An article on "Does DVC save you money?"

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Lumpy1106

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 2, 2010
When we purchased I built a spreadsheet that factored in a "Disney Inflation" number for the room rate and a modest, albeit smaller rate of inflation on the MFs. The room I was using as a comparison was an 5 night stay, AoA 1 br suite, and we were getting enough points to stay 5 nights mid-week, 1 br, standard view @ BLT, late summer, buying resale. I am only 2 years in, and well, COVID, but so far my guesses on the inflation rates have been pretty spot-on. What did I determine with the spreadsheet? My "payoff" would be about 9 years. I did not compare studios as my family is 5 people and we are pretty locked in to our typical stay. The numbers could be quite a bit different - I really don't know. What I would guess though is if you think it takes a whole lot longer than that, you probably aren't figuring in inflation.

But wait!!
Say we get 5 years in and decide, nah, we don't want to do this anymore. OK, that's the beauty of resale. We can sell our contract, get back most, if not all what we paid for it and be out only MFs for 5 years. MF's are roughly $1000/year for the contract we own. The AoA suite is running about $422/night AFTER discounts, so for 5 nights that would be $2110 for the same 5 nights. Not only that, there is no way a 1br BLT room would cost the same as a 1 br AoA room. A Contemporary STUDIO is $771/night after discounts, $3855 for our stay. Does DVC save us money? I don't know on what planet you could argue it doesn't.

BUT....
DVC does not save you money, in the same way that going on ANY vacation does not save you money. If you want to save money, stay home. But that brings up what has truly been the most valuable thing about DVC - it commits us to going on vacation, and boy do we need that! Just this last year, everything got shut down, it didn't look like we were going to go, and then thankfully FL allowed WDW to open, but only DVC and a limited number of other accommodations, the AoA 1 br suites NOT among them. We would have cancelled FOR SURE, 100%, no doubt in my mind...but we had DVC. WE WERE GOING! And boy did we need it. You can't put a value on that. I hear you though, yeah, but COVID. It almost doesn't matter. There is always SOMETHING that keeps us from going on vacation. You book DVC 11 months out, you ARE going, it becomes your priority.
 

we"reofftoneverland

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 5, 2015
It cracks me up to see him say that dvc members are wealthy because we always thought of it as middle class vacationing—- which was a turn off for us. We thought only people in the middle class are stupid enough to buy a timeshare lol. When we got into our 40s we became resigned to the fact that we were middle class lol (okay upper middle) and bought in. So, no, I do not think dvc owners are wealthy. But I do think dvc owners tend to be respectful and family oriented, which we love. We love how people who stay in dvc properties are not gross or too loud or destructive. This is a generalization but we have found it to be true.
 

Lumpy1106

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 2, 2010
Just posting again to say I responded earlier before reading the article. Yeah, I wish I hadn't. when his source is "DVC members say" instead of actual research I really don't know why he bothered. If you clicked on the link to try and learn a little more about the costs and benefits of DVC, don't bother reading the article - it is trash. This discussion though? LOTS of good info here!
 

DLgal

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
No one is saying DVC ownership is wrong. I think it's great that so many people find VALUE in ownership. However, value isn't the same as SAVING money. This is a question of saving money. The psychological aspects of ownership and how it makes you travel more cannot be ignored.

DVC is NOT a discount program. Honestly, why would Disney create such a thing? How would that benefit them?

For all the "accountants" on the DIS, just know that Disney has better accountants that have determined that they will get MORE money out of DVC owners than non DVC owners over a period of approximately 50 years (the contract period). If the math didn't work out in Disney's favor, DVC wouldn't exist. Bottom line.

Maybe it saves YOU money because you weren't getting the best deals that you could have before, and it's okay to admit that. But anything that forces you to pay money EVEN IF YOU DON'T USE IT is a liability. Sure, people rent out their points sometimes, but I will bet you there are people who don't use their points every year and just let them expire, because they DON'T KNOW they can rent them out, or don't want to bother. Disney counts on this. They sell these contracts using pixie dust promises and a LOT of people fall for it. Those same people were likely ALSO paying rack rate, and yet, Disney lured them over to DVC. Think about that for a minute.
 

Lumpy1106

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 2, 2010
No one is saying DVC ownership is wrong. I think it's great that so many people find VALUE in ownership. However, value isn't the same as SAVING money. This is a question of saving money. The psychological aspects of ownership and how it makes you travel more cannot be ignored.

DVC is NOT a discount program. Honestly, why would Disney create such a thing? How would that benefit them?

For all the "accountants" on the DIS, just know that Disney has better accountants that have determined that they will get MORE money out of DVC owners than non DVC owners over a period of approximately 50 years (the contract period). If the math didn't work out in Disney's favor, DVC wouldn't exist. Bottom line.

Maybe it saves YOU money because you weren't getting the best deals that you could have before, and it's okay to admit that. But anything that forces you to pay money EVEN IF YOU DON'T USE IT is a liability. Sure, people rent out their points sometimes, but I will bet you there are people who don't use their points every year and just let them expire, because they DON'T KNOW they can rent them out, or don't want to bother. Disney counts on this. They sell these contracts using pixie dust promises and a LOT of people fall for it. Those same people were likely ALSO paying rack rate, and yet, Disney lured them over to DVC. Think about that for a minute.
These are good points, but I will refer back to my earlier post - the fact that it commits me to the trip IS a value to me. If you feel this is a burden, then DVC, and really any annual trip to WDW is probably not for you. Honestly, that will be my yardstick for when we sell should there come a day. That's why DVC, especially resale, is so much better than just about any other timeshare. You CAN get out, it is a viable option.
 

JETSDAD

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
No one is saying DVC ownership is wrong. I think it's great that so many people find VALUE in ownership. However, value isn't the same as SAVING money. This is a question of saving money. The psychological aspects of ownership and how it makes you travel more cannot be ignored.

DVC is NOT a discount program. Honestly, why would Disney create such a thing? How would that benefit them?

For all the "accountants" on the DIS, just know that Disney has better accountants that have determined that they will get MORE money out of DVC owners than non DVC owners over a period of approximately 50 years (the contract period). If the math didn't work out in Disney's favor, DVC wouldn't exist. Bottom line.

Maybe it saves YOU money because you weren't getting the best deals that you could have before, and it's okay to admit that. But anything that forces you to pay money EVEN IF YOU DON'T USE IT is a liability. Sure, people rent out their points sometimes, but I will bet you there are people who don't use their points every year and just let them expire, because they DON'T KNOW they can rent them out, or don't want to bother. Disney counts on this. They sell these contracts using pixie dust promises and a LOT of people fall for it. Those same people were likely ALSO paying rack rate, and yet, Disney lured them over to DVC. Think about that for a minute.
Are you getting AKL rooms for under $90/night all in? If so please let me know where. You like to make absolute statements when they are not actually absolutely correct. When I can't use my points I do not lose money because I do rent my points. I'm not speaking for all owners but what we pay for rooms including our buy in and dues is less than discounted rates and less than renting points.
 

DLgal

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
These are good points, but I will refer back to my earlier post - the fact that it commits me to the trip IS a value to me. If you feel this is a burden, then DVC, and really any annual trip to WDW is probably not for you. Honestly, that will be my yardstick for when we sell should there come a day. That's why DVC, especially resale, is so much better than just about any other timeshare. You CAN get out, it is a viable option.
Value isn't savings, though. It just means something is worth it to you. The resale aspect of DVC makes it better than other timeshares, that is true.

I, on average, do travel to WDW annually, but my visits are cheap because we use the military discount on hotels AND tickets and I often go with friends so we split the cost. Whole family goes every 2-3 years. We have a pretty fixed annual vacation budget. We go to lots of different places. On years where we splurge at WDW, we go more budget on other trips. On years we go cheap at WDW or don't go at all, we go big on the other trips. I am going to spend the same amount every year on vacations, regardless. If I bought into DVC, I would have to only go to DVC properties every year. No thanks.

If you only go to WDW every year and that is your only vacation, you aren't saving money so much as not spending it elsewhere.
 

DLgal

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
Are you getting AKL rooms for under $90/night all in? If so please let me know where. You like to make absolute statements when they are not actually absolutely correct. When I can't use my points I do not lose money because I do rent my points. I'm not speaking for all owners but what we pay for rooms including our buy in and dues is less than discounted rates and less than renting points.
How much are you spending TOTAL going to WDW every year. Not just your room cost. That is the actual question here.
 

JETSDAD

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
How much are you spending TOTAL going to WDW every year. Not just your room cost. That is the actual question here.
No that is not the question when we're talking about the cost of the room and booking with or without discounts vs DVC which is what you keep arguing. If you're saying that someone staying DVC is spending more versus a person who uses discounts, both are there at WDW either way....one is booking direct, the other has DVC. We're not comparing someone staying DVC versus someone who isn't going to visit Disney. We're not comparing someone who wants to stay 2 weeks/year vs someone who come once every two years. We bought because we were going to be spending more time at Disney regardless. Do we spend more at Disney overall than we did previously? Yes, but that was the reason we bought DVC....we were planning to spend more time and money at Disney so we were better off owning than we would have been renting or booking cash rooms, even with discounts. If you choose to not visit Disney then yes, I guarantee I will spend more money at Disney than you.
 

4luv2cdisney

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
No one is saying DVC ownership is wrong. I think it's great that so many people find VALUE in ownership. However, value isn't the same as SAVING money. This is a question of saving money. The psychological aspects of ownership and how it makes you travel more cannot be ignored.

DVC is NOT a discount program. Honestly, why would Disney create such a thing? How would that benefit them?

For all the "accountants" on the DIS, just know that Disney has better accountants that have determined that they will get MORE money out of DVC owners than non DVC owners over a period of approximately 50 years (the contract period). If the math didn't work out in Disney's favor, DVC wouldn't exist. Bottom line.

Maybe it saves YOU money because you weren't getting the best deals that you could have before, and it's okay to admit that. But anything that forces you to pay money EVEN IF YOU DON'T USE IT is a liability. Sure, people rent out their points sometimes, but I will bet you there are people who don't use their points every year and just let them expire, because they DON'T KNOW they can rent them out, or don't want to bother. Disney counts on this. They sell these contracts using pixie dust promises and a LOT of people fall for it. Those same people were likely ALSO paying rack rate, and yet, Disney lured them over to DVC. Think about that for a minute.
It saves ME money despite getting the best deals I could before. I only bought enough points to take the trips I was already taking but no longer in values or moderates. Having excess points will be a rare occurrence for me and I would rent them if need be.

It's ok to admit that you don't want the risks that come with DVC in spite of the savings it could yield.

And now I see above you get military discounts and tickets. Big difference than what the rest of us typically have available. Maybe it wouldn't save YOU money.

So, it's ok to admit that DVC may not save YOU money, but SOME of us can save money.

I agree with the above poster re: your absolute statements. This is getting as ridiculous as disagreements over room discount vs free dining on the budget board. Of course a party of 1 is going to have a different math than a party of 4.

And we all agree that if you allow DVC to change your travel habits, it is not a savings in terms of your annual vacation budget. However, my family of 4 as all adults now, isn't going to fit in 1 standard hotel room forever. Travel habits change regardless of DVC or not.

So, in an apples to apple comparison of how much do I save on a trip on points vs a trip via cash with discount, I'm still coming out ahead. Every. Single. Time.
 

DLgal

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 12, 2013
No that is not the question when we're talking about the cost of the room and booking with or without discounts vs DVC which is what you keep arguing. If you're saying that someone staying DVC is spending more versus a person who uses discounts, both are there at WDW either way....one is booking direct, the other has DVC. We're not comparing someone staying DVC versus someone who isn't going to visit Disney. We're not comparing someone who wants to stay 2 weeks/year vs someone who come once every two years. We bought because we were going to be spending more time at Disney regardless. Do we spend more at Disney overall than we did previously? Yes, but that was the reason we bought DVC....we were planning to spend more time and money at Disney so we were better off owning than we would have been renting or booking cash rooms, even with discounts. If you choose to not visit Disney then yes, I guarantee I will spend more money at Disney than you.
The title of this thread is "Does DVC save you money?"

I said it before and I will say it again. If it saved people money, Disney wouldn't offer it.

I'm out.
 

yaya74

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 18, 2006
anybody else reading these comments and laughing out loud.......thanks for the laughs y’all
Why do you find the comments funny? I certainly enjoy reading everyone's comments about DVC which costs lots and lots of $$$ and appreciate the time that people took to share their thoughts to help people like myself make a well-informed decision. Buying a DVC is a serious matter, isn't it?
 
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Rustygirl84

Momma, wife, nurse
Joined
Jun 18, 2020
Why do you find the comments funny? I certainly enjoy reading everyone's comments about DVC which costs lots and lots of $$$ and appreciate the time that people took to share their thoughts to help people like myself making a well-informed decision. Buying a DVC is a serious matter, isn't it?
It is funny because there are people trying to compare prices on this board for a regular resort hotel room at Disney to the price of staying in a Villa. (Not the same thing or the same experience) I also find it funny that people get all bent out of shape over it. I own DVC and just bought in after staying at Disney many times over and the prices for rack room rates stated here are just not true on a regular basis. To argue whether someone is saving money or not is all about perspective. In the end, Disney is like a casino and the house always wins.
 

yaya74

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 18, 2006

Look at the consensus on this thread from not even 2 years ago.
Yup, I asked that question two years ago... Two years later today I am still asking the same answer. But I am sure glad that I didn't buy it then because there would be more covid-related conundrum that I need to deal with now.
 

Sandisw

DVC Forums
Moderator
Joined
Nov 15, 2008
I'm arguing the general point that DVC doesn't save you money. If your math says it does, you are using numbers that aren't based in reality, especially at today's direct prices for points. There is NO way to make a direct sale justifiable when given the plethora of discounts that continue to be offered at various times of year. It's even hard to justify a resale purchase.

I have occasionally been emotionally swayed by DVC, and have run the numbers using ACTUAL prices I paid in the past, and extrapolating it out to the future, and at the end of the day, being on the hook for 40 years worth of maintenance fees is where they get you. It's not the initial cost of the contract.

This topic comes up cyclically here on the DIS. This is just another one where posters try to justify a luxury purchase as some sort of smart financial move. It's not, no matter how you spin it. DVC means money out of your wallet, and almost always MUCH more money given to the Disney company than you otherwise would have.
I agree that it will not work for everyone, but I can say that what we were paying, with discounts, for CR vs. buying BLT in 2009 was definitely going to be a saving assuming our yearly trips continued. For others, it may not.

Maybe agree to disagree that your situation makes no sense, but understand that when others run numbers against their own expenses, it does.
 

quandrea

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 24, 2010
Value isn't savings, though. It just means something is worth it to you. The resale aspect of DVC makes it better than other timeshares, that is true.

I, on average, do travel to WDW annually, but my visits are cheap because we use the military discount on hotels AND tickets and I often go with friends so we split the cost. Whole family goes every 2-3 years. We have a pretty fixed annual vacation budget. We go to lots of different places. On years where we splurge at WDW, we go more budget on other trips. On years we go cheap at WDW or don't go at all, we go big on the other trips. I am going to spend the same amount every year on vacations, regardless. If I bought into DVC, I would have to only go to DVC properties every year. No thanks.

If you only go to WDW every year and that is your only vacation, you aren't saving money so much as not spending it elsewhere.
Who said that owning dvc means always going to WDW? Perhaps for you. We travel all over the world. I don’t really understand your point. Perhaps dvc makes no financial sense for you—that’s fine, but you seem to want to make a blanket statement that dvc is a bad idea. Not sure why there is a need to make that point.

You use the word cheap several times in your post. If I have to go somewhere on the cheap, I’m staying home. I want value, but comfort is first when I travel. Dvc gives me comfort with reasonable value. I’m not running the numbers beyond that. I look for value when I travel but that doesn’t necessarily translate to cheap. I’m happy to pay more for a flight that is the timing and route I prefer, I’ll always book the room I want rather than the cheap room. Do I want the best value for my dollar? Of course. But cost is not the sole driver of my travel decisions. Thus dvc was a good fit.
 

DougEMG

DIS Veteran
DVC Gold
Joined
Aug 14, 2008
DVC definitely will save you money given you fall into the right category of buyer.

  1. Want to stay on property in deluxe hotel
  2. Want to go every year
  3. Can afford to pay cash
  4. Don't change your vacation habits
Disney does this because they know that most people will change how they vacation and end up spending more money at Disney overall. This is the rare case of a win-win, Disney gets more money from their customer, but the customer gets the better vacation experience they want.

I definitely spend more money at Disney then before owning DVC, but that is my choice and I am happy to do it. I would not have been able to afford the trips doing what I am doing now without owning DVC.
 
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