How does Disney Vacation Club work? Is Disney Vacation Club worth the money? Read on to discover the truth about Disney Vacation Club here.
If you’re considering traveling to Disney for many years to come, The Disney Vacation Club (DVC) is one of the most exclusive Disney membership programs available. The members of this club get access to amazing Disney accommodations, discounts at parks, and more.
Is Disney Vacation Club worth the money, however? This guide will go over how the club works, what you get from your membership, as well as the positives and potential drawbacks.
From where to stay to the points per dollar, this is your DVC membership guide.
How Does Disney Vacation Club Work?
The Disney Vacation Club is essentially a timeshare program. Members purchase points that are like ownership in a Disney Vacation Club property. This resort will basically become their home away from home for all of their future visits if they choose.
This program is based on points and members are required to purchase a minimum of 100. These points are valid for 50 years from purchase.
Members can then access their points to book anything they’d like over the 50-year period.
You can also resell your membership down the road or buy points at a discount through a Disney Vacation Club resale program.
Disney Vacation Club members are able to choose any DVC resorts, as well as non-Disney Vacation Club accommodations.
You also aren’t tied to a certain type of room, the number of days you travel per year, or a time of year.
Disney Vacation Club Price
Currently, $188 is the price per point for 2020. If you buy the minimum, that’s $18,800 for 100 points.
A 250-point package would cost $47,000. This is a more typical package to buy. There are also closing costs and annual dues which vary by your choice of home resort and the number of points you purchase.
Based on the number of points you have, you can take annual trips and come back to the same location, or you can save your points and bank them for a more extravagant trip which would include more expensive resorts, exotic locations, or trips that include extended family.
The program is very flexible and you can accommodate a lot of different scenarios.
Where Can Disney Vacation Club Members Stay?
There are currently 12 locations within the Walt Disney World property that are Disney Vacation Club Resorts. There are also resorts at Disneyland in California, and in Hawaii and South Carolina.
Disney Vacation Club members can also use their points to book at any Disney-operated hotel, resort, or property. This includes the Disney Cruise Line.
There’s also a timeshare exchange network that you’ll be a part of, where you can access non-Disney timeshare resorts and hotels across the world.
Disney Vacation Club Value Perks
One of the biggest perks of the Disney Vacation Club is that your rates are locked in for 50 years. It’s almost inevitable that the cost per point will increase from $188 at some point over the next 50 years.
Think about if you bought your points when they were $35 per point and now, they are $188.
As a member, you’ll also get discounts to Disney shows, character experiences, behind the scenes tours, and discounts at the parks themselves, restaurants, and the Disney Cruise Line.
Disney Vacation Club accommodations are also world-class. While some are more luxurious than others, most of them are meant to be like vacation homes or condo rentals.
Disney Vacation Club resorts will offer all of the comforts of home, including bedrooms, kitchens, washer and dryers, and the ability to sleep, extended family.
Potential Disney Membership Drawbacks
One drawback to the Disney Vacation Club is you need to plan your trips in advance. Many resorts book up at least six months prior, so it can be helpful to plan your Disney trips each year to lock in the dates and resort you’d like.
If you plan trips last-minute, you may need to book stays at hotels that aren’t Disney Vacation Club resorts.
Another potential drawback is you’re locked into the program for 50 years. While getting the points at the lowest rate is a nice perk, you’ll need to make sure you use all of your points over the 50-year period.
There are ways you can sell your points on the secondary market, but you might take a loss for them. You can also rent your points.
If you plan on making regular Disney trips over the next 50 years, you’ll certainly use all of your points with your own children and even your grandchildren.
Parks and Fees
Another thing to keep in mind is that the annual fees will always rise. These fees are tied to the real estate market, taxes, and operating costs.
Your Disney Vacation Club membership also doesn’t include tickets to the parks or food. So while you’re planning, make sure you budget in the extra cost for airfare, driving, or park tickets, as well as dining.
You do get discounts on park admission, restaurants, and countless other tickets included with your membership.
Is Disney Vacation Club Worth the Money?
As with any timeshare program, there are pros and cons. As a Disney Vacation Club member, you’ll basically be committing to taking regular Disney vacations. If this is something you’re planning for over the course of your life, a Disney Vacation Club membership makes a lot of sense.
If you’re planning on traveling with extended family and taking longer annual trips, your points will certainly come in handy.
If you aren’t sure you’d like to return to Disney properties regularly, consider looking at the other resorts that are available as well to see if they make sense for you.
At the end of the day, it’s best to weigh the pros and cons, factor in your family’s travel plans, finances, and what your trips to Disney will look like, to know if Disney Vacation Club worth the money for you and your family.
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