Taking a vacation with a large group of family and friends and having trouble finding somewhere for everyone to stay? It can be a hassle trying to get adjoining hotel rooms, but the amenities of a hotel or resort are too great to give up by booking a house through a rental site. If this sounds like you, Vacatia might be the perfect solution.
What Is It?
Vacatia is a hospitality company reinventing timeshares, to help you discover, book and stay more easily. Founded in 2013, the company is headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area. This online resort marketplace makes it easier to find the perfect vacation spot for family and friends to rent.
Simply choose from 5,000 Vacatia recommended resorts, then select the perfect resort residence for your family and friends using the high quality photos, floor plans and detailed resort reviews. They have residences available across the U.S. and internationally in Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean.
Not familiar with Resort Residences? Many people aren’t – historically, in order to access resort residences you had to actually own one (or at least part of one through a timeshare). Resort Residences combine the space of a home with the management services of a hotel – you get the spaciousness and necessities of a private vacation rental home, but with the comfort and convenience of onsite check-in, housekeeping and resort amenities.
Resort Residences are ideal for groups of friends or families – it’s no longer necessary to get adjoining hotel rooms, instead you can enjoy a more spacious stay together.
How Does It Work?
To use Vacatia, simply enter your destination, number of guests, and intended arrival & departure dates. From there, you’ll be provided a list of their recommended resorts, and then the different residences available at that resort. Vacatia provides dozens of photos, including floorplans and residence layouts so you can get a true sense of where you’re staying, and how much space is included.
Vacatia takes pride in the ease of booking through their site – you can hold your booking for 48 hours while you confirm with the group, and plan to use their Flexpay option to pay over time, or split the bill with fellow vacationers. Unlike a site like AirBnB or VRBO, you are staying with a hotel – so you check in onsite like you would at the hotel, no hidden keys or awkward interactions with your host negotiating the contract.
In addition to a rentals site, Vacatia is also a timeshare marketplace. You can purchase your own timeshare or a part of one, and enjoy timeshares and resort residences more often.
Cost and Price Plans
Prices for the residence depend on the resort, but Vacatia does not charge a separate booking fee – their services are free to guests. The flexible pay options on the site allow for you to create a pay schedule that works for you. They also have a FamilyPass option with lower rates available, and offer military, large group, and extended stay discounts.
The company also has a “Best Price Guarantee” – if you’re able to find a better price on Vacatia or another U.S. based website after booking the resort residence, you can just email Guest Care with the information (screenshot or URL), and they’ll reimburse you the difference in price.
Competitors and Alternatives
In terms of a timeshare brokerage service, there are many other companies with a similar mission. Most hotels and resorts have their own programs to manage timeshare sales, and one of the biggest programs is Disney Vacation Club (DVC) Resale, which is Disney Resorts’ approach to timeshare ownership.
Through this program you can redeem points for various accommodations across Disney World and Disneyland, as well as in Hawaii, Florida and Hilton Head, South Carolina. If you love Disney parks, this is the perfect timeshare option for you. Vacatia has more options than DVC, however, if you want to venture out more.
Vacatia knows the importance of great customer service when planning a vacation, and they aim to make it easy and support you throughout the process. They’ve created a program, Vacatia Guest Care, which assists you through every stage of vacation planning and your stay.
Vacatia Guest Care will help you decide what the best option is for you through either the Live Chat feature in the site, or you can call the Guest Care phone number (855) 858-3950 to speak to a representative.
They will help answer any questions about the resorts or residences, amenities or even nearby attractions. They will also coordinate with the resort to communicate any special requests, and ensure you have a great experience with none of the hassle.
Online Customer Reviews/Complaints
When booking trips online, it’s important to be assured of safety and reliability. So is Vacatia safe? In a word – yes. Vacatia has been BBB Accredited since 2013, and has an A+ rating. Make sure you’re reading through the terms and conditions when you book, but the website is straightforward and you’re staying in resorts and hotels that are safe and recommended.
Additionally, each residence has reviews as well, pulled in mainly from TripAdvisor and other sites to ensure you have plenty of previous customer reviews for peace of mind and more tips on what to take advantage of while you are traveling.
While the overall reviews for Vacatia are positive there are negative reviews online for poor experiences at individual properties. The complaints range from people being misled by additional resort and cleaning fees to difficulties in canceling for a variety of uncovered reasons.
It’s advisable to carefully read the terms of your stay especially if you’re traveling to an area often affected by poor weather or know that you may need to cancel your booking for some reason.
Is It Worth It?
While Vacatia is a great timeshare rental site that allows travelers the ability to stay in resort residence, even if they are not traditionally able to access those timeshares, you should still double check with other booking sites to see if you’re getting the best deals.
When it comes to TimeShare sales that is a more complicated topic that requires serious and careful research as many people end up locked into bad deals that don’t have an easy exit strategy. You should always speak to a professional before buying or selling a timeshare.
Overall Vacatia is a safe and reputable company, with mostly good reviews and happy customers who’ve had memorable experiences booking through them.