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May '16

Travel Tips: WorldMark Waitlists

I actually attended a WorldMark owner re-education session that taught me some useful trips (rather than just being a ruse to sell me more points). This post is really for my friends with WorldMark credits, though it might be of interest to Wyndham credits owners as well.

I’ve used “waitlisting” on the website for years – you get up to 4 e-waitlists. What I didn’t understand/know is that if you CALL (which I hate) you can waitlist up to 8 resorts for any room size at any of those resorts – the e-waitlist limits you to two room sizes per request, even in resorts that have upwards of eight room sizes.

So, once you call, here is something to remember – WorldMark organizes is waitlist into three priority buckets:

  1. 90% of the people in this bucket will get their room request
  2. 50% of the people in this bucket will get their room request
  3. 10% of the people in this bucket will get their room request

So, ask which bucket (I mean Priority List) you are in so you can make travel plans a little further out. LOTS of inventory opens up 30 days out from your requested date as people cancel their reservations before the cancellation deadline. Because of my points level, that’s really convenient because I can book “Fun Time” (credits from your account or $.08 per credit needed) 5 weeks out if I want to pay rather that use points. I’m comped into Platinum Elite level for another year or so, so that’s 6 weeks (up from 5 weeks at the old level), so it’s less important as Platinum Elite doesn’t have housekeeping fees (based on unit size), whereas Diamond Elite has a handful of free housekeeping tokens. Another reason to get to the top level!

Another tip to minimizing housekeeping fees is to string together contiguous nights as different resorts – you’ll only be charge ONE housekeeping fee based on the largest unit of your trip.

Another thing I didn’t know is that “waitlist requests” disappear two weeks before your stay date when all inventory in converted to “Bonus Time” (credits from your account or $0.06 per credit needed). Looking for that last minute stay, most reservations are cancelled between 5:30pm and 8:30pm. Most inventory is put BACK in the system is at 6pm and 10:30am – load the page for the resort you want and hit refresh every five minutes – haven’t tried this yet, but sounds logical.

Additionally, I hear news of resorts coming online in Brazil and Thailand, along with what I’ve been asked WorldMark for years: PORTLAND. Though Wyndham bought Shell Vacations, I haven’t seen their resorts show up in the WorldMark system yet.

If there are folks contemplating WorldMark ownership – happy to share my experiences and knowledge, including purchasing “after-market” credits. Rule of thumb for “after-market” points is that they are 25-50% cheaper than points purchased directly from WorldMark, but come with severe limitations: no access to WorldMark South Pacific (and the upcoming WorldMark South America) or TravelShare (which opens up some of the Wyndham Resorts not in the WorldMark system), and buy the amount of credits (they recur yearly as long as you pay the maintenance dues) you think you’d need as you can’t combine company credits and “after-market” credits so if you had both, you’d be paying two maintenance fees.

See what happens when I don’t travel for a couple of weeks – you get a travel geek post.

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