View Full Version : Do you ask your guests to pay for any part of their stay?

07-05-2003, 08:50 PM

We are planning on going to HH next summer with my BIL's family. I plan on reserving 2 1-br units there so that we each have our own privacy and freedom. Also, just in case if each family is changing the plan, the other one can still continue.

I know many of you invite families and friends to DVC resorts with you. Do you ask them to pay for their rooms or part of it? I am thinking about either not ask for anything at all or ask them to pay for the maintenance fee on the points that I would need to use to secure their reservation.

They said that they want to pay for their room. How do you usually handle this?

I put up a poll for this and just wondering what most people do. Thanks

p.s. The above poll is for the points you would have incurred IN ADDITIONAL to your own stay. For example, if you will have guest in your 2-br unit which you would have reserved anyway, there is no additional cost to you.

Also, the poll does NOT include guests such as your parents, grandparents or children, grandchildren on either side. I will not even consider charging for these people. The poll is only for others outside of this category. Thanks

07-05-2003, 09:06 PM

I think making thon them pay for portion of the mantainance fee for the points you are using to make their stay is fair.

Allison BCV 6/03

07-05-2003, 09:34 PM
No, if I invite them they are my guests. Why on earth would I ask them to pay? To me that's like inviting someone to dinner and then asking them to pay the check.

That said, I would never turn down my guests picking up the dinner tab one night.

We've invited people to be our guests four times now, and three of the four picked up dinner one night. The one that didn't didn't seem to feel the need to pay for anything, which I felt was maybe a little taking advantage.

Generally when I invite someone to be my guest at a DVC resort, the room is one me, the rest they pay for.


07-05-2003, 09:48 PM
I have a deal worked out with my sister who travels with us often. We stay during the week at DVC and I use points. On the weekend, we either stay near Sea World via priceline or onsite at Universal and my sister picks up the tab for those hotels. Works for us!

I have also used points for a reservation at VB for my parents and have invited other family members to join as at WDW in a DVC resort and have used my points for their accomodations.

That's a big part of why I bought DVC -- fun to have family get togethers at WDW!!!

07-05-2003, 10:51 PM
Haven't answered the poll, because it depends on the guest.

My parents or my husband's parents get their room free - if we do the inviting - and probably even if they just hint that they want to come.

If we do the inviting, friends and other family members stay free.

However, we've already discovered (we haven't been members for much more than a year) that there is a class of people who invite themselves. Perfectly nice friends and family that we might not normally spend a vacation with. If they are comfortable to invite themselves, and we wouldn't normally ask them to go except they expressed interest, I'd expect them to pick up the dues on the points for their stay.

Now, if you BIL wants to pay for the room, I'd let him pay for the maintenance fees. He's still getting a good deal and he is offering to pay. Plus, it doesn't put him under obligation as your "guest" or you under obligation as the "host." Some people like to pay their own way and do feel an obligation they rather wouldn't feel if you picked up the tab.

07-05-2003, 11:15 PM
crisi, points well taken, I modified the criteria.

07-05-2003, 11:45 PM
Originally posted by ducklite
No, if I invite them they are my guests. Why on earth would I ask them to pay? To me that's like inviting someone to dinner and then asking them to pay the check.

That said, I would never turn down my guests picking up the dinner tab one night.

We've invited people to be our guests four times now, and three of the four picked up dinner one night. The one that didn't didn't seem to feel the need to pay for anything, which I felt was maybe a little taking advantage.

Generally when I invite someone to be my guest at a DVC resort, the room is one me, the rest they pay for.


I agree with everything you said. However, the key here is "if you invited them." If I invite someone somewhere (dinner, vacation, a movie, etc), then I pay. If I invite someone and don't plan on paying for everything, then I make that very clear. For instance, I just invited my sister to join us sometime at HH. I said we would love for them to join us and they would have their own room for free. However, they would need to get themselves there and pay their own expensives. For my sister, I wouldn't have even needed to say that but I would rather be safe then sorry. Now, I have had MANY people say they would love to join us. I blow most of them off! lol While they may be friends, I don't want to vacation with them. However, I have told a few that if we ever had any extra points I would give them a good deal. Sorry, but they just aren't people I am willing to "give" a vacation to (and some of those people include family!!)


07-05-2003, 11:52 PM
I have taken my father along with me a few times now since my mother died. He has remarried, and I have reserved a seperate room for him and his wife. I have asked him to pay for my dues on the points I used for the reservation for his room. Last year, I got them a room at OKW while dd and I stayed at BWV. I felt a little taken advantage of, so this year I asked him if he wanted to have the new arrangement. He and his wife want to go and didn't mind paying the dues which would be less than what they'd spend on any comparable accommodation. He is in a much better financial situation than I.
I figure that I am helping him out too.

07-06-2003, 02:04 AM
I use my points for our stay and ask guests to help out with other expences such as food and transportation to WDW. Most look at the money they save on rooms and gladly chip in.

07-06-2003, 05:50 AM
Hi. we have some friends who are going to WDW with us. and we have booked a 2 BR at the BCV. We have not asked them to help pay for lodging...they are our guests. They have offered to rent a luxery car or minivan for the week, and I said "sure". I gave them the info on tickets which they will purchase themselves. We are staying a night at the Swan before BVC and 2 nights at Vero Beach after. They are paying for their own rooms at both.

Like other folks - I get to do the inviting!
If I can't afford the points, then it would be foolish for me to invite them. If they want to come, then they need to book a stay somewhere.

07-06-2003, 10:40 AM
It depends, Usually we don't invite as in "hey, we have DVC, or another timeshare, come stay with us, all expenses paid!" Since I'm the one in the family with the timeshares, I'm usually always planned out when it comes to vacations. It usually works out as "hey, aren't you guys going to WDW, or St. Maarten, can we join you!" With that being said, if I have room in my room, then no charge, if I have to book more rooms, or more points, then they pay the maintenance on those rooms or points. Perfect example is this coming November, we weren't going, Mom and Dad said, hey lets go to VWL, so I booked a 2 bedroom for the 6 of us, and they were going to pick up the bike and boat plan and a fireworks cruise. Well Sis decided 2 months after I made the reservation to join us! Scrap that whole plan, couldn't get a studio, so switched over to OKW, for the 9 of us, 2 bedroom and studio, everyone wants to pitch in and pay the maintenance, why, because they know we plunked down a lot of money for the timeshare and because we have 39 more years of it, they will want to join us again and again and don't want to take advantage. Would I charge them to make money, no, but they don't want to feel like they are imposing. But I have a sneaking feeling that once mom and dad stay there, I see a purchase coming on!!

07-06-2003, 11:51 AM
I have given stays to my brother, my best friend and her family and another friend. I expect nothing. However, my brother and my best friend payed for all my meals during the time I was there with them and I received a small check from the friend since she had planned on buying my ticket (I have an AP). The other friend gave me a very generous gift card to Home Depot this XMAS when I was moving into a new house.

However, I would have been fine if they had not done anything. I am currently working on a reservation for another friend and if we can clear the waitlist then she will be home free.

The maintenace cost is just a fixed fee in my life now!

07-06-2003, 12:04 PM
I have, so far, taken DSIL, DBIL and their 3 kids to BCV last August and am planning on taking my sister and her husband and daughter in a couple of years.

I haven't asked for anything and most likely will not. Just the pleasure of having the kids along was payment enough.

07-06-2003, 02:04 PM
We've taken several sets of friends as our guests. We never charge them. Maybe we just have great friends, but all of them have pitched in more than adequately (taken us to dinner, bought groceries, made dinner, watched our son so we could go out, etc!)

07-06-2003, 02:12 PM
I don't charge my guests anything. I buy them park passes also but if they want ot go to water parks or Pleasure Island, they pay. They also pay for most of their meals.

07-06-2003, 02:36 PM
Charge people I ask to go? No way. The deal is that they need to pay for their food and drink and passes and airfare. We cover the room. When we take a friend od DS we pay the tab except spending money.

07-06-2003, 03:09 PM
We don't charge our guests. I think it is rude to invite someone and expect them to pay. If they ask, I usually say, "just take us out to dinner one night". Last year, our guests treated us to Cirque Du Soliel, but it is their choice. We have invited some folks that couldn't afford to do anything more than buy their own admission tickets. For those, we have also done a fair amount of cooking in the villa too. Once we took extended family in a GV and had each family group be responsible for the main meal one day. That way we had the main meal taken care of for 4 days, and it worked out well for those who couldn't afford the WDW prices.

colleen costello
07-06-2003, 03:34 PM
We just took friends for 3 nights at HH. As I invited them, I never expected any payment. They moved to South Carolina and we don't get to see them much; it was a treat for me to see them and for the kids to be together.

That said, I think my friend's hubby is a cheapskate. I myself would have certainly picked up dinner and this would have been easy as with the kids along, we ate cheap -- Cracker Barrel and Fuddrucker's. He manages the money and they are not broke, but I knew he would never pay for a dinner... just not his "thing." It was worth it to see my friend and her kids but this was a "one time thing" -- we just don't have enough points for the giant room!

07-06-2003, 04:14 PM
When I invite my DSD and her kids to stay with me on my DVC timeshare, she knows that the accomodations are free, plus I usually pay for a character breakfast. I love taking the kids anyway, and if they had to pay for the room too, it would make it harder for them to go.

And since my DH can't go very often, so I alternate going with him and going with family.

I have also given some nights in a BWV studio away to family for Christmas presents.

But, if I go with a friend outside of the family, then I ask them to help cover the maintenance fees. Not the whole thing, probably only about 1/2. This is not an invitation from me to them, like I would invite family, this is just a joint decision to go on vacation together.

07-06-2003, 04:28 PM
We've given points to my in-laws for Vero Beach and we've also had them stay with us in a 2 Bedroom (if we had been alone we'd be in a 1 Bedroom). We've never asked for payment - just expect them to buy their own tickets. They have taken us out to dinner on the trips we've been with them and also treated us to a day at Universal.

07-06-2003, 05:36 PM
There are a lot of variables to consider.

Firstly, if I was getting the same size of room anyway, I wouldn't charge, if I was getting a bigger unit ( or two units) I would charge depending on the number of days. A couple of days I'd probably "swallow" the cost myself. For me, coming from the UK, it's unlikely that the length of stay will be less than 10 days, therefore your talking about a pretty sizable amount of points.

IMHO it's nice when a guest offers to cover their cost by taking on a different cost themselves. Previously I have organised the accommodation and my "guests" have paid ( at different times) for the flights, rooms at another venue, most of the meals, park tickets etc. IMHO as long as all parties feel they haven't been taken advantage of it's a nice arrangement. IMHO it helps all parties to have a realistic understanding of the "true cost". If someone thinks you have "spent" more than $1,000 on them ( when the cost to you is closer to $200) they may feel they are in your debt.

While it's very nice of those of you that feel they like to "treat" their relatives I, maybe, take a slightly different view. There are a few of ways of looking at it, each make sense to me to charge at least something for the use of points above what I would book for myself.
1) I'm not massively more wealthy than my relatives, I chose to buy into DVC because I thought it was good value. It becomes less good value if I "treat" everyone else while they save their money to spend on themselves. There is a cost to DVC, even if you've got your money's worth from it. Why should my relatives benefit financially from the commitment I made? Would they have contributed had it turened out a disaster? I think not.

2) Does it embarass the person receiving the "gift" if they are less well off than the "owner"?. They may feel whatever they offer to contribute is insufficient for what they have received. It could actually leave a less well off sibling feeling inadiquate to his/her richer brother/sister. In trying to do something nice you could end up insulting someone. IMHO being upfront with costings leads to less embarassment.

3) Some people will think that there is no "cost" to you as an owner in including them. This can lead to them asking when they can come again, when perhaps you don't have the points available. It can also mean they think that splitting the cost of things while you're away is more than reasonable when you may hope they would offer to treat you. Some people can be VERY SLOW on the uptake even when some strong hints are dropped. This can lead to the weakening of a friendship, again with the best will and intentions you end up with having done a "favour" and losing some of a relationship because of it.

Whichever way you look at it, using one's points for someone else's DVC stay does have a "cost" to you, for a couple of days it really doesn't make much difference, maybe it's $100 cost to you(although getting a room each is "costing you" the opportunity of taking your family away for that duration, at some time in the future). Once you start getting up to costs over $250 or more I think it's a much safer to be upfront about the cost (if someone checks on the "rack rate" for that they may think you're spending $1,000 on them) . Some people are REALLY funny about being given what they think is an expensive gift if they don't think they can pay their way.

It can be difficult to broach the subject of money but if you think there is ANY danger of offending someone, or they thinking "flash b***ard, showing off their money" then talking it over is a sensible option. In your situation I would find out the $ cost of a studio, the $ cost of a one bedroom and the points cost of the two units. I'd be upfront and say "This is the cost they would charge you to rent from Disney, and I understand that you may feel you'd prefer to book direct with them and pay your room charge that way, but if you prefer I could book up using my points and to cover the costs I'd incur I'm happy to rent the room on your behalf and you can pay me direct $XXX " As I'm certain the price you would charge is going to be less than 40% it would cost from Disney he's still going to think it's a good deal and be happy with that. If you'd prefer to say "you pay for a nice dinner with Chef Gordon" for example then I'm sure they'd be happy with that.

Ultimately it's whatever you ( and he) feel comfortable with, but your DVC has a cost to you, if you think that some cost is fair from them, being upfront about it is going to save potential bad feeling if you can word it so that your offer makes it obvious that you're doing him a favour while not making money out of him. JMHO.

07-06-2003, 07:05 PM
We had guests stay with us this past January. They are friends that live in Sarasota and we KNOW he's paying a Huge alimony from an ugly divorce that left them nearly bankrupt. They stayed one night in the studio with us and it turned out that we were able to all get into the parks using one day we had on old hopper passes, and the new hopper passes we had with us. They bought us dinner one night at the Big Grille Brewing Company over at Boardwalk. We invited them, and we were also very aware of their financial situation, so there was no expectation of them to pay for anything.

A different story-

I went down with my family in 2000 prior to being a DVC owner and we all stayed at Coronado Springs on a CM discount. (DBF's cousin was a CM) We all payed about $100 per night for our rooms. We had so much fun everyone said "Let's do it again in 2005!" Now I am a DVC owner and I will be using 3 years worth of points to book enough rooms for six families, all related including my parents, my sisters family, aunt/uncle cousins and their families. They insist that they want to at least cover my costs, so I told them $100 per night was a fair price. They all work, they all have decent incomes, and they all know I would treat them if I were a lottery winner, but they all know I'm not. It's what they will have paid five years earlier and it will be IMO far better accomodations. They wouldnt want to feel obligated to me and I wouldn't want them feeling obligated and trying to make it up to me, and believe me they would. I think this way is fair and still an awesome deal for everyone involved.

Oh, I have tried to soften it a little by giving gifts of Disney Dollars on birthdays and Christmas to the children so the parents won't have to use spending money to buy souvenirs and such. Each child will have $50 Disney Dollars of their own to spend however they want by the time we go AND I intend to give gifts of park hopper passes to my two Godchildren (from 2 different families) the Christmas before our trip.

It may not be a perfect scenario for everyone, but for our family it works. As my grandmother used to tell all of us, one hand washes the other and both hands wash the face!

07-06-2003, 07:20 PM
It matters who comes. I have brought prople on three of my vacations. Twice I did'nt ask the third time i had to upgrade to a 2 br. I asked them to pay $5 for the extra points but that was it. It made it more comfortable knowing that the second br was theirs and they had paid for it. I wouldn't have asked for anything but they asked to come with us and they didn't want to sleep in the pull-out. next year taking dsister and her family, I invited them and i would not ask them for any money. As long as you don't have to upgrade I can't see why you would ask for money.

07-07-2003, 09:41 AM
I have an unofficial rule that I decided upon

Invited guests that join us on our trip I expect no payment .

If I have extra points and someone asks to utilize them they are charged the going rental fee. $10 pp

Recently I asked someone to change their ressie and use my points because they were going to expire, they kindly accepted, and I expected no payment but they generously covered my dues

That was a win-win situation for all.

You just have to think it thru and decide for yourself what you can live with .

Johnnie Fedora
07-07-2003, 02:19 PM
It depends on who is going, but we generally go with the "we pay" the 5 or more weekday nights, "they pay" weekend night(s) with cash. When traveling with others, we often get larger accomodations than our family would require alone. It still works out to be a great deal for them.

And besides, they get the added plus of basking in the glow of my sparkling personality. ;) :rolleyes: That alone makes the trip a great value!

07-07-2003, 03:02 PM
The only guests we have had so far are my parents. They did pay for several meals during our visit...though we didn't expect that (well, I *knew* they would....but didn't expect it as repayment or anything...I just know how my parents are) and we covered a few meals as well for them. In the end they probably paid for more than we did and got us each a gift while we were there too....toys for the kids and tshirts for dh and me.

We have invited my sil and her dh to join us at some unspecified time in the future...for which we won't expect any payment. When we were discussing possible dates I did make it clear that we didn't really have the points to cover weekends....200 points only goes so far. I know that could be hard for some people because of work schedules, but we can only offer what we can offer, iykwim.

I also really want to offer a stay with us to another family....we're all close friends (we joke that our children are betrothed because they love each other so much...my ds and their dd, and my dd and their ds...boys both a year older than each of the girls) and they helped us out a whole lot when we moved to this area, letting us stay with them, showing us around, etc.... I feel like I'd be repaying them just a little for all the help they've been. If I could afford it at all I'd love to give them park passes and everything...but we just can't. Same with some other family members....I have a teen cousin I'd love to bring along, and get her a pass (and cover meals, of course) in exchange for helping with our kids....but right now its not financially feasible for us (cash for the passes and stuff, or the points, as we'd need a 2br to have her join us).

So anyway, I offer stays with us freely, no strings attached...but our guests do have to realize that we have certain limitations as to what we can offer. And I'm really not hesitant to say if we can't manage something. I like the idea if someone wants to stay on the weekend they can cover it with cash....just another option I suppose.

07-13-2003, 10:01 AM
PA@OKW ---- Passess too!!! Can I be your guest?!!;)

Maistre Gracey
07-13-2003, 10:45 AM
We do not charge our guests for DVC accommodations. However, as anniet posted earlier, I would also charge for booking six rooms for all those people. There is a fine line between having guests, and throwing a free for all...:cool:

07-13-2003, 12:31 PM
Prior to our DVC membership, when we would accompany my sister, we would buy her family a few meals out, etc. to defray their expenses. We were pretty clueless, however, how the whole thing worked -- we figured in our ignorance that they "owned" it, and didn't eally get the whole points concept. I can recall not being able to figure out why my sister fretted so much over whether to stay an extra night (it was xmas night... and it was a Friday, too -- youwch). I think sometimes the guests just simply don't know how it works, and don't realize that extra accommodations aren't a "given", and that you have a limited # of points to work around.

Now that we own, we have been the "inviters" instead, and had my bil/sil and their son accompany us on our last trip, and probably again on our next trip. For now, we can all fit comfortably (and legally, lol) in a 2br. However, we may need to re-think how we manage these trips in the future as families and the kids grow. Putting 4 adults and 4 tiny tots in a 2 br is no biggie... putting 4 adults and 4 teens -- aye yi yi. When that happens, we would either have to add-on or ask for help, or point rental, or not invite, SOMETHING will have to give!

But for now, if we invite, then it's like inviting someone to my house -- I don't ask for mortgage money! We always have more groceries than we know what to do with. Besides, no one ever visits us in WV -- we always have to visit them on the east coast. So this is our one time to play host. They always offer to help out, and usually, we will let them perhaps pick up a dinner, but it's not a pre-requisite.


07-13-2003, 03:42 PM
Most of the time the guests we have are grandchildren and there parents, we buy the park passes for all the grandkids too!
We have had others come and stay with us, but I couldn't ask them to pay, they usually treat to dinner or something like that.

Verandah Man
07-13-2003, 07:03 PM
On our first trip "HOME" using points last November, we invited my Dmom, Dsis, Dniece, to join us for a 5 night stay at VB, and a one night stay at OKW. We used our points for a 2 BR Villa at both resorts. The only thing our guests paid for was their airfare and we all shared in the cost of the food and rental van. We ate most of our meals in our villa.

The same six of us are going on a Disney Cruise next month. However this time it was a bit different. We are paying the cost with our points, but my Dmom is only paying for her airfare, and tips during the cruise. My Dsis and Dniece, asked if they could join us this past Spring, because when we first asked them if they wanted to go, they both said no. We were going to do a 4 day cruise if they had said yes, so we changed our plans for a 7 day cruise. We had enough points for four of us, but not six, for the 7 day. My DW and I did a 130 point add on in May, even though that was enough to add my Dsis and Dniece to our ressie, we felt it was fair to charge them half the cost of the cruise, plus they paid for their airfare.

If they had said yes, when we first asked them last November, than we would have gladly paid their total way, except for airfare and tips, with our points. We try to be as fair as we can, if I invite someone out to eat, I do not expect that person to pay for their food, but if someone should ask if they can join us, then I feel it is their responsibility to pay their own way.

Maistre Gracey
07-13-2003, 08:30 PM
I think my personal bottom line is-
If I invite them as guests, I would not even mention any sort of payment.
If friends said "hey, we would love to come with you", that MAY be a different story.

The other side-
If I was the person staying at DVC for no $$$, I would INSIST on picking up several dinners, and trying to cover some of the extras.

We enjoy sharing our DVC with others, as I'm sure many here do...:cool:

07-13-2003, 09:24 PM
Maybe I'm venturing into the world of semantics here, but "Guests" don't pay. If someone is traveling with you and they are "paying" (providing some type of monetary compensation for the accomodations) they are not your guest.....they are traveling companions, friends, aquintances...something, but not guests. All of which is perfectly fine and quite wonderful, but I don't view that type of arrangment as guests.

07-13-2003, 09:43 PM
Disney refers to ME as a guest, but they always expect a payment!:confused: :rolleyes: :eek:

TDC Nala
07-14-2003, 12:42 AM
Family, I don't ask for anything. Friends, nominal amount for dues.

07-14-2003, 09:32 AM
Maistre Gracey,

Your personal bottom line is mine as well..

OK, I have another bottom line. Here are the tiers of people I expect to have use our points over the next 40 years....

1) Guests who we REALLY want to share Disney with but who wouldn't go otherwise. With these folks we are likely to give them all inclusive vacations - airfare, park tickets, even room charging privleges. We are doing this with my mother in law, who would never choose to spend her own money to go to Disney. Our own children (who at 3 and 4 can't really afford their own park tickets - and won't be expected to pay for their own trips until they hold real jobs).

2) Guests who we want to share Disney with who would go otherwise. With these folks we'd expect nothing for the room, but wouldn't be opposed to having them treat for dinner as compensation. My sister and her husband fall into this category. A number of our friends.

3) Friends who invite themselves with "well, if you ever have extra points." We have several friends that have put themselves on the "list" and chances are, we will never find extra points for them. If we do, I feel justified asking them to pick up the dues on the points they are using - especially since I'd be booking them their own studio - and may not even be traveling with them. These are friends and more distant relatives.

4) Strangers or very distant acquaintences who want to use our points to travel. Renters. They can pay $10 a point or whatever the going rate is. Since I'm more likely to dip into the #3s if we can't go ourselves, I doubt I'll ever be looking for strangers to use my points - unless money were very tight for us.