View Full Version : How to plan for a DVC cruise-need help
01-10-2010, 04:43 PM
First, I have a family of 5 total, so if I'm looking at the point chart correctly, I will be required to have a category 4 stateroom?
Assuming the cruise linked below was booked with a sail date of Aug. 16, 2011, my total points required (assuming the lowest point total for 2 adults and 3 children ages 8, 6, and 4, I would have to have to use 667 points? I take it the $95 reservation fee is a single charge, not for each passenger, correct?
01-10-2010, 04:55 PM
I am by no means an expert, but it should be just the $95 fee once, not for each individual. I am not really sure about needing a category 4, we have 5 and will be in a category 6, but not sure that is an option with point exchanges.
01-10-2010, 05:21 PM
I'm just trying to determine what offers the best VALUE in terms of point values. For example, this would take more than 2 years worth of points for me and the trip could be purchased directly from Disney for ~ $5,500 for the family.
I'm thinking that if we're going to go on a cruise, we'll go Royal Caribbean or something and then maybe rent points to someone for the year to pay for it.
I just can't picture giving up the equivalent for 4 trips in a 1 BR over the course of 2 years for a single cruise.
01-10-2010, 06:34 PM
We are considering a cruise in the spring of 2011 and are debating these same things. I just spent some considerable time on the phone with DVC and figured out that 2 category 11 rooms were much fewer points than the category 4. I assumed they could be adjoining rooms although I didn't specifically ask that question. Renting points and doing a different cruise line is a real possibility although I've never rented out points before and am not sure how that works.
01-10-2010, 08:29 PM
We took our first cruise, the Three Night Bahamian Cruise, this past October. There are four of us. Two adults and two children. We were in a Cat. 4. What we did was use points for one adult and both children and paid cash for the second adult. We used a total of 228 points for the cruise. It was a blast and we had a great time.
01-11-2010, 07:56 AM
We have cruised before on both points and on cash and now will cruise on cash in the future. IMHO the point charts are absurdly high now. We only have 250 pts. and used 397 of them for a 4 night cruise in a Cat 10 in July 2008. That was over 1 1/2 years worth of our points. That same July 4 nighter has gone up by about 65 or 67 pts. since then to about 465 pts. LAST year, all caught up on our points again, we were able to do a 4 n trip in a studio to SSR in May and then a 7 n trip in a studio at BCV followed by 3 n in an OVIR at Vero in August. 14 nights in one year. This year we have 6 n booked over spring break at Kidani and are hoping later this week to get 7 n in a studio in Aug. at HHI and still have pts. left to bank!! As fabulous as cruising is, I simply cannot justify using THAT MANY points on just 4 nights again. Esp. since it would "eat" basically 2 years worth of points.
Yes, we purchased our points to use them as we wished, as should everyone...but when we consider 2 or 3 trips for a total of about 14 nights EVERY YEAR vs just 4 nights every 2 years... Cash for cruising is the way to go for us. Since we ran out of points that year we actually ended up using the DVC cash discount for villas on 2 trips!!:sad2: We may as well just paid the cash for the cruise.:rolleyes1 I am NOT looking to fool with renting our points out (have read too many horror stories) and I don't want to pay taxes on the "income" etc. They are your points to use however you want, but only you can determine the value of how you use them. WE have decided we'd rather have more vacations each year rather than sitting around wishing we weren't out of points on just one trip. Two years is a long time to be out of points.
We rebooked onboard for the rebooking discount and now have a 10 night Med cruise booked in our same Cat 10 (SPH) room for July 2011 for under $6,000 + a significant onboard credit. I am very happy with that price for 10 nights. When cruising (on cash OR points) you have to "shop" your cabin category & dates. Try to avoid peak times. Sometimes moving your week in one direction or the other can make a big price difference.
OP - if you hang out on the cruise board for awhile you will find that many families of 5+ will book 2 connecting cabins in a lower category for less money than one Cat 4 cabin (usually inside cabins or Cat 9's give the most savings). PLUS you will have 2 bathrooms & twice the space. Note that you must ask for connecting cabins, not adjoining. They are not the same. Adjoining just means next to each other. Connecting means there is a door between that you can leave open the entire time.:thumbsup2 The other trick that many families do if their kids are old enough is to book 1 verandah cabin & 1 inside cabin directly across the hall. You have to book an adult in each room but who sleeps where can be adjusted once you're on the ship. To use points to cruise there is just one fee of $95 I think for the reservation. I don't think that is PER CABIN booked but rather per reservation.
01-11-2010, 09:29 AM
Remember that the $95 fee is for that reservation (date/destination). However, if there are any changes made to the reservation you may be charged the $95 booking fee again.
01-11-2010, 10:00 AM
Couple of things- A family of 5 cannot be booked in a Category 6. Also it's correct that usually two inside or oceanview staterooms will be a better option using both points and cash for a family of 5 vs. a Category 4. Category 11 staterooms do not connect- to get connection staterooms at the most favorable rate, you'd need to get Cat 10's. Hope that helps. Right now rates for the Disney Dream using points seem to be a particularly good value.---Kathy
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