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Paradise on a Military Budget

The Armed Forces Vacation Club



The sunrise from my 5th floor balcony at the Maverick Beach Resort

Photo Copyright (c) 2003 by Rod Powers

Sometimes I really, reallylove my job.

I'm writing this article on the balcony of my 5th floor luxury condo at the Maverick Resort, located at Ormond Beach, just north of Daytona Beach, Florida. Just a few minutes ago, I was watching the sun rising steadily over the limitless expanse of a calm Atlantic Ocean. The postcard sunrise had competition, however, because my eyes kept wandering to the group of dolphins who were playing tag just a few feet from the shore. Every five minutes or so, a flight of herron pass directly in front of me (for some reason known only to God and birds, herron seem to like to fly at just about the 5th floor level).

In a little while, I'll take a shower, then head down where a lovely lady named Carol will serve me a hearty breakfast at the pool-side resturaunt. Then I'll likely amble out to the sundeck and lounge around the pool (which overlooks the beach), and soak up some Florida sun -- keeping one eye open in case a pretty lady in a bikini walks by (in this endeavor, I subscribe to Heinlein's theory -- There are no ugly women. Some are just prettier than others).

Around lunchtime, I'll shuffle backto the resturaunt and check out the lunch special for the day. Then I might head back to the pool, or I may decide to check out a video from the front desk and spend the afternoon in my condo, watching a new release.

This evening, I'll cook supper in my condo kitchen, or possibly grill a couple of burgers on one of the gas grills on the sundeck. After that I'll probably open a beer or two, and enjoy the cool evening breeze and great view from my balcony.

Tomorrow, I'll do much the same thing (except I may vary it with a short swim in the 72 degree ocean water, and possibly take a walk down the beach).

I can hear what you're thinking......"About.com obviously pays retired Air Force First Sergeants way too much to manage a web site and write an article now and then...."

Nope. The real secret is taking advantage of a little-known military benefit: The Armed Forces Vacation Club. Military members (including active and inactive members of the Guard and Reserve), retired members,military family members, and 100% disabled veteranscan rent luxury condos at locations around the World for the low cost of $329 per week. That comes out to about $47.00 per day!

How can the military do this? There are hundreds (probably thousands) of time-share condos located throughout the World. Often, someone buys a "time-share" and then doesn't have an opportunity to use it. These unused time-share weeks are sometimes then rented out by the Condo's management association, rather than allow them to sit empty. The Department of Defense's Morale, Welare and Recreation Service has made a special deal with many of these management associations to offer the unused time-share to military members for the unbelievable price of $329 per week.

This is an unbeleivable savings. The regular price to stay at The Maverick, for example, is about $110 per night. The Armed Forces Vacation Club allows us to stay at this luxury resort for seven days, for about the same price that others are paying for three nights.

Maybe Florida isn't your thing? The Armed Forces Vacation Club has listings for virtually everywhere, including all states, Europe, Australia, the Bahamas, Africa, Canada, Mexico, Central & South America, India, the Pacific........pretty much anywhere you may wish to go.

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