DVC Monthly Preview – January 2019

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Welcome to the January installment of our monthly Disney Vacation Club preview. This month, we round up the latest news, including a look at DVC member cruises and Moonlight Magic nights. We’ll also take a look at some common DVC owner questions.

Booking Windows

This month, here are some booking window dates to keep in mind. For your home resort (11-month booking window), in January, you will be able to book for dates in December 2019. For all other DVC resorts (seven-month booking window), this month you will be able to book for dates in August 2019. Bear in mind that we’re now in range for most members to book the Halloween and Christmas season for 2019.

Booking directly through Disney, there is virtually no availability at any DVC property until mid-January 2019. From mid-month forward, there is some availability at Saratoga Springs and Old Key West at Walt Disney World (though studios are scarce) and at Aulani and Hilton Head Island. Into February 2019, there is also non-studio rooms open at Saratoga Springs, Old Key West, Aulani, and Hilton Head, as well as pockets of open rooms at Boulder Ridge (Wilderness Lodge) and the Polynesian Village bungalows.

If you want to expand your options, you may want to explore renting points as an alternative to booking through Disney. (If you rent points through the affiliate link to David’s DVC rentals, TouringPlans receives a commission.)

DVC and Disney News

Disney Magic sailing out of New York on her way to Bermuda, October 2018.

While we don’t have news on specific opening dates for Galaxy’s Edge (a.k.a. Star Wars Land), Disney is saying that the Disneyland version will open “summer 2019” and the Walt Disney World version will open “fall 2019.” This puts us within the booking window for DVC members to get rooms during opening season. We’re anticipating HUGE interest in Disney trips when these new lands are introduced, which means that hotel rooms of all sorts may be hard to find. If you want to be one of the first to experience Galaxy’s Edge, it’s time to start paying close attention to booking windows to make sure you’re not shut out of using your points toward the end of the year.

There is still limited availability on the DVC member cruises on Disney Cruise Line in 2019. The member cruises currently available are a 5-night sailing of the Disney Wonder from May 15-20 from San Diego to Vancouver, and a 7-night Bermuda sailing from October 5-12 out of New York on the Disney Magic. In addition to all the fun of a regular DCL voyage, member cruises include loads of perks not available to regular guests, including enhanced stateroom gifts, presentations by Disney-affiliated celebrities, member receptions, and other surprises. Members may book up to four staterooms for these sailings. Call member services at 800-800-9800 for more information. If you decide to book a member cruise (or any other Disney cruise sailing), you may want to kickstart your planning with the just-released Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line 2019, co-authored by yours truly.

Moonlight Magic Nights Return

One of the perkier perks of DVC membership is Moonlight Magic Nights, evenings where members get the run of a park, plus lots of snacks, for freeeeee! Yep, it’s like those big dollar paid late night evenings, but at no extra cost. While there is no fee, advance registration is required and availability is limited.

A Disneyland event will be held on January 31, but unfortunately that one’s “sold” out.

WDW Magic Kingdom will have Moonlight Magic Nights on February 5 and 12, 2019, with registration opening on January 9 for members with WDW hotel reservation, and on January 16 for all members. Disney’s Hollywood Studio Moonlight Magic will take place on March 20 and 27 with registration opening on February 14 for members with WDW hotel reservation, and on February 21 for all members. Epcot events will take place on May 13 and 20, with registration opening on April 3 for members with WDW hotel reservation, and on April 10 for all members. Animal Kingdom will host three events: July 18, August 8, and August 22, 2019, with registration opening on June 5 for members with WDW hotel reservation, and on June 12 for all members. The last Moonlight Magic event of the year will take place at Typhoon Lagoon on September 18 and October 16, with registration opening on August 14 for members with WDW hotel reservation, and on August 28 for all members.

DVC FAQ

Here’s where we tackle a frequently asked question or two about Disney Vacation Club.

Question: I’m coming for my first DVC stay with a young child. Will there be a crib in my room, or do I have to request it?

Answer: Pack n’ Play cribs are standard equipment in all Disney Vacation Club rooms. I’ve stayed in DVC units of all sizes dozens of times and have always had a Pack n’ Play stored in my room closet. On very rare occasion you might encounter a room not equipped with a crib, but this is likely because that room’s unit is temporarily out for repair or cleaning. If that happens to you, just call housekeeping or the front desk and they’ll have one sent to you right away. For more information about the crib situation at Walt Disney World, check out our related blog post.

And, just a reminder, DVC annual dues are coming due soon. To view your balance, log into your account on the Disney Vacation Club web site. Annual dues can be paid in a lump sum or set for monthly billing.

That does it for this month’s wrap-up. Got any DVC questions? Comments? Let us know below.

Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel at DisneyWorldMoms.com, a regular contributor to TouringPlans.com, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater. Erin can be reached on Twitter @MsErinFoster.

3 thoughts on “DVC Monthly Preview – January 2019

  • January 1, 2019 at 10:08 am
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    We’re renting points to stay at a DVC place. Is it possible for us to enjoy the Moonlight Magic Nights?

    Reply
  • January 4, 2019 at 11:34 am
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    No. I believe you need to have access to the member portion of the site in order to even register for the events (not 100% sure about this), but even if the members were to register you, you would need to be able to show a valid membership card along with an ID showing that you are the person named on the membership card in order to be admitted to the event. This is standard for most membership extras.

    If you are staying with members on their reservation as guests the situation is a little different; each member is allowed to bring up to three guests, up to the number of guests staying with them on their reservation. Practically speaking this means that if you have a married couple who are both on the contract (2 members) and you are staying in a 2-bedroom villa that sleeps 8, everyone can go. Both members will need to be present at time of check in.

    Reply
  • January 4, 2019 at 2:44 pm
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    Jennie, Thanks for answering Eric’s question. Your answer is spot-on, with one tiny exception. There are many situations where two (or more) people are owner/members on a single contract, but they’re not married. This often happens with parents of adult children or with domestic partners.

    In any case, you have to show a member ID and a photo ID (to prove that you’re actually the member) to participate in most of the perks associated with membership such as use of the member lounges and events like Moonlight Magic. If you’re just renting points, you would not have access to these member bonuses.

    Reply

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