete your exchange.
Redweek - Redweek used to be set up strictly as a timeshare rental and sales site. Timeshare owners could list their weeks for rent and anyone looking for a vacation deal could contact the owner and make a deal, even if that person didn't own a timeshare themselves (since they'd be paying cash). Now though, Redweek has increased their options and started a timeshare exchange service as well, based upon a points system (your weeks is converted to points for deposit).
Hawaii Timeshare Exchange (HTSE) - Hawaii Timeshare Exchange is a smaller exchange company that specializes in resorts located in Hawaii. So if you own a Hawaii timeshare and would like to exchange for another Hawaiian resort, you'll most likely want to check out your options with HTSE. While they don't have a free membership option, their exchange fees are lower than average, which helps make up the cost.
In all likelihood there are probably some other even smaller timeshare exchange companies that might suit your needs, but this list should cover all the exchange possibilities you can think of for your next vacation.
Now if you still don't own a timeshare yet, what are you waiting for? If you're looking for the variety offered by timeshare exchanges without the cost and hassle involved in dealing with a separate timeshare exchange company, you will probably find that a timeshare points membership is the best vacation ownership choice for you. You could either buy Worldmark Credits or RCI Points as both offer some of the most attractive options and good flexibility when it comes to vacation destinations.
Emma Martin currently owns timeshares with DVC and Royal Holiday Club and always makes vacationing a top priority.