Disney Vacation Club: The Cost of Ownership

By | October 6, 2010 at 6:00 am | 44 comments | Resorts/DVC | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Disney Vacation Club: The Cost of Ownership photo

Editorial note: First, I’d like to thank each and every one of you for visiting.  This article is by far the most popular on the site and I appreciate each and every one of you visiting.

Rightly so, some commenters below have pointed out that I accidentally neglected to include some important information about the numbers I’ve posted.  I believe in complete transparency, so here are the facts:

  • I chose 200 points because this is the number of points required for a standard one-bedroom villa at Animal Kingdom Lodge for a week during Dreams season.
  • A one bedroom villa is much larger than a normal hotel room and includes a separate bedroom, living room, kitchen and washer/dryer.
  • I then chose various hotel rooms across property that guests pay cash for to compare to from all categories.

Comparing a one-bedroom villa to a hotel room is not a direct comparison as far as room size and amenities are concerned.  However, I believe it’s a realistic comparison because it’s a reasonable way to use 200 points as compared to what a guest would pay cash for.  In actuality, there are an infinite number of ways to use a DVC contract.  An ideal solution would be to come up with a schedule of how someone would use their points over time, but my aim was to keep this simple and realistic and not simply an academic look at a studio against a hotel room, although some do stay only in studios.

If you are considering DVC, I implore you to do extensive research.  At the bottom of this article I have provided the spreadsheet I used to calculate these numbers.  Feel free to download it and adjust the numbers as you see fit.  The initial values are the only ones that should need to be changed; the spreadsheet should take care of the rest itself.

Finally, I am considering writing a follow-up to this article with additional situations.  Again, thank you very much for visiting!

Original article:

The Disney Vacation Club (DVC) infomercial I reviewed recently led me to start thinking about DVC again.  DVC on a strictly emotional level sounds incredible: having the ability to book Disney and other vacations using points instead of cash.  However, I’m going to take all the emotion out of a DVC purchase today and look at it from a strictly financial standpoint.  How much will DVC actually cost over the life of a contract?  When does DVC break even compared to paying for Disney hotel accommodations in cash?

Let’s start with three DVC purchasing scenarios.  All three are for 200 points; the first is for Animal Kingdom Lodge through Disney, the second at Animal Kingdom Lodge through resale, and the third for Saratoga Springs through resale.  Disney’s cost per point includes current incentives and resale costs per point were found in current listings on dvcbyresale.com.

 Cost per PointNumber of PointsTotal Upfront Cost
Animal Kingdom Lodge (through Disney)$110.00$200.00$22,000.00
Animal Kingdom Lodge (resale)$83.75$200.00$16,750.00
Saratoga Springs (resale)$65.00$200.00$13,000.00

A resale at Saratoga Springs is the absolute cheapest way to buy into DVC on Walt Disney World property.  However, buying a resale anywhere will save you a good deal of money versus buying directly from Disney ($5,250 in our Animal Kingdom Lodge example above).

The next part of the DVC monetary equation is dues.  Dues are collected from every DVC member based on the number of points owned at a DVC resort.  These dues are similar to homeowners association fees; they go toward the upkeep of the resort.  DVC dues go up around 3-4% each year according to DVCNews.com.  For this example I am assuming I purchased DVC in 2011 and will have all 200 of my points available in 2011; therefore, I will be paying full DVC dues for 2011 and each year thereafter.  Unfortunately, as of this writing the dues for 2011 are not yet published; however, I am assuming a 3% increase annually.  For 2011 I expect to pay $5.10 per point ($1,019.70 total) at Animal Kingdom Lodge and $4.59 per point ($918.76 total) at Saratoga Springs.

For the sake of simplicity I plan to visit Walt Disney World each year the last full week of August starting in 2011.  This is generally near the beginning of Value Season for the resorts and Dream Season for the DVC resorts.  200 points will be enough to book DVC accommodations at the home resorts at this time of year.  In addition to the three DVC options above, I have chosen six resort rooms to compare at rack rates.  For the Value Resorts, all of which are priced similarly, I chose a standard room at Pop Century.  For the Moderates, I chose a standard room at Port Orleans French Quarter.  Finally, for the Deluxe resorts, I chose a standard room at Animal Kingdom Lodge, a water view at the Boardwalk, a studio at Saratoga Springs and a Contemporary Club Level room with a Magic Kingdom view.

I will use the six resort room options and the three DVC options to find break-even points for each.  First, here’s a look at total costs in 2031, twenty years after purchasing DVC.  I am also assuming a 3% increase in the cost of hotel rooms annually.  According to DVCNews.com, resort rates increase 3-5% each year.

 Twenty Year Cost
Animal Kingdom Lodge (through Disney)$51,241.41
Animal Kingdom Lodge (resale)$45,991.41
Saratoga Springs (resale)$39,346.81
Pop Century Standard Room$16,775.74
Port Orleans French Quarter Standard Room$31,113.99
Animal Kingdom Lodge Standard Room$48,721.35
Saratoga Springs Deluxe Studio$59,044.88
Boardwalk Water View Room$82,588.28
Contemporary Magic Kingdom View Club Level$117,430.21

Twenty years later, all three example DVC purchases cost less than paying cash for a Saratoga Springs Deluxe Studio, a Boardwalk Water View room, and a Contemporary Magic Kingdom View Club Level room each year.

The following chart shows final costs for Animal Kingdom Lodge as compared to cash rooms.  The Animal Kingdom Lodge contracts last until 2057.

 Final Cost
Animal Kingdom Lodge (through Disney)$124,374.31
Animal Kingdom Lodge (resale)$119,124.31
Pop Century Standard Room$58,731.95
Port Orleans French Quarter Standard Room$108,930.20
Animal Kingdom Lodge Standard Room$170,573.66
Saratoga Springs Deluxe Studio$206,716.40
Boardwalk Water View Room$289,141.92
Contemporary Magic Kingdom View Club Level$411,123.67

As shown by the chart above, at current costs an Animal Kingdom Lodge contract through either Disney or resale will cost less than all the Deluxe resort options.  It will not cost less than paying cash each year at a Value or a Moderate resort.

Here are the comparisons for the Saratoga Springs resale.  Saratoga Springs contracts end in 2054, so the numbers are different for all resorts.

 Final Cost
Saratoga Springs (resale)$94,814.12
Pop Century Standard Room$52,093.32
Port Orleans French Quarter Standard Room$96,617.52
Animal Kingdom Lodge Standard Room$151,293.25
Saratoga Springs Deluxe Studio$183,350.67
Boardwalk Water View Room$256,459.42
Contemporary Magic Kingdom View Club Level$364,653.24

The final cost of a Saratoga Springs resale contract compares favorably to all cash room options except for Pop Century.  The difference between the final cost of a Saratoga Springs DVC contract and Port Orleans French Quarter, however, is less than $2,000.00.

What can we draw from this exercise?  A DVC contract is generally worth the outlay if you plan to visit WDW very regularly and stay in Deluxe accommodations.  Even the cheapest on-property DVC option, a Saratoga Springs resale, is only barely cheaper than paying for a moderate resort with cash every year.  I excluded extraneous costs such as closing costs and property tax to make an apples-to-apples comparison.  These would eat into any savings a little further.  Also, this excludes any discounts that may be available each year, reducing the cash cost of a room.  Any savings through DVC are definitely long-term savings.  Disney claims the cost of DVC can be made up in as little as four or five trips.  In actuality, of the comparisons here, only the Saratoga Springs resale costs less in five years than the Contemporary Magic Kingdom View Club Level room.  I also believe DVC rooms carry a cash premium for no other reason than to make a direct comparison from cash costs to DVC costs.

Because of the comparisons I’ve made here, I’m not planning to invest in DVC right now.  At this point, we’re a Value and Moderate Resort family; paying cash and keeping an eye on the discounts serves us better than purchasing a DVC contract.  DVC is a very personal decision; I suggest running similar numbers for your own family before making an investment.

For reference I’ve included my complete calcuations here.

This post is part of the eleventh Disney Blog Carnival.  Click for more excellent Disney blog articles.

Related posts:

  1. New Disney Dining Plan PIN Codes – Free Quick Service Dining for Value and Moderate Resorts
  2. Disney Vacation Club: Not Always a Huge Investment
  3. Free Dining: Is it Always the Cheapest Option?
  4. Review: Disney Storybook Vacations, a DVC Infomercial
  5. Disney Dining Plan: Worth the Cost?
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  • http://grumpyspace.blogspot.com grumpwurst

    Great synopsis. I did a similar one a few years back but approached it from a cost per point standpoint and cost per night of stay.

    But, your math has proven what the DVC Guides (aka Sales Person) made very clear to us. If you are primarily a Moderate or Value Resort guest then the DVC is not an option for you.

    In our case, if we had to choose between a Value resort and not going at all, we’d not go. So DVC was an option for us

  • http://twitter.com/DisneyGirlInNJ DisneyGirlInNJ

    Very interesting, Scott! :) Awesome comparison. I looked up Boardwalk resales and those are about $75/point right now. Dues are less than AKV but I can see where the break even point will fit in.

    Looks like I’ll be passing on DVC for now as well. I’ve been leaning that way but this reiterates that. One interesting thing to look at in the future though….renting DVC points instead of booking a value/mod through Disney. I paid $10/point at BWV for 3 nights in Jan and paid roughly $350-$400. Booking at POFQ would have been the same price. I’d recommend renting DVC points whenever you can. It’ll be about the same price as a mod, yet you have all of the amenities of being a DVC owner when you’re on property, without the hassle of dues, etc. Finding the best owner to rent from might be a headache but I was lucky and found a great owner on my first try.

  • http://twitter.com/GigglesJS Jami Smith

    Great comparison! We broke it all down and did a per point value. It made it easier for me to understand when the DVC Rep said the buy-in was paid for in 6-7 vacations. What also peaked our interest were the other locations that we could vacation by using our points. We could go to any of the other parks and also Vero, Hilton Head and soon to be Aulani. There’s also the cruises and the Adventures by Disney tours. These are all vacations that we had on our list of things to do anyways. We also liked the space of the DVC rooms. We can take family and friends to all these locations and know that space won’t be an option. Or having to split up the party. But as much I know DVC was right for us, I do know that it isn’t right for everyone. It was a huge purchase and we had given it much thought before buying in.

  • Craig

    Interesting article, but I think your math is somewhat flawed. 200 points seems like too large a purchase to compare to 1 week in a hotel. Many people consider most hotel rooms to be relatively comparable to a studio size unit, as you reference in one of your cash options. One week (7 nights, Sun-Sat checking out the following Sunday) in late August (Dream Season) in a Saratoga Springs studio, based on the 2011 point chart, is 111 points. A concierge studio at Animal Kingdom is only 144 points for 1 week in Dream. Also, Bay lake tower has SIGNIFICANTLY lower dues than the two resorts you used, so despite a higher initial purchase price its break even point may be sooner.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Over 1000 words and I knew I forgot something. I was using 1-bedrooms as a comparison. In 2011 at AKL in Dream season a standard one-bedroom is 200 points exactly. Here’s where it gets slightly tricky to keep the example simple; a one-bedroom at SSR during Dream season is 227 points. Can you get rooms for less points? Absolutely. Would it affect your break-even for the price you paid? Yes. However, would it affect it so much to break-even to the approximately $66,000 difference between a Value and Animal Kingdom Lodge purchased through Disney? I don’t think so, but I haven’t run the numbers to verify at the moment. Would it cover the $10,000 spread between Port Orleans French Quarter and AKL? Maybe, but again the numbers aren’t in front of me as I write this.

    I’m also trying to be practical here. As far as I know, most cash customers are spending money on standard or possibly water view rooms and not suites. As I understand it from my DVC friends, they like having the one-bedroom and don’t think the points are as well-spent in a studio. Flawed thinking? Maybe, but that’s why I suggest running your own numbers at the end to determine if it’s the correct fit for you and even included my own spreadsheet of raw data.

    In the end, though, DVC is worth it if you think it’s worth it. My intention was not to dissuade anyone from purchasing, but to help formulate an informed decision.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Thanks for stopping by! I’m glad you’re enjoying your DVC purchase. We also had a lot of the same ideas on our list, especially a Disney cruise and another trip to Disneyland. Hawaii would be somewhere down the line as well. This and the infomercial review really started the thinking up again, so I decided to put the numbers together.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I have thought of renting points as well; I think Katie wrote an article on renting not too long ago. This may be an article for another day. The only problem is finding someone to rent DVC points from that you trust.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Thanks! DVC is a very personal thing; it depends on how you like to travel, how often you travel, and other factors. Right now I can see myself splurging on a deluxe once in a while but am quite happy in moderates. The Values to me aren’t bad either and the kids love it. Who knows, maybe sometime in the future the situation will change and I’ll be buying DVC.

  • Anonymous

    So I thought of DVC. The rep does a good sales pitch and the idea sounds great. I would like to go for 8-10 days/year. right now go 8-10 days ever other year. If I have a conf in orlando, I add some days, and stay on WDW prop. Doesn’t make sense for me right now as I stay in values. For background, single guy, has access to using mil discount on rooms through either WDW or Shades of green overflow rates.

  • http://twitter.com/wdwfigment Tom Bricker

    Great comparison! I notice you don’t account for the time value of money, though. Once that’s in the mix, DVC looks even worse. When we did the math, it was a really close call for us, but ultimately DVC was barely favorable (for our purposes) and we made the purchase.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Good point! This all depends on the way you like to do things; if you’re one who lets a good travel agent handle your arrangements and discounts, I don’t see much of a difference as far as time is concerned. On the other hand, if you do everything yourself, there’s a big time difference when scouring for deals.

  • Cbconglom

    and i wonder how that compares to just booking through a site such as http://dvcrequest.com/ where you are basically just purchasing points from people who can’t use them

  • brifraz

    Another factor for us, when we made a the spreadsheet to end all spreadsheets and figure out if it was worth it was the other savings you can get with DVC membership – most specifically the savings on Annual Passes. In our case (family of 3), that amounted to $300 per year and over a 40 year period, that is $12,000! If you are visiting for more than 8 days per year, that’s a big difference (and makes the break even point much earlier).

  • http://twitter.com/wdwfigment Tom Bricker

    Well, that’s another consideration, but what I meant was the financial term time value of money (TVM): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_value_of_money

    Basically, if you pay any of these up-front contract price sums for DVC out of pocket, you’re paying for future vacations far in advance. The money you’re using to vacation in 2015 is tied up for 5 years that it otherwise would have been available. For a more simple illustration, let’s say $100 of your contract price goes to a room you’ll be using in 2011 and you purchase this year. Your $100 would have a value of approximately $107 in 2011. While $7 “lost” may not seem like much, when you compound this over many years and many points, it REALLY adds up.

    Now, all of this assumes you’d put the money to its next best use. When I did this calculation for us, I accounted for TVM, but also realized we would likely squander the money and/or not put it to its “next best” use. It’s one of those YMMV things, but if you want a truly fair comparison, it should be considered, as this is one of the big reasons Disney sells DVC.

  • Lherzer

    Comparing a 1 bedroom DVC villa to a standard hotel room at a moderate resort is frankly very misleading. It is even misleading when comparing a 1br villa to a deluxe hotel room. Separate living room, full kitchen, washer/dryer in the villa makes the comparison invalid in my opinion. You should have compared the 20 year cost of a studio using an average of 115 DVC points with the hotel rooms. I’d bet the result would be drastically different with DVC costs about 40% less than shown.

  • Anon

    Thanks for your efforts. I enjoyed the read.

    I believe your assessment may have been more accurate if you compared DVC to some Cash Rate Villas. 1 Bedroom Villas are so much nicer/different than standard hotel rooms. We love Poly/GF but after staying in DVC Villas, we have no interest in staying at either until they add some DVC Villas to those resorts.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I realized what you were referring to later last night but hadn’t come back here yet. No, TVM isn’t explicitly calculated here, but part of it is exactly what you said above; people aren’t going to necessarily put that money into the next best option.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Good point! Thanks for your insight.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I don’t think I’m being misleading but am accounting for the fact that tastes change with a DVC membership. However, I am considering a followup with additional situations. A quick glance showed a significant enough difference if you are a studio guest.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I’ll try to include this in the followup I’m considering. Thanks!

  • No Email

    Forgive me if I screw this up, I have not posted here before. It appears that the value of 200 points was understated. The reservation could be made for more than 6 nights. The spreadsheet calculation was great. Thanks.

  • http://twitter.com/Disneybabiesblg Jenn and Melissa

    I’m glad I’m not the only one that things it’s not worth it. I can’t guarantee that I’d want to spend every major vacation at disney over the next 20 years.. I will most likely go for 1-3 days annually and an occasional big trip, but with DVC I would feel wasteful doing non-Disney travel because you’re already paying SO much for the membership.. I’m good with the other resorts.. or even *shh* off property at a villa for about 1/4 of the cost..

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    It’s not my purpose here to disparage anyone who has purchased a DVC contract, but simply to investigate the actual costs as compared to cash resorts. It certainly can be advantageous for those who visit Disney often and enjoy the on-site perks.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    Type your reply…

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    The valuation depends on the DVC room a guest prefers. I am considering a follow-up to address some items commenters have brought up.

  • Lherzer

    Well, comparing a hotel room at Port Orleans with a 1br villa at Saratoga Springs or Boardwalk is like comparing a mercedes with a kia. They’ll both get you where you’re going ……but

    Changes in taste has nothing to do with a financial comparison. You need to compare like accomodations to determine which makes more sense from a dollars and cents standpoint.

    I’d imagine the standard 1br bathroom is about the size of a Port Orleans hotel room, so to be fair you’d need to compare like accomodations. A DVC studio to a moderate hotel room is fair.

    I think it’s misleading as folks unfamiliar with Disney accomodations see the dramatic difference in cost between owning 200 Disney points (which will get you a 1br villa) and the cost of moderate hotel rooms. Your analysis makes it look like a moderate hotel room is the better deal when in fact you are not comparing like accomodations.

    Just my thoughts. As I said earlier, I’d be interested in seeing the analysis of a 115 point contract with hotel rooms

  • Lherzer

    Thought I’d add the differences between a 1br villa at Boardwalk Villas with a hotel room at Port Orleans:

    Unit size: 714 sq ft in a 1br villa vs. 314 sq ft hotel room
    Beds: king bed in the master w/sleep sofa in living room vs 2 doubles
    Kitchen: full kitchen in a 1br vs nothing
    in-room washer/dryer: yes in a 1br villa vs. nothing
    separate living room w/sleep area for kids vs. 1 room period (privacy)
    bathroom: double the size in a 1br villa essentially 2 rooms
    park access: walk to 2 theme parks vs. bus to all 4

    Not much of a comparison!

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    We can agree to disagree here, but I think it’s quite fair to compare the cost of how one would use their DVC points to how one would otherwise spend their money. Another commenter even mentioned that he won’t stay at the Grand Floridian or Polynesian again until there are villas at those resorts. I do hope that no one is using this article alone to make a decision on DVC as much more research than this one article is necessary to make a proper decision.

    All that being said, the article I am considering will be adjusting points and other items. I’m not sure about a 115 point contract as that seems to be a specific number that would be difficult to find on the resale market and Disney requires a 160 point minimum for an initial purchase. I’ll take a look around and see what I come up with.

  • Lherzer

    I will try 1 final post here. I think your comparison is doing a disservice to your readers. Here is my opinion approaching it from a different angle:

    200 points at Saratoga Springs gets you 1 week in a studio during dream season (111 points) and 6 nights in a studio during choice season (86 points). So you are comparing the cost of 13 nights in a DVC studio with 7 nights in a moderate hotel.

    How is that NOT misleading?

    I agree with you in that folks use their points differently, but readers here and other places use analyses like this to determine if they will buy in to DVC. You didn’t give them an apples to apples comparison

  • Kapeman

    I don’t think you are seeing Lherzer’s point. It is not about how someone may or may not use the points over time.
    You stated that you were using a 1BR villa for comparison, but you didn’t note the differences between a villa and a standard room. What percentage of the general public would know the difference.

    I also think the number of points used was not a fair representation either. 13 days vs. 7 days is a big difference.
    You wouldn’t have had to use the data from an existing resale contract, you could have just used the average price per point.

  • Adam

    Great analysis….. But also remember… as to these savings that accumulate after 20 years or more…. How many families are really going to take annual Disney vacations (or nearly annual) for 20 plus years?
    I know the points can be traded for non-Disney vacations, and I’d love to see an analysis of the trade values. But my gut tells me that trading is probably not the best value either.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I understand you want a strictly academic comparison. I was going for more than that here based on my observations . You think it’s misleading. I think it’s realistic. However, the article under consideration will approach things in a more straightforward way.

  • http://disneybiz.com Scott

    I’d like to do some comparisons of non-Disney vacations, but I’ve had trouble finding solid information on the point trades into other timeshares. I have seen some information on Disney Cruises; maybe I can look at something with that.

  • Lherzer

    This is in response to Adam and Scott above and for all those considering DVC. It is important to consider how often you’d like to go to Disney before buying. Buying into DVC does not mean you have to go every year. And I can save you the trouble of analyzing using points for Disney cruises and trades: it’s not worth it.

    However, DVC allows you to both bank and borrow your annual vacation points. So, if you want to go to Disney every other year, buy 1/2 the points you need for the size accomodations you want and the time of year you would normally travel. If you only want to go once every 3 years, buy 1/3 the # of points you need.

    Here is an example: suppose you want enough points to stay in a 2br Boardwalk view villa at Disney’s Boardwalk during Magic season for 6 nights in 2012. A great villa that sleeps 8 with a fabulous view. That requires 295 vacation points. If you want to go every other year a 150 point contract will do the trick. Just bank your 2011 points into 2012. If you want to go once every 3 years, you can buy a 100 point contract. Bank your 2011 points into 2012 and borrow your 2013 points into 2012.

    Hope this helps

  • http://twitter.com/rwhitneyjr Rob W

    Great analysis. As one person said below we were motivated into DVC when we stayed at a Value resort. That really drove us to look at DVC.

    I’ve also approached my number crunching from a cost per point per stay vs annual cost. Come up with about the same numbers.

    One thing that really drove our family is our number of children. With two kids (and one on the way) a regular room at any resort just cannot accommodate us. When you do the math for the various suites available, even the Pop Value Suites, the numbers quickly tilt to DVC. While we only have 20 (of the 50) years of our contract in this situation it makes a difference. And at some point we would like to bring our grandkids down or stay in the more expensive concierge/club/magic kingdom view options.

    You are right– this is all as decision based on your circumstances and how you take advantage! When you figure in discounts for AP’s, Tables in Wonderland, Golf, merchandise, etc the numbers tilt even more in-favor of DVC… But you have to actually use those perks and take full advantage of what your have purchased.

  • http://dismarks.com/blog/disney-blog-carnival-11 Disney Blog Carnival #11 – October 11, 2010 | DisMarks – Disney Social News

    [...] DisneyBiz presents Disney Vacation Club: The Cost of Ownership [...]

  • Corleyboy

    The one thing you all are forgetting is that once you have been to disney enough you can resale your points and recoup a lot of your initial downstroke. When you factor that in DVC is well worth the cost if you use it for the next 10-15 years at Disney. Also the discounts for other rooms is substantial if you are taking more family members with you. Discounts on annual passes will save you tremendously as well. Well worth the initial cost. If you dollar cost average over 10-15 years you come out way ahead with DVC. If you go to disney once every 3 years it is not for you. Otherwise you will be better off purchasing a DVC membership. It has a major upside for many, but not all.

  • Waltons

    This is a great article, thank you. One thing that I might add is that when you take into consideration some of the perks that you receive when you purchase DVC, sometimes your points cost will come down considerably. We didn’t buy “Villas at Grand Californian” immediately and we waited to buy in when the perks suited us. When we factored in the perks we got when we bought in, our points came out to $84.00 per point instead of $112.00. That made it really worth it to us, especially considering we stay at VGC at peak holiday time.

  • David

    If ours was a typical family of 4, capable of fitting into one room on disney property, we probably would not have joined DVC. However, we are a family of 7 who choses to travel every second year with the gang and perhaps another trip with fewer members on opposite years. With only the minimum amount of points (160) at Bay Lake Towers, we are able to fit everyone in comfort, cook for our large family (saving money in the parks) and be close to the action. This would not be possible with other standard rooms…..needing at least two rooms for each visit, and also requiring the parents to split up between rooms. We love the Disney experience, and DVC allows us to experience it together more often as a family.

  • MommaG

    Thanks for doing the research. Very helpful.

  • Matty

    DVC calculations are very difficult to do.  This is an example of buying into select home resorts, and always staying at those resorts.  But if you buy a SSR resale, and stay at the BLT at the contemporary, you getting a much better bargain than staying at the contemporary with cash.  Especially in the 1 bedroom and not a studio.

    Also, you don’t have to buy 200 points either.  If you buy a resale, you can purchase as low as 50, but I’m going to say 100 is more reasonable, and you go every other year as you bank the points every other year.

    this gives you a final cost for a SSR resale at $100,108.  Now thats only about 8,000 less than staying at port orleans, BUT you have to take into consideration, that you are NOT going to stay at SSR EVERY time.  Over the long haul, one is not going to stay at the same resort paying cash every time either.  So in the end, the savings are impossible to predict, as discounts and travel habits vary.  I’m not a DVC owner, but am considering one.  For me, it is the idea of getting BETTER accommodations for the same trip, for the same money or less.  Plus, you get the added perks of trying all the different deluxe resorts on different occasions.  I personally know many people who love the value resorts, but I am not one of them.  I like to have down time and enjoy the resort, and I can do that better at the deluxe resorts.  You are correct that DVC is NOT for everyone who visits, but if you are a disney traveler often, it will work to your benefit.

  • matty

    I have to agree with them Scott. As someone looking into possibly purchasing (and I have rented and stayed in 1 br &2 br villas, as well as moderate resorts like POFQ and Coronado Springs) I can tell you the quality of room is a HUGE difference in a 1 br vs moderate standard room.  A comparison of studio would be more of a good representation. Your cost analysis over the long haul is accurate but misleading as to the savings compared with the quality of vacation over the long haul.  

    For example, I am looking into a 100 point resale.  The price ranges as we haven’t decided which home resort we want.  WIth that 100 points, we can go for a 5 night trip at ANY dvc resort during the choice season in a studio…..with points to spare.  Since we are not every year travelers (every other year is more accurate) we could then bank points and over a six year period, we could travel 3 times with 2 trips of 5 days over the choice season, and 1 week in the summer.  

    This is why a comparison is SOOO difficult.  The savings are there, for the right travelers.  You could even go every three years with the bank and borrow system.  With 300 points every third year, you could travel with 8 people and stay in a 2 br for a week!  for that, you would have to compare to the price of 2 rooms.  Every DVC owner has different needs, and truly needs to compare based on their own needs, preferences.

  • Dave

    You are all forgetting about one simple issue: over 46 years, if you took the cash you tied up to purchase the points + the cost of the maintenance fees every year, and the increases in them, then adjusted it all for inflation compared to a hotel, and just paid to go to a hotel like the Grand Floridian or Waldorf Astoria, you would literally save thousands of dollars.

  • Dave

    Sorry and invested the money instead.