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What is the Disney Vacation Club?
Disney Vacation Club (DVC) is a timeshare program owned and operated by Walt Disney Company. It’s not necessary to know everything about Disney movies to make full use of member benefits. Of course, being a huge fan certainly doesn’t hurt when it comes to being excited about their luxury resort locations.
If you’re a big fan of all things Disney but aren’t well-versed in the Disney Vacation Club world, don’t let your enthusiasm give way to frustration. Instead, check out our beginner’s guide below. You’ll be able to finally start saving up for those fantastic family vacations you’ve been dreaming about!
What Is the Disney Vacation Club Membership?
Like many timeshares, the DVC member purchases an amount of vacation time at a resort each year. The time allotted is based on the number of “points” they buy from Disney.
You can buy directly from Disney, and for discounts, you can visit whatsmagazine.com. When it comes time to use those vacation days, members choose their accommodations and make reservations using those same points!
For example, a studio room will require fewer points than a one-bedroom suite. However, the DVC member will not be responsible for any additional charges beyond their initial purchase. When you have a lot of points, your options expand even more!
Depending on the resort’s amenities, you can use the food, recreation, and even airfare points. The more expensive alternatives require a more significant point balance to reserve.
The DVC contracts are valid until an agreed-upon date that you’ll know ahead of time. After that time, members will have an opportunity to purchase additional points every year, depending upon availability and demand. However, there is no obligation or requirement to do so!
How to Join the Disney Vacation Club
Next, let’s look at how to join the Disney Vacation Club. Not everyone can become a DVC member.
First and foremost, you must fall within Disney’s minimum age requirement (18 years old). It would help if you also met specific financial qualifications. You will likely make an out-of-pocket payment upfront as part of the membership dues.
The fee amount varies based on how many points you’re buying and where those points are located. For instance, a studio membership at Saratoga Springs will cost you much less than a two-bedroom villa at the Boardwalk.
The DVC is primarily for families, but adults planning a honeymoon or other romantic getaway can find this program to be just as rewarding! Many couples choose to test drive” the DVC during their trip and then buy points on their return home.
Do you already plan on taking holiday vacations with your family? Then you might want to consider getting a DVC membership to help you save money in the long run.
Disney resorts charge a hefty fee to book accommodations during peak seasons (like Christmas and Spring Break). Sure, you could book months ahead, but what if something goes wrong.
It can be a little risky to plan out your vacation too far in advance. Plus, going through the official exchange system isn’t always ideal, especially if you’re looking for last-minute deals!
For many people, the most significant benefit is the ability to save up points for your family vacation throughout the year. If you can afford it, buying enough points at once to visit Disney several times each year will be well worth the cost!
Of course, not everyone enjoys paying that initial lump sum upfront to reserve their annual trip somewhere every fall. Fortunately, there are other ways to use DVC points without buying them all at once!
Many members find that it’s just as easy (and often even more affordable) to keep adding to their packages over time with a “points trust” account. This allows you to purchase additional points later on without having to pay the total rate.
Additionally, you can use your points to book hotel rooms in non-Disney resorts part of the DVC network. That’s right; you can go beyond Disney locations. You can use your points all over the globe. This flexibility is a great way to take advantage of your membership when you’re not traveling with the whole family!
Disney Resort Locations
What is the Disney Vacation Club membership means when it comes to worldwide travel? How exactly can you use your membership across the globe?
The DVC works with the most popular resorts in Disney World. However, they are not limited to that one park.
Not only does this membership offer access to most of the Disney-owned hotels, but you also gain perks at some Universal Studios locations. You can even use your points in Aulani Hawai!
When you purchase a DVC membership, you’ll be able to book rooms at:
- Bay Lake Tower
- The Boardwalk
- Boulder Ridge Villas at Wilderness Lodge
- Copper Creek Villas & Cabins
- Old Key West Resort
- Polynesian Village Resort (Tower)
- Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
- Animal Kingdom – Kidani Village
- You can use your points for stays at any deluxe resort worldwide across all of Disney’s hotel collections.
What About Expired Points?
Disney resorts run on a tight schedule, especially during the holidays. Everything is carefully planned to ensure maximum efficiency for their customers.
This includes using all your available points during each visit! It would be very unusual for Disney to have rooms at their resorts that are empty. So even if you don’t use them this time, there is almost always an appropriate time to use them later.
Since DVC memberships are portable and transferable between family members, you never have to worry about losing all those points because of poor planning or unforeseen circumstances!
More Disney Vacation Club Membership Perks
With Disney Vacation Club membership, you’ll get more perks than just hotel stays! You can also enjoy discounts on dining, shopping, and activities in the parks.
Being able to save on food is a big deal when you’re on vacation. On average, families spend almost $400 a month on groceries. When you’re vacationing, that number can quickly go up! Even if you’re only on vacation for a few days.
You’ll receive plenty of exclusive benefits for members. For instance, you’ll get a free memory maker photo package with the purchase of a one-day or park hopper ticket. You’ll also get discounts on airfare when booking through DVC’s travel agency. Members can even ship vacation purchases home using the DVC shipping service (at no extra charge).
Making Your Choice
Now you have all of the facts to answer the question, “What is the Disney Vacation Club?”. You can’t go wrong when you purchase this membership, especially if you’re already planning on traveling soon.
Since there are so many perks and uses for the points each year, even the most adventurous traveler would benefit from signing up. Please make your reservation today and start enjoying all of Disney World without worrying about how much it’s going to cost!
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