Caribbean survey reveals spending habits of timeshare vacationers
Interval International, a prominent worldwide provider of vacation services and an operating business of Interval Leisure Group (Nasdaq: IILG), announced that vacation owners and their guests who travel to St Maarten stay an average of 10.9 nights and spend more off site than on property for a variety of expenditures. In addition, their average annual household income is reported to be more than $147,000, reinforcing the affluent nature of timeshare owners who visit the island.
These are some of the findings from the St Maarten Timeshare Owner, Exchanger, and Guest Survey, which was co-sponsored by Interval International and the St Maarten Timeshare Association (SMTA). The report was compiled by the Shared Ownership Services division of HVS, a leading hotel consulting and valuation firm.
"Interval has a long-standing commitment to the Caribbean, one of the most highly demanded international travel destinations for its US-resident members," said Neil Kolton, Interval's director of resort sales and service for the Caribbean and Florida. "We're very pleased to provide this valuable research that shows vacation owners and exchangers spend generously while in St Maarten. It's also interesting to note that average expenditures and length of stay remain consistent between high and low seasons, reflecting a steady economic impact."
Spending supports local businesses
"As the survey indicates, timeshare owners are contributing appreciably to the island's economy in many areas as it relates to on-property and off-property purchases," said Ricardo Perez, general manager of Oyster Bay Beach Resort and SMTA board member. "While their spending supports local businesses, we're also very encouraged by the large number of respondents - 90 per cent - who expressed their desire to return to St. Maarten for future vacations."
Other notable findings from the survey include:
- The majority of respondents were from the US and Canada (88 and 6 per cent, respectively)
- About 30 per cent had household incomes greater than $150,000
- Average age was 60.6 years
- Average travel party size was 3.3 persons
- Those aged 41 to 55 spent the most on entertainment and nightlife (average of $359 combined for both on and off premises)
- Average spend for off-premise dining was $631 (82 per cent more than on site)
- Spending for groceries was $261 (50 per cent more than on premises)
- The off-premises shopping average per respondent was $794 (130 per cent more than on-site)
Interval International conducted the online survey of its members who own timeshare on St Maarten and/or visited within the last three years. In addition, the SMTA forwarded the survey to other timeshare owners and their guests who previously visited the destination. The fielding period was July 10-September 5, 2013 and there were more than 5,000 survey respondents.