walt disney world tips

Want a free drink while waking around in EPCOT? Stop by Club Cool. It’s a little store across from Innoventions, next to the Fountain View ice cream shop. The store is sponsored by the Coca Cola company, and they have soda machines inside where you can try Coke products from all over the world. Korea, Italy, Japan, they have a great variety. You’re limited to a small, dixie cup, but you can fill it as many times as you’d like.

What you REALLY should say to characters at the Disney parks!

There’s a post floating around listing things to say to the characters at the Disney parks, and having worked in the parks, I’d actually say a lot of those are bad conversation starters. Compliment the princesses on their dresses? Ask Tigger if he’s a boy or a girl? Show Eeyore your muscles? No, no, no.

Here are some ACTUAL conversation starters if you want to have some fun character interactions! These are just the princesses, if people like these/use them then I’ll make another post with more characters.

Keep reading

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Dinner at California Grill located in Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

My DCP Tips!

Fall 2015 apps just came out, which means this is the last application season I have to sit idly through before I can apply for my next program - Spring 2016. Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what I’m going to do differently on my second program, so I thought I’d share my ~*CP Knowledge*~ with those of you doing the program for the first time. I hope these help you on your Disney journey, but if you have any other questions feel free to ask!

1. Do your research. Before you apply, research all the roles and get a good understanding of each - don’t just judge based on your assumptions! Check what people are saying on tumlblr and YouTube and rank your roles based on what you think you will enjoy and be good at. Also, make sure you have good reasons for picking your top roles to show your interviewer that these are the best fits for you!

2. Pick the right roommates. It’s hard to find a perfect group of people to live with for 4-6 months on Facebook, so if you’re doing this make sure you want to live with these people! Get to know them by talking a lot, filling out and sharing roommate surveys, and make sure you’re all on the same page about where you want to live. My roommates became some of my best friends and I met them through Facebook, I promise it is possible to find amazing people!

3. Pack smart. Fun fact: it does get cold in Florida (just kidding, that’s not fun at all). And even if you are coming from 25 degree weather like me, you will quickly adjust and 60 degrees will feel freezing to you. Pack a good amount of warm and cool weather clothes. I only brought one pair of jeans with me on my program and I think I wore shorts less than 15 times the entire time I was there. Also, make sure you have good shoes that you can walk a lot in, my only warm weather shoes I brought hurt my feet so badly. Don’t make this mistake! And if you have a limited amount of packing space, don’t pack too many clothes, you’ll be working five days per week anyways.

4. Buy stuff when you get there. This goes along with the last one, but, again, if you have limited packing space, consider buying new things once you get to Orlando. Towels, bedding, toiletries, food, and cookware all take up a lot of space and can be bought fairly cheap at Walmart or Target. However…

5. Spend your money wisely. You will be tempted by the overpriced food and merchandise at the parks and resorts constantly, but don’t forget to be wary of buying things in the “real world” like food and clothes. For a lot of people, this will be the first time they are paying their own rent and buying their own groceries, so try to keep to a budget. It will really suck when all your roommates are planning to go out to dinner and you can’t go because you only have $10 in your bank account. The best way to do this is to buy cheaper food (or food that costs the same but will keep you fuller longer.. oatmeal > poptarts, multi grain bread > white bread, etc.) and bring your own lunch to work, or snacks to the park. It’s okay to go to an expensive dinner every now and again (I spent $80 at California Grill once, so worth it) and splurging on something at the parks, but don’t make it a habit.

6. Take advantage of cast member benefits. Speaking of saving money, as a cast member you get amazing discounts. 20% off most merch and dining, plus full service resort restaurants are 40% off for lunch (and some for breakfast). If your family or friends are coming to visit you can get discounted resort rooms and dining plans (I got my family one week at AKL for $1000 (regular would be ~$3000) and dining plans for $35/day.. regular $55). Also, be sure to routinely check out Cast Connections and Property Control (cast member only stores) where you can get insanely discounted merchandise. I have bought mickey ears for $1, a charm bracelet for $0.80, t-shirts for $5, and so much more. There are a lot of other random benefits for cast members, too. One night we got to ride Rockin’ Roller Coaster with the lights on and then watch Frozen at the Sci-Fi dine-in! Keep your eyes and ears open for these typed of opportunities!

7. Try new things. There are tons of things to do at WDW, try them all! Before I did my DCP I hated fireworks, but Wishes quickly became one of my favorite things to do. Even if you don’t think you’ll like it, try it because you’ll never know until you do!

8. Learn to love your role and location. I guarantee you there will be days when you HATE your job no matter where you work. So, I challenge you to find the best in what you do. I was custodial, and !surprisingly! I disliked taking out the trash and cleaning toilets, BUT all I had to do was remind myself I am working at the happiest place on earth and that I am making magic for thousands of guests and I started enjoying myself. Do your best and be grateful for your job. Just remember, every job has it’s ups and downs, it’s all about your attitude!

9. Don’t be afraid to call out. Keep your sanity and give yourself a day off from work once every now and again if you need it. I called out three times during my program, and I think it was necessary. Take the day off and relax, go to Universal or the beach - just don’t go to any Disney parks! (But remember: one call out = one point, three points in 30 days, six in 60, or nine in 90 = one reprimand. Three reprimands means you get termed)

10. Make a definitive bucket list and get it done! Whether it’s character meet and greets, foods you’re dying to try, or maxing out on Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin (it’s possible!) you have time to do it all. The best way to accomplish the things you want to do is to write them down and start working on them immediately! If you wait, you will find yourself at the end of your program with way too much to do.

Good luck on applications, and don’t forget to have fun! FT&PD :)

Aside from all of the other festivities at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, one of the greatest must-sees is Mickey’s BOO to YOU! Halloween Parade. In my personal opinion, it’s one of the best holiday parades Disney has to offer. Stake out your spot for this parade EARLY if you want to be able to sit/a good view. Don’t worry about waiting around; now is a great time to regroup, enjoy some ice cream or popcorn, or eat the candy you’ve collected. Not to mention, the pre-show of the parade is the riding of none other than the Headless Horseman himself.

If you have kids (or kids at heart) with you, try and get them towards the front, especially towards the end of the parade. Not only will they get to see better, but the very last float in the parade is the Goofy’s Candy Co. float, and the performers on the street have baskets of candy that they hand out to the kids that are closest to them. So make sure you get a good spot!

DCP Tips: Phone Interviews!!!

So I know a lot of you have just sent in your applications for Fall DCP! And I just want you to know how proud I am of all of you! This is a big step, and it takes a lot of courage even to do this part, so pat yourselves on the back! 

Now I’m sure a lot of you have already done the web interview as well, depending on when you applied, sometimes it comes directly after you apply and others it comes a few hours later.

If you haven’t done the web interview yet don’t worry the link will come soon. This part’s a breeze, just don’t overthink any of the questions, and don’t let yourself get distracted because you have to do it in one sitting.

Ok so now for the big event: the phone interview.

Ok first what I want you to do is take a deep, deep breath, and now exhale.

It’s alright to be nervous about this, it’s a big deal! So I want you to make sure you schedule it for a time when you know there will be NO interruptions, and make sure everyone who might want you during that time knows you can’t talk, because of your interview. I repeat NO INTERRUPTIONS!!!!! Clear? Ok…

Next: before your interview, get dressed. I know this sounds weird, but it honestly helps. Some people say you should dress up, but I don’t think that’s necessary. But, getting up and getting dressed, eating, and basically just taking care of yourself in the morning before your interview will wake you up and give you energy. Even if your interview is at night make sure take care of any responsibilities before hand and setting yourself up a quiet comfortable place to sit for a while. Making yourself presentable for some reason just does something to your energy and your voice and it makes you seem more put together. I don’t know why but it works, ok?

Next: SMILE. You are literally applying for a job that pays for you to do just this, and trust me they can hear you smiling. Your voice changes, even if you aren’t particularly in a smiling mood, if you smile you will sound so much happier to them. Another thing, be happy, so many people don’t even get this far! Laugh at yourself, laugh at their jokes, and they will have jokes. Just show them you are a friendly happy person, because in the end that’s what they are really looking for, someone who is going to always have a smile on, even when it’s hard.

Finally don’t worry too much about the questions, none of them are hard. They are all questions about something I hope you are an expert on…yourself! Just tell the truth, and be honest even if you aren’t sure it’s what they want to hear. Don’t just tell them what you think they want to hear, be yourself! The interviewers are all lovely people and are always willing to repeat questions of elaborate if you need them to so don’t be afraid to ask! The best thing you can do is make friends with your interviewer. Still be professional, but don’t be above just having a chat with them. For my last interview I did the lady saw that I go to school in Savannah, and got all excited because she really wanted to go there on vacation. So for about 5-8 minutes of my interview I told her about Savannah and all of the things there are to do here, and about my school. We were going off on a tangent but she loved it, and it actually helped calm my nerves to be able to talk about something I knew a lot about. In the end she had to end the interview because she had more work to do and we had been talking for almost an hour. I ended up getting accepted and I got my first choice role, so this really works, guys. The interviewers are lovely people and they want to see you succeed, so have fun with this! 

I’m so proud of you all and I’m sure you will do amazing, don’t worry about anything. I’m always here if you need anything. Here have a puppy!

Pin trading is a great way to spend time at Disney World. The problem is, pins can be pricey, and if it is your first time trading, how are you supposed to get enough pins to trade? There is a quick fix. Prior to your trip, purchase an inexpensive set of 20+ pins on eBay. Since the pins will most likely be unpopular, undesirable ones, they are perfect for trading once you get to the parks! All you need now is a lanyard. My family does this every year.

This is a SPECIAL TIP, regarding all those visiting Disney World on Dapper Day. Too many times, I’ve visited Disney World one one of these days (Dapper Day, Goth Day, Gay Day, etc), and have unfortunately seen people have trouble with their day. Never fear, however, I’ve come up with a few quick tips on how to make your Dapper Day a great one :)

  • I understand spiffy-looking shoes are a HUGE part of Dapper Day. However, make sure your shoes are comfortable, because if you show up in tight, vintage riding boots, your feet are going to be blistering by lunchtime.
  • Make sure your dapper dressings don’t resemble a Face Character, a cast member costume, or a resident of Main Street USA/Citizen of Hollywood (they’re characters, too!), because they may not let you in if people could mistake you for a character/cast member.
  • Florida’s September weather is mainly very, very, VERY hot. Make sure your outfit is light, with not-too-heavy fabrics. It’s best to leave the trench coats and fur shawls at home, and if you plan on wearing stockings, go with light, breathable nylons as opposed to thick tights.
  • If you have light colored shoes on, they’ll most likely get scuffed up, so try not to wear your brand new pair of white Mary Janes, if that’s possible.
  • Since this is a Non-Disney-run event, the cast members won’t know much about the event, so it may not be worth asking them anything about it.

If anyone has ANY more questions about Dapper Day, don’t hesitate to drop them in my ask box. Have fun, Dapper-ians! Also, you can send in your Dapper Day pictures here, I’m going to be posting a few of them if I get any!