Beacon Island in Plettenberg Bay is a popular attraction over the festive season. Picture: Supplied.

It seems timeshare owners and vacation club members are in ‘pole position’ to soak up the sun and wake up to the tranquil sounds of the ocean from the privacy of luxury family-sized accommodation this festive season. The Vacation Ownership Association of Southern Africa (VOASA) reported that close to 300 000 room nights have been booked across the country over the Christmas holidays.

VOASA spokesman, Alex Bosch, said when they compared the number of timeshare apartments to the number of hotel rooms in Umhlanga, for example, they found that timeshare accounted for approximately 63% of the accommodation options. 

“This is a very interesting observation because not only are these vacation owners deriving greater benefit from their accommodation offerings, they are also contributing significantly to local revenues through restaurants, entertainment attractions and retail outlets,” said Bosch.

A recent global Oxford Economics Study, conducted on behalf of the American Resort Development Association, revealed that vacation owners generally spend more than double what a hotel guest spends on local attractions.  This is because hotel guests spend the majority of their holiday budget on premium season accommodation rates, while vacation owners are saving up to 50% on their accommodation that is prepaid over 12 months - which means more available cash for Christmas festivities. Some of the popular beach properties where vacation owners will spend the holidays include Bantry Bay and The Peninsula All-Suite Hotel in Cape Town, La Côte d’Azur in Margate and Breakers and Umhlanga Sands in Durban.