What Is Disney Vacation Club?
Disney Vacation Club (DVC) is a vacation ownership program that offers a cost-effective way to vacation at Disney. There are 13 Disney Vacation Club resorts, and Guests may also choose to use their membership at other destinations around the world.
How DVC Works
One becomes a member by purchasing a real estate interest in a Disney Vacation Club Resort. This interest is represented by an allotment of annual vacation points. Vacation points are used to reserve your accommodations.
What You Need To Know
- The number of vacation points you will need for a particular stay will depend upon the resort chosen, the type of accommodations, the time of year, and your length of stay. Two bedroom villas require more points than deluxe studios, and weekdays require fewer points than weekends.
- You may use your vacation points however you choose. Deluxe Studios, 1-Bedroom Villas, 2-Bedroom Villas, and 3-Bedroom Grand Villas are all available. You may stay in a Deluxe Studio for one vacation, and then a 2-Bedroom Villa for your next.
- You will choose a “Use Year” when you purchase. This is the date your points will be available. For example, if your use year is April, your points will be available to you on April 1 of every year.
- To maximize your vacation point use, you may bank this year’s points to use next year. You may also borrow points from next year to use this year. You will need to pay close attention to the banking deadline each year if you are going to bank your points.
- The resort that you choose to purchase an interest in becomes your “Home Resort”. This is important because you are able to book your vacations at your home resort at 11 months prior to the check in date. You may stay at any DVC resort, but if you are booking at a resort that is not your home resort, you must wait until 7 months prior to check in to book your vacation.
- Once you have your initial purchase and home resort, you may add on points at any other resort if they are available. You can check with a DVC representative to see if they can find the points you want, or you can choose to buy your points from a third-party vendor. The advantage to buying through Disney directly is that your points are eligible to be used for the Disney Collection, Concierge Collection, and World Collection. Points not bought through Disney cannot be used for any stays other than at DVC resorts.
- Point charts are put out every year for each property. The amount of points per year that a property “costs” will never change, but the dates and points may be reallocated each year. For example, since the date of Easter changes each year, points during the spring surrounding Easter might fluctuate from year to year. In 2016, for a week in a standard view Deluxe Studio at the Polynesian Villas and Bungalows, the point cost from March 20 – April 2 is 227. In 2017, for the same stay in the same room type, the point cost from February 16 – April 8 is only 169. That’s because Easter is March 27 in 2016 and not until April 16 in 2017.
What DVC Costs
The cost of membership depends on the size of the real estate interest you purchase at a Disney Vacation Club Resort. The minimum point purchase through Disney is 100 points. There is no minimum point purchase if you purchase through a third-party vendor. The current cost per point through Disney for an interest at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows is $168.00. To purchase 100 points, the cost would be $16,800 plus closing costs.
Additionally, there are annual dues for each property. The amount changes each year, and is calculated per point. For example, the annual dues for the Polynesian Villas and Bungalows is $6.09 per point, so for 100 points it would be $50.75 per month or $609 annually. If you choose to pay your dues in a lump sum every year, they are due on January 15. Annual dues are the same whether or not you purchased your points through Disney or a third-party vendor.
Financing Your Disney Vacation Club
You may be able to finance your purchase through Disney Vacation Club. You may also consider options from other sources. If you were to finance 100 points at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows through Disney Vacation Club and you have good credit, your down payment would be $1,690 (10% of the purchase cost). Your loan amount would be $15,538.38, and your closing costs would be $428.38. For a 120-month loan, your monthly payments would be $245.95, with the additional monthly payment of $50.75 for annual dues. Additionally, you may make additional payments to the principal at any time. If you purchase through a third-party vendor you will need to secure your own financing and pay the lump sum to the vendor at the time of purchase.
How Many DVC Points do I Need?
That is a personal preference. If your children are in school and you are limited to traveling over school breaks, you will want to check out the point charts for each resort carefully to see what each room “costs” in points. For example, a week at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows in a Deluxe Studio during late June 2016 is 142 points. To take that same vacation each year, you would need a minimum of 142 points. If you wanted to travel over spring break each year, the points would go up to 227. If you are only planning on going every other year, you may get away with purchasing fewer points because you are able to bank and borrow to make up the points you need for each vacation. Keep in mind, though, that the minimum point purchase through Disney is 100.
Disney Vacation Club Resorts
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Members who have purchased their points through Disney may use their points at any destination in the Disney Collection. The Disney Collection is any Disney resort (even ones that are not DVC, including the Disney hotels in California, Tokyo, Paris, and Hong Kong), and it also encompasses cruises on Disney Cruise Line and vacations with Adventures by Disney.
Members who have purchased their points through Disney may also use their points at any destination in the Concierge Collection. The Concierge Collection is a selection of 33 resorts throughout the world, including resorts in Colorado, Illinois, Vermont, New York, California, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Hawaii, Washington D.C., and New York City in the United States. Resorts are also available in Japan, Malta, the United Kingdom, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, the Canary Islands, Italy, and London, England.
Members who have purchased their points through Disney may also use their points at any destination in the World Collection. The World Collection is an exchange through RCI. Members may use their points at any of over 2,500 RCI properties throughout the world.
DVC Member Perks
There are some advantages to being a DVC member. Members receive discounts of 10 to 20% at selected Disney-owned and operated restaurants. They also receive discounts on certain Walt Disney World resort merchandise at all Disney-owned and operated merchandise locations. Discounts on Tours and Recreation and Relaxation experiences are also available. And lastly, there are exclusive Member experiences available. Check the DVC website for more information and restrictions.