Disney Vacation Club

Over the past few weeks and months, my family has made the decision to buy in to the Disney Vacation Club.  We have purchased 150 points at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

 

What is Disney Vacation Club?

Disney Vacation Club, or DVC, is a timeshare.  People have a negative attitude about the term “timeshare” though, so Disney calls it a vacation club, which definitely sounds much nicer.  When you buy points, your points can be used at any Disney Vacation Club resort.  You pick when you want to go, what type of room you want to stay in, and what type of a view you’d like.

Aulani,_a_Disney_Resort_&_Spa_by_Anthony_Quintano

Why buy Disney Vacation Club?

We looked at how many times we’ve been to Walt Disney World in the past 10 years (nine times!), and how much we’d spent on lodging for each of those vacations.  We know that in the future, we’d like to keep going every other year or more, and because of that, Disney Vacation Club makes sense.

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What are the REAL costs?

Disney is selling point at the Polynesian Village Resort (Walt Disney World) and at Aulani (in Hawaii).  Points are currently $168 each.  Meaning, if you buy in at 150 points, you’ll be paying $25,200.  If you have the cash up front, you end up getting each year’s vacation for about $500, plus the annual dues of $900.   $1,400 a year might sound like a lot, but when you know that it’s for a week at a deluxe resort, for just about the cost of a value, that’s pretty great.

Now, if you decide to pay over 10 years with Disney financing, you end up paying 12.5% interest, so an extra $15,000.  TIP: PAY IT OFF AS QUICKLY AS YOU CAN!

 

What does that mean, though?

The cost per point, over 50 years, ends up being about $9.40 each.  Staying at a deluxe studio at the Animal Kingdom for a week in January would cost 68 points, or about $640 dollars.  A two bedroom suite in January is as low as 185 points, or about $1,740.  Pretty great considering 9 people can stay there and it includes a living room, dining, full kitchen, and washer and dryer.

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Disney Powerball

A lot of people in the past week have been talking about the Powerball lottery, which had a jackpot of $900,000,000 and was then raised to around $1,500,000,000 (yes, that’s 1.5 billion!)  Because many people have been talking about it, I decided to bring a few questions to my Twitter account (365DaysOfDisney).

This week on Twitter, I asked the following question: If you were to win a few million dollars (or more) in the lottery, how would you spend it at the Disney parks?  I received a number of really interesting and differing responses, some of them using the hashtag “DisneyPowerball”.

Some of your responses
Most followers said that they’d want to purchase either a home in Golden Oak, Disney’s million dollar neighborhood, or Disney Vacation Club points.  So I did some research.

Disney Springs Kimball

Golden Oak currently has four homes available for purchase, ranging from $1,899,000 to $2,999,000, or if you don’t mind waiting, you can build your own custom Disney home.  Golden Oak has four neighborhoods: Marceline, Carolwood, Silverbrook and Kimball Terrace.  There are special perks to living there, like having a concierge able to book travel, tee times, dining reservations, and even in-home catered events.

Polynesian Bungalow

The Disney Vacation Club is Disney’s worst “Best-Kept Secret”: everyone seems to know about it.  Many potential Powerball winners would like to own points for the time share.  When I contacted a DVC specialist this evening, I found that Disney has limited the amount of points you can own at any one resort to 4,000, and a grand total of 9,000 in all of the resorts.  With banking, a person could use 12,000 points every three years at one resort, and Disney doesn’t want anyone to be able to monopolize the resorts.  That being said, 4,000 points at Disney’s  Polynesian Village Resort would cost $672,000 (plus closing costs), and have annual dues of $24,320.  Of course, if you have millions of dollars, that’s not too bad.

Once in Orlando, a lot of respondents said they’d love to take the backstage Disney tours, eat at whatever restaurants they wanted without worrying about the cost (Victoria and Albert’s, anyone?), and buy any souvenirs they want.

Give Kids The World

Give Kids The World also had some responses, with a few people saying that they’d love to give millions to the non-profit organization that helps “fulfill the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses”.  Give Kids The World is located a short distance from Disney and does amazing things for kids and their families, giving them a place to stay, food, trips to the parks, in-resort entertainment, etc.  (you can follow them on Twitter here)

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My response
If I were to win millions of dollars, I would definitely spend a good amount at Walt Disney World.  My ultimate dream is to spend 365 consecutive days at Walt Disney World.  With a local apartment and conservative financial choices, I’ve priced this out at around $42,000.  But if I had lots of money?  I’d buy a house nearby, and on weekends, try different Disney resorts out.  Royal Asante Presidential Suite at Animal Kingdom? Don’t mind if I do.  Doing every behind-the-scenes tour? Sounds great!  Rent a yacht for the fireworks and have a private dinner on-board? Sign me up!

I also asked one other question: If the Disney parks were to offer a Disney lottery, which had prizes like one night in the castle, a week’s vacation, unlimited fastpasses, a signature dining package, Disney gift cards, etc, would you buy tickets?  Disney had their “Year Of A Million Dreams”, which gave out prizes, but would you be willing to pay for a chance to win something special?  A lot of people said yes.  Although Disney’s prices have gone up and up and up, people are still willing to spend a few extra dollars if they have a chance to win something incredible.

So, how would you spend your money at Walt Disney World if you had millions? Leave your response in the comments below!

 

Blog Topic Ideas

While I’m not able to write much this summer (it’s hard not having a computer), please follow me on Twitter: @365daysofdisney to chat, ask questions, interact, etc.

Topics that will be posted this summer/fall:

Trail’s End Buffet review
Bringing Young Ones to Disney
Fort Wilderness Cabins
How to Beat the Heat at Walt Disney World
The Future of Hollywood Studios
When’s the Best Time to Go To Walt Disney World?
DVC – Is it Really Worth It?

What topics would you like to see talked about in an upcoming post?

Summer posts

I am in New York this summer with my family.  My laptop, however, is in South Dakota.  Posting on WordPress won’t be easy, but I have a lot of post ideas, pictures and information to share from our trip to Walt a Disney World three weeks ago!

Here’s hoping the iPad wordpress app works.

  (My daughter’s favorite ride: the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train)

Walt Disney World

I haven’t updated this in a long time. But, summer is here, we’re at Walt Disney Worle right now, and I’m taking lots of pictures to post for articles written over the course of the summer. 

Please check back over the next few months for some new and exciting posts!

Running At Disney – What would you like to see?

RunDisney in the last few years has exploded in popularity, with more people running in more races than ever before (and those races are selling out faster than they ever have).  These are the races they currently have planned:

Wes and Kayla Marathon

First two weekends in January
Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend
Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend (Disneyland)

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(picture available here)

Middle of February
Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend (Walt Disney World)

tinkerbell half

First two weekends in May
Expedition Everest Challenge Weekend (Walt Disney World)
Tinker Bell Half Marathon Weekend (Disneyland)

First weekend in September
Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend

avengers-run

First two weekends in November
Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend (Walt Disney World)
Avengers Super Heroes Half Marathon (Disneyland)

This year, they do not have a Tower of Terror 10 Miler (many people are guessing it’s because of an expansion coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios).

I was thinking about what types of races I would like to see (in a serious way, as well as some fun runs that would never happen but would be amazing).  I asked a few people on Twitter as well, and got a lot of responses from a parody account called @runnDisney (notice the two Ns in the name).

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(This image is from Cava Del Tequila)

Tequila 10k – Starting in Epcot at the Mexico pavilion, runners have to consume a different shot of tequila each time they pass by (6 laps makes 6.18 miles, a 10k).

A cat friendly race – unnamed yet.  But anyone who can put a cat on a leash and then get them to a finish line without dying deserves a medal!

The Backlot Tour 5k, Maelstrom 5k, American Idol Experience 5k and Sorcerer’s Hat 10k – each time Disney closes an attraction, they should have a race first, in honor of / remembrance of the attraction.  Get tickets while the last!

If you were in charge of coming up with the next RunDisney event, what would your distance and theme be?  Please leave a comment below!

365 Days At Disney – how can you help?

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As the new year hits, many people think about resolutions, goals they want to accomplish for the year.  Here is mine for 2015.  By the end of this year, I plan to raise enough money to spend one year at Walt Disney World, moving to Orlando in May or June of 2016.

How can YOU help?

Donate: Obviously, if you have $36,000 you’d like to give away, I’m happy to take if off your hands.  Later this week, an online funding site will go live with my information and ways that you can donate any amount.  If enough is raised, this project will be a go.  If I don’t reach my goal amount, the money donated will be given to a great organization, Give Kids The World.

Spread the word: The way this is going to work is by reaching out to as many people as I can.  Do you have Facebook, a Twitter account, online blog, podcast, or other social media site where you’d be willing to share about 365DaysAtDisney?  The more exposure I get, the more likely funds will be raised.  I am available for emailed correspondence, interviews, etc.

An update on our family

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I still work for a school district in South Dakota.  My wife left her position there to open up an in-home daycare for the children of teachers (so we have the same weekends, vacations and winter and summer break).  Our daughters are now one and three years old.

An update on logistics

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If we start our 365 Days At Disney in the summer of 2016, it would not change anything with our eldest’s education, she won’t miss any school.  My wife is still very excited for the idea, but has realistically stated that it either needs to happen soon, or not until we are retired.  I’ve looked at apartments in Orlando as close to Walt Disney World as possible, and we as a family have created a budget that includes everything we would need to get by for one year.

An update on the end goal

I still plan to blog each day that I am at Walt Disney World, as well as vlog or start a podcast.  Later this month, I will be contacting several publishing companies about the possibility of a book, to see what interest there may be.  My wife has also said that she’d like to write about the family dynamics of spending a year at Walt Disney World, and how it (hopefully) strengthens us as a family.

If you have any questions, comments, ideas, or other ways you can help, please email me (365DaysAtDisney@gmail.com) or leave a comment below!