Vinyl is a lot softer on the feet. I spent a little more and bought the steps and swim out that matched my liner exactly so I think it looks really good...
However...gunite looks better (IM0) and can handle getting scraped and such.
I agree with vejadu, I also have vinyl, opted for it over the huge difference of prices, but one plus not mentioned here is that vinyl makes it more difficult for algae to adhere to the sides....or so I was told.
The ONLY real advantage to a vinyl pool, besides the lower initial cost, is that they do better in parts of the country where the ground gets a hard freeze and that the surface is non reactive (a trait they share with fiberglass pools). They do complicate some issues such as killing algae. In all other areas I fell that fiiberglass and plaster pools have numerous advantages over vinyl.
Don't underestimate the soft feel and touch that "vejadu" mentioned. My guests comment on that virtually every time they visit the pool for the first time. That said, they sometimes comment on the inherit slipperiness of it, too.
In a vinyl pool, the water acts as part of the structure keeping the liner tight to the walls/floor, so you can only do partial drains or you risk stretching and ripping your liner if you completely drain. Leaks are also more common although patching can be done by the homeowner. An advantage of a liner pool is that after 8-10 years you can change the pattern... or if you have lots of $$$, you can change it when you want.
It's definately cheaper and can be installed in 3 weeks or less.
Thanks for the responses. Upon viewing this site, it is quite evident that many really "get into" their pools. :-D
I am new to pools this year and wasn't sure about them. Actually , my wife wanted one to play in. Last year was a very dry and hot summer. This year has been very tropical. The pool hasn't been used as much as I had hoped.
I gained my water knowledge from Ben's site. So far, following this route has given a TFP. :-D