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Old 03-17-2013, 12:39 AM   #1
ImTempest
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Trying to Figure out the Use Year Thing Before Purchase

Okay, so say my husband and I are very very lucky and we purchase a 100 or 200 point DVC membership at Grand Californian (this is what we're hoping for, anyway). Ignore the direct vs. resale issue entirely for right now. We will be using the membership mostly for a two-night stay in October and a two-night stay in early December. The contract has a September use year, and points are entered into the account in September.

This part is where I'm confused about the whole thing. If we called at the 11-month mark (say, in November 2012) for a reservation for October 2013, did we use the points from September 2013 to make the reservation? As I understand it, the points we would get in September 2013 are good for bookings made for September 1, 2013 through August 31, 2014. Did I get this right?

And that's why we want a use year close to the time we want to use the points, in case we need to bank. Yes?
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Old 03-17-2013, 05:12 AM   #2
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The points from a September Use Year may be used for reservations from 9/1 to 8/31 each year., The banking deadline is April 30 each year. Reservations may always be made at your Home Resort 11 months ahead based on the points in your account that will be available for the reservation - banked, current and/or borrowed.

September is a great Use Year for trips in October and December. The only real time Use Year comes into play is if you would need to cancel a reservation since that reduces the amount of time available to bank or use those points before they expire.

In your example above, the points from Sepetmber, 2013 would need to be banked in order to use them for any date beyond August 31, 2014. By banking them, they are useful thru the end of August, 2015. They would need to be banked before that could be used for that reservation.

Enjoy!
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Old 03-17-2013, 10:16 PM   #3
ImTempest
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Thank you, Doc! I'm starting to (almost) feel like I've learned enough to buy DVC. I didn't want to just "buy from the heart". I really want to understand what I'm getting into and how it works, so I can "choose wisely".
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Old 03-18-2013, 08:32 AM   #4
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Agreeing with Doc, getting a UY just before your typical travel time (if you have one) is better for you on the off chance that you may need to cancel.

On Wednesday we will be taking our first trip as DVC owners. Last week it was uncertain whether we would be able to take our trip as planned. My FIL had what should have been a simple surgery, almost 2 weeks ago now. He had some serious post surgical complications, that kept him in the surgical ICU 10+ days. He is recovering now, but last week that was not guaranteed.

If I had had to cancel last minute, I would have been left with approximately 400 holding points. Since I have a Feb UY, I would have had until the end of Jan 2014 to use or lose them. If I had had a June UY for example, and had to cancel, I would have only had until the end of MAY 2013 to try to use them before they expired.

When we were shopping contracts we focused on Feb & March UYs, as we like to travel in the spring, and may be stuck with some summer trips while the kids are in school. GL
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Old 03-18-2013, 09:37 AM   #5
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We chose September as well, but for probably different reasons. Our oldest is on school and my dw teaches. We like to vacation in spring, but occasionally Spring Break falls over Easter weekend, and a fall break or first week in January works out with the school calendar. Regardless we can always go in the summer last resort if we have to.

Sorry for rambling, but I'm always interested on why people bought the use year they did.
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