While the timeshare industry doesn’t have the best reputation for being completely forthcoming about how timeshares actually work, usually a lot of what the sales person says can be regarded as hype rather than outright fraud. Unfortunately though, this isn’t the case in Mexico where fraud is pretty commonplace in timeshare sales.
If you purchase a timeshare during a tour in Mexico, you should be aware that Mexican law requires a 5 business day cooling off period for timeshare purchases. This is also known as the rescission period. But getting this rescission period honored by the timeshare sales force is another matter all together.
Most of the fraud that occurs in the Mexican timeshare industry has to do with the rescission period. It is not uncommon that this law is completely ignored and some timeshare resorts require you to sign your rights away even though Mexican law does not allow this either.
Let me reiterate. The “cooling off” period is a right guaranteed to you by Mexican law and you cannot waive this right away, even though many timeshare sales personnel will insist that you must do so. It does not matter if they are selling you a “used” timeshare or if you are turning in a timeshare you own to cover part of the purchase price. You still have the right to cancel the sale within five business days.
Of course, enforcing the rights you do have is another matter altogether. If you do find yourself in a situation where you are trying to cancel the purchase of a timeshare that you bought in Mexico, make sure to contact your credit card company and dispute the charges if you paid by credit card.
In addition to your credit card company, you should also immediately contact Mexico’s consumer protection department, called Profeco. Their phone number is (+52) 55 5211-1723. You will need to send them a complaint letter and fill out some paperwork, but they will be a big help making sure that you get your money back, though it may take a while.
This is just another reason why I would recommend buying your Mexican timeshare from eBay or another reseller located in the US rather than buying it in Mexico itself. You will save money and a great deal of hassle.