I’m never quite sure if people overlook the memory maker from Disneys PhotoPass, especially Guests who visit Walt Disney World without children. I must admit if it wasn’t part of the deal we booked I wouldn’t have paid to add it on as an extra but we had great fun using it throughout our vacation.
Memory Maker was an added extra for booking our vacation directly through Disney. And the brilliant thing is you don’t need to do anything. Once we’d checked in and received our magic bands which were linked to our My Disney Experience accounts we were good to go. Any photos taken by PhotoPass cast members or on the rides were automatically uploaded to our Disney Experience accounts (sometimes you’d need to scan your band with the cast member or at a ride exit point).
Once the photos are on my Disney Experience you can edit them with magical borders or stickers of the autograph of the character in the photo etc. Alternatively, you can leave them unfiltered and then download to your device (phone, computer, iPad etc). Depending on how many photos you’ve acquired this can be quite time-consuming. The photos have expiration dates too, so my advice would be to set some time aside to do this soon after you return from your vacation.
Disney also offers you the opportunity to use the photos to make your own calendar or print the photos onto mugs etc. I did a calendar a few years ago when I didn’t have the memory maker, this enabled me to have a number of different photos (some months I used 2 or 3 photos) to keep which worked out cheaper than downloading or printing photos – If you haven’t purchased Memory Maker as part of your package the photos are all watermarked when they show in My Disney Experience, but you can purchase individual photos if you wish. I will say I had great fun creating the calendar and the quality of it was of a high standard and I loved reliving all the Magic of my holiday over the next year.
Now it’s worth mentioning for anyone on a budget that it’s free to have photos taken with PhotoPass cast members. The photos just show up watermarked on my Disney Experience. Alternative if you ask the cast member they will take photos for you with your camera or on your phone etc.
We were really impressed that rides such as Test Track, Buzz Lightyears Space Ranger spin and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster pick up your magic band and the ride photo automatically syncs with your account. Be warned though the technology is not 100% so if you see your ride photo on the preview screens at the ride exit touch your band to the relevant screen if you love your photo as the one time we didn’t, we got a most assuming Test Track photo of 6 strangers.
It’s also worth noting both Tower of Terror and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train both do videos as well as photo stills. I was gutted that our Tower of Terror video didn’t work on the one and only time I have and will ever ride it. Luckily proof remains in photo form and to be fair the video would have probably been awful as I was the biggest baby you can imagine.
One thing I’ve never done before and Alistair and I had a bit of fun with this holiday were the photo booths scattered across the property. The first one we came across was on the Boardwalk but after that experience – we tried to create hearts with our hands and failed epically! We found them in the Magic Kingdom in the exit shop of Space Mountain and also near the exit of Speedway… In EPCOT there was one in the shop at Test Track and I’m certain there are loads more. These took a number of photos and then gave you the option to print strips of mini photos for $5 or you could scan your band free of charge and have the photo added to your Disney PhotoPass. These were so much fun but be warned the TV screen outside displays your photo too….
My final piece of advice is don’t miss the Tangled lantern PhotoPass in Fantasy Land in the Magic Kingdom. With the Tangled toilet area used as the backdrop you can pose with your own lantern. The cast members are fantastic and direct you so you look like you’re releasing it into the sky for the lost Princess. This is a very popular photo pass and is still fairly new. We waited 30 minutes for our turn but it was worth the wait. These photos are amongst my favourite and it was really fun to do too.
I’ve also been big on photos and capturing the moment, what I adore about the Memory Maker is it also captures the Magic and I can continue the fun editing and print the photos at home. If it’s part of your package please take advantage of it, go meet the characters, do those magical poses jumping in front of the Castle at the Magic Kingdom and who knows. More often then not the cast members add little surprises to your photo too just trust them when they ask you to hold our your hands and look at them!
On that note… enjoy the Magic!!!