Westgate Resorts is a Florida-based timeshare group founded in 1982. Starting off as a small resort in Kissimmee, the company expanded in the 1990s and early 2000s by opening some of their most popular resorts, including Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa in Orlando, Westgate Town Center Resort, and Westgate Park City Resort & Spa. The company now owns nearly 30 resorts and is the largest privately held corporation in central Florida. But despite all this success, Westgate timeshare reviews put into question the ethics of this influential corporation.
According to the reviews, many Westgate timeshare owners have had very negative experiences with the company. Customers say that Westgate uses high-pressure sales tactics and holds people in sales pitches for hours longer than promised. They’re also known for having unkempt and outdated rooms despite showing customers state-of-the-art units during sales pitch tours.
After hearing what all the negative Westgate timeshare reviews have to say, you’ll never want to invest in vacation ownership with them.
If you take a look at Westgate timeshare’s Better Business Bureau page, you’ll see that they have a shockingly low customer review score of 1.09 out of 5 and a whopping 601 customer complaints over the last three years. With such negative reviews, you’d wonder why Westgate remains one of the most successful timeshare developers in the industry.
Let’s delve into Westgate timeshare reviews and determine the major reasons why customers say you should never invest in a timeshare vacation with them.
A prevailing message among Westgate timeshare reviews is that the company is dishonest about the length of their timeshare sales presentations. Like many other developers, Westgate ropes potential buyers into attending these pitches by offering them free getaways at Westgate Vacation Villa resorts. Customers are told the pitch will be 90 minutes long and that if they stay for the duration, they’ll get their nights for free. But if this sounds too good to be true, it is.
Multiple customers say they were roped into a sales pitch that lasted up to six hours. When they’d request to leave without signing a timeshare contract, the salesperson would threaten to make them pay for their free stay and even said added fees would be applied if they didn’t make a purchase.
In replies to these BBB reviews, representatives from Westgate have tried to backtrack by saying they don’t require customers to stay longer than 90 minutes and that any individual salesperson who forced them to stay hadn’t been properly trained. However, the frequency of this issue brings into question Westgate’s major communication issues.
Another major issue that reviewers discuss on BBB is that Westgate’s salespeople and the brokers managing numbers for timeshare buyers have major communication issues, especially when it comes to timeshare prices.
Multiple reviewers report that their timeshare salesperson dodged questions regarding how much their timeshare would cost. Sales reps will often hold off on giving actual numbers, insisting that whatever price it amounts to, the customer will be able to afford it. When pressed further, they’ll say things like, “You can’t put a value on unforgettable family vacations.”
Sales representatives are also known to throw in tons of incentives for attendees to purchase a timeshare. They’ll offer perks like tickets to water parks, Disney, and other theme parks that will only be received after signing a timeshare contract.
And when customers get iffy about offering up their social security number, reps will tell them they don’t have to provide the number and that the signing process will not affect their credit score. However, the mood starts to change when customers move onto the financing part of the timeshare sales pitch.
According to Westgate timeshare reviews, the brokers who handle finances for timeshare purchases tend to have inconsistent messages from what the sales representatives say. Despite sales reps’ insistence that Westgate timeshares will fit any customer’s budget, brokers are known to pull out outrageous prices that many customers are nowhere near affording. The broker will gradually talk down the customer until they’ve been in the sales presentation so long that they agree to a price they otherwise wouldn’t, just to escape the pitch.
Another common sentiment in the Westgate timeshare reviews is major booking issues. A lot of customers say that once they signed on for their timeshare, they had a hard time booking a room. Since Westgate is one of the most popular timeshare developers, there’s stiff competition for units, and even if you consistently pay your ever-increasing annual maintenance fees there’s no guarantee that you’ll book a spot.
Another complaint customers have had is that many of the rooms at Westgate Resorts are outdated, dirty, and not up to par with the units they were originally shown. When Westgate salespeople take customers through a tour of the resort during sales presentations, they show them the best units they have to offer. This gives guests the impression that this is what they’re buying into.
But when they actually purchased and started visiting their Westgate Resort timeshare, many reviewers were disappointed by how rundown and dingy their actual unit was. On top of that, many reviews state that Westgate front desk workers were anything but accommodating when they discussed disapproval over their unit. A lot of customers even insisted on checking out because the workers provided no suitable rooming alternatives for them.
A big part of their success is one of the major complaints Westgate owners have with the company: that it’s almost impossible to cancel a timeshare with Westgate. Like other major timeshare developers such as Marriott Vacation Club and Wyndham timeshares, once a Westgate timeshare contract has been signed it’s very difficult to escape ownership unless it’s done within the rescission period. This period of time where customers are given the option to cancel their timeshare is usually somewhere between three to 10 days after signing.
But according to the Westgate timeshare reviews, rescission is rarely acknowledged by reps during the sales process. Though it’s ethically questionable to withhold information about cancellation periods from customers, this practice isn’t uncommon. Most major timeshare developers don’t share this information with their prospective customers during the sales process.
As long as they include information about rescission somewhere in the large stack of paperwork that comes with the contract, the deal is technically not a timeshare scam. Some timeshare reviewers have shared that their rescission period was intentionally hidden somewhere within their contract and they didn’t find it until it was too late to cancel. At that point Westgate representatives simply said they could do nothing to help and instead bombarded them with requests to upgrade their timeshare unit.
If you once had an interest in purchasing a Westgate timeshare, a quick skim through their hundreds of negative reviews should change your mind. Because according to Westgate timeshare reviews, the company is notorious for having aggressive sales tactics, major communication issues, booking and rooming problems, and deceptive cancellation policies.
But what if you’ve already invested in a Westgate timeshare and you’re past your rescission period? It may seem like you’re out of options and that you’re stuck with an unwanted timeshare purchase for life — but you might not be.
If you’ve been a victim of fraud, high-pressure sales tactics, or misrepresentation during the timeshare sales process, Centerstone Group may be able to help you pursue timeshare cancellation. Contact us for a free consultation to analyze your case and determine eligibility.