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Old 11-10-2016, 12:42 PM   #111
Sir Aaron
Grand Villa
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,473

Originally Posted by esiqu001 View Post
Hey all,

However the thing is that we never have planned a vacation 11 or 7 months out. We travel off semi-off season or what DVC calls the "Choice Season" for Aulani. Usually our vacations are planned 1 to 3 months in advanced because of our hectic schedules. So is there really a benefit for us to purchase where I want to stay since we don't plan 7 or 11 months in advanced?
You need to evaluate whether you will get the accommodations you desire at 1 to 3 months. DVC books up and getting a reservation 1 month ahead of time may be extremely difficult. But once you get to 7 months or less, there is no advantage to using Aulani points over any other points.

If this is the case this is where I think in my situation it would be better to buy "best value" like SSR(Not sure what is the best value but i hear SSR all the time I am still doing research of the MF and such and what would be the best). Am i missing something or is this the case. I am definitely leaning toward best value even though I will be staying at Aulani 2 out of 3 times every 3 years.
"Best Value" is the term used for the combination of buy-in and annual dues that results in the lowest cost to the owner. As such, SSR is usually the cheapest to buy and has the lowest (or soon will) maintenance fees (also called annual dues). Some resorts have an extremely high buy in cost and high maintenance fees. Those points really are only valuable if used to book at the home resort since the true value of those points is to get a reservation within the booking window (because you'll never get a room otherwise). For example, if you want to book a Christmas reservation at Poly you better own Poly points. At 7 months, the Poly points lose their value because somebody with cheaper points with another home resort has the same priority in obtaining a reservation as the Poly owner. So at 7 months you want to use the cheapest points to book your room.

Unfortunately, the "best value" requires some prognostication about the future of that resort and the others in terms of what the maintenance fees will be over time. What we've thought about that over the last five years has changed quite a bit with respect to certain resorts, so I'm not sure you can trust any analysis of what resort will offer the best value over time. We can make educated guesses and forecasts, but we can't predict the future.

As far as "best value" you also have to consider if you think you'll ever want to sell your contract. Resale value would have some part of the analysis in that case.

I think once out of 3 years we will probably go to WDW to get our fix. So that is why DVC is also appealing since we can use it to stay at the resorts in florida as well. We actually never stayed at a DVC other then Aulani so I don't know the experience of staying at a DVC in WDW. We usually have done budget hotels since most of the time we are out. DVC seems appealing now tho because while it is only the two of us, we are planning to have kids eventually and they are going to be Disney kids 100%.
DVC is only a value if you want deluxe accommodations. DVC is going to be much more expensive than "budget accommodations." With DVC you can usually get a 1BDR suite for the price you'd pay for a hotel room with 2 double beds at normal rack rates at a deluxe hotel. The better the hotel, the better the value of DVC.

As a side question, I saw DVC buyers of polynesia people recommend just buying retail since the spread is short for resale. Does this hold true with Aulani since they are retail as well? I know poly resale is $120-$140 or so but Aulani resale was $95-$115 which i think is enough to justify resale - correct me if I am wrong.
Resale purchases now have restrictions on the use of those points. For example, you can't use resale points to book a room at the Disneyland Hotel. It cuts down on your ability to use the points in certain ways. Most Mouseowners on this forum do not believe those other uses are a good use of the points because you can often rent your points to another person which would generate enough cash to pay cash rates and then some. However, in my own experience, I've found using points for hotel rooms to be an excellent value in CA during certain time periods that have very high cash rates (for example, the half marathon).

The annual dues/maintenance fees are the same whether you buy direct or resale. So your decision is based strictly on the buy-in cost. You just need to compare the costs and decide whether the difference in that cost justifies the additional privileges that come with direct. As resale prices approach direct pricing, the more likely that paying that price is worth the additional cost, especially in view of the long term nature of the contract (that is if you amortize the buy-in cost over the length of the contract). Poly resale rates are probably very high due to the fact that is a new resort with very few resale contracts on the market. Additionally, that property is small so there will ultimately be fewer contracts in total and thus, less of them on the market at any given time.

Last edited by Sir Aaron; 11-10-2016 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 11-11-2016, 10:49 AM   #112
Two Bedroom
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: SFO
Posts: 551

Is there any public info out there on DVC availability by number of months out? For instance, let's say I really like BCV but the economics of SSR work better. Is there any way to research what times of year I wouldn't be able to book BCV 7 months out?
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Old 11-11-2016, 11:30 AM   #113
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,258

I'm not aware of a formal resource for this, but much of it can be predicted.

BCV is small so it's harder to book in general.
Points charts reflect demand to a point.
Events like F&W make BCV/BWV harder to book (than normal)
Holidays, spring break, summers are harder for all resort-attached resorts.

I'm sure the folks around here will have more first hand examples.

Originally Posted by dicriseg View Post
Is there any public info out there on DVC availability by number of months out? For instance, let's say I really like BCV but the economics of SSR work better. Is there any way to research what times of year I wouldn't be able to book BCV 7 months out?
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Old 11-11-2016, 05:53 PM   #114
Sir Aaron
Grand Villa
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 3,473

Originally Posted by dicriseg View Post
Is there any public info out there on DVC availability by number of months out? For instance, let's say I really like BCV but the economics of SSR work better. Is there any way to research what times of year I wouldn't be able to book BCV 7 months out?
There isn't a Disney source, but there are online sources that provide pretty good advice.

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Old 10-12-2019, 08:24 PM   #115
Grand Villa
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Eagan, MN
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Originally Posted by DVC Data View Post
One of the first decisions a prospective Disney Vacation Club member has to make, after deciding to buy into DVC, is which resort they should purchase and make their home resort. DVC members who wish to add-on face the similar issue of choosing which resort to add-on points at.

DVC members can book their home resort(s) up to 11 months prior to the check-in date, while being able to book other DVC resorts only 7 months prior to check-in date. This 4-month booking advantage is important for certain high-demand periods or certain room types. An example is the concierge rooms at AKV.

Prospective DVC members may not be aware that they are not limited to just the resorts that DVC is actively marketing, but that it is possible to buy into any of the DVC resorts, even the older “sold-out” resorts. You can buy these resorts on the resale market, as well as direct from Disney (once you convince your guide that you simply are not interested in the resorts DVC is actively marketing).


Now, what factors should one consider in choosing their home resort? People consider a wide range of things when deciding to choose their home resort. This includes (in no particular order):
  • The time of year you travel and whether you are able to plan your vacations 7 - 11 months in advance
  • Purchase price
  • Maintenance fees
  • Points charts: The number of points required to book certain accommodations will vary from resort to resort and season to season.
  • Years remaining on contract
  • Theme/decor of resort
  • Room sizes and layouts: OKW has the largest rooms. BLT, VGC and AKV have extra bathrooms (1BR and larger). PVB has the largest studios.
  • Location: Proximity to a particular theme park, entertainment center, or even animals may factor into your decision.
  • Resort amenities: Recreation and dining options differ from resort to resort.
  • Style: Some people prefer a condo-style resort with exterior walkways. Some folks prefer interior hallways and valet parking.
  • Resort size: Some people prefer resorts that are smaller and less spread-out.
  • Type of accommodations: Not all resorts offer 3BR Grand Villas. Only AKV offers concierge bookings and value villas. PVB lacks 1BR villas.

Everyone’s personal tastes and individual preferences are different. Some may value certain factors more than others or not at all.


In addition to these individual factors, there are a few popular philosophies that you’ll hear from DVC members.

The most popular philosophy is Buy Where You Want to Stay. If you really love a particular resort, then buy into it. There are some people who have a particular fondness for a resort and really want to stay at that particular resort, and they would be unhappy if they were not able to book there. These folks should buy where they want to stay, provided that they can reliably plan and book to take advantage of the 11-month home resort booking advantage.

If a specific resort (theme/style, location, villa type and/or view) is really important to you and you can take advantage of the 11-month home resort booking advantage, then buy into that resort. The need for the home resort booking advantage varies by resort, villa type, view and time of year that you most often vacation.

If you don’t have a particular fondness for a certain resort, or if you’re not a planner and anticipate always booking at the 7-month window (or less), then one of the next two philosophies may be best for you.

One alternative philosophy states Buy Where You Wouldn't Mind Staying. This view states that people should avoid buying at a resort that they really wouldn't be happy staying at. Since the resort you buy into will be your default location should your other options fall through at the 7-month window, you should pick a resort that you would wouldn’t mind staying at; i.e., it would not make you unhappy.

Finally, others promote the idea of Buy the best deal; that is, whatever resort has the lowest overall cost. If any resort is fine, then buy where you get the best overall deal for total cost of ownership. Recognize that the variables for that depend on purchase cost (price, closing costs and finance charges), annual dues, expected length of ownership and likely resale value upon disposition. Keep in mind that any savings in upfront purchase cost will probably be offset by the difference in maintenance fees.

Some members may decide to purchase at more than one resort, giving them multiple home resorts. Typically, the reason is that the owner wants the 11-month booking advantage of the Home Resort Priority Period in order to make it easier to get the resort they want, at the time they want, with the accommodations they want. This reduces any possible frustration at the 7-mo window, wait-listing, or having to “settle” for another reservation while missing out on the one you really had your heart set on.

Keep in mind that if you have more than one home resort, all vacation points being used to make a reservation during the Home Resort Priority Period must be associated with that home resort. That is, you cannot combine points from multiple resorts to book one resort during the Home Resort Priority Period. You may combine all the points you have at all your home resorts and book any DVC resort only at the 7-month window.

If you own 150 points at BLT and 200 points at VGF, for example, you can use those 150 BLT points to only book BLT 11 months in advance, and those 200 VGF points to only book VGF 11 months in advance. You could not, however, combine your points 11 months in advance to have 350 points to stay at either resort - you must wait until seven in advance to do so.

Some folks purchase small add-ons at other resorts and then, by banking and/or borrowing, book a vacation there at the 11-month window every 2 or 3 years.
I have points at Akl because of the value and concierge units. I have points at Vero because you need points to book a two bedroom in the summer. I just added a contract at Riviera because of the tower studio and the ability to book standard view rooms before the 7 month window.
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