Is DVC worth it for a primarily solo traveller?

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by superdisneydork, May 2, 2013.

  1. superdisneydork

    superdisneydork Mouseketeer

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    I am the kind of person that has always wanted to do an annual Disney vacation with family. As the years went by, I made my way through school and started a promising engineering career. Now I can actually afford yearly visits to the world, but my family has all grown up and lost interest. As a result I ended up going on my first solo trip last year, one of many hopefully annual Fall trips. I am planning another Fall trip this year with my aunt and younger cousins, but I fear I may only get the one trip out of them before they too are bored with Disney (entering those scary teen years where Disney isn't cool enoghu!). As such I'm faced with the somewhat ironic situation of being able to comfotrably afford the vacation I want every year and having no one to share it with!

    Now, I loved my solo trip, and the idea of many more doesn't bother me in the least, but I've always been a Pop/Allstars kind of guy, mostly because I was taking < 5 day trips and didn't much point. It's always been a desire of mine to take longer vacations in the nicer resorts and maybe do things other than park days, some nice downtime. Recently I went on my first cruise (Not DCL though, I was outvoted by the other cruisegoers!) and found that downtime days enjoying resort-style amenities were also extremely excellent and balanced well with the adventure packed port days. As such I'm even more inclined to do a more inclusive Disney vacation balancing park time with nice resorts. As such, I am more inclined to cough up the dough for the nicer resort.

    Also, another important factor, as of next year my available vacation time will see a reasonable increase, so a longer trip is no logner a stretch. Overall, several events have conspired to make the idea of a annually having longer stay at a higher end resort not only feasible, but even more desireable. As such I find myself toying with the idea of a small DVC resale contract, with enough points for a 7 to 10 day Fall vacation at someplace like BWV.

    The thing that nags at me, is while the pricing is reasonable, and I could likely start socking away cash for a purchase next year (I do not want to finance anything), I wonder if I'm just seeing the idea through Pixie tinted glasses. I am undoubtedly sure I want to vacation there every year, perhaps even more often, just as sure as I am that I will not have any persistent travel partners through the years. While I may occasion have a relative or two, or some buddies to travel with, I will more often than not be flying solo. While researching DVC, everyone is talking about how great it is with their family, and I wonder if maybe it's just not worth it for the one person. On the other hand, I look at what those levels of resort stays would cost me normally, and it seems to make more sense again.

    So, I'm here to have my head put on straight, am I crazy? Is this just not a reasonable idea now? I suspect since I feel the need to ask this, I probably know the answer already, but I need judgement from those who have gone through it, and can be more objective than I. Right now, the idea of promising myself a nice resort vacation every year is sort of hard to punch holes in!

    I am also (foolishly) optimistic I might be able to turn my family around someday, and getting everyone together at BWV or anothe DVC resort for a 7 day trip would be just amazing, especially if I could do it with any regularity. If I have the DVC points already and I can put them to use, it might be an easier sell! I already get discounted park tickets through work, so it's more incentive.

    So, let me have it? What does everyone think? Don't be afraid to tell me I'm crazy, if that's the case I need to hear it! :)

    Matt
     
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  3. dbs1228

    dbs1228 DIS Veteran

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    If you enjoyed your solo trip and love Disney, can afford it and want to prepay your vacations and stay on sight in bigger accommodations GO FOR IT! One of my BFF's work with a women who owns BWV points and she has traveled solo and through the years she has met other solo travelers thru the boards and they meet up at the World once a year.

    I say do research, look into a smaller 100 - 150 point contract on the resale market and if you can afford it - go for it. If there is a year you will not use the points you can bank them or rent them out.

    Good luck in your decision - if it were me I would go for it on a small scale (point wise) and see how it goes.
     
  4. superdisneydork

    superdisneydork Mouseketeer

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    That was precisely my plan, since I won't need much, and if I turn the family around I am sure I could arrange for more points or borrow one year if necessary.

    Speaking of renting out points, is there any merit to thought of being a repeat renter? I wonder if that makes more sense for my situation.

    I love Disney, I love being there and planning trips and just enjoying it, I want to get the most out of that without accidentally trapping myself in something that maybe isn't the right fit. I'm also stuck with the engineering mindset, which can lead to what some of my coworkers refer to as 'analysis paralysis' where I'll research something perpetually and never commit due to not having researched every conceivable scenario yet! (Which is of course, impossible) This is why I need the outside perspective.

    Matt
     
  5. raftislander

    raftislander Mouseketeer

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    Well you: 1) love Disney; 2) are planning yearly trips to WDW; 3) might sometimes be travelling solo and sometimes not; 4) have already shown that you will travel solo; and 5) post on a board that will allow you to meet up with other Disney lovers when you are travelling solo. Most of all, it appears that you have the financial means to purchase a resale contract. These are all good fits with DVC in my opinion. When you travel solo, you can rent a studio. When family is in tow, you can rent soemthing larger. Book at Aulani and see how fast your family will join you!

    If you were hesitant to travel solo, I would be concerned about a purchase. Also, is there another purchase- like a home- that should take priority? Engineers can be mobile in their profession- so home ownership is not always prudent. But if you are settled into a location, will purchasing DVC interfere with your ability to become a homeowner? I bought DVC and have a daughter in college. She loves Disney, but I recognize that as she finishes school and starts a career, her flexibity/ability to vacation with me may change. I have no doubts that -with her or without her - I will be using my vacation points. :rotfl:
     
  6. chalee94

    chalee94 <font color=green>I thought all sand was ground up

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    i'm in this boat. i'm single. i have a lot of family in FL (including my retired parents) and still enjoy going to wdw every year (or every other year).

    still worth it to buy at least a small DVC contract for onsite vists at wdw IMO.

    i also own another timeshare that's a better value for trading out for other destinations (or offsite visits to wdw).
     
  7. dbs1228

    dbs1228 DIS Veteran

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    Renting points is a great option - for me - due to my past profession of travel agent - that option would not work for me I love the planning process and need to be in control of my ressie. You could give renting a try for the next trip or 2 and see how that works for you DVC will always be here so certainly no need to rush.

    Reasons I bought:
    1) We go every year (took 16 years of trips to buy in):confused3
    2) BLT was built and wanted MK resort :thumbsup2
    3) Want to stay in bigger accommodations - went with 2 girlfriends (left DH and DD's behind) and still got a 2 bedroom :banana:
    4) Want space in the villa for down time/down days :surfweb:
    5) I prefer to make simple meals in the villa's vs. going out for every meal popcorn::
    6) I like to bring family and friends with us to share the experience some cannot afford it :love:
    7) I have 3 DD's and hoping someday if we are lucky enough we can bring the grand kids for many "family vacations" :dance3:
    8) We LOVE Disney :cloud9: and decided to prepay our vacations
     
  8. jstarcze

    jstarcze DIS Veteran

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    Superdisneydork you are me. I always wanted to go to WDW, especially EPCOT, so one year I scheduled a solo trip when no one wanted to go with me. I've own for BLT for 4 years now. I go twice a year now, sometimes solo and sometimes with family or friends. One year I even went three times. If you love Disney, then you will love it like I have. DIS does have a solo travelers forum if you need ideas on things to do as a solo traveler. But quite frankly while I don't commando the parks, I am always doing something when at WDW. In fact I'm trying to slow myself down a little and actually rest at the resort more. :beach:
     
  9. superdisneydork

    superdisneydork Mouseketeer

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    Oh yeah, that's a surefire way to get them all on-board haha!

    I was a little hesitant when I booked the trip, but it was great, there wasn't a single part of the experience I didn't love. The freedom to utilize single rider, and stop for shows and whatnot whenever I wanted was fantastic. I never even did the game at the end of M:S before that trip because nobody would ever stop for me! I wouldn't hesitate to do solo again, I also have the benefit of local friends that will always join me for a park day or two.

    That is one thing I was concerned with, I am a planner and a paranoid triple checker, and I would hate not being in control of the reservations!

    Those reasons are all common to me, I'm actually funding this entire Fall trip for my other family members because I want to make sure they experience Disney and have the chance I had to love it. Also, I'm securing my crown as the coolest cousin! :cool2:

    This sounds like me indeed! I would be up for mixing solo trips with family and friend trips, some of my friends are about to cave I think on 2014s trip and join me because I won't shut up about it, but I am sure they will enjoy it and be satiated for quite some time! Also, I really want to slow down and enjoy the resorts, and I'm in a chicken/egg mode. I never stay above POP/Allstars because I just don't use the resort amenities, and I don't ever use them because I'm never at a nice enough resort! Really I want to be staying longer so I don't feel like I'm giving up park time for resort time. Ideally I'd like to do park days alternating with resort/DTD days to maximize adrenaline fun and relaxing and try to combat the post-Disney exhaustion somewhat! I feel that would be less fun/worth it at a smaller resort like Pop though, and the prices at the nicer resorts (like BW/BWV) is a little nutty to me. Hopefully this will enable me to make longer stays and enjoy them that much more!

    Thanks,
    Matt
     
  10. Best Aunt

    Best Aunt "That's the best-est present ever!"

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    I don't think the issue is Solo versus Family.

    I think the issue is being a Pop/AllStars kind of guy versus being someone who loves the villas.

    If you're thinking about getting a DVC contract and making solo trips, do you see yourself in a studio or a one-bedroom? Do you see yourself at BCV/BWV? BLT? VWL? AKV? SSR? OKW?

    I suggest renting the type of villa you would want at the resort you would want, to see how you like it.

    I stayed in a 1 BR at BCV in March one year and I was hooked. I knew I would keep doing it, even if I were paying rack rate. So for me, it made sense to get a DVC contract because I'm comparing apples to apples (staying in a 1 BR at BCV on points versus staying in a BR at BCV through Central Reservations Office).

    If I were a Pop/AllStars person, then it would be hard to judge financially. I would be comparing the cost of paying rack rate to stay at Pop/All Stars versus the cost of buying a contract which would let me stay in a 1 BR at BCV. Apples to oranges.

    Then there's the fact that sometimes you get a discount on rack rate. Then there's the question of whether you're a free dining kind of guy. You won't get free dining with DVC.
     
  11. DMKEDM

    DMKEDM DIS Veteran

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    Am "sort of" in the same space...only I already bought my points (7 years ago), so now my "issue" is to keep them and use them for an increasing number of solo trips, or "downsize."

    DS is now out of school and in his first year at a demanding job--we have one trip planned for later this year (and I feel extremely lucky to get that!), but the days of school break trips to Disney are over...

    I found I have several families/friends who are thrilled to go to Disney w/me...I book a villa for them (and one for me)--but even staying in "my" villa it's an expensive trip for them, and there's no one who's as "addicted" to Disney as I am...they either don't want to or can't afford to go as often as I want to go...

    So, I foresee that more and more, I'll be on my own.

    So far, like you, I've done only one solo trip; and like you, I loved it. I haven't quite gotten up enough courage to try to meet up w/other DisBoard travelers, but I have it in the back of my mind to try that some time. So I'm keeping my points until I hit a year (if ever I do) when I don't use them.

    There is SO much to do at Disney...you can easily really relax and enjoy without vast amounts of park time (I don't tend to skip days in the park--an AP makes it irrelevant to worry about using a day of admission--but I do have days when I go for one ride, or one treat (Dole Whips!), or one shop, or one stroll around the park...an hour in a park is it some days...

    The one thing I don't do is sit-down restaurant meals by myself. Just not comfortable with that, at least yet...but there are plenty of good counter service/in-room choices, and plenty of other trips when I do have dining companions...

    Anyway, long way around saying I'm certain I can make it work, and I'm certain you can, too. And if a few years go by and it's more work than fun to make it work, there's a good resale market out there...seems to me it's pretty low-risk to give it a try!

    Good luck!
     
  12. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis

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    Given the choices available for a single, I don't see this as any different than a couple or small family. If you're happy to pay to stay on property, will travel consistently to a DVC covered area and will get more than a value if you don't own DVC; I see the choice the same as any couple basically comparing a studio to a moderate or deluxe Disney options. The bottom line is that traveling as a single tends to be relatively more expensive per person than a couple for anything including a cruise, Disney, etc.
     
  13. dsdeleon

    dsdeleon Mouseketeer

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    One great thing about Disney solo is you can let your guard down and feel safe. I have traveled alone in Europe and South America and you have to go through a lot of effort to stay safe and can't really zone out and enjoy your surroundings. It's nice to explore without stalkers and pickpockets!
     
  14. Dean

    Dean DIS Veteran<br><a href="http://www.wdwinfo.com/dis

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    One should always be aware and avoid putting themselves in a situation but I agree it's much less risky and more comfortable at WDW than most places for somewhat similar situations. However, things happen at WDW and like on cruise ships, they are often not reported in such a way that the general public would know about them. Thus a portion of the sense of safety is false, IMO.
     
  15. superdisneydork

    superdisneydork Mouseketeer

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    I do feel safe in the World, perhaps too much, last year after a back to back of opening and closing Epcot, then opening MK, I needed a break, so I decided to ride the train (never was able to convince anyone to do that before either!). It was so relaxing I dozed right off clutching my camera. I was awakened by my phone buzzing, my local friend had arrived at the park and saw me napping!

    Matt
     
  16. DeeCee735

    DeeCee735 "How Do You Know of the Key?"

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    If this is what you love and you have worked your whole life, and now find yourself in a position to be able to afford something you know you will use, there's 0 reason not to buy. This is JMHO, but life is short, goes by so quickly and if it's not something that will hurt your financial well being, why not?:cool1:

    We have 23 year old children, we bought 13 years ago, and while my family has used it once a year and loved it, my kids can't go so much right now, with getting themselves out into the real world of careers, but it's there for them until they are 60. My husband can only take 1 vacation a year and that's where we both still love going.

    That being said, I go 3/4 times a year. Sometimes alone, sometimes a friend will meet me, sometimes I'll take a cousin. It's where I love to be. It's my serenity and my fun. If everyone else tells me they are bored, or sick of it :confused3:confused3:confused3:confused3(huh?!), then I leave them home and go myself. I'll never be sick of it.

    So, coming from the POV of a person who can go with family, or guests, and chooses alone sometimes (and finds those trips to be AWESOME), I say go for it, and enjoy every minute!:woohoo::woohoo:
     
  17. RSWA2

    RSWA2 Mouseketeer

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    I'm very similar to you. I am a young, single engineer. I first considered purchasing DVC primarily as a solo traveler when I first graduated, I ran all the numbers, compared finances over the time a the resale DVC's were good for (2042 to 2057) vs value, mod, deluxe with various discounted rates. Added inflation, growth potential of the money, hotel rate/MF increases, etc.

    People who say DVC is so great with others because it is, but it doesn't mean that it's not great as a solo. At the end of the day, the resort is still the same/similar resort, whether you are traveling solo or with 1 or 10 people. You still fall asleep and wake up at WDW.

    If you want to stay at non-value and non-mod resorts and you will travel at least every other year or so. Then DVC may be a good option. So I guess from one analytical mind to another and since we take emotion out of numbers, if the numbers work, then it works. Numbers don't lie. Your life outside of DVC may change and others may join you in future trips and you can say that the rooms are taken care of. I wouldn't let that hamper your decision. If you've never stayed at a deluxe, go check them out, or if you aren't going back soon, watch some videos of the lobbies, rooms, grounds, etc. See if you like them. You may just really like Values more and if that is the case, DVC won't be worth it.

    I ran and played with the numbers for years before I purchased, looking back, I probably should have purchased earlier once I finished all my calculations and analyzing as since the numbers don't change, I ended up paying for 2 more trips, each 10+ night stays at a deluxe before I bought resale. So the price I paid for those 20+ nights would have paid for most of my resale purchase. :sad2:
     

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