Pros and Cons of Joining Disney Vacation Club

Saratoga Springs lobby seating and wall art

Becoming a Member of the Disney timeshare is a big deal for a few reasons. Going to Disney every year with family or loved ones is a dream for many people. Disney Vacation Club can make that possible when it may not have been otherwise. This is a meaningful change and one reason Members love DVC ownership. Another big deal is the price of joining. Weighing the Disney Vacation Club pros and cons can help you decide if it’s a good fit for you and your travel goals.  

Pros and Cons of Disney Vacation Club Ownership

It’s interesting that one pro for you might actually be a con for someone else. One example of this is pricing. DVC can help you save a lot of money on Disney hotel stays but it does require a bigger commitment at one time than booking annually. Everyone loves to save money but a long term spend requires the right timing in life. So, below we’re outlining common pros and cons of joining Disney Vacation Club but please consider your own situation and what you would like to achieve by purchasing.

Pro: Staying at Deluxe Resorts at Disney Destinations

One of the biggest highlights of becoming a Disney Vacation Club Member is staying at Disney’s fanciest resort hotels. DVC home resorts come in a wide range of themes and aesthetics. Enjoy the wilderness with the lodge inspired setting at Copper Creek or Boulder Ridge. It’s off to the races at Saratoga Springs with the New York horse racing theme and many pools to choose from.

Deluxe resorts are in excellent locations with one or more very close to each of Disney World’s four theme parks. Over at Disneyland, the Grand Californian has its own private entrance into Disney California Adventure. Across the way, Disneyland Hotel cozies up to a monorail station that will take you inside Disneyland park into Tomorrowland. Amenities at this top tier of hotels are fantastic. The Grand Floridian has a spa. A few resorts have boat launches with rentals and firework cruises available to book for an additional cost.

What people love about Disney deluxe resorts:

  • locations close to parks with fun forms of transportation like monorails, Skyliner and water taxis
  • detailed theming throughout the properties from lobbies, to restaurants, to rooms
  • luxury feel and amenities like pools with slides, signature dining and character meals

Bay Lake Tower on a sunny day
Saving money on deluxe resort stays is a plus to consider when weighing the pros and cons of Disney Vacation Club.

Pro: Saving money with DVC

If you visit Disney regularly, you know the resort stay is often the bulk of the vacation cost if you’re booked at a deluxe resort. With Disney Vacation Club, this cost can be much lower than you’d imagine. 

Many Members love DVC because it helps them stay at deluxe resorts when they could not have renting a room each year. The Disney timeshare can make Disney vacations much more affordable. This is especially true with resale DVC contracts which come at a lower price than direct DVC even. Resale contracts are those sold by Members. 

Aside from the price difference between DVC and booking a room annually, there is also the kitchen factor. Many DVC rooms have full kitchens or at least kitchenettes. Disney meals can be very pricey, especially if you’re eating anywhere but a quick service or walk up window. If you like to save money by eating some meals in your room, some of the DVC villas have a much better set up for that. You can look at the room layouts at each of the DVC home resorts to see what room styles fit your needs.

Pro: You have options with resale and direct

It’s nice to know you have the option to buy someone else’s contract instead of buying directly from Disney. This can take the price of deluxe Disney hotel stays down even more. 

Disney has minimums when it comes to buying Disney Vacation Club directly. The minimum to qualify for the perks included in Membership Extras is 150 points. However, the purchasing minimum overall is 100 points. So, you can buy as little as 100 points from Disney but you won’t get all of the extra perks of being a Member. If you want to buy less points, helpful if you’re thinking about visiting every other year, resale DVC is great for that.

Pro: You can sell DVC

DVC resale is beneficial as a potential buyer and as an owner, both for different reasons. It’s a relief to know you can sell DVC for any reason or no reason. If you decide you’ve had all the fun you want to have with your Membership, list it for sale and move on. The Disney timeshare is different than other timeshares in terms of reselling.

Disney vacations are always in demand and DVC is no different. While resale DVC switches between a buyer’s and seller’s market like other forms of real estate, there are consistently buyers. It’s possible to make your money back or make your money back and then some if you’ve had your contract for many years. Each case varies but we have lots of information on our blog so you can look at past trends like the DVC resale price history.

If being able to sell DVC is important to you, talk to an Expert about the resorts that are consistently the most popular with the best resale return. 

Con: The large upfront cost of DVC

The cost of Disney Vacation Club is really a con and a pro of buying. While the savings are amazing, DVC requires you to commit to vacations long term. This comes with a long term price. There are options to ease the burden, though.

To get started, you can always purchase a smaller contract. To enjoy longer stays, you can bank and borrow your points. If you bought a 50 point contract, that means you could use 100 points every other year. This would help you get the DVC experience and savings on deluxe resort stays while investing at a minimum. Financing is an option, too.

The upfront cost of DVC might be prohibitive for some who don’t have paying cash as an option. Luckily, it’s possible to get a loan for Disney Vacation Club. Talk to your loan specialist about rates and being able to pay your loan off early for the most flexibility in financing.

Something else to think about regarding financing is how much DVC goes up over time. Disney raises prices when they see fit with no notice. These price changes affect resale DVC per point prices over time.

You’ll have to do some math with your particular finance numbers but waiting to save up for a contract might be a losing game if the interest costs less than the amount DVC goes up. This is something to research, will depend on your contract and there’s no way to predict how prices will look in the future. We can only look at long term trends to help us consider all of our options and what makes the most sense for us but it’s truly a personal choice.

Con: DVC is a long term commitment

As mentioned above, the fact that DVC provides decades of vacations might be a pro for some but the long term commitment may be a con for others considering buying in. You are not able to choose the length of your contract upon buying. How long a DVC contract is and when it expires depends solely on when and where you purchase your contract.

Con: Annual dues are always part of Disney Vacation Club

Paying annual dues might not be attractive to everyone and there isn’t a way out or to pay for many years upfront. You can pay annual dues by the month or by the year so that does give you options at least. You can also pay for all of your annual dues together if you have multiple contracts, simplifying this requirement.

There are some steps you can take to make paying annual dues easier on the wallet. If you have a Disney Chase Visa you are able to pay your annual dues with reward points. This can be done when you transfer your Disney Rewards Dollars to a Disney Rewards Redemption Card. 

To add convenience, you can also have your annual dues automatically taken out of your bank account monthly.

DVC Resale Experts Can Help

Do you have more questions about the pros and cons of Disney Vacation Club? Have a very particular situation regarding the pros and cons of joining Disney Vacation Club you’d like to run by an Expert? DVC Resale Experts is a licensed real estate broker with a team that specializes in resale DVC. Whether you’re adding on points, buying or selling Disney Vacation Club, the Experts can help you find the right price to place a bid with or list your contract for. Our independent, licensed real estate agents are former Disney Vacation Club Guides. They have decades of pixie dusted experience selling DVC and delight in providing excellent service to their clients. The Experts have seen it all and are happy to answer your questions throughout the process.

DVC resale prices can pleasantly surprise those interested in becoming Members. See our resale DVC listings for a look at real time availability and pricing. Ready to sell DVC? Get in touch for a complimentary valuation of your specific contract today. There may be someone waiting on our Buyer Wish List for a contract just like yours.

Disney Blogger Nicole and Disney CEO Bob Iger

Sparkly Nicole

Nicole is a native Floridian who attended the University of Central Florida and decided to call the land of theme parks home. She’s been sharing magical tips, tricks and Orlando travel and tourism favorites online for over a decade.

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