Question about buying VB for Wdw use

spinchy

Earning My Ears
Joined
Oct 5, 2013
first a little background:
My job doesn’t allow me to book vacation time 11 months in advance. Usually 6-8 months out at best.
Right now I can afford a VB resale contract without financing. Although annual dues could end up costing more, avoiding debt is very appealing to me

I’ve read through the boards, and have seen people advise against buying VB with the intent to only use at WDW. I feel like the main argument is you can’t book at 11 months, but that won’t apply to me anyway.

To me, if I can’t book 11 months out and don’t care where I stay at WDW (I actually like Saratoga Springs a lot, which seems to be the fall-back for many people), is there still a reason not to just by VB?

Am I missing something? Thanks
 

chicagodisneyguy

Mouseketeer
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
Booking inside the 7 month window is getting harder and harder every year. If you want to book anytime between late September and middle of January I would not buy VB. Many resorts book up well before the 7 month window during that time. If you are trying to book studios it's even less likely. I think if you travel from February to September you'd have better luck.

As you've noted above, VB dues are closing in on $10/point. That is $3/point more than SSR. If you keep the contract for any length of time the initial savings will be eaten away year by year.

I'm sure others who have bought VB might tell you they use it at WDW regularly. But I would never buy VB unless I was planning on using my points there a majority of the time.
 

jamie3631

Earning My Ears
Joined
May 17, 2017
first a little background:
My job doesn’t allow me to book vacation time 11 months in advance. Usually 6-8 months out at best.
Right now I can afford a VB resale contract without financing. Although annual dues could end up costing more, avoiding debt is very appealing to me

I’ve read through the boards, and have seen people advise against buying VB with the intent to only use at WDW. I feel like the main argument is you can’t book at 11 months, but that won’t apply to me anyway.

To me, if I can’t book 11 months out and don’t care where I stay at WDW (I actually like Saratoga Springs a lot, which seems to be the fall-back for many people), is there still a reason not to just by VB?

Am I missing something? Thanks
I would not buy somewhere you have no intention of staying. It is becoming harder and harder to even get a full week at 7 months. Dues are extremely high, which I understand you are trying to avoid debt, but over the life of the contract, I would guess the difference could easily be eaten away, depending on how quickly you paid off the financing. Also, Vero Beach has much less life left on the contract than the newer resorts. I would not personally buy a Non-WDW resort if that is the only place I wanted to stay.
 
  • spinchy

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Oct 5, 2013
    Thanks for the replies. If booking anywhere at the 7 month window is so difficult, is the take home message that DVC just isn’t a good choice for somebody who isn’t able to book 11 months out?
     

    skippytx

    Bay Lake Tower
    Joined
    Aug 24, 2015
    Spend the extra money on Saratoga points if you go down this route. You won't regret it. Booking at 7 months is possible, but sometimes difficult depending on when you travel. Getting an entire week somewhere at the 7 month mark between October and Marathon Weekend is going to be a problem at anywhere but SSR or OKW. Other high demand times like Spring Break weeks, and July 4th week will be rough as well.

    If you travel at lower peak times (for DVC) and are willing to pay more points for the more expensive rooms, you'll probably be ok. The lowest point cost DVC rooms are the first to go. For instance, Std view at BLT where I own is a battle at 11 months out. Theme Park goes next as people pay extra for the view. Lake view is generally available at the 7 month mark as there are more LV rooms available.

    DVC can work though, especially if you're flexible with your travel dates, and are open to split stays. If you travel at peak times and want certain rooms you definitely need the 11 month advantage though.
     

    jamie3631

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    May 17, 2017
    Thanks for the replies. If booking anywhere at the 7 month window is so difficult, is the take home message that DVC just isn’t a good choice for somebody who isn’t able to book 11 months out?
    I completely agree with skippytx above. I do think DVC is still a great choice if unable to book at 11 months. Alot depends on if you're willing to do split stays. You can do a lot more bookings under 7 months if willing to move every day or two. I have pieced together quite a few trips like this but we don't mind resort hopping. It just depends on what your expectations are. As was mentioned above, fall through early January are the busiest times of year for DVC, so that 11 month home resort option becomes more critical. If you have alot of points and will be booking 2 or 3 bedroom rooms, and not trying to get the value or standard view studios that get snatched up right at the 11 month mark, then this is more feasible. It's just making sure your expectations are in line. It depends on where you want to stay when traveling, etc. If you know you want to stay at WDW all the time, then buy Saratoga. Low dues, long life yet, and one of the cheapest to purchase. It is a large resort so it is one of the last to book up, making that 11 month home resort option much less valuable at SSR than a resort like Beach Club or Grand Floridian that are smaller and in more demand.
     

    skippytx

    Bay Lake Tower
    Joined
    Aug 24, 2015
    Here's an example of availability and the DVC "season". DVC demand is different than what most people expect when it comes to vacations. I just checked and Saratoga has almost full availability in June, July, and August this year in a Standard Studio. Multiple full weeks of availability. October and November though, I can't get a full week there. The 7 month mark is Nov 30th right now.

    So there's a lot of variables, but slower DVC times and less popular rooms will have more availability around the 7 month mark. If that matches when you want to vacation, it could be a good fit. If you want to visit Christmas week though, but can't book until 6 months out, it's probably not a good fit.

    ssr_fall.PNG ssr_summer.PNG
     

    CanadaDisney05

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 20, 2017
    Alot depends on if you're willing to do split stays. You can do a lot more bookings under 7 months if willing to move every day or two. I have pieced together quite a few trips like this but we don't mind resort hopping. It just depends on what your expectations are.
    Does Disney make resort hopping easy? While in theory it actually doesn't sound too bad, it sounds like a lot of hassle. Having to pack all your stuff, checkout of the hotel, hop on a bus with your stuff, check in at the new resort, and then unpack. I feel you would spend your whole trip moving
     

    crvetter

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 26, 2018
    Does Disney make resort hopping easy? While in theory it actually doesn't sound too bad, it sounds like a lot of hassle. Having to pack all your stuff, checkout of the hotel, hop on a bus with your stuff, check in at the new resort, and then unpack. I feel you would spend your whole trip moving
    Disney handles the luggage movement. You can call Bell Services to your room to grab your luggage (or drop off in the lobby). Then it gets moved to your next resort.
     

    CanadaDisney05

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 20, 2017
    So you can just packup your stuff and bring it to the lobby on the way to the park in the morning. Then bus to the new resort after and check in?
     

    crvetter

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 26, 2018
    So you can just packup your stuff and bring it to the lobby on the way to the park in the morning. Then bus to the new resort after and check in?
    Correct. Though you can expect your luggage around 5 PM (I think that is the general time frame).
     

    spinchy

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Oct 5, 2013
    Thanks again all. Really love the support on these boards!

    The length of the contract is an important point I wasn’t considering. SS looks like it has quite a bit more length to it still, so I’ll definitely factor that in.

    Other than that, I’m still left with the opinion that the resort I pick has no bearing on where I’ll be able to stay since I can’t book 11 months out. 200 VB points will do me just as well as 200 points from a WDW Resort if I’m booking at 7 months or less (which will be the case for me).

    I’m going to review my numbers again focusing on contract length and the cost of dues.

    Really appreciate all the feedback!
     

    Deb & Bill

    DVC-Trivia Contest, Apr-2006: Honorable Mention
    Joined
    Mar 20, 2000
    Plan on booking at least a one bedroom versus a studio if you can't book closer to 11 months out. Dues at VB are pretty high, plus there is always the consideration of a hurricane assessment if there is considerable damage. Or even selling the resort. That would leave you with nothing. WDW doesn't get hit with hurricanes as bad as the coastal areas do. I'd buy SSR or BLT and enough points for at least a one bedroom.

    You'll want to consider if where you work today is where you will work in ten years and if you could make a reservation closer to 11 months out in the future.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    In general, for people looking for inside 7 months, for studios, DVC may not be a great fit.

    It's a timeshare. Timeshare rules and costs are not a fit for all. And that's okay.
     

    ELMC

    DIS Veteran
    DVC Gold
    Joined
    Jul 4, 2011
    Thanks again all. Really love the support on these boards!

    The length of the contract is an important point I wasn’t considering. SS looks like it has quite a bit more length to it still, so I’ll definitely factor that in.

    Other than that, I’m still left with the opinion that the resort I pick has no bearing on where I’ll be able to stay since I can’t book 11 months out. 200 VB points will do me just as well as 200 points from a WDW Resort if I’m booking at 7 months or less (which will be the case for me).

    I’m going to review my numbers again focusing on contract length and the cost of dues.

    Really appreciate all the feedback!
    There has been a lot of discussion on these boards about length of ownership and my opinion is that one should look at a DVC purchase with a 10 year horizon. While it's certainly possible that DVC could still be a good fit for you beyond that, it's very difficult to predict and many owners (someone please supply some real data here if you have it) own for about 10-15 years. So, with that as the premise, and assuming you are willing to accept some of the risks already laid out in this thread, I definitely think it is a smart calculated risk to purchase VB to stay at WDW. As long as you are flexible with your dates, resort, and room category, you can definitely score something at the 7 month mark for most times of the year. And while VB dues are higher, yes, they have seen significantly smaller increases over the past three years combined as on property resorts have. Furthermore, even if you account for the fact that they are $3 more than SSR per year, if you are only keeping the contract for 10 years then you've paid $30 more per point in dues but you probably spent $30-40 less in today's dollars on the purchase.

    So while there are risks in this strategy, it's not completely off the mark, especially since the most important aspect of home resort ownership (the 11 month window) is not a benefit to you at all. Good luck with your decision!
     

    DougEMG

    DIS Veteran
    DVC Gold
    Joined
    Aug 14, 2008
    Does Disney make resort hopping easy? While in theory it actually doesn't sound too bad, it sounds like a lot of hassle. Having to pack all your stuff, checkout of the hotel, hop on a bus with your stuff, check in at the new resort, and then unpack. I feel you would spend your whole trip moving
    Resort hopping with split stays is very easy. Bell services just picks up your bags and takes them to your new hotel. We typically bag the bags up in the morning, call bell services to take them and then head out to a park. No need to really check out. Then after we are done in the park head to the new hotel and check in.

    While packing up is a bit of a pain, what is nice is feeling like you are on two separate holidays because of staying at two different resorts.
     

    jbish

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 11, 2013
    My job doesn’t allow me to book vacation time 11 months in advance. Usually 6-8 months out at best.
    So, there's a chance you might be able to book even 7 months and 1 day out in advance? Up to 8 months out? That gives an edge to having some home resort advantage - even if it's not for every trip. We don't always plan out 11 months in advance but I know that at least I still have a slight advantage to beating the crowd at 7-9 months out. (Except the walkers...can't do anything about that.)
     

    disneynutz

    DIS Veteran
    DIS Lifetime Sponsor
    Joined
    Dec 11, 2006
    IMO to be happy with your purchase, buy where you love to stay. Buying resorts on the east coast or Aulani, you will pay higher dues and you will also have to pay for storm damage. If buying those resorts were a great choice, they would be sold out and you wouldn't find them listed on any resale website. Remember, every resale listing is someone who may have made a bad buying decision or decided that DVC/Disney isn't for them or they have had a life change.

    :earsboy: Bill

     

    ljmiii

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 26, 2007
    My job doesn’t allow me to book vacation time 11 months in advance. Usually 6-8 months out at best.
    Right now I can afford a VB resale contract without financing...I actually like Saratoga Springs a lot...
    You haven't really said how flexible your vacation plans can be. If you want to visit 'sometime in summer' and can be confident of getting whatever days you booked as vacation days off then you should buy at VB. If you need a particular week in summer but can be confident of getting vacations approved 7 1/2 months in advance you should buy at SSR. If neither of these are true you probably shouldn't buy DVC and should instead look to rent from people who already have reservations.
     

    MICKIMINI

    Love the Mouse!
    Joined
    Sep 6, 2003
    I was barely able to get a 1 BR (2 weeks) and an additional Studio (8 nights) at OKW at the 9+ month mark for F & W in October. I had to waitlist one night in the studio but did get it. A CM was able to link the reservations so there is no chance our guests will have to move for one night. We have resort hopped before and actually enjoy splitting a two week stay at two different resorts, however I'd be totally stressed out even moving every two nights. I guess it just depends on how you adapt to change...and if you have a washer/drying in your villa and therefore just need a small bag :) and have little to pack/unpack!

    I agree with other posters to buy where you want to stay...
     

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