The Disney Vacation Club program offers an alternative to traditional timeshares in Orlando, providing members with several accommodation options and deluxe amenities at resorts on Disney property. Disney Vacation Club members purchase a minimum of 160 points for each year of their contract, and can ‘spend’ these points on different types of vacation homes.
If you’ve considered joining the Disney Vacation Club membership program, here are some important things to consider before signing the contract:
Disney Vacation Club Membership Resorts
There are currently seven properties at the Walt Disney World Resort that participate in the Disney Vacation Club Membership program. These are the: Animal Kingdom Villas, Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, the BoardWalk Villas, the Beach Club Villas, Old Key West, Saratoga Springs and the Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge.
Most of these properties are located right next to the Disney resort hotels, and feature deluxe amenities and upgrades to accommodate for extended stay guests. For example, the studios have a wet bar, mini refrigerator and microwave. The villas have full kitchens with full-size appliances, and some master bedrooms have a whirlpool tub. When considering whether to buy a Disney Vacation Club membership or investing in a timeshare, compare all of the amenities and features of the property so that you are making the best investment.
Costs of a Disney Vacation Club Membership
As of 2010, the price to purchase ownership in the Disney Vacation Club program is $112 per point, with a minimum of 160 points. This means you need to plan on spending at least $17,920 to cover the initial cost. You will also be responsible for paying annual fees, and these vary depending on the type of property you are investing in. The annual dues and maintenance fees are roughly $580 per year for 160 points. The DVC membership program is subject to annual dues increases, up to 15% per year. This fee changes depending on the type of resort because it covers the fees of maintenance and refurbishments of the property – the older properties typically experience the greatest increases.
Best Candidates for a Disney Vacation Club Memebership
The DVC membership program makes sense for frequent travelers who want to stay exclusively at Disney properties. It may not be a good match for individual and families who can’t plan their vacations at least seven months in advance. You may be a good candidate for a Disney Vacation Club membership if:
– You can pay all of the upfront costs with cash, not financing
– You can plan a Disney vacation at least once every two years, and can plan for it at least seven months in advance
– You can keep staying at the Disney resorts for an extended stay, until you use up your membership points
Keep in mind that you can also use your DVC points at other DVC properties, including Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland resorts in California and Paris, and for the Adventures by Disney program.
The Disney Vacation Club membership program can be an attractive option for frequent Disney travelers who can pay the upfront costs required to join, without financial hardship. Over time, the membership pays for itself and can be more affordable than staying at privately-owned hotels, resorts, and other properties in the area.