View Full Version : How Will Your Vacation Habits Change Over Time?

10-30-2004, 07:17 PM

I've been seeing a lot of interesting polls lately - here on the DIS, at least ;) - and some interesting posts as well. So I got to thinking (yes, it's 'duck and cover' time): How will our vacation habits change over the years, now that we're DVC owners for the next 37-49 years? The following issues occurred to me:

1. Visiting the WDW parks less frequently. Of course, we love WDW, or else we wouldn't have spent all that money (and all the time here on the DIS) for DVC ownership. Still, I've got to imagine that, after 20 years, Tarzan's Treehouse, The Living Seas and Indy's Stunt Spectacular are going to get a little old.

2. Fewer visits. Do you really think you'll want to come down to WDW (or VB or HH) just as often after 2 decades of ownership?

3. Length of Stay. Do you think you'll start to make longer trips? Shorter Ones? Just about the same?

I really have no strong opinions on any of these topics - I have no axe to grind - and I'm sure there are other topics that haven't occurred to me. I'm just curious - particularly as someone who's been a DVC owner for just over 1 year with only one DVC stay under my belt - what you folks think. After all, this could be the one thing that stays with you for longer than anything else in your life (spouses and children hopefully excluded).

Happy Birthday Cat
10-30-2004, 07:23 PM
Good topic Dr. T. Well worth a discussion. It will be interesting to see what other peoples' plans are.

Ours will change over time because the nest will become empty and we purchased DVC primarily because of our four kids and our love of WDW.

In the future, I could see us staying for one long period of time in a 1BR (January and February) instead of the current couple of trips each year in a 2BR that fits all 6 of us. We have about 10 years until retirement is possible and about 12 years until our last one is out of college. Even when we only have a couple of kids going on vacation with us, we will still get the 2BR. We have been spoiled by it.


10-30-2004, 07:34 PM
We have been members for 5 years and have taken many DVC trips. Our vacation happens are now starting to change. We are going on our first cruise in May (not on points). Our kids will be starting school next year and I anticipate that we will start to visit only 1 or 2 times a year to WDW and stay 8 nights or longer instead of 3 or 4 times a year staying 5-6 nights. I also expect that we will try some exchanges. If they do not work out we will probably try to rent points for awhile before considering selling. I would like to hold on to them as we have 3 contracts. We did this so that we will have 200 points and our kids will have 100 each (this way we can tell them this is what you get each year and no arguing). Or, we may try to stay for longer trips when we retire, but that will be another 20 years or so.

10-30-2004, 08:40 PM
our youngest will be out of college (good Lord willin' and the creek don't rise) in about 12 yrs. When the kids are in the 'semi-adult' stage, dh and I will probably take more short term, smaller accomodation trips. Even though the parks won't be as much of a draw (except maybe Epcot) we both enjoy the atmosphere of the resorts so at least one of our year's vacations will be at DVC properties. We're already brainwashing the kids that we WILL be taking the grandkids (when they arrive) to Disney...so we'll probably be back to 2br accomodations just like the good ol' days. Of course, as the untimely passing of friends and family remind us...nothing is guaranteed...so we MUST live life to the fullest NOW...while we all have each other :o)))

10-30-2004, 08:52 PM
My kids are now 12 & 9 and most everything we do on our DVC trips revolves around them right now. In the future I can see my husband and I taking shorter but more leisurely trips. For example I could be happy just staying at my resort and relaxing at the pool for the entire time. We could take advantage of other locations such as Haawia. I don't think I will ever get bored with my DVC vacations because there so many resorts and places to explore.

Oct. 2004 SSR
Aug. 2003 BWV
Oct. 2002 All Star Sports/BCV
March 2001 All Star Sports

10-30-2004, 08:58 PM
We have found that we go more often now, 12 nights in the summer and 6 nights during late Nov early Dec. and for the last 2 years 4 nights for the Flower/Garden Festival. We are into our 12th year as members, but before DVC, we went just about every years since '79. So we have had more than 40 trips to Disney World in the past 25 years. Now that the "kids" are all out of college, DW and I go 2-3 times a year. We have some close friends that have moved to the Orlando area and we enjoy sharing the DVC magic with them, both at WDW and Vero. We have APs but really don't do the parks real hard anymore, the comando days a long over. But WDW is a great resort location, with many activites that don't require a park admission. Also we now visit more of the OTHER Orlando site, Sea World, Universal...

I can see us going even more when we are blessed with some Grandchildren to share the magic with and spoil. We may make shorter trips, 5-6 nights but do 3 or 4 a year. We still "dream' of having enough points to spend the coldest part of winter at WDW, like 6-7 weeks in Jan and Feb.

I don't think I will ever get tired of going to Disney. Even after all the trips, as soon as I walk through the front gates, I'm just a kid agian.

10-30-2004, 09:06 PM
We finally bought into DVC this year, after 6 trips, every other year, since our younger DD was born. We usually travel down for a week at a time. This summer, we took a shorter trip, to check out home, and came to the conclusion that shorter, more frequent trips could be the way to go!

Now, our older DD has a year and a half, and she'll be in college (groan!). She's SO my kid, I see her with a love for Disney, making trips with her kids (o.k. MANY years down the road, thank you!), and draggin' mom and dad along(to help defray costs, don't you know!)

Our younger DD is disabled, and we have written into her special needs trust that she has a trip to WDW every other year. SSR will be there waiting for, even if we're not.

If things were different, I could see my DH and I traveling to Hawaii, or to Europe, but our reality is, we'll probably take younger DD to WDW as often as we can afford the airfair, and the park hoppers, and can squeeze it into school schedules.:wave2:

10-30-2004, 09:07 PM
We bought 10 years ago and it seems like we go to WDW more now that we used to. Our children are now 25 and 26 and they visit there on their own and also as a family. It is a tradition that we all go together at least once a year and the trip is always fabulous---great memories.

We live in NJ and always wanted to retire to Florida. But our children will probably remain here and since we don't want to "abandon" them we will probably keep our roots here (ugh, hate NJ) neither one is married nor do they plan to anytime in the near future. So now we are thinking that we would be able to spend January and February at WDW (studio?) and that may work for us for a while. We will just have to see what life brings us in the next 10 years. We love DVC so much and have been there so often, that it actually feels like our "second home". I am the park person, DH isn't, so we compromise....I get the annual pass and he tags along occasionally (park hoppers). It works for us, of course there is usually someone with us that also has an annual, so that leaves DH at OKW and me in the parks. :hyper:

10-31-2004, 12:10 AM
We've been members since 2000 and things have already changed for us. I suspect that they'll change over and over again before the year 2042.

When we joined we had a baby and a 5yo. We lived in PA. So we planned longer, less frequent trips because we drove to WDW....though we didn't always stick with our plan. We made 3 trips in 2002...2 were over 2 weeks long though.

Then in 2003 we moved to SC. At about the same time my MIL moved to St. Petersburg. We ended up planning more frequent short trips to coincide with visits...and because WDW seemed so close to us in comparison to living in PA.

But my MIL passed away last October, then 2004 began with buying a house and having a baby. So once again we have some major changes. Our budget is not so free with the house....and the baby adds a bit more complexity to vacations. Currently we're planning less frequent visits. Next year we'll go to HH instead of WDW.

Beyond that? Well, I still plan to vacation at DVC at least once a year. As the kids get older dh and I may manage some trips without them. We might someday buy more points so we can stay longer or invite friends or family to join us more often....or we might find that what we have is just enough.

As far as going to the parks...we've found it has become much more difficult with our children at the ages they are now (9, 4 and an infant) so we're planning to not visit the parks quite as much until it once again becomes easier. The kids certainly enjoy plenty of down time at the pool and just goofing off....fine with me, as a mom who needs the relaxation time! I can see my dh and I doing a bit of commando touring when we first are able to travel alone again....but we're also not getting any younger and perhaps we'll find that by then our age has caught up with us!

I'm looking forward to staying at DVC with just my dh for a while...until we eventually have grandchildren (with 3 kids I think our chances are good that it will happen someday...no guarantees though, I guess!) and then I hope we can have some nice whole family vacations together.

But, I'm not too set on any one thing....and I don't have time to obsess about planning anymore. The only certainty is that things won't always be exactly the same as they are now or were in the past.

10-31-2004, 12:19 AM
Currently me and DW (DINKS) visit for F&W festival, Christmas and a winter escape in March or April. We visit for 8-11 nights each trip.

We keep amassing points with the expectation of an early retirement and staying in a 1 Bedroom for 3 wks in Jan, all of Feb/March and into April. Even then we may well want to make shorter visits for the F&W and Christmas festivities. So yes, we expect over time to stay alot longer.

10-31-2004, 12:57 AM
I HOPE our habits never change. We love to go on the rides, see the shows, and just enjoy the parks overall. In fact, even as I start preparing a basic schedule for each trip, I never hesitate to categorize something as "let's do that NEXT time." We've probably only experienced about 50% of Epcot (never been in The Land, Energy or Wonders of Life pavilions at all), but I'm happy with making it a gradual process.

And, hopefully Disney will continue to help make the parks a new experience each time.

Given that we live in the midwest and our children are just now reaching school age, I'd say it will be a couple of decades before we can increase trips from our current 1-2 times per year. Hopefully most everything will stay fresh and new.

Even if we do begin to bore of a large number of attractions, I still can't forsee a time where we could visit WDW and NOT enter a theme park. It's just too much of a temptation. ;)

10-31-2004, 01:09 AM
Thanks for all the thoughtful responses so far, folks. I guess it's fair to add my $.02. We're empty nesters, and we seem to be settling into a week in May for just the two of us, and a week in early December where we get a 2BR and invite some friends or family. Someday there'll be grandchildren, so I can see us changing our timing to meet their vacation schedules.

We too think that "just staying at the resort" will often be enough, particularly when it's just the two of us; and, of course, the days of getting up at 5AM on an EE morning to run the "Magic Kingdom Mickey Mini-Marathon" at the rope drop are a thing of the past.

10-31-2004, 01:27 AM
Interesting thread!

DH and I (both 38 -- but still *love* roller coasters, theme parks, video games, etc.) took the DVC plunge this year, after a number of shorter WDW trips as well as our WDW honeymoon this past June.

We bought into DVC knowing that we'd never be able to have children -- that it would be just the two of us for those 50 (or so) years. Despite that fact, Disney dorks that we are, we still gobbled up 330 points.

We figured that we'd be able to share the fun of DVC with our family (have nieces and nephew, with more likely on the way!!) and children-enabled friends.

Because of our known childlessness, I don't think the number or length of our trips will change for at least for the next 15 or so years: one shorter trip for the two of us alone, and one longer trip for us and whatever friends/family members are joining us.

It may be that as we get older, we'll "lend" some of our points to friends and family so that they also can share the Magic with their extended families. And we'll probably try for the occasional II exchange as well.

It's funny: despite the lack of kids in our future, I don't see us selling our points at any time. When we finally do kick the bucket, I'd guess we're going to deed our DVC to whichever of our nieces/nephews dotes on us the most strongly in our old age (i.e., visits us when we're in "the home.")!!!:p

10-31-2004, 08:51 AM
Dr. Tomorrow,

Since you're our Disney friend from the future, we'd love to know what the parks will be like, say, 20 years from now. Will the Astro Orbiters finally be free from their tethers? Will they have to add another room onto Carousel of Progress? Will they paint the castle pink and dress it up like a Barbi dollhouse for the WDW 50 year anniversary?

I'm sure our trips will change as our kids grow up. They're 11 and 13 and both LOVE Disney. DW and I took our first trip before we were married (seperate beds of course!) in 84 and had a blast! We both love Epcot, and I look forward to one day doing the flower and garden festival and the food and wine festival. We're limited to vacation times when the kids are off from school. Maybe I'll get a job driving one of the resort boats or something when I'm 64 to help pay for all the wine and food.

10-31-2004, 09:30 AM
Our kids are 5 and 6. We go every other year for a week.

Until they are maybe 10 and 11 or so, we will focus on days with Disney parks.

After that, there will be the teen years. I antcipate the scheduling will change - no more pulling them out in October, we will go in late August. We will need a two bedroom for just us - so no more guests (unless they are the friends of the kids). And our days should have fewer early mornings, more water parks and more Universal in them. As the kids get old enough to manage the parks on their own, I see us hauling golf clubs down.

Once the kids go to college, we will go more often (yearly - or maybe a few short trips to do things like see Disney at Christmastime - I've never done that - unless we let them use the points) with more schedule flexibility, and our days will have more golf in them. DVC is our "kids go to college" golf resort.

10-31-2004, 10:29 AM
OUr boys are currently 13 & 14 years old, and we have been going about once a year since we bought in 2000. We will probably continue this for another 5 years until they are out of school.

I don't know what we will be able to swing with them in their college years, but I know DH and I will continue to go and love it!

Way down the road, I would love to vacation with both boys and their families maybe every other year? This would require another 100 point BWV purchase for us to stay in a grand villa for a full week.

10-31-2004, 10:29 AM
It looks as though we're going to go from being Florida residents and doing 3 to 5 short trips a year, to being Michigan residents and doing one long trip every year or every other year.

We've never traded out or done concierge, but I can see that in our future, too.

That was the whole reason we bought DVC -- it was so flexible.

Coach Rick
10-31-2004, 10:31 AM
What has changed in just two years of DVC membership we have gone from vacationing whenever, to planning on vacationing every two years to now planning on every year, maybe more than once a year. We are going for main vacations being 8 days, and a few days for interim vacations. In coming years I can only imagine increasing frequency while we add to our point totals.

10-31-2004, 11:01 AM
Fun and interesting thread!

So far, since I became a DVC member in 2000, I've been busy sharing trips to WDW with family. I still have a ways to go in order to give all of them a chance if they'd like to go. Unfortunately, my work schedule necessitates that many of my trips are over peak times for the most part (Christmas week and Easter week) so the points don't go as far.

I also travel other places unrelated to WDW or DVC points, but my WDW trips have become a beloved part of my travels. I'm anticipating a period of time in 8-10 years where I may branch out and use my points for II trades and other options. I know it won't be as "smart" a use of my points as staying at WDW, but I think I'll enjoy doing some splurging just the same.

When I retire (not for 15 years or so :( ), I look forward to going to WDW at slower times of the year. I'd love to spend 2 weeks in early December and 2 weeks in late January. Or maybe just do one trip a year and stay for most of January. Sounds heavenly! :angel:

10-31-2004, 01:58 PM
Originally posted by Tooneric
Dr. Tomorrow,
Since you're our Disney friend from the future, we'd love to know what the parks will be like, say, 20 years from now. Will the Astro Orbiters finally be free from their tethers? Will they have to add another room onto Carousel of Progress? Will they paint the castle pink and dress it up like a Barbi dollhouse for the WDW 50 year anniversary?
I'd love to tell you, but take a look at the tag that the Tag Fairy gave me. If I do tell you, then there could be a temporal paradox, and the timeline that leads to a wonderful future for WDW in 20 years could be wiped out, and WDW could be replaced by MEW (Micheal Eisner World). So keep the faith; there's a lot of cool things coming up.....

[Adjusting my tinfoil hat back, and a little to the left] :teleport:

10-31-2004, 02:52 PM
I don't see things changing much for us. We are DINKS and what has happened since we bought into DVC is that we tend to take more vacations sometimes of shorter durations. We love the parks and I think we always will, but have definately given up typical comando type touring. An afternoon relaxing in our villa or down by the pool is the norm now. We enjoy the special events and have been able to take advantage of a number of them. I hope this continues in the future as well.

11-01-2004, 07:48 AM
The biggest change I foresee in the next 10 years or so is the time of year we go.

We always vacation during the summer since our vacation is driven by the school calendar.

DW & I are looking forward to WDW trips with cooler temperatures, lower crowds and of course the beautiful holiday decorations.

We are already spending less time in the parks since the AP's are not as attractive cost-wise as we'd like them to be. We will be exploring the greater Orlando area a little more through the years, I'm sure.

11-01-2004, 06:17 PM
when DVC still had free tickets - it was go to WDW every day.....

Now I am learning to love the resorts - they actually have stuff to do in them....:teeth:

I am also discovering the rest of Orlando - SW, US/IOA, lots of things to do....

WDW is always building something new and different - that hasn't changed - and hopefully it won't!!!!

when I first joined - it was with this plan - one trip for me and mother - one trip for my brother's family.
I was working and going to school at night. Oh I got my degree finally in 2000 - after many long years.

his kids were beginning school - and they had a different off schedule from me.

so we were both to do and stay in studios - yea...

I have brought many more points.

my brother and his family generally stay in a 2-bedroom - when they go - the last few years they have used it to stay at other places - BC, off property (I rent the points for cash)

I still go and stay in studios, also 1 and 2 bedrooms. With other family, friend, co-workers.

Jerry is trying to talk me into a GV - but I don't think so.....

I go some years more frequently - other years less frequently.

I even had a plan at one time until 2007 - yea that went off the door long ago.

I guess if you love WDW, you always will - now or in 50 years.... at least I hope so!!!

OKW was the DVC for the first few years - and I never got try of staying there - or if I did - one night per trip on my stays were enough to convince me.

Anyway I hope everyone loves there DVC now and at least until their contract run out - if we live that long!!!

11-01-2004, 09:24 PM
Right now the kids are little 5, 24 sleeps away from 4, and 18 months old. Our trips are generally 6 or 7 days long, at a relaxed pace. Lots of pool days.... early nights...

When the kids are more self sufficient, I will take the kids down, bymyself, for longer trips in the summer in a 1 bedroom..... and DH will come along for the fall trip in a 2 bedroom... We have also fallen in love with HH and hope to do 6 nights there, in early summer, for the next 38 years, sadly booked at the 7 month window.

We like 3 vacations a year(plus a couple of adult trips), and I cant see that changing.... What we do... that will change.

11-01-2004, 09:29 PM
My first trip to WDW was in 1976 at the Poly. I started going down every other year. Then it was every year. Some years it was twice. :)

We bought our dvc points last year, because we go so often and we know we're going back. I would love to arrange it so we go twice a year. There are so many neat things going on at different times of the year. I love the parks and I don't see that changing.

With the DD's in school we are tied to summer, thanksgiving and christmas trips. So the change I see later on is the time of year we go. I would love to get to the F&G and F&W festivals more often.

11-01-2004, 09:42 PM
Good questions.

We are empty nesters as well. Our pre-DVC ownership visits had increased to more than once per year and averaged about 5 days in length per trip.

Buying DVC increased our trip length to generally a week at a time and we continue to visit more than once per year.

In the future, we will probably continue with weekly stays, possibly three times per year. Don't forsee spending less time at the parks, but that is always possible.

A great deal will depend on our health.

What has changed considerably is the more laid back approach to our visits. We rarely ever spend more than the morning at the parks. We might return in the evening for dinner and fireworks, but generally we are out of the parks between lunch and dinner.

11-03-2004, 02:44 PM
If I do tell you, then there could be a temporal paradox, and the timeline that leads to a wonderful future for WDW in 20 years could be wiped out, and WDW could be replaced by MEW (Micheal Eisner World).

Thanks, Dr. Tomorrow!

Now I understand your tag line. It's a heavy responsibility you must carry. I hadn't thought of the consequences, only of my own selfish thoughts. I will just have to wait and see what unfolds at MEW, uh, that's WDW over the next score.

11-04-2004, 02:33 AM
Right now we can only go on school vacations so I would say in about 13 years I definitely want to start going in January and Sept or Oct and enjoy the cooler weather.
I really see us doing a lot of exchanges in the future.
Somewhere in there my husband and I will start doing solo vacations (we have never vacationed without the children) although each year we approach to my dd becoming a "Preteen" I see it as a stronger possibility.
I pray God blesses me with grandchildren and a daughter in law and son in law haha! I do look forward to large family vacations once grandkids come but since I'm only 29 and dd is 9 that's a LONG way away.