Monday, February 7, 2011


Bret and I had a first on Saturday.

For years we've been getting these offers in the mail. You know the ones- "Happy birthday! We want to send you on a 3 day/2 night stay anywhere in the continental United States!" Right down to, "Dinner for two on us!"

We finally decided to take up an offer when a big one came a couple weeks ago. Of course we knew there would be catches. These things always come with a requirement to sit through a sales pitch of some kind. And with travel it's usually for timeshares (of which we are not fans). We assumed we'd be listening to a timeshare offer-of-a-lifetime, which we would easily say no to, then be on our merry way.

Turns out it was a vacation club once-in-a-lifetime pitch. I'm not gonna lie. It was a tempting offer. And if we were the kind of family who traveled often, we probably would have gone for it. But the one big catch, the one that hit the nail in the coffin for me, was that this really was a once in a lifetime offer. A you walk out that door and try to come back, the price goes up many thousands of dollars so it's now or never offer. And we told the guys, flat out, we're just not going to buy something before we have a few days to think about it; we never have, we never will. To which they tried to give us the whole "statistics show that if you don't sell people on this the first time, they're not going to come back so we have to get them at the first visit." And the whole time I'm thinking, "Um, they don't come back because you told them they can't." Or, "Maybe they're not coming back because when they thought about it, it really wasn't a good idea to buy...didyaevathinkathat?"

But really, it was a great deal...for people who plan to travel extensively. And I'm glad we didn't take the bait and buy in. I feel like such a responsible adult:) Plus, when our kids are older and we get the hankerin' to travel all we have to do is ask my parents or one of my brothers to go listen to the pitch and split the cost with them because the membership is transferable between family. Cha-ching!

Unless of course they change the deal ten years down the road and that's no longer available. Which leaves us no worse off because we weren't planning on traveling that much anyway. Cha-ching!

It was a very funny experience. One that wasn't on my bucket list, but should have been. It feels like a right of passage:) And now---Bret and I have a free round trip to anywhere in the lower 48! Major restrictions to be sure (3 days/2 nights- read two days in airports, one day vacation), but for the cost of a rental car and souvenirs, we can see somewhere in the US that we hadn't planned on seeing. Cha-ching!

Time to start researching where to go, but preliminaries have my mouth watering for Philadelphia or Virginia. The site seeing that could be done!

I wonder how far Mt. Vernon is from Monticello...