Trip Report 1st time use of DVC points, AK and SS split stay 12-27-2020 thru 01-09-2021

Hello all. For this report I'll try to limit it to just my experience with DVC and keep it as brief as possible. I will post the parks experience in another post shortly. I hope this helps anyone who is considering purchasing DVC, as I know I had alot of questions and still have some today.

So quick backstory, we have been thinking about buying since Saratoga first opened but it wasn't until recently that we could truly afford it. Many years later now we are a family of 4 with two kids age 20 and 18, I guess not kids anymore but in my eyes they will forever be 10 and 12 LOL. We bought in direct at Copper Creek in the fall. Then very soon thereafter we bought resales at Animal Kingdom and Grand Floridian. All of these had banked 2019 points which is the reason we made this unplanned trip.

First let me say that the cast members were incredible at both resorts. We drove from Wisconsin and had planned to arrive around 8 P.M. on the night of 26th and stay at any cheap hotel around Disney. Due to two big traffic jams, we didn't arrive until the 27th at like 1 A.M. Not being able to check in at AK until 3 we thought we would just drive to AK and see if we could get a cash room for the night if that was even possible at that hour. The cast member told us since it was our actual check in day and the room was available we could get in immediately. WOW. I was blown away and thrilled. This of course would of never been possible in a pre covid world but this time it worked out for us.

First impressions of the room: It was a studio and was a standard view. The room was ok sized, the sink area was nice, the bathroom was ok. It didn't wow me but it was a step up from the All Star resorts we have stayed at often. The main bed was very comfortable but the sofa pull out was by far the worse sleep I have ever had at a Disney property. I have no idea who is meant to sleep on that bed. My daughter is 150 lbs and felt every bar and spring in the frame. I volunteered to sleep there and let me tell you it was indescribably awful. Also we received trash service only once during the 7 night stay.

However their were many positives, we woke up to find giraffe, zebra and other wildlife outside our balcony. So not only did they get us in a room way early but they upgraded us to savannah view, very magical. The pool was nice and large and their was a small hot tub, 5 or 6 people and a large hot tub, 10- 15 people nearby. Their were some activities and movie nights but no fire pit going ever.

I liked the resort but will definitely need to revisit post covid restrictions. While I personally liked the lack of guests and general busyness, not having restaurants, bars, and other key components open was a bummer.


On to week 2 and Saratoga Springs

We packed up and drove over early, like 8 or 9. We had planned to go to Epcot which opened at 11. We were planning on dropping off our luggage and head to the park but again got some Disney magic as they said we could get into a refurbished room at the paddock right now in lieu of the water view room they were originally scheduled for. So of course we jumped on it. Again amazing cast members every time we encountered one the entire trip.

The room was great, just like I have seen on the youtube videos. Both beds were very comfy, tons of lighting options, ample usb and outlets. I don't know the Sq ft of each room, but this one felt much bigger than AK. I have nothing but praise for these rooms and staff. We received trash service every day and made requests for coffee and misc items that were often delivered in minutes. The other major positive was the quiet pool at Congress and the super easy and convenient walks to Disney Springs. We are park warriors in general and being able to go to the pool/hot tub after a long park day at 11 PM or even later some nights was fantastic. Those 2 reasons alone are enough that I would consider staying there many times in the future.

The only thing I didn't care for and its minor, is I like walking through a lobby to get to and from the car and that room doors are in inside hallways like AK. So that feel of individual separate buildings and open outdoor room entrances was a little less appealing. The lobby was a little far and less convenient than I would of preferred.

Overall is was a great experience and I'm happy we bought into DVC at this time. Like I said, we are people that usually are in the parks from open to close. However with everyone being a little order I can see taking our time more to enjoy these resorts and all they offer compared to my value resort stays and look forward to experiencing them all in the future.

If anyone has any comments or questions I'd love to hear them.

I will post a daily trip activities report here in the near future for those interested as well. Thank you
 

macefamily

Well-Known Member
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Thanks for the report. Our family followed the same route that you did. We thought about DVC for years, but finally made the jump in 2019 when we had some money put aside to buy in. "Kids" are 24, 21, and 18. Our first DVC experience was five years ago when we were upgraded to Saratoga Springs from a faulty room in a value resort. We fell in love with the one bedroom suite. We bought into Old Key West and love the rooms there. We're thinking about grabbing some resale points if the right offer is out there. Our first DVC stay was a split stay between Saratoga and Boardwalk. That was at the very beginning of the Rona. We enjoyed it, and we're thinking about another stay in the coming months. Welcome aboard, and I hope your family enjoys DVC for years.
 

hiddenmickey75

Member
Original Poster
Thanks for the report. Our family followed the same route that you did. We thought about DVC for years, but finally made the jump in 2019 when we had some money put aside to buy in. "Kids" are 24, 21, and 18. Our first DVC experience was five years ago when we were upgraded to Saratoga Springs from a faulty room in a value resort. We fell in love with the one bedroom suite. We bought into Old Key West and love the rooms there. We're thinking about grabbing some resale points if the right offer is out there. Our first DVC stay was a split stay between Saratoga and Boardwalk. That was at the very beginning of the Rona. We enjoyed it, and we're thinking about another stay in the coming months. Welcome aboard, and I hope your family enjoys DVC for years.
Thanks for sharing, I love hearing about everyone's experiences. I'd love to add on at Beach Club or Boardwalk but I'd like to know if Disney plans on doing an extension like the 15 year OKW before I do.
 

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