Post # 1
We have been gifted an RCI timeshare week to use for our honeymoon late October 2010. We have previously been to the Cabo resort where it is located and wanted to visit Maui instead – – since neither of us has ever visited any part of Hawaii.
Kahana Falls is the only available option and has some average/poor reviews on the RCI website. We have stayed in plenty of spots in Mexico that were just average also, and while it didn’t ruin our time there, looking ahead I’m a little concerned about the lack of ‘luxury’ on our honeymoon if we choose to use this timeshare.
From a financial perspective, choosing to use this timeshare (and the awesome airfare deal we are getting from Seattle using Alaska companion fares) it makes a lot of sense. I’m just really concerned about arriving and being disappointed that we didn’t pony up for a 5 star.
Our biggest concern is that we want to stay somewhere nice and be pampered and this clearly is not going to be like that… but it saves us THOUSANDS.
Help!? I need some REAL feedback from folks who can advise us personally! We enjoy being around other people but not HUGE crowds, want to relax but also truly explore Maui. Is it better to stay here and use the extra money for excursions, car rentals, shopping etc? Or should we spring for a different property entirely on our own budget?
Post # 3
Do what is best for your budget. Starting a marriage in all sorts of debt with nothing to show for it other than pictures will just cause problems, frustration, and anxiety between you and your FI.
My FI and I are actually going on our honeymoon in Maui too. We would have loved to have taken a month long jaunt around the world for our honeymoon, but that just isn’t economically feasible for us. We have said that no matter what, if we don’t have the money in savings, we won’t do it. He paid cash for my e-ring, will do the same for my wedding band and we have already paid for the hotel/ flight/ car for our honeymoon.
Wait until you two are more financially sound to really splurge. Also, Maui is a small island. Perhaps you could stay at the Four Seasons for one night during it so that you get that experience that you are craving. Another idea is to do a spa day at the Four Seasons or the Maui Westin, etc.
Post # 4
You only have one honeymoon so it should be everything you dream of in my opinion. If it does prove to be too expensive, can you compromise on something else? FI and I wanted to go to Europe for our honeymoon but it was going to cost us thousands just to get there so we decided to go somewhere else that we were just as happy with and promised to go for our one year anniversary no matter what. We also took into consideration the money we saved could go towards a house which we want very badly shortly after the wedding. I would say make decision that you will be 100% happy with. If there is anything about it that says “Eh, I wish this or would have done this” then don’t do it.
Post # 5
- Wedding: June 2010 - Indiana Memorial Union
Honestly, if I’m on a beach I don’t really care what the hotel is like. I’ve stayed in some crappy motels in Florida, but once you’re out in the sun enjoying the weather, nothing matters 🙂 I would definitely do the budget option.
Post # 6
I guess the point is we want to go to Hawaii, specifically Maui. So we can either use (we have the cash available but right now it isn’t ‘designated’ towards anything wedding related) our own money to stay at a super nice, expensive, break the bank style resort and probably not book many extras (boat rides, surfing, what have you) OR we can go and use this FREE timeshare, ignore the fact that its across the street from a public beach and is less resort and more ‘lodging’ and use the money we would have spent on a 5-star towards experiences and shopping.
So which one wins for a trip to Maui? Free lodging with fun stuff to-do outside of the accomodations and less of a financial limit on outside things – OR – 5 star resort and pretty much staying at the resort the entire time?
Post # 7
I would pick time share with one or two nights in a five star – right at the end of the trip so you leave on a good note! Spend the extra money you save on fun activities and a Jeep!
Post # 8
Personally I would stay at a nice place! We didn’t find a ton of stuff to do on Maui so we spent a lot of time enjoying the lovely hotel, beach, etc. It kind of depends on whati s going to make this honeymoon really special – which, if you can afford it, is really nice! You only get one honeymoon, and its probably the most romantic trip you’ll take, you’ll be on such an endorphin high!
Post # 9
We’re going to Maui also! I’ve been to Maui once before – and it’s amazing. Last time we stayed in a condo right off the main area. It was wonderful (and only a 5 min drive to the beach). We decided it’s our honeymoon, and we’re going to splurge on a nice resort. You only do it once!
The condo’s we stayed in last time were super nice though, and REALLY affordable. PM me if you want more info on them. We were actually thinking about staying there again this time.
Post # 10
I’ve been to Maui several times and one of our visits we stayed in an economy hotel, and we still really enjoyed ourselves (and I am a huge hotel snob).
While you are on Maui you aren’t going to be hanging out in your room – or even at the pool, I’d recommend the beaches. 🙂 And while I’m not familiar with where you are staying, even if it is not on the beach you can still drive to and use just about any beach on Maui. I would stay in the affordable timeshare and splurge in other areas – you will want to rent a car and it is expensive on Maui. I agree with the idea of spending one night in a luxury place – if you do the Ritz Carlton and tell them it is your honeymoon you will get free champagne, a heart of roses on your bed, and other fun things (well, at least we did, though it was admittedly a different Ritz). The Westin Maui has a very nice spa and I would recommend doing the outdoor couples massage for two – it’s by a waterfall and so relaxing. You could also do several nice dinners out- the Westin has a great outdoor restaurant, you could make a day of it there with the spa and then dinner at the outdoor restaurant (get a reservation for the timing of the sunset). And you’d have the westin experience without the crazy westin prices. 🙂
Some other things to do on Maui that are inexpensive:
– Drive to Haleakala volcano (especially for the sunrise) – but bring a blanket from your hotel room, it’s cold
– Their is a winery that is great and has free tastings
– There is a blowhole (I don’t remember the name) that you can hike to – awesome pictures and an amazing show of nature
– Watch windsurfers and then head around the corner to have lunch (not dinner – less expensive) at Mama’s Fish House
– Road to Hana (bring a picnic lunch)
Some additional splurgy things to do:
– Snorkel trip to Molokini (underwater volcano) – take dramamine if you do this – trust me
– Luau – I highly recommend Feast at Lele
– Helicoptor tour
I love love love giving advice and ideas for Hawaii trips, please feel free to PM me for more info!