LEISURE: Holidays on the Cheap

Two weeks at a luxury vacation condominium or resort at 50% below regular rates every year until 2016? Sounds like the grand prize behind the sequined curtain on some TV game show. Actually, it is a fairly typical example of the kind of arrangement available through a holiday-financing gimmick called time-sharing that is stirring interest among budget-minded vacationers.

Under time-sharing plans, participants pay anywhere from $800 to $8,000 for bargain-rate accommodations in a certain condominium or vacation resort for a given number of weeks in a particular season each year, usually for...

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