Riviera Owners Are Going To Make Booking At 7 Months Much More Difficult

Ben E N

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 14, 2017
I have been looking at many booking options throughout 2020 and 2021, and have constantly noticed that Riviera is priced way higher than any other area resort when it comes to point per night. It's not just a couple of points, either. In the spring or summer, a BCV or BWV studio is only 18 points, while a Riviera "preferred" view (the only one most people are finding to be available) is 25.
Considering that the only Riv owners who can trade out to other resorts are those that buy direct, they would be wasting points not to once the "newness" of Riviera wears off. Once you add the yearly cost of points to maintenance fees, these owners paid around $12 per point per year. That 8 point difference means that they would be saving close to $100 per night to switch out to a cheaper resort with a better location. This will make it much, much harder for all other owners to get into these resorts at 7 months, and there will be many owners like myself who have no interest in trading into Riv at its ridiculous 25 point per night demands.
I don't blame future Riviera owners for taking advantage of the opportunity to trade out, but I am frustrated with Disney for setting the price per night so high. I'm sure they did so with the expectation of making BCV2 and BWV2 at least 30 points per night for a studio in 2043 and later, but it is giving me anxiety to anticipate the next 22 years of having to really fight for these types of rooms.
 
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crvetter

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 26, 2018
I mean there are plenty of other owners paying near or above $12 a point already (BCV, BWV, VGC to name a few). Your assumption relies heavily on the fact that most owners don't want to stay at Riviera and were uneducated in the cost of their vacation stays (most just are uneducated on how hard a studio might be to get at certain times, but that is true of every DVC resort but PVB really). I would suspect most people are buying Riviera to stay at Riviera and/or are knowledgeable how much staying there costs for their vacations. It would be silly for a buyer (even direct) to purchase Riviera with not intention to stay there. Direct prices are cheaper at a few other resorts so if the Riviera purchaser as you suggest wants to always change to cheap resorts would likely purchase them (DVC freely shows the other resorts to you when they sell). And with the new resale restrictions, something DVC has to really make obvious, direct buyers are now queued in right away that a resale market exists.

No one worries about the resorts I mentioned above simply because the perception is that people want to stay there on a basis (Riviera does have a lot to offer it's just not everyone's taste). People have a valid concern that some resorts might lead to a 7 month demand for studios and 2 beds simply because those are the most popular but that doesn't mean the studios and 2 beds aren't selling out. By all accounts Riviera seems popular with Riviera owners and with non-Riviera owners.
 

Sandisw

DVC Forums
Moderator
Joined
Nov 15, 2008
I bought my RIV points to use primarily at RIV and won’t be using them elsewhere very much. Now, the 2019 point I got when I bought are being elsewhere because they were extra and I used them to upgrade my rooms sizes as well as used them to spend more to stay at VGF in June.

My hope is to continue to book right at 11 months So I get SV rooms as much as possible for those stays!

But I agree that when a RIV owner does want to try something else, there will be some places that will be less expensive. I have a feeling though that the trade out may be less than the wanting to trade in..at least at first.
 
  • Ben E N

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2017
    I mean there are plenty of other owners paying near or above $12 a point already (BCV, BWV, VGC to name a few). Your assumption relies heavily on the fact that most owners don't want to stay at Riviera and were uneducated in the cost of their vacation stays (most just are uneducated on how hard a studio might be to get at certain times, but that is true of every DVC resort but PVB really). I would suspect most people are buying Riviera to stay at Riviera and/or are knowledgeable how much staying there costs for their vacations. It would be silly for a buyer (even direct) to purchase Riviera with not intention to stay there. Direct prices are cheaper at a few other resorts so if the Riviera purchaser as you suggest wants to always change to cheap resorts would likely purchase them (DVC freely shows the other resorts to you when they sell). And with the new resale restrictions, something DVC has to really make obvious, direct buyers are now queued in right away that a resale market exists.

    No one worries about the resorts I mentioned above simply because the perception is that people want to stay there on a basis (Riviera does have a lot to offer it's just not everyone's taste). People have a valid concern that some resorts might lead to a 7 month demand for studios and 2 beds simply because those are the most popular but that doesn't mean the studios and 2 beds aren't selling out. By all accounts Riviera seems popular with Riviera owners and with non-Riviera owners.
    With DVC guides pushing the whole "you can stay everywhere" piece, and pushing Riviera as the only place to buy, I think you are putting too much faith into the people buying there. Disboards members are typically smart enough to know what they are buying into, but is the general public? I agree Riveria is popular now, and will be popular for the next few years, because it is new and shiny, but once Reflections opens and BCV goes through a refurbishment, will Riviera be worth 7 points more per night? Some will remain ignorant or loyal, but many people will be looking to switch in order to get an extra night or two for the same price.
     

    crvetter

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 26, 2018
    With DVC guides pushing the whole "you can stay everywhere" piece, and pushing Riviera as the only place to buy, I think you are putting too much faith into the people buying there. Disboards members are typically smart enough to know what they are buying into, but is the general public? I agree Riveria is popular now, and will be popular for the next few years, because it is new and shiny, but once Reflections opens and BCV goes through a refurbishment, will Riviera be worth 7 points more per night? Some will remain ignorant or loyal, but many people will be looking to switch in order to get an extra night or two for the same price.
    True but I think most aren’t buying Riviera when they do sell OKW for an example (they did tell me outright without asking about buying at other resorts) as a more economical cost per point (it’s fairly obvious when you buy what week is at each resort). My point was they are presented with cheaper resorts (point wise) but choosing Riviera (likely cause of the incentives) and likely are buying for their intended vacation habits (so have enough points though will there be enough inventory when they want to go is another issue). So I don’t think the drive to move is really the reasons you outlay (but likely just availability issues at the home resort if it even happens). Besides I don’t think there is anything wrong with any resort trading at 7 months. While it adds more owners at 7 months it adds more rooms for a vast amount of owners at 7 months.
     

    LSchrow

    life without the BWVs is <null and void>
    Joined
    May 11, 2000
    Add us to the Riviera owners that plan on using most of our Riviera points to stay there (it's unlikely that we will use them elsewhere - we've stayed at almost all other DVCs,, & already have quite a few points at our other preferred resort, which we stay at multiple times a year, every year).

    I do agree that points per night will most likely increase at each new resort as it is built, just as happened with the DVC I resorts.
     

    Ben E N

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2017
    True but I think most aren’t buying Riviera when they do sell OKW for an example (they did tell me outright without asking about buying at other resorts) as a more economical cost per point (it’s fairly obvious when you buy what week is at each resort). My point was they are presented with cheaper resorts (point wise) but choosing Riviera (likely cause of the incentives) and likely are buying for their intended vacation habits (so have enough points though will there be enough inventory when they want to go is another issue). So I don’t think the drive to move is really the reasons you outlay (but likely just availability issues at the home resort if it even happens). Besides I don’t think there is anything wrong with any resort trading at 7 months. While it adds more owners at 7 months it adds more rooms for a vast amount of owners at 7 months.
    As someone who bought BLT resale I am finding myself trading out a lot more than staying there. BLT is great, and I thought I would be there at least 50% of the time, but when I see that it is over 20 points per night for a Lakeview studio, and that I can get a studio that sleeps 5 for 18 or less points, of course I pause and look elsewhere. I wouldn't blame Riviera owners if they did the same at times where points are tight. At least BLT offers a great location. Other than "newness", I'm not seeing the draw there that would convince people that it's worth keeping their trip a few days shorter to stay there.
    Due to its high per night cost, I sadly have no interest in trading into Riviera. I'm not hating on the resort, just its cost. With me as someone who wants to trade out of my own home resort, but not into Riv, that further strains the system at 7 months. If it were more in line pointswise with BVC or BWV, I would be happy to try it out for a week.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    I agree with OP. I bet a lot of uneducated buyers were guided to buy Riviera as the “only DVC for sale at WDW”.
    And we know there are guides who show new buyers the charts for BWV Standard and AKV Value. :oops:

    DIS users are going to be a lot more aware of the system. As are people who add on at RIV. Most new buyers are not. I have seen posts elsewhere that pretty well demonstrate that.
     

    Sandisw

    DVC Forums
    Moderator
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2008
    As someone who bought BLT resale I am finding myself trading out a lot more than staying there. BLT is great, and I thought I would be there at least 50% of the time, but when I see that it is over 20 points per night for a Lakeview studio, and that I can get a studio that sleeps 5 for 18 or less points, of course I pause and look elsewhere. I wouldn't blame Riviera owners if they did the same at times where points are tight. At least BLT offers a great location. Other than "newness", I'm not seeing the draw there that would convince people that it's worth keeping their trip a few days shorter to stay there.
    Due to its high per night cost, I sadly have no interest in trading into Riviera. I'm not hating on the resort, just its cost. With me as someone who wants to trade out of my own home resort, but not into Riv, that further strains the system at 7 months. If it were more in line pointswise with BVC or BWV, I would be happy to try it out for a week.
    It always come down to value and yeah, I get that some are not going to see it as worth the extra points, but many will. I just stayed at BCV for the second time and to be honest, have no desire to go back. Only reason I changed to that resort is because I knew it would be easier for my friend and I on ECVs then the room I had booked at BWV.

    I just don’t think it’s unique to RIV and your BLT example is a good one. RIV will never be the least expensive option..though tower studios could be.. but some will see it as worth the extra points, even if it means staying one night less. I won’t stay at OKW or AKV, no matter how many points it saves me!
     
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    CarolMN

    DVC Co-Moderator
    Moderator
    Joined
    Aug 18, 1999
    If Ben E N's assumptions hold true, it could keep the resale value of BCV and BWV higher than otherwise expected. Isn't the difficulty getting in at 7 months one of the major reasons why they still command the prices they do today?
     

    crvetter

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 26, 2018
    As someone who bought BLT resale I am finding myself trading out a lot more than staying there. BLT is great, and I thought I would be there at least 50% of the time, but when I see that it is over 20 points per night for a Lakeview studio, and that I can get a studio that sleeps 5 for 18 or less points, of course I pause and look elsewhere. I wouldn't blame Riviera owners if they did the same at times where points are tight. At least BLT offers a great location. Other than "newness", I'm not seeing the draw there that would convince people that it's worth keeping their trip a few days shorter to stay there.
    Due to its high per night cost, I sadly have no interest in trading into Riviera. I'm not hating on the resort, just its cost. With me as someone who wants to trade out of my own home resort, but not into Riv, that further strains the system at 7 months. If it were more in line pointswise with BVC or BWV, I would be happy to try it out for a week.
    I mean your assessment is fair and I agree to a degree. Though personally I don’t think Riviera is going to upset the system at all there are plenty of current owners that would gladly fill the space at Riviera up quickly (myself included I think the space of the rooms command a better price than BWV and BCV, I love BWV don’t care for BCV), already showing to be true. So I don’t think it will lead to a demand imbalance. I also don’t think any owner is wrong from trading at 7 months I just disagree with the statement that because it’s expensive per night and the cost per point is high it means it will stress the system. There are many resorts like that already (cost more per night than Riviera by a fair amount) that don’t stress the 7 months by all accounts.

    I also disagree that the resorts only appeal is “newness” it does have a lot to offer to get people wanting to stay there (let alone its 1 of 3 with more than bus access to Epcot and HS which will always draw from some MK resorts even if it’s second choice). More than I thought when I visited this past weekend. Though I’m a bit biased because its resort style I like (but I’m also someone that owns and loves CCV).
     

    jarestel

    DIS Veteran
    DIS Lifetime Sponsor
    Joined
    Oct 24, 2003
    Since no Riviera owner can book another property until the 7 month window opens, I don't see how this impacts owners at the other resorts. Sure, it may increase competition at 7 months for the non-home resorts but every new DVC that opens does that anyway. I guess I don't see this as too much of a problem.
     

    Ben E N

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2017
    There are many resorts like that already (cost more per night than Riviera by a fair amount) that don’t stress the 7 months by all accounts.
    This is the part that I am not seeing. Now I have been looking almost exclusively at the summer months, as this is when most of my trips fall, so there may be some rebalancing elsewhere, but the only studios that are more expensive than Riviera preferred view are the Polynesian and Grand Floridian lake view ones. There are many more standard view Poly rooms than lakeview ones, and I believe the same is true for the Grand Floridian. The Polynesian rooms also have the extra shower and space as an added bonus to their price.
    While the Riviera studios are 50 or so feet larger than the older resorts, they offer no extra sleeping space or amenities than can be found in cheaper rooms.
    Based on it's size, I would be fine if DVC was asking 20-22 points per night, but the swing to 26 for a weeknight over the summer is an expensive one. As I stated in my first post, people will have to spend a lot more money per night to just be one stop closer on the skyliner than if they were at an Epcot area resort. It's possible a large number of people will find the extra $50 and that saved stop to be worth all the extra cost, but it feels like an overreach by Disney to me that throws the system out of balance. Perhaps not too extremely, but if 10-20% of owners find it to be too cost prohibitive to stay there frequently, it will stress the rest of DVC disproportionately.
     

    crvetter

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 26, 2018
    This is the part that I am not seeing. Now I have been looking almost exclusively at the summer months, as this is when most of my trips fall, so there may be some rebalancing elsewhere, but the only studios that are more expensive than Riviera preferred view are the Polynesian and Grand Floridian lake view ones. There are many more standard view Poly rooms than lakeview ones, and I believe the same is true for the Grand Floridian. The Polynesian rooms also have the extra shower and space as an added bonus to their price.
    While the Riviera studios are 50 or so feet larger than the older resorts, they offer no extra sleeping space or amenities than can be found in cheaper rooms.
    Based on it's size, I would be fine if DVC was asking 20-22 points per night, but the swing to 26 for a weeknight over the summer is an expensive one. As I stated in my first post, people will have to spend a lot more money per night to just be one stop closer on the skyliner than if they were at an Epcot area resort. It's possible a large number of people will find the extra $50 and that saved stop to be worth all the extra cost, but it feels like an overreach by Disney to me that throws the system out of balance. Perhaps not too extremely, but if 10-20% of owners find it to be too cost prohibitive to stay there frequently, it will stress the rest of DVC disproportionately.
    I’m looking at the total cost (amortized buy in + MF per point) times number of points a night, not just the points per night. If you look at that which is the true total cost (since it includes the higher buy in fees, time left on the contract, and MF) you see VGC, BCV, VGF, PVB all for instance costing a lot equal to or near Riviera. Aulani is up there too but I didn’t consider that since it’s already a terrible value direct compared to resale.

    Looking purely at points per night doesn’t capture the entire picture when you are considering home resort booking priority which your entire post sort of requires in the analogy (i.e. you said owners won’t use the home priority period simply because it will cost too much)
     
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    zavandor

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 22, 2011
    While the Riviera studios are 50 or so feet larger than the older resorts, they offer no extra sleeping space or amenities than can be found in cheaper rooms.
    The bed under the TV at RIV is a full size single, meant for an adult and not a child, the pull down murphy bed which is much better than the sofa and the split bathroom. They have probably the best studios for a family of 5 (I think the extra space at Poly is a bit wasted in the second shower room, the living areas doesn't feel bigger than other resorts). And the two bedrooms sleep 10 people, which is currently unique I think.
    This said, if given the choice between BWV garden or RIV preferred, I would chose the former any day, exactly because of the cheaper points. But I travel solo so I don't need those extra amenities, not sure what a family would choose.
     

    Ben E N

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 14, 2017
    The bed under the TV at RIV is a full size single, meant for an adult and not a child, the pull down murphy bed which is much better than the sofa and the split bathroom. They have probably the best studios for a family of 5 (I think the extra space at Poly is a bit wasted in the second shower room, the living areas doesn't feel bigger than other resorts). And the two bedrooms sleep 10 people, which is currently unique I think.
    This said, if given the choice between BWV garden or RIV preferred, I would chose the former any day, exactly because of the cheaper points. But I travel solo so I don't need those extra amenities, not sure what a family would choose.
    Hopefully that is enough to swing that extra amount of people there. I was looking for studios for families with children when I thought of the issue, but can see where those two factors could help out. If someone were to view their studios as a more economical option compared to one bedrooms, that could get interest there. It wouldn't interest a large number of parties, but potentially enough to offer the people wanting to leave. I hope so, as the point hungry rooms pretty much ensure that I will never stay there.
     

    Brett Wyman

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 30, 2018
    Since no Riviera owner can book another property until the 7 month window opens, I don't see how this impacts owners at the other resorts. Sure, it may increase competition at 7 months for the non-home resorts but every new DVC that opens does that anyway. I guess I don't see this as too much of a problem.
    The idea is a lot more people bought into Riviera who aren't going to want to stay there long term. Point cost being one of the main factors. As a parent with young kids if I owned Riviera I would be looking to book a monorail resort at 7th month window.
     

    _auroraborealis_

    I like marshmallows. And adult beverages.
    Joined
    Oct 18, 2015
    Mathematically, let us be blunt: This isn't just about "high point costs at RIV." Adding any DVC to the system increases pressure at 7 months for the highest demand resorts (hi BWV and BCV, but also BLT/Poly/VGF). You're adding thousands of owners to the blend at that point.

    Arguably, IF a resort is highly desirable in its own right and has decent inventory (Poly, not Saratoga), there is some balance of the presence of its owners in system, as they may want to sleep around a bit as well, creating some equilibrium of trade.

    The concern, which we will simply have to see if its valid or not over time, is that the price point of RIV (in points) is going to be less desirable to legacy owners, leading to RIV owners who buy direct wanting to trade out and joining the 7-month "rope drop" stampede for the popular OG resorts, without approximately equal resort owners (who don't own at Saratoga) wanting to come in.

    The resale restriction element at RIV is also a possible disruption of equilibrium.

    (PS: I am not saying Saratoga is bad, simply that we know it does not have equilibrium. More Saratoga owners own in hopes of sleeping around than other owners look forward to trading in. It is known, as written in prophesy and 10,000 forum threads.)
     

    Sandisw

    DVC Forums
    Moderator
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2008
    I also think another strain on the system that could come in to play..maybe not right away, is that all new resale buyers can’t trade into RIV,

    One thing that could happen as well for some RIV owners due to the cost to stay there is to see them add on cheaper points via resale to use as trading and save RIV points for stays there or be a RIV owner who also has qualified cheaper points and will be able to use them at 7 months to afford the preferred view if SV becomes elusive.
     

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