Ask a Disney Question: Where Have All the Deals Gone?

From Meg L.:

We are planning a one day trip to Disney World in June. We got a deal on the Contemporary Resort, 40% discount per night. We WANT that same discount on a Bay Lake Villa resort with 2 bedrooms, but they say there aren’t any rooms available with that discount. You know anything about how to get one? Times to call??

Meg:  Thanks for reading the site and for your question. Sadly, there’s no real trick to getting these deals other than to know that they’re out there and to ask for them.  It also helps to have flexible travel dates.  Disney only sets a aside a small number of rooms under these codes based on sophisticated projections of what they need, what they already have, and what they can expect to book without incentives in the upcoming months.   They fill up quickly and once they’re gone, they’re gone.

There are a couple of things you can try.  As much as I love planning my own trips, I’ve gotten better deals with a Disney authorized travel agent.   They don’t charge for their services and are really good about finding the best rates, so if they can’t find something that works for you, all you’ve lost is the amount of time it takes to contact your agent and explain your needs.  We don’t specifically recommend anyone on this site, but if you want to know who I use and who I recommend to my friends, send me an email and I’ll give you her information.

Second, and I think this is probably your best bet at this point, consider renting Disney Vacation  Club (DVC) points.  You can rent points from individual owners on  the DVC forum of Disboards or on Mouseowners.  Both forums will require you to register to post. Mouseowners has a particularly good section on the dos and don’t s of renting points.  The Dis, which is the more active board, only allows renters to respond to owners’  listings but is pretty flexible beyond that.  Make sure you get references from the owner and be wary of renting from someone with a low post count.  Most points rent for around $10, but more desirable resorts like BLT may go higher.  Sometimes on Mouseowners, owners rent out confirmed reservations. These tend to be pretty good deals and are worth a look.  Quite often the owner will allow you to rent  a day or two rather than the entire reservation.

If the idea of renting from an individual owner sounds too risky, consider renting from a points broker like DVC by Request. They charge around $13 a point but are usually pretty successful at matching up owners and renters. Since they act as an intermediary  between you and the owner,  you won’t have contact with the owner, so this makes the whole process easier on you.  Keep in mind that both brokers and owners and have very strict cancellation policies (as in, you’re out of luck), so trip insurance is a good idea.

I went to the Disney site and looked for a 2-bedroom Bay Lake view at BLT for a weeknight in June (the 15th, if you’re counting) and put in the numbers and it came out at a whopping $979!  But hey, that includes tax.  I then went over to Mouseowners, checked the points charts, and found that this same night “rented” for 48 points a night.  Even renting from a broker and paying the absolute maximum of $13 a point, you’re still only paying about $624.   It’s not as good as 40% off, but it’s close.

Depending on how important it is to stay in BLT, I would look around and see what I could find. It’s a beautiful resort. But don’t cancel that Contemporary reservation just yet.  Good luck. And please let us know if you find a good deal!

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