I have always wanted to be a part of the Disney Vacation Club but start up costs are too high, and 160 points a year seem like too much for my family to use in a year.
Lately, I've been looking into resales and was wondering what you thought of them. My thinking is this: If I could purchase around 40 points a year then I could go every three years and use 120 points (40 for the current year plus the forty from the year before and 40 from the year after). Any thoughts you have about this I would appreciate.
Start up costs for the Wilderness Lodge Villas part of the Disney Vacation Club are too high
Ah, how Dad wishes that he had the foresight to join the Disney Vacation Club years ago, when points were a mere $50 each! Now of course, the points are considerably more at over $100 each. The Disney Vacation Club can sure make sense for some families, and after the initial investment it has the potential to save a lot of money. But although it's tempting, it isn't right for everyone.
Dad's glad to hear that you are being realistic about your budget and your vacation habits. You're right - buying into a brand new Disney Vacation Club membership, with a minimum of 160 points upfront is certainly not the right option for your family since you only plan to vacation with your points every few years. Looking into a resale option would be a much better fit for your budget and your needs.
But it's not the only affordable option. Dad's rule of thumb is that if you plan to visit Walt Disney World every year or every two years and stay in a deluxe resort, or plan to visit every year and stay in a moderate resort, then the Disney Vacation Club may make sense.
Since you're looking at less frequent trips, it might make more sense to simply save up your money and travel every three years, staying in a moderate or value resort (Dad is particularly fond of Disney's Pop Century Resort).
Dad's take on the Disney All-Star Music Family Suites
If your heart is set on the Disney Vacation Club, you might want to try it on for size first to make sure that the Disney Vacation Club experience is what you would prefer to a more traditional hotel room. There are pros and cons - bigger rooms, in-room laundry and kitchens (though this is a con according to Mrs. Mom), and even special discounts, which you're trading for an up-front buy-in fee, annual dues, and less housekeeping.
If you want to test out the Disney Vacation Club before committing to it, there is always the option to rent points, just like Dad did earlier this year.
Dad's Bottom Line
John, the decision to commit to your vacations years (and decades) in advance is a very personal one, and deserves due consideration. If you decide to invest in a Disney Vacation Club resale, make sure you go through a reliable DVC resale specialist. In either case, you have many years of magical memories waiting for you and your family!