The Alpackas will last a long time under anything other than truly abusive use. My 2010 Yak is still going strong. I've had to repair one cut (sharp rock), patch a crack around the mouth valve (bad design Alpacka), patch two holes in the seat (gravel in the boat), and put some prophylactic aquaseal in a few wear spots on the floor. I also spray it down with UV guard twice a year. My boat has gotten a lot of use in this time. I don't beat on it on purpose, but I don't baby it. I don't see any reason I won't still be using it in a decade, unless I buy something else and sell the Yak.
Short answer; if you're not sure if you'll need a drysuit, you shouldn't be getting into water where you might need a drysuit.
Long answer; there are some occasions when a drysuit is needed for safety. I wear mine running whitewater late September through June. I've used it on perhaps 10 packrafting trips total. As David alludes to, they are not fun to wear.
More often, a drysuit enhances warmth a lot, and adds a safety margin (which you may or may not feel is necessary). In these cases I always go with raingear, maybe an extra vest, and a more conservative boating strategy. I have a fairly high tolerance for getting darn cold, something others do not choose to tolerate.
So the drysuit question has to do with what trips you intend to do, when you intend to do them, your personal safety requirements, and your personal tolerance for suffering.
It should also be said that while it's not as warm, a wetsuit is a much cheaper alternative which is quite serviceable, and even preferable to a drysuit on many trips. I use a 3/5mm farmer john on a few trips every year. It's bulky for overnights, but does make a decent sleeping pad.