potential buyer/newbie questions
So, I am either going to buy through resale, most likely at the Fort Wilderness Lodge, or wait and buy into the Grand Floridian when it’s available. (I know this is a huge difference in cost, but the idea of being on the monorail is very appealing to me).
Anyway, as I have no children, I usually go to WDW during off times(my last trip was 12/2/12 – 12/12/12). I go off times to avoid crowds, and usually during the winter months to escape the winters of the north east. Since this is my travel time preference, do experienced members think the 11 month vs. 7 month window is as important?
Then some more general questions:
1. If I decide I want more points, can I buy an additional 50(for example) and roll them into my account? I would assume they would have to be the same home base.
2. If I am a small amount of points short(including borrowed ones) can I rent, say 20 points to use?
3. Has anyone had any maintenance issues at properties? On the aforementioned trip of December 2012, I stayed at the Polynesian (as I had many times in the past), the room, and common areas of the building were so bad, WDW credited me some money, then I moved to Port Orleans Riverside, and was credited the additional difference. I was totally disappointed in the Polynesian this time.
4. Anyone able to book Hawaii 7 months out? How difficult is it?
5. What happens with a new property, such as Grand Floridian…when they start accepting bookings for it, I assume it will be within the 7 month time window…will non home resort guests be able to book?
VWL doesn't have access to the monorail.
December is peak time for DVC.
If you book at 11 months, you will have a better chance of getting what you want.
Yes you can add-on contracts.
You can "rent" points, (up to 24) from Disney or transfer points from another member.
DVC properties are generally in worst shape than cash rooms.
Aulani is still being built so availability won't be known until Disney sells all of the DVC units.
Owners at GF will be able to book first, then all members.
you can still add points by buying a resale with a different UY month, but it is a little more complicated to use and keep track of.
you could also try to find another owner willing to transfer pts from their acct to yours.
As mentioned, December is probably the most popular time for DVC bookings. Points are low and people want to visit for the holiday theme. VWL is a small resort and can be hard to get in December so I'd you want to stay there, owning and booking at 11 months is crucial, at least IMO. No matter where you buy, for that travel time, you'd want to book at the 11 month mark so you at least have a reservation. You can then try your luck at 7 but at least you'd have a place to stay.
You can have points at more than one home resort. I own both BWV and BLT. Each can only be used at their own resort during the home resort priority but at 7 months, they could be combined. In my cased, since I have different UYs for them, I have to transfer to accomplish that. But if you buy with the same UY and title the same way, it's easy to combine at 7.
You can always buy more points. Disney is not going to stop you. They call about every two years checking to see if we have 'enough'.
If you buy resale you can buy want ever contract you can afford. But just remember it would get complicated if you are trying to put one trip together on both contracts. If you made a reservation on the first contract at 11 months at that home resort and wanted the entire trip at one resort, you would have to wait until the 7 month mark on your second contract (if it was a different resort) and see if you can add on days. Most likely you would need to move rooms.
I personally have not had any huge maintenance issues but you can easily scroll through many of these threads and find people that have. I have always been please with the quality and upkeep but I recognize that I may have just been lucky. The one issue we did have was the last time we stayed at AKL there was one lightbulb out, I called to have it fixed. I don't think mouse keeping ever did replace the bulb during our stay but it turned out that it was not a lamp we ever needed.
Just a thought here, since Grand Floridian will be very expensive, you most likely will not purchase as many points, I will assume. Even though I agree with you that a monorail resort is awesome, I would rather have more points. If you have less, it will definitely complicate your ability to go to Hawaii or even stay at your potential home resort of the Grand Floridian. I found VWL an easy resort to get to the parks and Downtown Disney. The boat was a great way to travel and broke up the need of always taking the bus.
We just stayed at VWL and had a wonderful stay. The villas are maintained very well.
From early October through the marathon weekend, it can be difficult to get any DVC villa at less than seven months out. The Grand Californian Villas are also tough to get nearly any time because they are the smallest of all the villas. Grand Floridian Villas also look to be small at this point in the construction.
As far as pricing, VWL and Grand Floridian are going to be light years apart.
With Grand Floridian, we don't know what the initial price will be, but it will surely not be less than the $165 per point currently being charged at BLT. Based on a quick glance at the ROFR thread, it looks like you can buy VWL in the $50's per point on the resale market.
I personally think WL is by far the most beautiful of all the Disney resorts, and if I were picking between it and Grand Floridian, it would be an easy choice. But I'm not you.
The downside to VWL, IMHO, is that it is a very small resort, and if you want to go in December, you're going to have to book exactly at 11 months and maybe even "walk" your reservations then. Another downside to VWL is the annual dues are rather high. That is going to cost more in the long run than your initial outlay, so that is an important factor. Some will say the 2042 expiration of VWL is a negative, but to me that's a positive.
(Although, truth be told, if I were buying DVC, I'd buy OKW because I love the resort, the buyin price is low, the dues are also low, and the villas are in a class by themselves as far as size is concerned.)
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