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Archive for September, 2009

According to the U.S. Department of Education, vacations can actually make kids smarter.

The study found that children who travel over summer break did better in reading, math and general knowledge than their peers who didn’t vacation. The Dept. of Education conducted a series of analyses to determine the relationship between summer vacations and academic achievement in children entering first grade. The results revealed that children who traveled with their family over summer vacation scored higher on academic achievement assessment tests than those who did not travel.

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Timeshare owners are likely to be cautious about how they spend their holiday money following the recession, according to thetravelmagazine.net.

Tourists are more attuned to finding bargains and are more likely to take shorter breaks to cut back their spending budget, the magazine’s editor Sharron Livingston explained.

Here’s the link to the article from GoTimeshare.org

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Finances bleak for Timeshare Industry

Time-share experts continued to paint a bleak picture of the industry’s financing options last week, as executives gathered for the 11th Annual Vacation Ownership Investment Conference, this year at the Peabody Orlando.

Not much has changed since the capital markets seized last fall, making it difficult for time shares to fund development and sales. The good news is that, after a year, developers have at least adapted to the new conditions, said Jeffrey Galle, director of structured finance at CapitalSource.

Because of a lack of financing, time-share developers deliberately slowed sales this year. Scott Berman, of PricewaterhouseCoopers, said industry sales this year are likely to total something in between $6billion and $8 billion, which is equivalent to sales in 2004.

In a rare note of optimism from the lending panel, Galle hinted that some financing could be on its way. “There’s some larger banks, key banks, that are sniffing around the space,” he said.

Full report here

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Playing the share market

Holiday schemes once viewed with great scepticism are enjoying a resurgence in popularity, writes Jane E. Fraser in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Full link to article here.

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Testing out ‘shared ownership’

Realty and the hospitality players eye leisure real-estate space, which offers customers luxury accommodation without the hassles of ownership.

An article in the Hindu Business Line, dated Sept 13, 2009.

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Despite the current global financial climate, Australia’s holiday ownership industry continues to hold steady with strong occupancy rates according to RCI, the global leader in vacation exchange and one of the Wyndham Worldwide family of companies (NYSE: WYN).

Geoff Ballotti, president and CEO of Group RCI, will deliver the keynote address Monday, September 14 during the 2009 Australian Timeshare and Holiday Ownership Council (ATHOC) conference. Mr. Ballotti will discuss current global trends in holiday ownership and the stability and optimism for the future growth of the timeshare industry.

Link to the full article here on http://www.hotelsmag.com

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The latest edition of “Disney Files,” the magazine for Disney time-share owners, contains an unusual missive from Disney Vacation Club President Jim Lewis: A pitch for political contributions.

In a letter on page 2 of the magazine, Lewis urges Vacation Club members to donate money to the political-action committee of the American Resort Development Association, the time-share industry trade group. Lewis is in the midst of a two-year term as chairman of ARDA.

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