Happy family taking a self picture at the sea shore on a sunny day

Good to KNOW membership FAQs

Top tips to keep in mind, courtesy of Accor Vacation Club’s Members Services team.

Have you taken advantage of the new GAP booking window?

We have listened to the feedback, provided through the 2016 Members Survey, at Members Workshops and over the phone. Changes have been made that deliver greater flexibility and provide more opportunities to make online reservations. Enter – GAP Bookings. Once the 7 night reservation booking windows for all levels of membership have opened, 10 months prior to check in, reservations shorter than 7 nights can be made when there is no availability either side of the shorter duration block using the new GAP booking window. Conditions apply, so contact Members Services for more on how to use this new Booking Window.

Ensure an always-happy anniversary!

We’ve all been guilty of forgetting about those important anniversaries. We want to help you make sure that never happens when it comes to your Accor Vacation Club Première Points. Your Accor Vacation Club membership anniversary and expiry dates remain the same every year and never change. Therefore, to keep those important dates top of mind, we recommend setting a reminder and planning ahead. Whether you prefer an old-school wall calendar or digital calendar alarm is up to you – just write them down and lock them in! That will help ensure that you never have to worry about having any unused points expire.

Remember, when you check in, your points check out.

Points for Club property reservations are deducted on the actual day of check in – not when you make the reservation. Première Points used for Accor Hotels Select reservations are deducted on the day of reservation allowing you to check in up to 90 days later.

Convert your Première Points with AVC Travel.

Don’t know what to do with your expiring points? Unable to check in to a Club property before they expire? Talk to us about exploring the Accor Hotels Select properties or converting your Première Points to Discovery Dollars. Use Discovery Dollars to reduce the cash component of hotels, cruises and packages booked through Accor Vacation Club Travel.

Coming clean on credits.

Running out of cleaning credits should never deter you from making a new holiday reservation with Accor Vacation Club. If you want to book a stay, but do not have enough cleaning credits available, you can purchase more at the time of making the Club property reservation. Alternatively, Members can choose to book an Accor Hotels Select property, which does not require you to use a clean credit at all.

Stay in touch.

Not receiving all the latest news from the Club by email? If you think you might be missing important updates, please don’t hesitate to call. Your Members Services team can check that we have your current email details, and ensure that you are subscribed to receive all of our important news.

Telephone Workshops.

We love nothing more than bringing Members up to speed on all the membership benefits they are entitled to, and helping use each and every point! Make sure you call Members Services to arrange an annual workshop, to help stay on top of the many benefits and maximise your Membership to its full capacity. Our mission is to ensure you can fit in as many holidays and experiences with

Accor Vacation Club as possible to create holiday memories that matter.

For more information or to answer any questions you may have contact your friendly Member Services Teamon AU: 1300 76 14 14 or NZ: 0800 76 14 14 (press option 2) or email info@accorvacationclub.com.au

To plan your next holiday escape visit www.accorvacationclub.com.au

Accor vacatoin Club Travel's Cool destinations - Goddafoss-Iceland

5 of the coolest destinations on Earth

Story by Jackie Hamilton & Kevin Montalbo

Looking for a change of pace? There’s more to our wondrous world than just the equatorial hot and steamy tropics. A light dusting of snow across any town or village and you have a winter wonderland in the offing. Think snow crested mountains, cruises to see sparkling glaciers and fjords soaring to the skies. Bundled up snow-boarders carving up white powdery ski-fields and the obligatory roaring open fires to snuggle up next to as you keep warm and toasty.

 

1. Russia and the Baltics

“Fascinating and astonishing”. This is how you’ll describe the scenes of Red Square, Catherine’s Palace, numerous onion-domed churches, St Petersburg, the world-class magnificent Hermitage Museum and more.

You won’t need to go in the Northern hemisphere winter, because it’s pretty much cool year-round! Want to make the most out of the experience? Go in for a Baltic Cruise. You’ll explore gorgeous seascapes and beautiful towns and cities in North Europe with a blanket of white highlighting the cityscapes.

From Sweden and Denmark, to Russia and Estonia, you’ll soak up the rich histories of these iconic cities from berlin and Moscow to Helsinki, Stockholm, Oslo and beyond.

 

2. Alaska, USA

Known as America’s last frontier, Alaska is home to seemingly untouched winter landscapes, with distinct panoramas that will leave you in awe. Alaska’s famous Inside Passage, generous glaciers, and an abundance of wildlife like you’ve seen before – and you can discover all this on an Alaska cruise expedition departing Vancouver, Seward or Whittier (Anchorage). You could even cruise from San Francisco or LA, if you happen to be there.

Explore the Inside Passage, befriend seals and whale watch, and, if you’re up for it (literally), board a helicopter over the gargantuan Juneau Icefield, Mendenhall and Taku Glaciers!

As an addition, we would highly recommend extending to Denali National Park, which plays host to various winter activities such as dogsled races, wildlife watching, and stunning landscapes towered over by Mount McKinley, America’s tallest mountain.

Of course there is always the Rocky Mountaineer Rail Journey, showcasing otherwise inaccessible wilderness of the Rocky Mountains in all of their magnificent glory. Secret haunts of bear and caribou, families of deer and soaring high in the sky, bald eagles.

Excited yet? You should be!

 

3. Japan

Japan is considered a year-round destination, exuding timeless beauty whatever month you may visit. Since it belongs to our cool list, there’s no doubt that the Land of the Rising Sun is simply stunning during wintertime. Ski-fields run over with so much powder snow you could ski or snowboard your way to Hakuba, Niseko, and Sahoro, each flourish with silky ski tracks, grab a snow-mobile, discover snow-monkeys in nearby hot springs (yes, there really are such a thing as snow-monkeys! Very cute.) The list is almost endless, and don’t forget to sample the freshest sushi or ramen noodles and a little saki… to keep yourself warm of course. You’ll be thanking us for this.

 

4. Austria

For a classic European winter, say hello to Austria. Outside of winter, the scenery is already set to inspire you with landscapes dotted by fairy-tale villages, green fir forests, and deep mystical lakes. Now imagine all of that with a blessing of powder white snow… simply marvellous! Other cultural treats to enjoy include the very popular Christmas markets where you’ll find delicate handmade souvenirs, the ubiquitous gluhwein (hot mulled wine), cream coloured ponies and crisp apple strudels, doorbells and sleighbells and schnitzels with noodles… OK these ARE a few of my favourite things!

And, with a trip to Austria, they are likely to become yours too.

 

5. Iceland

Love winter? What better way to celebrate the chilly season that to go to Iceland? Here, you’ll get the full experience of winter, as temperatures get really low while you see spectacular views of the Northern Lights from this island nation. Warm yourself up in the island’s naturally occurring volcanic hot springs and geysers (Did you know that most of Iceland’s power is geo-thermic making use of the numerous volcanoes that still today spew forth sparks aplenty, along with the creation of new land). Plus, for the thrill-seekers among you, the ultimate winter adventure snorkel (yes you heard right, I said snorkel). Don you mask and fins, and a “dry” suit to keep you warm and snuggly as you push out into Thingvellir National Park Silfra Fissures’ clear waters. Why? I hear you ask… this is where the tectonic plates between Europe and America merge – and how cool is that! Another country to add to your adventure bucket list!

 

These adventures are available as part of Accor Vacation Club Travel (for eligible Premiere Plus members).

 

To enquire about the benefits of an Accor Vacation Club membership, visit www.accorvacationclub.com.au

 

Timeshare

How To Be A Satisfied Timeshare Owner

A timeshare is a form of vacation or holiday ownership. The original definition or style of timeshare (and the one most people probably think of when they hear that word) involves buying the right to vacation for a set period (usually one week), every year, at a specific resort. For many years now, timesharing has become a popular way to take a vacation. Still, a lot of travellers don’t know a lot about how it works, or indeed are aware of how timeshare products have evolved over time to now include more diverse options that open up a lot more variety and destinations.

When you own a single vacation or holiday home, you have dominion over a physical property. You can use it anytime and every time you want. Holiday home ownership comes with responsibility though. You obviously are committed to pay for the full value of the property including year-round maintenance costs plus rates and taxes, water and electricity charges and body-corporate fees (if a strata property). Having a timeshare is different from this arrangement in many ways.

In its original form, a timeshare essentially offers you an allotted amount of “time” wherein you can use your resort’s accommodation. For example, if you choose to own a 3-bedroom timeshare at a Queensland resort for the first week of January every year, your vacation accommodations are guaranteed at that time, every year. If you are a frequent traveller or vacationer, timesharing might benefit you because you get the perks of a high-end vacation home without having to spend for all of its upkeep.

Of course, over the years, timeshare has evolved. There are now timeshare ‘vacation clubs’ that work by providing a set amount of ‘points’ annually that can be used to stay at a broader network of accommodation owned or linked to that club, as opposed to offering a set week to be taken in just one location.  Some clubs have 20+ properties in their own network, which provides a lot of variety.

A lot of timeshare ownership programs now offer the option for timeshare exchange too. An exchange allows you to go on vacation at a different resort, in a different location beyond your own timeshare property or Vacation Club network. This way, you are not tied down to selecting the same vacation spots every year.

There are a lot of unsatisfied timeshare owners. If you listen to their complaints you will find out that the dissatisfaction stems from not knowing what timeshare is, not understanding what different kinds of timeshare options are out there, or grasping how their specific timeshare works. Timeshare is a significant purchase that you shouldn’t go into with your eyes closed. Equip yourself with knowledge before you sign on the dotted line and you will be a satisfied owner of a timeshare that suits your personal lifestyle needs.

 

Frequently Asked Questions by Timeshare Buyers

 

How is timeshare different from a hotel?

In most instances, Member accommodation within a timeshare resort generally offers more space and amenities as compared to a traditional publicly sold hotels, depending on the operator you go with. Often a hotel room is a studio-sized area that has a bed, then there’s a small bathroom and nothing else. With timeshare, you are more likely to get an actual apartment or a condominium-style unit with a choice of several bedrooms, bathrooms, a full kitchen, dining area and a living room. Amenities are also offered in most timeshare resorts – recreational, sporting and social activities both for kids and adults. Many resorts also offer swimming pools, golf courses, tennis courts, horseback riding, skiing and others all on site.

What are the different types of timeshares?

It’s important to understand the different ways timeshare work. Timeshare ownerships are either deeded or leased for a specified period.

  • Deeded – A deeded timeshare is like a regular real estate purchase. After you buy a deeded timeshare, you own it. You may sell, rent out or will your timeshare to your heirs. A deeded timeshare is a perpetual contract; there is no expiration date.
  • Leased – A leased timeshare gives you the right to use a property for a specific week or weeks for a definite period, usually 20 to 99 years. The right to use the property expires at the end of the leased period.
  • Licensed timeshare – A licensed timeshare requires you go join a “vacation club”. Members of the vacation club receive points that they can use to purchase holidays at a choice of several resorts. (This, for example, is the category that Accor Vacation Club sits within.)

What are timeshare use periods?

When doing your research, it good to understand some basic timeshare terminology, especially in regards to stay options. Depending on the type of timeshare product you might be interested in, you may come across these terms:

  • Fixed week – A fixed week timeshare allows you to use the unit for that specific week. Fixed week typically starts on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
  • Floating week – A floating week timeshare allows you to use the unit anytime during the year based on availability.
  • Flex time – A flex time timeshare is similar with floating week. Flex time refers to a season though wherein you can use your timeshare – winter flex or spring flex

Can I afford to buy a timeshare?

If you are considering buying a timeshare, it is vital to take an honest look at your finances to see what you can afford. First, determine how much you can pay out for the initial purchase price. Most timeshare companies will offer financing, and this can help you delay the up-front cost. Be aware that it’s common for timeshares to require an annual maintenance fee of up to $1,000 or more too (for maintenance, running costs and regular refurbishment). It is good to consider how these costs weigh up against what you might already be spending on annual holidays now and in the future to determine the value and benefits for you personally.

How does timeshare exchange work?

If you own a leased timeshare, a big advantage might be having the flexibility to exchange your week. You can join a timeshare exchange company and trade your week with other timeshare owners. This flexibility allows you to use your home resort every year, if you want to, or trade for any of the affiliated resorts throughout the world. Some timeshare resorts have an internal exchange program while others use an external company. These external companies require an additional membership fee that you can either renew or cancel every year.

 

About Accor Vacation Club

Accor Vacation Club is a licensed timeshare offering of AccorHotels. Members get an allocation of Premier Points annually and they can use this for holidays or short breaks. They can enjoy top-quality accommodation across Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia.

A membership in Accor Vacation Club is great if you’re the type of vacationer who plans your holiday in advance and likes the security knowing the type of accommodation you will get. Let’s say your work allows you two weeks of vacation per year that you can pre-schedule. Possibly, a membership with Accor Vacation Club would make a good investment to pre-plan your holiday time in advance. You get pre-paid accommodation that allows you to spread out with friends and family in generously-sized properties, with the flexibility to use the properties facilities to self-cater during your stay.

Here are the top 5 Accor Vacation Club properties that members rave about:

  1. The Sebel Sydney Manly Beach – Your gateway to golden sand, snorkelling and surfing, The Sebel Sydney Manly Beach has a breathtaking waterfront setting. Members can enjoy a variety of fully-furnished accommodations, from studios to one and two-bedroom apartments that boast convenient kitchenettes. Guests can also choose from an ocean view, superior and standard rooms that all have air condition, private bathrooms, LCD TVs and balconies.
  2. The Sebel Melbourne Flinders Lane – Members who love the sophisticated city vibe of Melbourne have good things to say about The Sebel Melbourne Flinders Lane.  Smack bang in the fashion and foodie district of Melbourne, this boutique hotel has 56 exquisitely-furnished apartments that have big bedrooms, living areas and kitchenettes. Just a short stroll to theatres, museums, sporting venues and eateries, urban-loving vacationers surely enjoy The Sebel Melbourne Flinders Lane.
  3. Grand Mercure Puka Park Resort – One of the most popular destinations included in the Accor Vacation Club portfolio, Grand Mercure Puka Park Resort is loved for the luxurious seclusion it provides. Think stylish apartments, and the laid-back ambiance of a mountain lodge.
  4. Grand Mercure Basildene Manor – Accor Vacation Club members love the old-world charm and modern comforts of Basildene Manor. This is the preferred destination for wine lovers not least of all because of its enviable location in the wine region of Margaret River. Needless to say, this rustic manor house and its landscaped gardens is ideal for tourists interested in exploring the area, and is near to great wineries, cafes and restaurants.
  5. The Sebel Pinnacle Valley – An exciting year-round destination, The Sebel Pinnacle Valley offers stylish and modern apartments in the stunning Victorian High Country. Just 30 minutes away from the Mt Buller ski slopes, Accor Vacation Club members can choose from a wide selection of outdoor activities like snow skiing, bushwalking, horseback riding and golf, depending on the time of year.

 

The information in this article is not personal financial advice and has been prepared without taking into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person.  Before making a decision to purchase or upgrade a membership in the Accor Vacation Club, you should consider the PDS dated 19 April 2018, issued by A.P.V.C. Ltd AFSL 245515 and available at www.accorvacationclub.com.au or by contacting A.P.V.C. Ltd on 1800 70 81 90.

 

Sydney Harbour Bridge

You haven’t lived until you’ve tried these 3 experiences in Australia

Australia is a truly vast country. In fact, with an area of just over 7.6 million square kilometres, it’s almost the same size as the continental United States. It’s also blessed with a diversity of spectacular landscapes, natural and man-made, which give life to some remarkable experiences.

Take the Uluru Base Walk

No list of must do experiences in Australia would be complete without mention of Uluru, or Ayers Rock, a huge sandstone monolith that rises to a height of 1,142 feet above the surrounding desert plain in the southwestern Northern Territory. Uluru has long been revered by the local Aboriginal people, known as the Anangu. Climbing to the top isn’t strictly illegal, but is forbidden by traditional law, so a better option is to take a guided walk around the circumference, which is approximately 10.6 kms. Uluru at sunset is particularly memorable, when the sandstone glows an intense scarlet red.

Dive the Great Barrier Reef

Likewise, any list of amazing experiences in Australia must include a visit to the Great Barrier Reef, off the coast of Queensland. The Great Barrier Reef stretches from Cape York in the north and Lady Elliott Island in the south, covering over 348,000 km2 making it the largest coral reef system in the world. The Great Barrier is also one of the most abundant, diverse and colourful ecosystems on the planet, supporting 400 species of coral, over 1,500 species of fish, including a variety of sharks, and over 30 species of marine mammal, including bottlenose dolphins and humpback whales. Whether you swim, snorkel or dive, the mesmeric beauty of the Great Barrier Reef is definitely one of the must do experiences in Australia.

Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge

Last, but definitely not least, in our brief guide to amazing experiences in Australia comes the celebrated symbol of the ‘Land Down Under’, the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Originally opened in 1932 and affectionately known as the ‘Coathanger’, it is the world’s tallest steel arch bridge measuring 134 metres from its top point down to sea level of one of the most beautiful natural harbours in the world. If you want to challenge your fear of heights, or simply set your pulse racing, climbing the bridge is an adventure in itself, but also offers panoramic 360º views over Sydney Harbour including, of course, Sydney Opera House, when you arrive at the top. You can climb Sydney Harbour Bridge during the day, at dusk or after the sun has set; we recommend the latter, when the Sydney skyline sparkles and creates a glittering reflection in the waters of the harbour.

If you are interested in enjoying great Australian travel destinations as part of a timeshare membership, visit Accor Vacation Club. If you are already a Member, visit Accor Vacation Club Travel for even more great travel and holiday ideas around Australia and beyond.

 

The information in this article is not personal financial advice and has been prepared without taking into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person.  Before making a decision to purchase or upgrade a membership in the Accor Vacation Club, you should consider the PDS dated 1 January 2017, issued by A.P.V.C. Ltd AFSL 245515 and available at www.accorvacationclub.com.au or by contacting A.P.V.C. Ltd on 1800 70 81 90.

Accor Vacation Club Members can transfer their Première Points (the Club’s currency) to Discovery Points in order to redeem and book selected travel product as featured on the Accor Vacation Club Travel site

What is Accor Vacation Club Travel and how can I make it work for me?

You might have heard that last week Accor Vacation Club launched a new one-stop travel service and website for its Members.

If you are a Member of this Club and have had a chance to check out Accor Vacation Club Travel, then you might also be asking, what does that mean for me?

For some background, the handy new Accor Vacation Club Travel website is a collaboration between Accor Vacation Club and its new travel provider, Our Vacation Centre Pty Ltd in conjunction with I.C.E. Vacations Asia Pacific Pty Ltd (ICE).

Put simply, ICE specialise in providing a range of exciting travel-based benefit programs for Holiday Ownership (Timeshare) providers like Accor Vacation Club, to benefit Members. They have been the sole provider of cruise product for Accor Vacation Club Members in Australia since November 2013.

Under the new, extended Accor Vacation Club Travel commercial venture, ICE has expanded its offerings beyond just cruises so that Members can take advantage of its expansive Discover365 Program. Think of it as your very own travel agency!

Accor Vacation Club Members can transfer their Première Points (the Club’s currency) to Discovery Points in order to redeem and book selected travel product as featured on the Accor Vacation Club Travel site.

And rest assured, every consultant a Member interacts with has been trained in how Accor Vacation Club and the points system works to help get the most out of your membership.

What kinds of experiences and products can you take advantage of? There are coach and custom tours, or cruises.  Car hire and travel insurance deals. Discounted wine offers, golf holidays and access to more than 120,000 hotels and resorts across the globe.

The team is there to work with you to leverage your membership and book travel on your terms, both at home and overseas. Antarctica, Africa, Europe, Asia and the USA. The world is really your oyster.

To find out more about how this Member program works, visit the FAQs page, or check out the introduction video below.

The information in this article is not personal financial advice and has been prepared without taking into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person.  Before making a decision to purchase or upgrade a membership in the Accor Vacation Club, you should consider the PDS dated 1 January 2017, issued by A.P.V.C. Ltd AFSL 245515 and available at www.accorvacationclub.com.au or by contacting A.P.V.C. Ltd on 1800 70 81 90. All hotel and cruise bookings are subject to availability.