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The Complete Newbie's Guide to DVC

How to book a DVC room

Image: DisneyHow you book your room depends on which method you chose. Customers who rent points will mostly leave the process up to someone else. You'll pick your dates and hotel. Then, someone else will do all the legwork. It’s great for people who don’t want the stress of booking hotel reservations. Anyone who wants some control of the process will find it a bit frustrating, though.

Booking via your own DVC points is much different. If anything, you’ll have too much control. You’ll go into the official Disney Vacation Club website and choose the Book Online section. From there, the process is fairly self-explanatory. 

You do need enough points in your account to book the reservation. Thanks to the lenient system in place, however, you may borrow from the following Use Year as needed to schedule your trip. I realize that’s a lot of jargon, so here’s what matters. As long as you purchase a decent-sized contract (say 75 points or more), you can always spend a week at a Disney resort at least once every two years.

Image: DisneyBooking a hotel room does depend on availability, of course. DVC is just like a standard hotel stay in this way. You'll find that the most popular resorts book the quickest. Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa is particularly tricky since it has only a little over 100 DVC rooms available. Properties like Disney's Old Key West Resort and Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa are much easier to book since they have the most extensive inventories at Walt Disney World. No matter where you stay, however, every resort in the DVC catalog is impeccable. You'll feel like royalty the first time you visit one of these hotels.

You may wonder how you address the rest of your Disney trip. You’ll be responsible for purchasing tickets. It’s important to point out that DVC members frequently receive ticket and annual pass discount offers. They’re also eligible for the Disney Gold Pass, something otherwise open only to Florida residents. It’s one of the cheapest annual passes and not significantly more than seven- to ten-day tickets.

Image: DisneySomething I like about the DVC booking process is that it separates purchases. I love having the flexibility to discover admission tickets at other outlets. Most standard Disney bookings require packages. Speaking of which, you CAN buy the Disney Dining Plan for a DVC vacation. I mention this because a non-DVC booking would force you to get a package deal. You can segment your purchases as a DVC member. I quite like that extra amount of control. It lets me price shop, although I’ve generally found that booking everything through DVC winds up cheapest.

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