Vacation Cycle- how do you spend points?

Discussion in 'Purchasing DVC' started by Trooper8286, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    Hello All!

    I have been lurking for quite a while, made calls to DVC and brokers and stalked the broker online listings.......when my financing cones through, we are members! Currently I am trying to figure out how many points I should start off with. I am going with BLT. I am thinking modest trip in December (67 PTS) and the a bigger trip (longer, nicer or both) in the summer. Evaluating the best way to go once a year with a possible long weekend now and again.

    My question is straight forward.....
    How do you work the cycle and allocate points?
     
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  3. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

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    Hello and Welcome.

    You didn't say how many points you will have to play with.

    My DD and her husband have 210 points and the go once a year for 7 nights in a 1 bedroom at a low point time, Sept/Oct and a long weekend in a studio, usually in May.

    We go 3 or 4 times a year. Usually a 2 bedroom in Sept/Oct and studios the rest of the time. This year we went in January (9 nights), May (8 nights), going in September for 11 nights (4 nights in a studio and 7 in a 2 br) and going the 1st week of December for 7 nights. Hoping to get a night or 2 extra at VGF during the Dec trip.

    Jan, Sept and Dec are all the lowest point seasons to maximize point usage.

    Good luck with your planning and enjoy your points!
     
  4. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    Thanks Diz! Your breakdown is exactly what I was wanting to know.

    I did not say how many points I had.......I am trying to gauge how many I need, and part of that decision is how often and when to go. I was thinking along the lines of alternating a studio and 1 or 2 BR depending who we drag along with us. We are a family of four, so we are good to go with a studio.....

    My quandry is managing a three year point window. Banked, present and borrowed. I have in mind doing a 2 BR, Magic season, 6 nights with my sister in law and her family. At BLT, that is 406 points. That would be sort of a once every five years thing. I would have to bank or borrow and assumes at least 150 points, with points now.... leaving 48 to be banked in 2015 for use in 2016. I am not o much worried about having to do that next year.....I could wait for the right contract... this is just a mental exercise to see how many points I should try to buy....
     
  5. chalee94

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

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    try to get a UY that starts before you travel most. ideally, you never want to travel in the last few months of your UY. but no UY covers every travel date.

    i have an oct UY and i typically travel in nov/dec. i would never want to be in FL in the heat in july/aug/sept...so my UY works great for me.

    IMO, if you are buying direct in order to use pts primarily for higher cost weekend nights (fri/sat), that is a low value proposition. looking at resales for weekly stays (or longer stays that only include one weekend) is a better value currently.

    i recommend that you read and bookmark the Understanding Use Year thread as a great reference for UY. the big thing to remember is that UY has NOTHING to do with when you can call to book a stay.

    using 3 years of pts is do-able but it helps if you can make plans the year after if any pts are left over, to keep them from going to waste. (i wouldn't recommend DVC for every-third-year plans.) and keep in mind it might be cheaper to just pay cash for weekends in some cases (especially if you are focused on studios, which are not much different than hotel rooms with fewer real beds) so feel free to start small and add more pts later if needed.

    definitely hang out on the boards...read through random threads to get a sense of issues you had not thought of...use the search function (or google) to find out more...but feel free to ask questions as you go.
     
  6. ssawka

    ssawka DIS Veteran

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    We usually do some sort of a Disney vacation every 6 months. We'll do 5-6 nights in a 1 BR in the Winter and then usually a couple of nights in the Summer at HHI or VBR. We also sometimes rent points to take a cruise instead of the Winter trip.

    BTW, I am waiting to see who will be the first poster will be to say "You should not finance a luxury purchase." Personally, I think if you can afford it and can manage the debt that there is no problem with financing. Financing decisions are very personal and only you can decide if it makes sense for your financial situation.

    popcorn::
     
  7. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    That made me laugh out loud! I used to be an admin on a forum and waited for the guys I called the "doom posters" to drop the hammer. then I would have to come in and blow a whistle......fun stuff.:lmao:

    We are refinancing our house regardless to lower out interest rate and I am taking some cash out to help make this happen.

    Charles....we are looking at going every year, but going small...big...small...big... and working the points to do that.
     
  8. Sandisw

    Sandisw Moderator Moderator

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    Well, I started out with 180 in 2009 and then quickly made it 210 in 2010. In 2011, I added another 150--but sold a 30 point contract to help with the extra cost.

    In 2012, I then added another 100 points so I am now up to 430...so giving you a typical scenario of how to manage points would be tough...since I keep adding more short trips to my once a year long trips, which required more points!!!!:rotfl2:

    But, when we did buy, our plan was to do 5 nights a year in the summer in a 1 bedroom and then a long weekend for just DH and I every fall--once year in October for F & W and then the following year in early Dec. to see the holiday decorations.

    Right now, when DH and I go by ourselves for those long weekends, we conserve points and just get a studio. Its typically for 3 nights only and to be honest, more than big enough for what we need. But, for the summer trips, I like having the larger rooms.

    Of course, for the past 3 years, its turned into a big trip with family and friends and with the addition of the points, have been doing 2 bedrooms which are really nice when going with a lot of people! And, DH and I are starting to manage an extra trip during Memorial Day weekend, and I added a short stay every February...
     
  9. rusafee1183

    rusafee1183 DVC Owner Since 2012!

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    I am having the same problem Trooper8286. So, it's not just you! :goodvibes

    DH and myself (just us, no kids yet) purchased 120 points at AKV direct in 2012 and quickly screwed up by booking trips with family who backed out, and renting points and borrowing in order to make all this happen. :sad2:

    So we were left with no points for practically two years... :eek:

    We are currently in the process of purchasing another 125 points resale at VWL and should be closing this week. The whole time during this process, I kept asking myself if we were doing the wrong thing by purchasing more and I should have just planned out my points better. But, we found a contract that we really liked, could afford (also financing :rolleyes1) and WANTED. I know that this isn't the most advised route, but we figured that if we have a bit too many we can rent out any points that we don't plan on using or bank them for a larger trip.

    I honestly have no clue how people plan all of their points so far in advance unless they are someone who travels at the same time, at the same resort, size room, with the same people every time. :confused3

    We like to mix it up and travel with friends and family, stay in different size rooms at different resorts at different times of year. It definitely makes planning that far in advance difficult.:upsidedow


    Good luck figuring it all out! I envy the people who account for everything so efficiently! :thumbsup2
     
  10. DizBub

    DizBub Totally Addicted

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    I am assuming that you know that BLT standard any size unit will give you the most bank for your buck and that you must reserve that at your 11 month booking window. Especially if you are going at low point seasons.

    Don't dismiss staying at OKW. Huge rooms and definately a lower point option.

    Please let us know what you decide to do!
     
  11. Deb & Bill

    Deb & Bill DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention

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    Bringing family or friends along who don't understand the process is a waste of points. If they don't get it, they don't get invited. And for the most part, it is either just the two of us or the three of us. Unless it is marathon week and my husband's running buddy is joining us. He (and his family) is always invited because they get it. We've brought nieces, friends, inlaws, parents, etc. And they all got it.

    And if they can't plan, they don't get invited on our points.

    One more thing. If you only plan every third year, you are still paying dues every year. To me, that would be a real negative.
     
  12. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    No, we are going at least every other and probably every year. What I am trying to wrap my brain around is how people manage points in that window.

    Example: spend 70, bank 80, visit in December 2013. The next year, use banked 80, add 150 from 2014 and borrow 150 and go big. Sit out 2015 or borrow 50 from 2016 to go small for a weekend. Go small again in 16 and repeat.....

    Just trying to figure out what other folks do.

    I also am planning to have the "invited" ones buy our park passes since we are providing the room.....
     
  13. Missyrose

    Missyrose DIS Veteran

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    We originally bought a 150-point BWV contract (we love the Food and Wine Festival and the Epcot resort area in general). Then we added an 80-point BLT contract. And finally, we just added 65 points at VGF. Here's how we'll break things down:

    The BWV contract will be used for our fall trips, longer trips or trips when we need a bigger villa.

    With the BLT and VGF contracts, we'll alternate years for our late-winter or early spring trips. So in Year 1, we'll used 130 VGF points, in Year 2 we'll use 160 BLT points, etc.

    So 295 points in all, with a pretty decent plan of how they will all be used.
     
  14. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    As if things weren't muddled enough....the promoter for Star Wars Celebration just announced that Celebration will be in Anaheim in 2015........across the way from GCV......during spring break week......Premier Season......:crazy2:
     
  15. kim532

    kim532 DIS Veteran

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    We bought a 100 point AKV direct with the thought of every 3rd year. It is not working out for us. Reality is we want to travel every year. I am in a constant borrowing pattern.

    I guess my thought is to be realistic with your purchase. I don't think we were. We really need at least another 100 points. My add-on will come in a couple of years. Probably a BLT resale or maybe a Poly direct. Saving now so I am ready!

    Kim
     
  16. Pirate Granny

    Pirate Granny DIS Veteran

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    We have a 220 OKW that we will use to bank and borrow and do a grand Villa at OKW in June every three years. I have BCV 164 for studio trips for flower and garden show...and just purchased 150 VWL to go in Nov/Dec for the holiday...studio again.

    That said, next year we are 4 nights in a 2 bedroom at BCV, and 9 nights at OKW in a GV. Kids (adults), are lobbying for 2 nights at VGF, which I would drop a night at OKW and add the two nights at VGF if available in a 2 bedroom lock off...which sleep 10 persons. That leaves me enough points to still get my Christmas trip on at VWL. Took a spread sheet to figure out the points.
     
  17. Trooper8286

    Trooper8286 TK8286

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    Thanks for all the input. I see several strategies that help me think this through.
     
  18. JaneSparrow

    JaneSparrow Mouseketeer

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    We bought 200 BLT points direct in 2010. We planned to go every year but things happened and we've only been able to use our points twice in 2011 and again this coming December.

    When we bought we already are going to visit my in-laws in LA in 2011 so why not add a stay at VGC right? So we stayed for a few nights there in 1BR and got my son's godmother a room at DLH too for 1 night since she arrived 1 night before our 1BR reservation.

    Since we have those extra points from buying direct, we also have a trip planned for October 2011 for my son's 3rd birthday. However, my DH did not get approval on his vacation request so we had to cancel this trip. My stepgrandfather also passed away in May 2011 and my grandmother moved in with us. I also found out the day he died that I am pregnant. So we decided we really needed a break. DH company has a yearly shutdown the first week of July and as much as we promised ourselves not to go back in July (we were there in 2010 and son got sick) we had no other choice. Off we went to 2BR SSR. Since we needed 2BR to accommodate grandma, we also invited another godmother and her mom to occupy the additional beds.

    2012 was not possible because our second was born, mom passed away and I got no vacation days left. Rented our points through David's rental. But the renter needed more than what we have left in 2012 so we had to borrow from 2013.

    We are going back in December in 1 night BLT studio followed by 1 week in 2BR BLT (our first time home) and had to borrow 2014 points. We have no plans to go back until 2016 since there are plans to travel outside the country in 2014 and 2015 (different countries) but we'll see if we can squeeze it in.

    So up to this point, we have not done what we planned when we bought. Which is every 1 week every 11 or 13 months to take advantage of using annual pass (and now TIW too) twice. We intended to stay at either 1BR or studio but we never sat down to figure this out because we have not done enough trips to determine when we want to go. We may need to add more points especially since we have yet to stay at a studio.
     
  19. holula

    holula DIS Veteran

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    We have 279 points split over four contracts, all at OKW. This year we bought the discounted PAP and borrowed a lot of points from our 2013 UY to make the pass worthwhile (our UY are Oct and Dec). We usually book a studio as its just me and BF and we tend to do shorter trips.

    Next year we are having a Disney-lite year. We will probably try VB or go back to HHI (which we visited with my parents this year) with our 60 remaining 2013 points. Then the following year we are planning to get married at WDW - so we need points for that.

    We do it by looking at when do we want to do WDW that year (Food and Wine, marathon weekend etc) and we use the bulk of our points for that. Any other points are generally used around cruises - staying a few nights before and one after.
     
  20. AllieV

    AllieV DIS Veteran

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    We have one 100 point contract. The intent was to go every other year and use 200 points. When we bought the resale contract, though, it came with extra points, so we used 300 in one trip. Totally ruined us.

    So now I'm budgeting to buy two more 100 point contracts, each at a different resort so we can do split-stay trips every year for 8 or 9 nights. In the meantime we'll wait it out another year to gather up the points.
     
  21. NoleFan

    NoleFan DIS Veteran

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    2 night stays in a studio every other month. We are FL residents.
     

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