March 31, 2009 // Franchising.com // Parsippany, N.J. —– RCI, the global leader in vacation exchange and one of the Wyndham Worldwide family of companies (NYSE: WYN), today unveiled new and innovative technology advances to enhance member experience and deliver increased value to its affiliated resorts.
"Over the past 35 years, RCI has been devoted to providing industry-leading technology and marketing solutions that create new capabilities that developers can use in attracting new sales leads while improving their value proposition to its membership base," said Geoff Ballotti, President and CEO, Group RCI. "Our commitment to and investment in technology development and customer satisfaction continues to position us as the technology and marketing leader for the vacation exchange industry."
At the American Resort Development Association (ARDA) 2009 Convention and Exposition in Orlando, Florida, RCI unveiled the newest of its technology initiatives. A unique tool that will reinvent the vacation planning experience, RCI® TV is an online television network available to RCI members on RCI.com that offers an entertaining and educational network filled with stories about RCI, products and services, and travel and resort information. Subscribing members will find a broad selection of useful content on RCI TV to help them get the most out of their membership and make vacation planning fun again. With developers able to feature their properties and millions of members able to watch RCI-affiliated resorts come to life in the upcoming Resort Showcase channel, RCI believes that RCI.com will become a tool that will drive greater exchange activity and help increase occupancy for RCI affiliated resorts.
Also part of its technology initiatives, RCI earlier launched Enhanced Search, an online search capability for its RCI® Weeks members. This new functionality has radically changed the online experience by providing members with a broad view of the exchange vacations available to them and the ability to search using filters to help find the exact vacation experience they want. Since its inception, the new online features have already produced positive results, with an increase in both online activity and member satisfaction. In January and February 2009, North American members booked 40 percent more exchanges online than in the same period for 2008. Of those members surveyed, 85 percent responded that they liked the enhanced search at least as well or better than the previous search function.
"As the inventor of the vacation exchange business, we continue working to develop fresh and new ideas that will improve our members' experience and exceed the expectations of our affiliates," said Ballotti. "RCI TV brings an exciting and dynamic element to RCI.com that provides a terrific selection of useful content that will delight our members while helping our developers drive sales. With our current content, we're only scratching the surface. We're planning to aggressively expand these channels and make our ever-growing travel and resort content more widely available across our social networks."
Group RCI, part of the Wyndham Worldwide family of companies, (NYSE: WYN) is the worldwide leader in vacation exchange and the European leader in vacation rentals, with exclusive access for specified periods to more than 73,000 vacation properties in approximately 100 countries. The company is comprised of vacation exchange, including RCI, the worldwide leader in vacation exchange and provider of travel services to businesses and consumers and The Registry Collectionïƒ’ program, the world's largest luxury exchange program; vacation rentals, including Endless Vacation RentalsSM , Landal GreenParks®, Novasol®, and other renowned vacation rental brands, through which vacationers can rent a variety of property types, from city apartments to villas; and NorthCourse®, Leisure Real Estate Solutions, an international leader in providing a full spectrum of advisory, research, and asset management services. Wyndham Worldwide Corporation is one of the world's largest hospitality companies with leading brands in lodging franchising, vacation ownership, vacation rentals and vacation exchange.