Global Discovery Vacations Members Share their Travel Tips

When looking for tips on how to use the Global Discovery Vacations membership, you have several resources at your fingertips, from your member website to a direct call to our agents (800-879-7779). But there is one other source of information that is just as valuable: Your fellow members!

Over the years, we’ve heard different ways members just like you plan their vacations while taking advantage of their membership benefits. If you want to hear some membership tips directly from other members, we’ve compiled some of the best collected from surveys, interviews and social media (some quotes were edited for clarity).

Booking Vacations

“Nothing like spending Christmas by the ocean!” – Courtesy of member Rachel B.

Member Cleo M.:

“We try to book our vacations for the entire year in advance. This helps us be able to save the money needed for plane tickets etc. over time instead of having to charge a bunch of stuff on credit cards. I try to pay cash for everything.”

Member Rick A.:

“I do find now that for skiing, I can use my 60-days-or-less Expressways. For sunny vacations, get on that right away.”

Member Patricia K.:

“My favorite thing to do is book my GDV condo using Expressways and waiving the fee with my Star. As an employee of a major airline, I not only fly standby, but have to plan my trips last minute and am used to ‘winging it’ when it comes to choosing a vacation destination. This method has allowed me to not only travel on the dime, but adds adventure as to where our travels will take us.”

Member Tom S.:

“We found that if we book early and we’re flexible in where we want to travel, we end up in a great vacation spot. We have also been successful in finding some great Expressways during peak season by keeping on top of when they come out.”

Member Jill L.:

“I have always found that talking to the agents and asking them questions is the best way to find the accommodations we desire.”

Member Rebecca L.:

“Global is a full-service travel agency – they can help you with so many different things! We had planned another trip in the spring to the Bahamas, but due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to cancel. So, if you have any doubts about something arising that you are unable to go, I would recommend the Trip Insurance that they offer. It was a very smooth transition when we had to cancel, other than being disappointed that we couldn’t go.”

Getting Value out of Travel

“First vacation EVER. Cancun jungle zip line adventure. It’s so not me normally, but a carefree adrenaline junkie was born in Cancun!” – Courtesy of member Edmanidia G.

Member Pat T.:

“I started an Excel spreadsheet with what we actually paid for the program. Then, each time we travel, I look up on the Internet and find out how much that property would cost without Global. I factor in the annual fees, as well as the weekly fee. We should break even next year (after two years).”

Member Karyn B.:

“I choose experiences over things! Traveling with our family builds positive memories and experiences together that we don’t really get at home with all the daily distractions, electronics, friends, jobs, etc. My kids will not remember what toys they got for Christmas, or how much they loved those super-expensive shoes, but they will remember hiking over the lava and how incredibly hot it was from just a few feet away!”

Member Rene B.:

“You can’t beat the options of places to travel and it is a fraction of the price than if you didn’t belong. Yes there is an up-front investment, but pays for itself in first couple of years of use. If you aren’t able to use the membership one year, you don’t have to pay that year’s annual Activity Fee.”

Member Amanda S.:

“I swear by getting the traveling insurance. Almost six years ago, we booked a trip to Disneyland – flights, tickets, condo, car rental – the whole works! Three days before we left, I ended up in the hospital. The travel insurance covered everything. We were able to re-book the trip when I was better and there were no costs to re-book anything. It was a lifesaver. Since then, we always get the insurance! The fee is nothing compared to flight fees and cancellation fees. We literally would have lost thousands of dollars.”

Sharing the Benefits

“The family sunset in Lake Tahoe.” – Member Shane G.

Member Berta K.:

“I own two memberships, that way I can take our family with us. We were skeptical at first but we decided to check it out. It is everything they promise it to be. If you’re not a planner, it’s harder to get place you want. If you happen to find it, grab it right away.”

Member Cleo M.:

“Travel with friends – it helps cut down on the costs of a lot, including rental cars if need be. Arrange everything needed for your trip between each other. Generally, between the two families, everything is usually all provided for.”

Member Jody S.:

“We have traveled everywhere using our Vacation Weeks as well as last-minute deals. We took the entire family of 26 people to Florida and used our five weeks for two condos in Orlando that were side by side. My kids have used a Vacation Week here and there to go to California, Florida, Las Vegas and other destinations.”

Condominium Living

White Oak Lodge and Resort cabin kitchen.

Member Amy W.:

“We prefer vacationing in a condo because of the fact we have a child. It is so much easier to have a home for the week versus a hotel for the week when you have children. It is really nice to start off the day with a homemade breakfast and a place to have snacks or a frozen pizza if you need. Or, if you just need some time out of the sun, it is so much nicer to kick back and relax in your living room versus your hotel bed.”

Member Pat T.:

“Before we bring our luggage into the condo, I document the condo with pictures. Then, while we stay, I keep a journal regarding the condo such as unit number, comfort of furniture, things the kitchen was missing. This has been very valuable when talking to friends about the condos. I also keep a book with the location, pictures, journal entries for future use if the same condo becomes available.”

What to Expect When Purchasing a Global Discovery Vacations Membership

Member Donna C.:

“This club is not like a timeshare. You are able to go to different places at different times for a very reasonable cost. We did not use the program for the first few years and what a mistake that was. Since using this vacation program, we have been able to go to multiple places that I would have never gone to before. My husband and I plan on retiring in May and traveling to a lot more destinations.”

Member Dianne B.:

“Having been associated with other travel clubs for 10 years, we felt that our family’s vacation needs were shifting (grandchildren getting older, less flexibility for group vacations, etc.), plus we did not want to burden them with the responsibility of increasing maintenance fees when we can no longer travel. Global seemed like a good substitute, providing basically the same type of vacations, but without the high maintenance fees. And there is more flexibility within the mid-Atlantic region, which is where our family lives.”

What kind of tips and tricks do you have for other members using the membership? Share yours in the comments below.

Top photo courtesy of member Jhulee M.

Corey is a writer from Overland Park, KS, and has been with Global Discovery Vacations since September 2013. Once a sportswriter, he traveled the country and became proficient in airport security line etiquette and leaving items in hotel rooms.