How Much Is Disney Vacation Club People often wonder how my family manages to enjoy several Disney vacations each year without breaking the bank. My answer is simple: Disney Vacation Club (DVC). If you’re a frequent visitor to Walt Disney World or Disneyland, and you typically stay on Disney property, you might be missing out if you haven’t explored the world of Disney Vacation Club.
DVC offers a more adaptable alternative to traditional timeshares and can provide substantial savings for those who regularly opt for Disney’s deluxe resorts. With 16 properties and counting across Walt Disney World, Disneyland, and various beach destinations, DVC offers flexibility for Disney enthusiasts who crave variety while securing their long-term vacation plans.
While DVC membership isn’t a financial fit for everyone, it’s a dream come true for those who want to make the “House of Mouse” their second home. Here’s everything you need to know about becoming a DVC member.
What is Disney Vacation Club (DVC)?
Disney Vacation Club is a points-based program that offers more flexibility than traditional timeshares. Members purchase an end-dated real estate interest at select Disney resorts, acquiring a specific number of “vacation points” annually at their chosen “home resort.” These points can be used to book stays at any Disney Vacation Club resort, regardless of room type and travel dates, subject to availability.
The contracts for Disney Vacation Club currently extend until various years between 2042 and 2070, depending on the chosen home resort.
DVC members enjoy various perks, including discounts on dining, merchandise, tickets, and tours. They also have access to exclusive Disney World annual pass categories, such as the Sorcerer Pass (currently paused due to park capacity limits). Other benefits include a member lounge at Epcot, special member cruises with Disney Cruise Line, free parking at DVC resorts, and exclusive events like Moonlight Magic, offering after-hours access to Disney World theme parks.
How Does Disney Vacation Club Work?
When you become a Disney Vacation Club member, you essentially purchase an annual allocation of DVC vacation points. These points can be customized to align with your travel style. You can use your points to reserve accommodations at Disney Vacation Club resorts in Disney parks worldwide and select destinations like Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Hawaii, Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort in South Carolina, and Disney’s Vero Beach Resort in Florida.
The number of points required for each stay varies based on factors such as the chosen resort, length of stay, travel dates, and room type. For instance, standard studio villas at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge in Disney World start at 7 points per night, while a club-level room with a savanna view can cost up to 36 points per night.
You can use your points as you see fit, whether for an extravagant single vacation or several shorter getaways throughout the year. Additionally, you can “bank” unused vacation points for the next year or “borrow” points from the following year for the current “use year.”
How Much Does Disney Vacation Club Cost?
The cost of a Disney Vacation Club contract primarily depends on the number of annual points purchased. Contracts typically include between 150 and 1,000 vacation points, with a current price of $207 per point for select resorts. Adding a $250 document preparation fee, $578.30 in closing costs, and any available discounts (common for new members), a direct purchase of 150 points from Disney costs a total of $31,728.30.
However, if you choose financing with a fixed annual percentage rate, you’ll pay significantly more over the contract’s lifespan. Based on Disney’s sample numbers, a 10-year loan would cost $53,860.80, adding $22,132.50 to the total price.
In addition to the initial cost, members are responsible for annual maintenance fees, which vary by resort. Some resorts have lower initial prices but higher maintenance fees, which have increased over time.
Disney Vacation Club contracts can also be purchased and resold on the secondary market, often at substantial savings compared to buying directly from Disney. However, purchasing a resale contract may come with certain limitations, particularly related to member perks and home resort restrictions.
Choosing a Home Resort
Selecting a home resort is a crucial decision for DVC members. Your choice depends on factors like location and vacation style. Disney Vacation Club resorts cater to various preferences:
Monorail Loop Resorts: If proximity to the Magic Kingdom and easy access to Epcot are top priorities, consider resorts like Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows, and The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios Area Resorts: If you’re a fan of Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Disney’s Beach Club Villas and Disney’s BoardWalk Villas offer convenience and a vibrant atmosphere.
Disney Springs and Golf Access: Resorts like Disney’s Old Key West Resort and Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa are ideal for those who don’t mind being further from the parks and prefer easy access to Disney Springs and golf courses.
Immersive Escapes: For a unique experience, consider Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, which offers an African-inspired atmosphere and views of African wildlife, or the Copper Creek Cabins and Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, known for their rustic elegance.
Beach and Island Resorts: If you crave beachfront escapes with Disney’s signature touch, explore Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort, Disney’s Vero Beach Resort, or Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Hawaii.
Booking a Disney Vacation Club Stay
Booking a DVC stay is similar to booking any Disney resort stay, but with variations in booking windows. Members can reserve stays at their home resort starting 11 months before check-in, while other DVC resorts open for reservations at seven months before check-in. DVC offers a booking window calculator to help members determine when they can make reservations.
DVC points can also be exchanged for stays at select worldwide resorts through Interval International, as well as used for various Disney vacations, including Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, Disney Cruise Line sailings, Adventures By Disney packages, and National Geographic Exped