new members query
Would like a little advice if possible. We are resident in the UK and are just about to become members of the DVC.
We have thought this out considerably but was just wondering if there is any advice on any pitfalls of owning points for someone in the U.K.
For example would it be impractacal or not cost effective because we would need to factor in air fares?
How easy is it to obtain the accommodation you require - are accommodation booked up very quickly.
Any pluses or minus that anyone has come across in the past would be most helpful.
While there are certainly DVC members willing and able to respond to your question, we do have a UK DVC Forum which might be an opportunity for more response.
I will move it over there for you.
First thing to consider is that DVC points are better used for DVC resorts and those are only in the USA. There are other options like exchanging into RCI for a resort in Europe or using points for an hotel in Disneyland Paris, but those are not a good use of point, there are other more economical options for that.
So to take full advantage of your purchase, you should go to WDW or DLR at least every 2 or 3 years. Do you plan to do this? Have you done this in the past few years? While going often to WDW is attracting to everyone, it is also very expensive, starting from airfare to tickets and food, so the excitement could wear off after a few trips and you'll remain with an expensive timeshare you cannot use effectively.
Are you considering resale or are you going to purchase direct?
Welcome to the DisBoards and I'll just respond to your question above....
We're OKW, SSR and Vero Beach members and last year we stayed at Vero and then at the Beach Club, this year we've booked a week at Bay Lake Towers and 2-weeks at Animal Kingdom in a Value Studio which is normally difficult for a non-Animal Kingdom DVC member.
Like most from the UK we book as far out as possible so if we're booking our home resort that will be between 7 and 11 months out, normally 11-months.
And as long as you book at exactly 7-months out from your check-in date you should hopefully get a booking at most of the other DVC resorts but that also depends on the time of year you travel, don't expect a non-home resort over Christmas, Easter, July 4th and Thanksgiving.
Also to bear in mind, some members might not be able to use their membership over a few years due to changes in circumstances but if that unfortunately happens then all is not lost as members have the opportunity to rent their points.
This can be done through a third person-company or you can rent them yourself, currently you can get $11 per point for renting from David's rental's, check out http://www.dvcrequest.com/associate/ and all the replies to this thread http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=3064196
Best of luck and we love our DVC, members since '97
whether or not DVC is cost effective depends on what your baseline is. There will always be cheaper ways of doing Disney than buying DVC. This applies whether you are from the UK or not.
If you go to disney regularly, pack rack rate, stay in delux hotels then DVC will save you money. If not then you will always find a way of doing your holiday cheaper than DVC. DVC for us changes how we holiday not how much we spend. Before DVc we would ahve gone and spent two weeks offsite in a villa or condo somewhere but we always wanted to stay ionsite in deluxe accomodation. However, when i priced it i always baulked at the priced. Thats why i bought DVC. We now can stay onsite in the accomodation we want without my thinking i could get this cheaper elsewhere. Over the next 20-30 years of holidays i fully expect to spend more money at Disney not less because we bought DVC as we will now definitly go every other year whereas before we might have skipped a few trips. We bought DVC because we want to own it and we wanted the certainty that we will be back, not because we genuinly believed we would spend less money long term.
Coming from the Uk does have one advantage, you are likely to be thinking about planning 1 year in advance. That way you will be able to take advantage of your home resort 11 month window and get the accomodation you want. We always book our flights as soon as they are released to ensure we get the cheapest and book accomodation 11 months before
Thank you very much for all your replies.
We are going to buy direct from DVC. Our home resort will be Animal Kingdom. We have been going to a DLR every 3 years but now our children have children of their own and although we will be visiting our home resort we also wanted to be able to stay at other resorts using our points. We did not want to be commited to going to Animal Kingdom for each vacation.
We felt that we could have the benefit of being the ones vacationing using the points for the first few years and then our children could inherit our points when the time arrives and it be beneficial to them and their families.
Being realistic, my husband and I will not be around in 2057!
We were thinking of acquiring further points over the following few years to increase the amount of points we have.
Nobody knows what the future brings for individual people or familes. Perhaps we should have thought of the DVC about 10 years earlier then this?
It would probably cost us £1,500 each visit, to America with air fares etc. using DVC points without spending money.
We have just come back from a 12 night holiday to America and a Disney Cruise and that cost £4,200 without spending money
So as long as we have sufficient income to continue to travel, looking at the figures being part of DVC is beneficial.
Our only other thought was the "Maintenance Fee" which is paid each year for your home resort. Would it be quite easy to sell your points for one year etc if you could not travel. This could then go towards these fees.
Oh dear. Is this a good idea for us or not? We will have to make a decision soon as we are awaiting the papers to arrive for us to sign.
Thank you everyone, your comments will help us build a bigger picture and give us the ability to make a more informed choice.
Do you know that with resale you can get an contract AKV for around 70$ per point (even something less)?
Buying through Disney has some advantage, but the price difference is huge and many think that those advantages are not worth the difference.
I'm not saying this is the best option for you, just to be sure that you have evaluated, since many of us on the Disboards consider this the best option.
About your questions:
Once you sign up it's not possible to split a contract anymore, so if you want to leave it to children it's better to think to this now. You pay slightly more for closing costs.
Are you confortable with the concept of Use Year?
Do you know which are the cancellation policies?
The difference between a villa and a standard hotel room?
What is a perk that can be removed any time and what's guaranteed by your contract?
Which are the very busy periods for DVC (they not always are the same of hotel high seasons) and which resorts are difficult to book and when?
Buying DVC you'll spend a lot of money and commit to 40+ years of maintenance fees, you should do this with the happiness of looking forward many years of vacations, not with doubts if you did the right thing.
DVC is not going anywhere, it will still be there if you take some more time to study the system.
zavandor has highlighted some excellent points which you need to consider and if you've not yet consider buying from another member who's selling their points through resell from say the Timeshare Store then you must fully look into that as zavandor suggests.
We purchased all our points through Disney, but with what we know now and how we use our membership we would buy through resell next time.
Here's an example, current price per point when buying direct from Disney for an Animal Kingdom membership is $145 (it was $140 but increased last month to $145) and this can be reduced via a combination of a dollar per-point discounts and a developer incentives.
Examples for a new member purchase of between 100-159 points: $145 per point less $3 per point incentive plus $1,000 Developer Credit
Between 160-219 points: $145 per point less $10 per point incentive plus $1,000 Developer Credit
Between 220-319 points: $145 per point less $12 per point incentive plus $1,000 Developer Credit.
But if you were to buy from another member through resell then there are at least 3-companies which you could use.
The Timeshare Store is one of those and advertises on the DisBoards at www.dvc-resales.com/dvclisting.cfm and you should be able to purchase a BLT contract for less than $100 per point, an AKL contact for $75 or less and at other resorts between approximately $40 and $80.
There's two other cost to think about, the closing cost runs from $322 to $825 and paying for the annual dues for this year.
And there are less benefits to consider but you may never get to use those benefits anyway.
1) What are cancellation policies?
2) Which perk can be removed at any time? (I'm thinking this is DCL)
3) What are busy periods for DVC?
Thanks in advance!
Here's the answer to question 1 taken directly from the members website.
Changing or Cancelling Reservations at Disney Vacation Club Resorts
Changing a reservation 31 or more days prior to check-in:
If the new reservation uses fewer Vacation Points than the original reservation, the remaining Vacation Points will be returned to your account in the Use Year in which the reservation falls.
Changing a reservation 30 days-1 day prior to check-in:
All Vacation Points will be placed in the Holding Account. If the new reservation uses fewer Vacation Points than the original reservation, the remaining Vacation Points will stay in the Holding Account until the end of your Use Year.
Changing a reservation on the check-in date:
If the new reservation uses fewer Vacation Points than the original reservation, the remaining Vacation Points will be forfeited.
Cancelling a reservation 31 or more days prior to check-in:
All Vacation Points used to make the reservation will be restored to your account in the Use Year in which the reservation falls.
Cancelling a reservation 30 days-1 day prior to check-in:
All the Vacation Points used to make the reservation will be placed in the Holding Account in the Use Year in which the reservation falls.
Cancelling a reservation on the check-in date:
All the Vacation Points used to make the reservation will be forfeited.
Question 2) Which perk can be removed at any time?
Check out this thread http://www.disboards.com/showthread....=portable+perk and click on the link at thread #7 for a list of DVC portable perks.
Question 3) What are busy periods for DVC?
Check out this thread at http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2951245
Hope that helps
Thanks so much, Samaya!! Before reading your post, I researched everything on my own, as they were all questions I hadn't thought of yet. I found a lot of information and am a more educated 'buyer' because of it!
Only to happy to help; you and SylviaG are doing the right thing, researching the pro's and con's of a DVC membership and what better way than ask current members.
There's a wealth of information on the internet, but it can be difficult to find especially if you don't know the question to ask but that's when site's like the DisBoards come into their own. When we first purchased DVC back in 1997 we only had a DVC guide to ask questions to, we didn't know any members and we couldn't turn to the internet for help.
Within days we made a snap decision when on vacation in '97 to make our first purchase at OKW, luckily we were buying into Disney whose product has been first class ever since.
If we were buying points now for the first time, then we would be searching the web just like you but would be buying resell and not direct from Disney due to the high difference in pricing, it's not just a few dollars a point.
DVC members are only too happy to help potential new members so keep asking those questions until your happy enough to proceed.
All the very best Samaya
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