Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Let me start by saying that yes we have had issues and yes the sales pitch is strong handed... With that being said we have owned a 3 BD LO for 15 years and have enjoyed our vacations. Anytime I have had an issue it has been addressed and rectified. Our oldest daughter used the Timeshare in Virginia for her honeymoon and was not high pressured and had an overall wonderful time. Yes if you exchange weeks or locations you pay a fee, this was clear when we purchased so it does not surprise me when I am told there is a fee. We have let friends use it for vacation and they also enjoyed themselves.
Bugs? It's a high traffic place in warmer locations of course you will see bugs! Go to any restaurant in the middle of the night and turn on a light, I bet you see bugs! Now I can say we bought way back in the day and paid 1/3 of what they are selling for now so that probably weighs in here a bit. Our maintenance and taxes have doubled and that sucks but being that we paid it off 10 years ago we are not complaining. I know where I am staying and if I have a complaint I let them know in not uncertain terms that I am not happy and they need to make it right, which they have always done. We also bought at the Palms and quickly realized that was a mistake, we got rid of it after 2 years. If you don't like it, book your stay at the Howard Johnson and enjoy your stay... Nobody can force you to buy or make you stay for the spew, get up and walk out!
June 2016 my husband and I got convinced to sit through a timeshare presentation. Needless to say we were gullible enough to buy! Paying 130 a month no not too bad. Then we upgraded our unit in January to a 1 bedroom deluxe oceanfront. Needless to say I have been fighting with them to get our vacation booked for the summer. Kept getting run around then they finally go to book it. Mind you it's April now and come to tell me there's nothing available. Hmmm. I'm now paying 210 a month and just paid 735.00 for maintenance fees.
Been on the phone with several people over this to finally get an email from my agent saying "you're booked for the week you wanted in a 1 bedroom." I thought nothing of it got online to my acct. Yea it's a 1 bedroom but NOT what I paid for. We are suppose to be oceanfront with a full kitchen etc. We have king size bed, pull out sofa, mini fridge, microwave, and coffee pot!!! Very irate and would not recommend them to anyone!!!
Westgate Orlando Resort - Where do I begin? Our stay was from April 1-8, 2017. I am typing this as we are heading home literally. The first room (K8) we received was an outdated hotel room with a kitchen and washer and dryer. Which was fine until I started seeing ants and other bugs in the sheets and realizing how nasty the room was. Mold in the shower, past guests hair in the blankets, dog hair on the linen also. We met our wits end when the toilet was revealed to be clogged and it had to be taken off to be fixed. All while they wanted us to remain in the same room that they had splashed toilet water all over the floor containing fecal matter and whatnot.
We adamantly refused and they changed our room to (V12). That room was a moderate upgrade as it was still very poorly cleaned. Again past guests hair and dog hair in the linen. Mold in the shower, and bugs whom I think felt as if we were intruding into their personal space. Upon switching rooms on Sunday, I had left my son's jersey in the first room and when I called the front desk to retrieve it I was told that would be unable to be done. I was floored! Which further proved the rooms were not adequately cleaned anyway because it would have been in Lost & Found. Three days of calling Lost & Found and Guest Services and no results.
The sales people in the lobby tried to bait us in with their Torture Sales Tactics, and my husband almost fell for it as I'm not the one for wasting my precious time. Once you go into the lobby in the morning they tell you that you have to pay $24.00 which is non refundable to sit through a 90 min sales presentation. I didn't come down here for that and was not about to waste our vacation making such an expensive purchase when they don't even give you a written contract. All of the weary looking families being herded into the lobby waiting to be picked off by the Vultures aka Sales People... I'll pass. Don't Stay There and Don't Buy from this company!!!
My husband has been a Westgate owner since 2006. In our three years of marriage, this is our first visit together to his 'home' timeshare in the Smoky Mountains. In 2014, we chose to pay a fee and go to a Florida Dude Ranch, which we did enjoy. It was quiet, no one bothered us, and we enjoyed peace and quiet. Last year, we had to cancel our December vacation due to my surgery, and paid a fee to postpone. We have already booked Myrtle Beach for this Christmas 2017. My husband called the Gatlinburg resort and asked several questions before booking this spring get-a-way week. We had looked online and done our research on the fires that took place here in November. Upon calling we were assured that though 70% of the property was destroyed, we would have the same amenities and be in a similar cabin such as the one we own. Not the case.
Before we even left the house, we got the first call from Marque to meet him for breakfast. There was another call en route, and another when we arrived (a six hour drive). Our 'cabin' ended up being more of a Motel 6. It is in the "Owner Referral' section adjacent to the busiest area of the resort, the registration lobby, aka meeting central. It is NOT the 2 bed, 2 bath, hot tub cabin with a view that is bought and paid for. It is a 1 bed, 1 bath, galley kitchen, 3rd floor noisy hotel room. There is a lovely view of the highway, complete with construction trucks going in and out, beeping, honking, about 50 golf carts coming and going, a loud speaker announcing every time they get a new owner, and folks going in and out all day on the receiving end of "the timeshare talk."
Within hours of our arrival we agreed to meet with Marque for a deluxe breakfast the next morning. This includes tasteless fruit on a buffet, cold scrambled eggs, sausage patties and canned biscuits and gravy. All served on the finest PLASTIC-ware. We were about to be right in the middle of what we witness daily. Our view from about 8am-6pm is resort employees taking people in and out of meeting central to tour the property, go in a model, and then be given a two hour sales pitch. They tell you how the billionaire owner is now investing some of his OWN money into making the newly rebuilt cabins even better. They plan to rebuild in two years what took 18 years to build.
They pull out a worn binder and show you 6-8 bedroom cabins with a price tag of $240,000, "but oh, nobody can afford those, lets move on..." and then go on to tell you how much your property is worth, such growth, such real estate, and "now you can offer your timeshare to others and charge them a fee..." on and on. He also informed us if we call and book through the Gatlinburg number, we would not have to pay a fee for going to a different resort, good to know, after paying it twice. So my husband tells them he is not interested in any further upgrading, gives a few complaints about what was expected, and what we got, because we DID inquire on the phone and made clear we like peace and quiet and views. Marque makes a few notes and calls over a General Manager. General Manager goes on to tell us how the fires affected the property, yadda yadda, and he and Marque make small talk about any free tickets they can give us.
Since we prefer to sightsee and relax, we are not interested in dinner theaters and the like, so we cut the talk short. My husband tells him he only needs to know how to have my name put on the deed to the property, due to his previous wife with whom he purchased the timeshare being deceased. The general manager leaves, and comes back with a set of papers claiming he cannot believe his findings... "You are qualified to buy a $240,000 cabin, but for you, we can discount it $100,000 making your purchase price only $140,000!" And Marque adds, "WOW, Who ARE you people? I've never seen that before!" This sends my husband over the edge. Had we of thought quickly, we should've said "I'm Batman, and this is my wife, Wonder Woman." My husband again said he wasn't interested, and then they wanted him to sign a form saying it was ok to "release this property for a different owner to take advantage of."
My husband (being a lawyer) said that would imply some sort of intent in the first place, he wasn't signing anything and to please call when they got the information about the deed he inquired about. And with that, he offered a handshake and we excused ourselves. Rather, we disengaged from the pitch. The two sat there dumbfounded staring at each other in disbelief as we walked away. There is no bar in which to lounge with a beverage, there is one, may be two? restaurants above the pool that is about 102 degrees, constant hammering and sawing, constant construction traffic, folks jabbering on cell phones trying to make the next sale, financiers walking back and forth with their little black briefcases...
There is a nice indoor water park, and an outdoor pool, though they are still hammering and rebuilding the back portion of the outdoor pool. There are delicious free cookies in the model, go get some. And after waiting (and calling) two days for the spa to open, I was able to get in and have a wonderful massage with Amber. At some point in the future, I could see bringing grandchildren here, to enjoy the water park, and go into Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge for the day. But at no point, does this seem like a quiet, peaceful, relaxing vacation with a view. We have contemplated putting a sign on our balcony facing meeting central that reads "JUST SAY NO!" or maybe "Who ARE You People!?"
My husband and I were given a week as a honeymoon gift at Westgate Gatlinburg. The place was beautiful but they trick you into thinking they are giving you a tour and turned into a 3-hour high-pressure sales pitch in a tent. Finally, we agreed to the lowest deal 3 hours later. We were never getting out of there without agreeing. We immediately went to the front desk said we wanted to cancel and checked out 3 days early.
They told us sales was out until Monday and on Monday when we called sales they told us we missed the 3-day deadline which we tried calling over the weekend but we were told we were not allowed to cancel over the phone. Needless to say we were stuck with 2 years of payments. Fast forward a year later we had to cancel our reservation last minute due to a medical issue with my husband and I offered to provide documentation but WESTGATE SCAM shows up again. $100 rebooking fee. I would not advise anyone to deal with Westgate in the future!
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I purchased discount Universal tickets online. I was told I'd have to sit through a 30 min presentation and take a tour of the resort. We were originally told if I purchased 2 days they would give me 3 extra days as long as we toured their resort. 2 days before we were to fly out received a call stating those tickets were no longer available!! Lady on the phone then informed us she could give us 2 days park to park passes (mind you they already received our $3 months ago) only to find out the tickets were only for 2 DAY passes!!!
The salesman was great, until we said NO... he went and got his manager who tried to change our minds. When that didn't work they handed us over to the gentleman to get our tickets who then proceeded to say he was going to fire our salesman!!! VERY PUSHY!!! If you struggle saying no, STAY AWAY!! Once we received our tickets as I stated we paid for 3 months prior, there was no cart to take us back to the clubhouse where we were parked... had a long walk back.
My husband and I decided to buy discounted tickets to Disney World but we would have to go to a timeshare. Was supposed to be a free breakfast for my whole family. We got there a little late due to not knowing where to go on the property. We got all of five minutes and my kids had to throw their food that they weren't done with and go to the childcare area. A meal of danishes muffins and fruit. After the presentation they tried to get us to buy and we said we do not have any extra money at that time for a down payment. They tried to get us financed and we did not qualify. We said we will buy when we save enough money for the down payment which would be a couple of months. So they decided to give us a free 6 night stay for the following year in their 3 bedroom suite. Free is a joke. We had to pay a 499 dollar processing fee or whatever they called it.
So we decided that after reading the contract we did not want a 6000 dollar hotel room which is the cost of ours if we paid monthly and then the fee of 899 dollars on the year we stayed in the hotel as that is what it is. A resort is a joke. We stayed in a three bedroom room and in the master there was a huge spa in the middle of the room. And it as well as the other shower had water stains and mold and the suite smelled old and was out of date. We were also told they had shuttle service to the Disney parks. To use the shuttle you had to reserve your time in advanced and it took you to the park at 830 am and picked you up at 630 pm, I didn't buy 1500 dollars of tickets for that little of a time at the parks. If I was going to pay that kind of money I would expect the Hilton or Swan at Disney.
Anyways I got a call to set up a time the morning we were to check out. I said no we do not have any time to spare as this is a family vacation and we had plans. Was then told that we had to sit down to a meeting with a rep or they would charge us the full price of the room and bill it to our card. Good thing we didn't have a plane to catch. We were then brow beaten into buying a timeshare we couldn't afford. We told them all of our concerns about the room and that we would not be buying a timeshare for an old, dirty room. Ok they sell us one in a new building that someone apparently pulled out of that was almost paid for at a huge discount. We fell for it and decided a few months later to pull out. It is overpriced and run down and what they promise you in the beginning is a scam to get more money from you.
I have read so many bad reviews for Westgate. We have owned our Westgate timeshare now for several years. We have had both good and bad experiences with our vacations. We have found the condos beautiful at both Branson and Gatlinburg. Yes, we did find their salespeople extremely pushy and do not like dealing with them. But, we purchased and then upgraded. Yes, they were pushy, but no one twisted our arm or held us hostage.
We have loved the vacation experiences and will be going to Orlando later this year. Last time, in Gatlinburg, we were not given what we owned, but they did give us a free week for 4, which we are using this year. So, although we were very upset, and it got a little ugly, in the end they worked to make us happy. The amenities are wonderful and our children have enjoyed everything. Unfortunately, we would have been going back to Gatlinburg except for the wildfire. So this year, we will be trying out one of the Orlando resorts. In all, my advice would be not to purchase on the spur of the moment. Although they promise you will have "free" vacations, we have certainly spent more than if we just spent the money at a hotel.
On the other hand, we have had beautiful and spacious accommodations, which we would have never had with a hotel. And because we are going to Westgate Resorts, we have went to places we probably would not have chosen otherwise. I like being able to cook and wash our laundry, and I love the spaciousness and privacy of the condos. So although we have spent more money than we should have, we have enjoyed our Westgate resort.
Arrived Westgate Smoky Mountain Resort 11/27/16 day before fire. At 4:00 pm I walked my dog on the complex and noticed large ashes and embers floating in the air so we returned to our room. Around 8 pm the satellite dish went down and around 8:10 pm two men knocked on our door shouting "GET OUT NOW!" We called the Front Desk but no one answered, there was no phone message. Called directly to the Welcome Center but no answer, then called our concierge but voicemail had not been set up.
Feb 1 owners meeting the WG spokesperson said, "Fire department only gave a 20 min warning to evacuate 1600 from a 2.5 mi." No outlet road. Fire Department employee told me the Fire Chief told her to not comment but refer me to call Chamber of Commerce Marci Claude (865) 436-0509. However she has refused to take any calls.
We waited three days to hear anything from Westgate officials but none came. I have videos showing the time we were evacuated which shows 8:37. We're waited at the entrance. I was able to find other resorts were evacuated at 6 PM. I am looking for a class action lawsuit to subpoena Gatlinburg Fire Department and Westgate Records. Why were people not evacuated earlier???
I am a time-share owner at Smoky Mountain Westgate Resort. I purchased a 3 bedroom. Every year my family and I visit during the 4th of July weekend because it is the ONLY week my husband & children are off at the same time. This year because of the fire, there are no 3 bedrooms available. They told me I could stay at another resort. I choose Orlando Town Center because it is the ONLY other Westgate property similar to Tennessee (3 bedroom & water park). I was told that they would waive the exchange fee, but I would have to pay a fee of $250 because they have activities that week. My options were 1) go a different week or 2) pay the fees. However, if I choose a different week Tennessee still does NOT have 3 bedrooms, and my husband CANNOT change his vacation dates (they are set at the beginning of the year).
Why should I have to pay fees when I am paying mortgage and taxes, and cannot stay there. I'm very frustrated! It just seems like Westgate wants to suck out all of the money they can. It's never enough. Tennessee owners should be accommodated at any resort at anytime during this rebuild. I don't think it's fair to charge fees when we have no other option, but to go elsewhere! If I have to take this greedy Goliath to court, I will!!! I'm sure other suits will follow!!!
Told staff when we arrived we were there to spend time with family that we hadn't seen in 2 years, was not interested in a timeshare review. On Wednesday morning February 22nd, 2017 a man called our room and told us because we bought through Priceline we were owed $50 back. To come to front desk to pick it up. When we got down there we were told about breakfast upstairs and was asked to sit in a very short meeting. When we got upstairs it was so loud that it affected my heart which I have issues with and the girl Anglie that was with us had left the room and left us sitting. So we went back downstairs and told the man at the desk that we were not staying, that we were leaving. And then they pretty much pushed us into going out by the bar area with the lady and sitting through this meeting. That's when I started having issues again and needed to get a water so I could take my medicine.
My husband told her we were done, we didn't want no part of a timeshare and we were not buying into it. She got very rude, stood up and started yelling for security. When I told her the noise was bothering me upstairs I could not do it she made a very nasty remark about "maybe we should let Isis go take care of that." We were not there for a timeshare. We live in Florida and we were there to visit family. Like I said she was very rude. The whole resort was a fiasco. We paid 200 bucks a night to stay there and it was very uncomfortable.
After all of this I will never stay another Westgate Resort and I had plans on making sure none of my family does either. The way we were treated was uncalled for. When you say No it should be left at that. You should not be forced into something. Thursday I suffered from seizures and was stuck in bed all day long and we're pretty sure it was brought on by the stress that we went through from the staff at Westgate on Wednesday morning. Just to make things clear when we arrived the first night at Westgate the staff at the front desk that check doesn't work very well mannered and we're no part of this whatsoever.
Well, I will 2nd, 3rd etc... others experiences with Westgate's timeshare sales pitches. These people are rude, pushy and deceitful. They become nasty very quickly and will talk circles around anyone. They use typical high-pressure sales tactics. The scheduler changed our tour from 90 minutes to 60 but the sales person said she had no idea why and that I was "required" to stay for all 90 minutes and take property tour... also something the scheduler said I wouldn't have to do! I insisted that the scheduler manager and the sales team manager come talk to me (scheduler said there was no manager there so I insisted on the MOD for the resort) and at this point I was given the $ they promised me for listening to the presentation.
The only choice one has is to get nasty right back. Sales does this for a living and only understand one language... the language of rudeness! As for the resort... it's tired. It's very 80’s ish. Mold in the shower, appliances don't work and decor is way out of date. I booked this place as a secret deal from Priceline because it was a 4 star resort! No idea how it got that rating but we won't be staying here again.
Don't be fooled by the beauty of the resorts. Whatever you do--DO NOT INVEST IN A WESTGATE PROPERTY--they are a complete scam. They show you one thing and sell another. They misrepresent what they are selling and do not show you a contract--now they give you a disc and, if you are away, you won't have time to review it to cancel. They advised that they NEVER ALLOW CANCELLATIONS--so, if you are unhappy, forget that.
When you do go to use your timeshare (and I own one), they bother you repeatedly to come to an "update" to waste a couple of hours, where they try to sell you more and do not let you leave. They bring in a supervisor to offer another deal and you don't go until you buy something--what you purchase, however, is not what they promise and you WILL NOT BE HAPPY when you switch resorts from one Westgate to another, you get the identical room that any other guest would have for the price you pay for yearly maintenance--so this will NEVER become a worthwhile investment. You will never reap a real benefit from this timeshare.
And, although they tell you that you can exchange for cruises, this is also a lie. If you try to do that, you will give up your week and get a 100 dollar discount on the cruise--meaning, it is not worthwhile at all. So, everything they tell you is a real scam. When you do go to complain, there is no one that can talk to you. You are switched to different agents and a "supervisor" finally will talk to you, but will tell you that you were told everything and there is nothing else he can do---so it is a complete waste of time and, you cannot get rid of the timeshare. There is absolutely no market and you are stuck forever! If you like the resorts, use them like a hotel--much better deal--just don't buy anything. It is the worst investment we ever made.
The folks at Westgate Resorts ought to be ashamed of themselves... Me and my wife back in July went to a presentation where we ended up buying the timeshare with the understanding that we had two weeks vacation every odd year and 12 weeks where we can go everywhere. Anytime for a fee ranging from 49 to 399 a week... I have already paid close to 3 thousands on that mortgage. I called last week to book a week of vacation. It was then that I found out that there's no such thing as 12 weeks for such price. Plus instead of 2 weeks it's only 1 every other year. Which means by the time I take my next week vacation I will have to pay close to 9 thousands for nothing. I was told by management that I should have read my contract because they could care less about what the agent has told me... It was a big mistake from my part. I wished I could find a way to get out of this nightmare called dream vacation for life...
Please stay clear of Westgate when doing their timeshare presentations. They will lie and are sneaky. Sales rep told me I was getting a package for a loft but instead sold me a 1 bedroom. However they are paperless so I didn't see that it was changed until trying to book my stay. Now no one can seem to help me and it's too late after they have gotten a lot of money off of me. I wouldn't recommend Westgate to my worst enemy. They are crooks. Don't believe anything they say and only half of what you see.
On December, Dec. 05, 2015 to be exact, we were talked into a 3 year trial of Westgate resorts for $1,750.00. When we came back during the grace period, because already we had caught them in several lies, the salesman gave us much more assurances and lied to us again, we found out later. When we finally were able to book a resort that we liked in Gatlinburg, TN area for June of 2017, wildfires happened so we called thinking they might cancel our reservations; but the girl assured us that our reservations were still good and much of the resort was untouched by fire. She said that they would contact us by letter or e-mail by the end of Dec. 2016 if they were going to cancel. Neither one happened.
Today January 28, 2017 after making plans we called them and they said that they had called us on Dec. 13, 2016 (an imaginary phone call) and notified us that our reservations were cancelled. It never happened. This company is full of bold faced LIARS. Do not bring a checkbook, cash, credit card or any other payment form to any sales presentation with these people. YOU CANNOT TRUST THEM!
Westgate Resort, Kissimmee FL., 01/20/2017-01/27/2017. Seems like I am adding my own verse to the same song. On a positive note, the resort property is pleasant and attractive, the working class employees are polite and helpful (if they understand English), the onsite sports bar had excellent food and service, and the resort was easy to get to and conveniently located. However... We were offered this stay from a friend who did not use all of her timeshare weeks and gladly paid the $300 exchange fee because it sounded like a great deal for some much needed R&R. We later found out that simply booking a stay would have been much less. Due to a delayed flight, we did not check in until a little before midnight and simply wanted to get to our "condo" and get some sleep.
Immediately after check in, the sales pitch started. We were directed to a VIP desk for our welcome package and invited to a deluxe breakfast or lunch the following day and a 90 minute presentation of the property and timeshare purchase options. As a thank you for our time, we were offered VIP access to the resort amenities (but the water park is an extra fee), $50 in vouchers for our choice of the onsite restaurants, an exclusive savings book that in reality was available from any visitor center, and passes to attractions that could be chosen at the gift shop. We were under "no obligation to purchase anything", but this "is a sales presentation". We said "OK, can we go get some sleep now?"
After we had to return to the check in desk because our key cards did not work, we found that our condo turned out to be no more than a moderate hotel room with the added convenience of a kitchen and in room laundry. Ok, still a good deal. Sleep was difficult, because the adjoining room was separated from us by a poor fitting door that allowed the light, as well as all the noise and animated conversations, to come spilling into our room.
Upon waking, the other little inconveniences showed up as well. I tried to make coffee, but the coffee maker did not work properly. It was a simple fix, so I fixed it. The bedroom TV had a poor picture. The cable was not properly connected, so I repaired and connected it. My wife tried to make an energy shake for breakfast and the blender was DOA. It eventually got replaced. My wife tried to log in and use the WIFI with the provided access credentials and found out it is not free, you must pay for it. Hmm, going downhill fast, and we haven't been to the sales presentations yet.
The deluxe lunch was cold hotdogs with stale buns and some rice and beans. Way to make an impression! The room was full of weary vacationers and hungry sales persons trying to reel one in. Our presenter spoke heavily accented English, but offered flawless Spanish if that would be better, and put out a lot of information that sounded impressive, but really made no sense. The opportunities and travel options were endless, and this was a much better option than renting a hotel room, and you could have a real warranty deed, an investment that was yours forever! Wait, what, forever? Yes, pass it on to your kids and grand kids, forever. Just pay the yearly taxes and maintenance fees, and the booking fees, upgrade fees, and exchange fees if you want to use a different week or location. It forces (her words, not mine) you to take a vacation, because quality time is important.
At this point, I am still trying to do the math in my head to determine what type of property is assessed at over $500,000 per acre for property taxes, and the rest of the pitch is lost on me. After the initial numbers were put out there, my wife and I politely tell the sales lady we are not interested. When pressed as to why, we respond that we don't plan or take a lot of luxury vacations, and the cost just doesn't make sense. Furthermore, we are here to relax and have no intention on making a huge purchase while on vacation.
After some back and forth, she relents and tells us she will go get a manager to sign us out and we could get our free gifts. He comes in and starts round 2. I get up to leave telling him I am not putting up with a tag team effort. This is not a tag team, he is simply showing some different options. No need to put on a show. He could get us into a "trade in" for a significant savings, and drop us to a single bedroom for only one week. The implication being that the initial pitch was for a brand new unit reserved just for us.
Again we say no, less politely than before. The tone changes and we are told we need to stay for the 90 minutes and then accusingly asked "Why would you sign up for a presentation with no intent to purchase?" I pointed out on our invitation that the check box for staying 90 minutes was not checked (a technicality) and the line that indicates no purchase required to receive your free gift. He gets visibly annoyed and they both get up and leave, taking our copy of the invitation (needed to get our free gifts). The original presenter returns to sign our invitation that we no longer have, and must retrieve it from the manager. She rudely gives it back to us and walks away.
We take our paperwork to the ticket counter, get some of the promised freebies and are directed to another desk for, wait for it... another sales pitch. If we want to get all of our offers, we must attend another presentation, but don't worry it is not a timeshare offer and is not affiliated with those folks. We can even upgrade our offer for a small fee. It is not high pressure and we can have brunch on them. Just bring an open mind. Why not, I'm so irritated that my weekend is shot anyway.
Turns out it is not a timeshare property presentation, but is a sales pitch for an overpriced exclusive vacation club, offered through Westgate Resorts. The brunch consisted of pastries and fruit. The highlights of the presentation are: you still pay an upfront cost, yearly fees, resort fees, exchange fees, upgrade fees, and booking fees, there are blackout dates, and the accommodations and amenities are the same. Doesn't make sense to us so we say no to the presenter, then say no to the manager, and finally leave, having wasted four hours of our lives, and disrupting most of our weekend with mid day presentations.
The rest of our stay was pleasant enough. We spent most of our time away form the resort taking part in our own activities. Upon casual encounters with other guests, some of which were timeshare owners, we found that our experience is pretty much the norm. Everybody is pressured into buying or upgrading. Booking the time and location you want is frustrating. The quality of the units as well as the furnishings is sub par. You do not get what you are promised. Not my idea of a luxury vacation.
This complaint is for an apartment unit for disabled guests at WestGate Vacation Villas at 7700 Westgate Blvd. Kissimmee. We exchanged a week from our Palm Springs AZ timeshare to come and stay in the Orlando area. Our exchange was for the WestGate Villas. We experienced a series of issues upon arrival. To start, the ice maker was broken, a request made to repair it. No repair done. Instead a bag of ice was left in the freezer. Finally the ice maker was changed out two days later. The toilet did not flush and kept running for two nights in a row. They came, said it was fixed and did not repair it. It took two more visits to fix it on the third day. The apartment unit was missing the TV remotes in the bedroom and living room; and no hot water in the kitchen. The service repair people did not resolve the issues when first reported. We had to constantly call the office over and over.
The appearance of the unit is ragged. The dishwasher is rusted and broken when pulling out the trays to place dishes. The trays come out of the rail and drop on the floor. The cabinet around the dishwasher is rotted, and the cabinet doors are splintered and separating. The kitchen had no hot water. The apartment is deplorable. No one should be placed in this unit and it is reserved for disabled guests. It appears that WestGate Vacation Villas has an inferior standard for guests with disabilities. It does not think much about providing the same comfort and service for guests that have physical challenges. The hotel management has made little effort to correct these issues, knowing we were inconvenienced for 3 days out of our week's vacation dealing with the broken and run down facilities in the unit. Lastly, we had a dog barking in the unit next door for three days Sunday through Wednesday.
Out of 52 weeks in the year we have one week to vacation and have to deal with this nightmare. What a terrible way to spend a vacation. This issue was raised to several people, we spoke with three managers, Shane who sent the repairmen back twice, Omar ** sent a security to check on the dog barking but did nothing more. And Allan, Front Desk Manager, whom we spoke to last communicating all the issues, he was going to return a call and never did call us back. The Management we have tried to reach have not returned a call nor offered an acceptable compensation for all of our trouble. Do not recommend this as an amenable place to stay. STAY AWAY.
Sadly I did not read this reviews before we purchased. They are a scam.They tell you you can use the timeshare anywhere in the world...never. They toss you around when you get through to them. Please, please do not waste your money and time.
Never buy a Westgate timeshare. What you see and what you get are far apart. The maintenance is appalling and the conditions of the units are appalling. It seems you never get your unit you bought when you book and what you do get put in does not even compare to what you bought. Just use the 90 dollar deal for three days and be done with it. When you try to book any other Westgate resort with your floating week, they will always be full.
The units are in deplorable shape. A lot of their timeshares are in old buildings and no better than a seedy roadside hotel. Most good hotel chains are way better than what you get at Westgate. Beware. This is only a 2 star at best. Includes, the Lakes, Villas, Williamsburg. Stay away. Book a nice hotel for the money you will waste on Westgate. The prices I see that people pay to buy are all over the place. Do not be scammed by Mr. Seigel. Go look up and see what he lives in. It will make you sick. That is where all the upkeep money goes to, obviously.
Do not buy timeshares here! They tell you it is no problem to get the week you want but in fact it is almost impossible. Then they charge a re-booking fee to reserve in another year. Terrible company to work with on the phone and on their website. Their answer is "NO" to everything!
I wanted to share my more positive experience with my timeshare at Westgate Vacations Villas. First of all, I did go through the high-pressure sales tactics after I already purchased my condo through a private seller. Actually high-pressure is kind of a tame description -- trying to resist their sales staff is like trying to hold on to an oiled lamp-post in a hurricane, but it can be done. Earlier this year during our vacation there, we were promised $120 for sitting through their "presentation" and my husband said, "Why not" even though I warned him -- two hours later, after being called rude for asking if they understood what the word "no" meant, I created enough of a scene to be finally given my promised money and leave. I had to keep asking in a loud voice when we would get our money -- make a scene that disrupts the other "sales attempts" going on and they will want you out of there!
Two hours wasted, but we received $60 per hour for sitting through their torture tactics! And we didn't give them the requested "twenty" dollars prior to the session either. My husband said, "Why would I give YOU twenty dollars?" They folded. Of course, they tried to convince us to "upgrade" and told us because we didn't buy through them, we were "missing out" -- I have yet to figure out what exactly I'm missing out on! They tried to tell me they could do better than the "private sale deal" I got -- I laughed and said, "I highly doubted it."
You see, I did purchase a Westgate timeshare but not directly from Westgate. Through a private seller on eBay, I "purchased" a FIXED week 2 bedroom with loft (sleeps ten) villa in the NNN building for ONE DOLLAR. The seller then refunded my money to avoid Westgate trying to use their right of first refusal. My condo/unit is absolutely beautiful and conveniently located near the entrance, the store, and restaurant, and a three minute walk to the water park. This was a private seller -- not a company, or dealer. She told me she had used the unit with her family for many years and now lived in Florida. She also gave me the most wonderful advice ("RULES") about how to enjoy my vacation there without falling prey to Westgate's salespeople and I am going to share it with you below.
We have used the condo two years in a row, and love, love, love it! It is updated, clean and beautiful. I have no problem making reservations. The only issue I have to decide regarding dates is whether to arrive on Friday, Saturday or Sunday of our fixed week. The fees are just under $1000 per year and I did receive my discount for paying early. It is far cheaper for us than paying for two hotel rooms at Disney -- although if I could afford to buy into the Disney Vacation Club, I would do it in a heartbeat! So here are the "rules" we use to make sure we have a very enjoyable vacation at Westgate each year thanks to the lovely lady who "sold" me her beautiful time share condo.
RULE ONE -- At check in, when the "invitations" to attend "owner appreciation" breakfasts, dinners etc begin -- say " No thank you," in a firm voice, and then again, NO, THANK YOU. NOT INTERESTED, and REPEAT -- as many times as needed. They usually give up after the third NO, NOT INTERESTED -- the reception area staff are not as pushy as the sales staff.
RULE TWO -- DO NOT ANSWER YOUR ROOM PHONE! Who needs it anyway? Everyone these days has a cell phone, right? But regardless, if you need to call someone using your room phone, call them, but don't answer calls from Westgate staff. If you need maintenance work done, then by all means answer the phone and if it's anyone else, hang up. We haven't needed any maintenance done the past two years.
RULE NUMBER THREE -- If they try to "visit" you and leave a nice invitation to talk/dine etc on your door, respond by leaving a big note over the top of their note, stating, "DO NOT CONTACT ME. NOT INTERESTED." If you are unfortunate enough to be at your unit when they arrive, just close the door, and/or leave. One year they did, the next year they didn't. They do not, I repeat, THEY DO NOT OWN YOU -- the USA is a free country. You can say NO, and MEAN IT, and they will leave you alone. They have never come back after I left that large note on the door.
I have found the staff at the reception, the water park, and the store to be delightful. We get an owners discount on purchases from the store, and of course, free tickets to the water park and other amenities. We have enjoyed their mini-golf, ping-pong, the fitness center, their paddle boats and bikes -- all free for owners. The condo is always stocked with a "welcome" package, including dish soap, dishwasher soap, laundry soap, toilet paper etc. Internet is free for owners. I don't understand why they feel they need to use such awful high-pressure sales tactics because the resort really is beautiful.
So in summary, if you want to own a Westgate timeshare, buy privately, learn how to be firm, say 'No' and mean it and go enjoy your vacations! If you have been scammed into buying one you can't afford, stop paying for it, and threaten them with legal action -- or better yet, hire an attorney and have him/her write them a letter telling them you are on to them and know there is no legal binding contract they can hold you too. Close that bank account or cancel that credit card and don't lose any sleep over it, because they do not actually have a legally binding contract over you -- surprise, surprise -- they lied about that, too.
We booked this Hotel for one night only 12/21/16 approximately 20 hours before, So there wasn't even a cancel 24 hours to begin with. I started reading the reviews and naturally if you want to read the bad you have to look a little harder, HA! So that's when I saw two recent reviews of bedbugs. We called 1 hour after booking to cancel, and they charged us a $40.00 cancel Fee! So would not recommend this dump to anyone.
I've been reading the reviews regretfully after I have already purchased. They are eerily similar to my experience. Once you buy and call to use your property you are constantly told that what your initial salesperson told you doesn't apply or you misunderstood what they were saying. Nothing seems to work out, numerous calls and threats does absolutely no good. Every conversation starts with them trying to upsell you before they even listen to why you are calling. Oh, and there's no way out! You will be paying fees forever. If you are considering buying - don't!!!
We were in Miracle Miles shopping centre when my wife simply asked this kiosk for MJLive tickets. They sucked us into this timeshare presentation that they promised will only last 90 minutes. We weren't sure if with our infant we could even watch MJ, but they called and confirmed we could. $40 later, we booked our timeshare presentation next day.
Arrived at Westgate, we were made to wait for 30 minutes despite of "booking" the time. Going inside the big hall where they had about 40-50 salespeople pitching and selling their condo rooms. First, we were told our infant won't be getting childcare as he's not potty trained (surprise!!)... then the sales guy forced us to go eat before he can present (even though we had a full on meal right before). Excruciating 3 hours later, he revealed the numbers (200k to own a condo in the hotel for one week/year at an interest rate of 20% borrowing) and we had to make a decision there and then!! Of course we said no!
Then the rudeness kicked in. Did we kick our bedsheets this morning and promised we weren't gonna buy? Did we never intend to have an open mind? Etc etc... He called his manager (Sharmisa) and she was the epitome of rudeness and discourtesy. Her final offer was to buy a week of a condo in Florida for $70k which we have never seen. And then she started calling us different rude things...
Their manager came and apologized for her behavior and led us out of the sales floor. We got our MJ passes and heaved a sigh of relief! But later that evening, we were denied entry to the show because (surprise!!) infants weren't allowed!! My wife cried for having wasted our day and still not being able to watch the show!! What a bad experience!! Stay away from these guys in the malls who try to give you cheap tickets for shows and make you attend their silly timeshare presentations. The product is soooo bad that no one in their right mind will buy it.
We were lied to about the timeshare we bought twice. They gave us a card that was "just like cash" and it's not. They also said we could go anytime of the year and now they say it will cost us 500 more dollars to upgrade. That would be a week's stay. I will be trying to figure out how to get our money back. DON'T EVER DO THIS...
Westgate resort in Branson Missouri - After we checked into this dump it was like a terrible rundown dump motel. We were suppose to have conjoined rooms which we didn't. The game room was closed by 6 every night after being told it was open til 11 at check-in. The rooms were very dirty, housekeeping didn't even make beds on a daily basis. They charge for wifi $100.00 for use of it. We stayed from December 9-12. Will never again check into a Westgate again. Say they deliver food from their restaurant but when we ordered we had to walk down in rain to get our food.
The lady said she couldn't leave her "post". Just overall not happy with this terrible business. The pictures they sent of the rooms we were to stay in were not where they put us. They put us in a building number 2. Just over a dump. And make sure you hide valuables. My friends that came with us got stuff stolen during cleaning of their room. They reported it and front desk said there was nothing they could do about it. Unreal. I've never been treated so bad ever at a resort. I will not return there ever again. Unfortunately we don't go on vacation very often so this meant a lot to us. But not after staying there. Run down dump.
When we arrived at Westgate Colonial Williamsburg we had no idea the resort was a timeshare until the “concierge” met with us after check in. We were told that this was a timeshare property and that if we sat through a 90-minute presentation we would get $125 cash and free Wi-Fi during our stay. Initially we said no because we were on vacation and who wants to waste 90 min of their vacation on a timeshare presentation, especially if you weren’t looking or thinking of doing that?
However we were told that if we did not attend we would be charged $10 a day for Wi-Fi over our 7-day stay, we were also “assured” that the presentation would take 90-minutes at most and that there were no high pressure selling tactics. We reluctantly agreed to listen to the presentation to avoid being charged another $70 for Wi-Fi thinking it was only 90-minutes at most. We were told that we had to put $20 down on the spot and then we would get that $20 back if we showed up, which was a little odd in itself.
Once at the presentation 2-days after check-in we found out rather quickly that we were we suckered in to dog and pony show where we kept being asked, “what would you pay for the property” repeatedly 6-7 times after we stated we weren’t interested in the $28,400 price tag for 1-week a year. At one point I look down at my watch and noticed we had been there for 2 hours and 10 minutes after we were “assured” that the presentation would last 90-minute at most and that there were no pressure selling tactics. After telling the agent that there was absolutely no way we would make a decision like this on the spot, however we were told that in order to get our promised gift the manager had to speak with us to close the presentation, just another ploy to get us to buy on the spot we suspect.
After waiting for the manager for what seemed like forever I again looked down at my watch and we had now been there 2.5 hours. At this point I was up upset as it was very obvious we had been taken advantage of, we told the sales agent that we had activities planned today and that we could not wait any longer for something we were not going to buy. Again we were told that in order to get our gift we had to speak with the manager. I’m not sure if this staff does all of the presentations or not at this property, but what I am sure about is that this is the most unprofessional group of sales managers that we have ever come across, we felt like we were at some off the wall used car lot it was so unprofessional. Not one manager ever apologized for the wait and/or said "give us 5-minutes, 10-minutes, etc. and I will be right with you." All we kept being told by the sales agent was “it shouldn’t be long.”
Long story short we NEVER received ANY gift because we had other activities that we had already made reservations for on our VACATION! We did receive back the $20 that we had put down though, I guess that was supposed to be a consolation for us wasting 2.5 hours of our vacation time for being treated like just another couple in an assembly line of customers, we’ll get to you when we get you mentality.
The icing on the cake for the manager’s reaction when the sales agent told him we couldn’t wait any longer because of planned activities. He made it VERY obvious he was not happy and stormed by us without looking at us or saying anything to us. My wife and I could not believe the childlike reaction and the unprofessional nature, at the minimum we expected a “sorry for the wait folks” but I guess he didn’t care since he knew we weren’t buying that day. But the worst part of it was throughout the initial presentation my wife and I actually became quite interested in the properties in Park City, UT and Branson, MO and briefly spoke in private that this may be an option in another 3-6 months.
However one thing I can now guarantee is that we will NEVER buy a timeshare property from Westgate and we will NEVER again stay at any Westgate properties. If we could have received a refund for the rest of our stay at the property we would have happily packed up and went to another venue in Williamsburg. I personally have been treated better at the Motel 6 venues that I stayed at while in college, so why would I want to give over $25,000 to a company that obviously ONLY cares about my money and NOT the experience? Additionally how are we supposed to have trust and confidence in our $25,000 purchase after being treated like that? There are way too many other timeshare properties out there and I’m quite confident we will find one that is polite, professional and accommodating to their customers.
In the last 40+ years I can count on (1) finger how many complaint letters, bad reviews, etc. that I’ve ever taken the time to write, but our treatment has left an unbelievably sour taste in my mouth. I will be writing as many reviews as possible on different sites to warn other potential guests before they unknowingly get suckered in to wasting 2.5 hours of their vacation time, I even wonder if we would have ever got the $125 as promised in the first place, after the “used car salesman” tactics that were used I’m sure that was a gimmick in itself also. It’s quite embarrassing to admit that we allowed someone to con us in to something of this nature, but we are now educated on the process and hopefully we can warn others before they fall victim as we did.
1st time coming to Westgate town center. It is a beautiful location near Disney. Friendly staff except for when I arrived had a guy named Brian try to get me to become owner. Promised me 50 dollars and more gift if I stay and listen to his presentation. "I didn't receive anything. Wasted 2 plus hours for nothing!" Pool 13 was a beautiful pool area. Bartender was great except when some kids came with water balloons started throwing them everywhere. I asked to speak to manager and no one to be found. My best experience by far has been Westgate on the lakes! If you're looking for a place to take your children and have it be all about them. That's the place to be!!! They have pool activities, DJ, PIE EATING CONTEST. IT'S ALL ABOUT THE KIDS! Most memorable trip by far!
ConsumerAffairs Research Team
The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.
Westgate Resorts is a timeshare company that was founded by David Siegel in 1982. The company offers customers more than 13,500 timeshare villas and access to properties at 28 resorts.
- Numerous outposts: Westgate Resorts' properties are located conveniently throughout the U.S., so they are easy to reach for customers no matter where they live. They also offer a diverse range of landscapes and amenities.
- Resorts with amenities: The company offers timeshare owners a huge selection of amenities at their resorts, including soda shops, pool bars, spas, putting greens and more, so traveling to their timeshare property feels like a real vacation.
- Charitable company: Westgate is also a community-focused company, and the company donates more than 2 million dollars each year through the Westgate Resorts Foundation.
- Convenient online account management: Owners of Westgate properties can access their account online, and they have convenient options to pay fees, change membership options, and more.
- VIP owner events: The company regularly throws VIP events for owners, including parties, shows, and more.
- Best for Travelers with a favorite vacation destination, young professionals with disposable income and large families.
Westgate Resorts Company Profile
- Company Name:
- Westgate Resorts
- Year Founded:
- 5767 Major Blvd
- Postal Code:
- United States