Buying Disney's Vacation Club Direct or Resale?
You know what one of the most, if not THE most magical place on earth is? Disney World. Easy answer, right? You know what makes it even more magical? Having access to the deluxe resorts at Disney World on a value resort budget. For what seems like forever, Jess and I have gone back and forth with whether or not we wanted to buy into the Disney Vacation Club (DVC) or not. This past weekend, we finally fell off the cliff, rather than taking the jump, and committed ourselves to making the purchase.
For you non-Disney folks (as if they exist), the DVC is a vacation timeshare program, not unlike many of the timeshares you see all over the USA. This means you buy into a program allowing you the right to use a hotel or resort for vacation stays over an allotted period of time. With Disney, rather than using predetermined amounts of weeks, you use a points system. With this system, you select the amount of points you want to buy that can be used yearly, and that will determine the overall cost of your purchase. You get a home resort, which you can book 11 months in advance, but with the DVC you can also book many of their other DVC resorts in Florida, California, and so on 7 months in advance. Even more so, you can use points to book a Disney Cruise, as well as travel all over the USA and worldwide using RCI. How it works is the points you have are used for staying at any of the resorts. Let’s say you have 100 points, a weeks stay in a value studio at Animal Kingdom Villas is 67 points. So, after that stay you would still have 33 points that you could use for a short trip later in the year. When you buy DVC, you have those points for 50 years and can buy more points at any time.
Now that the formalities are out of the way lets get down to the brass tax. I wish we would have made the decision to purchase DVC and stuck with it 9 years ago when we first thought about it. In the long run, because we go to Disney so much, we would have saved a good amount of money at this point. However, 10 years ago, dropping 20 grand on a vacation didn’t seem like a smart movie. Now, both Jess and I are in a position where we have our home, are starting to kick the tires on starting a family, and want to make sure we can still vacation when that happens. In short, DVC makes more sense now than it did 9 years ago. One of the biggest reasons for this is the ability to sell your points. If you know you are not going to vacation in a given year or use all of your points, you can sell them off either to renters or DVC rental companies. Doing that alone will cover your dues for that year.
Even though we have now decided we wanted to buy DVC, there was one glaring decision that we still needed to make: buy direct from Disney or buy resale? There are so many factors that go into making this decision that made it incredibly difficult, so I want to start buy giving the benefits of either side.
Pros of Buying Direct
-Its fresh, brand new, and you have it for 50 years
-You have access to all the discounts and exclusive lounge
-You can buy into the newest resorts
Cons of Buying Direct
Pros of Buying Resale:
-Cost is usually 50% or so less
-you have access to the same booking options
Cons of Buying Resale
-You don’t get the full 50 years
-you don’t have access to exclusive DVC member discounts
Each side has great benefits that made it really difficult to choose between. After doing extensive research, we ultimately came to the decision that the savings on the overall purchase was more important than the length of the membership and the potential discounts you could get by buying direct. Even though you do not get the 50-year length, when Jess and I decide to dive in and make an offer, we will still have the timeshare well into our mid 50s and have 30 plus years to decide whether we want to renew. Even more so, we can add on points throughout the year which would expire at different times, so ultimately, we think buying resale is the best bet for us. But it may not be the best bet for everybody. If you value some of the perks that buying direct will offer than it will ultimately make more sense for you.
Are you thinking about or have you ever bought into the Disney Vacation Club? What was your decision-making process like? Let me know in the comments below, on Twitter, or on Facebook. As always thank you for reading.