Trading Power is the term used by RCI vacation exchange company to describe the value assigned to a timeshare week for the purpose of exchange. Using a ‘like for like’ principle, each property unit that you wish to add to their inventory, or ‘deposit’ for exchange is given a value that is calculated based on a number of criteria. These include popularity of the resort where you have your unit, the type of accommodations, the demand of the season when you have your timeshare week and how early you register or deposit the unit for exchange etc.
As a general rule, supply and demand is a key factor in your exchange value, with popular destinations and high demand weeks yielding higher points and giving you more exchange leverage. For example you need higher Trading Power for prime destinations and popular dates like Christmas week and Thanksgiving.
The following are some of the factors taken into account when RCI calculates your Trading Power:
- Supply and Demand
- Size and type of unit
- Score of resort from comment cards
- How far in advance you deposit
How to Enhance your Trading Power
The main way to maximize your Trading Power is to plan your vacation in advance. How early you deposit your resort week affects the trade value assigned to your unit. If you add your property for exchange with less than 9 months until your planned vacation, your exchange value decreases in comparison to similar properties that were deposited earlier. Therefore, to get the most out of your resort week, you should deposit between 2 years and 9 months in advance. The knock on advantage of early planning, is that you also have plenty of time to catch great deals and you do not need to know when and where you want to travel.
Another way to enhance your Trading Power is to deposit a week that is in high demand, like Christmas or during the school vacations. First, ensure that your reserve a popular week in your home resort and then you will be able to exchange your week at a higher value when you deposit early.
The beauty of Trading Power is that you do not lose the value you accrue, and you are given Deposit Credit for any unused Trading Power for an additional vacation. This happens when you exchange your timeshare for a unit that has a lower value than your own home resort. In that case, the difference is added as credit.
For example, the timeshare you bought might have been two weeks in a three bedroom apartment during the Christmas and New Year period for all the family, but this year you want a romantic anniversary vacation for two in a one bedroom suite in spring. The Trading Power of your home resort unit is much higher than the kind of vacation you wish to reserve, and therefore you will be credited with the difference to use on your next vacation.