Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Disney's Memory Maker 101


Welcome to those of you joining me from Rolling with the Magic and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the 2nd stop on our Magical Blogorail

Disney's Memory Maker

The newest and updated form of Disney's PhotoPass, Disney has "trained" photographers located all around the parks ready to take pictures of you and your family while on your vacation!  

Location

Located sporadically around all four parks and water parks, many of Disney's PhotoPass photographers are set up with Tripods along the heavy photographed venues, such as Main Street, U.S.A., near the Tree of Life, near the exit of EPCOT with Spaceship Earth in the background, etc...  Most character meets will also have a PhotoPass Photographer ready to go take your pictures as well.  You can also find many walking around without tripods for special photographs, or pictures in not-so-regular locations.

How Do I Get My Pictures?

As of the last time I visited Walt Disney World, the photographers would tag your pictures on your Magic Band, but also on a card that you could link to your account.  In November 2013, they recommended doing both, as the systems were still new, though we had no problem with those we only scanned on our Magic Bands.  With the RFID (radio frequency identification) that Magic Bands have, you will also automatically have your attraction photos loaded to your magic bands!

Memory Maker allows Guests to collect, view, download and share all of the Walt Disney World vacation photos linked to their My Disney Experience accounts:
  • When taking photos with a Disney PhotoPass Photographer, Guests will associate their photos by touching a MagicBand or Memory Maker card to a device that the photographer uses.
  • For attraction photos, the Memory Maker Guest will link the photos at the counter with the help of a Cast Member.
  • The Memory Maker Guest can also download photos from Family & Friend connections in My Disney Experience who choose to share photos with the Guest.
  • For each Memory Maker purchase, Guests can collect photos during a 30-day window that begins the date of the first photo download or the date Memory Maker is otherwise redeemed (whichever comes first).

Add Magic To Your Pictures


Remember how I mentioned the photographers without tripods?  Many of them can add "Magic" to your pictures!  You often won't know what the magic is until you see your pictures, but I've held balloons, Tinkerbell, been scared by Stitch - there are many options!!  They tend to be some of my favorite pictures because you aren't quite sure what they will be until you log into My Disney Experience and check out your pictures!

Attraction Photos

Many attractions have had photos available for purchase.  For a while, you can even purchase a separate package.  Now, they are all included in the one Memory Maker price.  The best news of this, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror is now adding a video to Memory Maker packages!

Participating attractions include:
  • Space Mountain® Attraction
  • Splash Mountain® Attraction
  • Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin® Attraction
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™
  • Rock ‘n Roller Coaster® Starring Aerosmith
  • Expedition Everest® Attraction
  • Dinosaur Attraction
  • Test Track® Attraction

Traveling with Friends

If you are traveling with friends and family, you can link up your accounts and share photos!  As long as you are connected and can see each others photos, you will be able to download all photos shared with you by the end of the 30 days!

Use Your Own Camera

I can't state it enough - whether you purchase the service or not, the PhotoPass Photographers will happily use your personal camera to take pictures.  They will usually take 5 or 6 with theirs and 1 with mine, but it's a great way to get more pictures of the entire family at no additional cost.  Speaking of...

Cost

If you purchase this package 3 days prior to arrival, your cost is $149.  Purchasing within 3 days, on, or after your trip, the price is $199.  Definitely worth the savings of $50 by purchasing in advance!  While Disney Visa Cardholders can still go to a private character meet with *one* print per card available for free, when I use the Memory Maker service, I don't generally go out of my way for this picture, as I make sure to take many more pictures throughout the full trip.

Is it Worth it?

This is totally a personal question - I will say, it's an expensive service, true, but one I often purchase.  While I do often have the PhotoPass Photographers use my camera, if I pay for the service, we tend to take many more pictures.  It's even better with multiple families or groups that travel together to split the cost.  The attraction photos alone make it worthwhile for me!

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Home is Where the Mouse Is.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

**2nd Stop ~ Memory Maker 101

17 comments:

  1. I have loved the PhotoPass service over the years. When we went in December, we still had the service that sent you a disk (which I appreciate). We haven't purchased it for our November trip - yet. We're still wavering.

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  2. I really enjoy the MemoryMaker option. Makes me feel like I don't have to spent my entire vacation taking pictures. Is the 15-day deadline extension still an option?

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  3. I can't wait for my next trip so I can add this on. This is truly a step forward for the Disney Photopass experience. Do you end up purchasing the magic photos usually?

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  4. Thanks for laying this out. We were long-time photo pass CD purchasers, but have never gotten Memory Maker. For whatever reason, I couldn't determine whether it was the same value. Do you find there has been much of a difference between the two services?

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  5. I'm still debating whether or not to buy the Memory Maker for our next trip. On our trip in 2013, we were only stopped my a Disney photographer once. I would worry that we wouldn't have many photos in our package. Do you have any suggestions for getting the photographers to notice you?

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  6. james @ HomeisWheretheMouseisAugust 21, 2014 at 1:00 PM

    Like PhotoPass+ before it, Memory Maker is usually a no-brainer for us between the park photos, character meets, attraction photos and dining photos we get. Generally the quality of the photos is good too, although we have gotten a few questionable pictures. Our most recent trips were also our first experiences with missing photos. Have you ever had problems with bad or missing photos?

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  7. I definitely have had some fairly bad pictures, but we get the quantity in, so there are more options for decent photos. The last trip we went without it, we hardly got any pictures of the whole family, so even though they aren't alwyas great.....

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  8. The trick is to stop them. They ARE cast members and should be trained in customer service, so don't feel strange about walking up to them and asking to take pictures! My husband once found one waiting for Alice by the tea cups and asked him to take pictures of us on the attraction - and he did! We got some of my absolute favorite picture that way! If they're walking around without a tripod, just go up and ask them - the worst they can do is say no, right?

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  9. It's the same value - the difference now is that it's all digital download, which makes sense considering most new computers don't have cd/dvd drives! Also - the ride photos being on there I LOVE - you can do that only for $50 or $60, but I like to get it all!

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  10. I usually preorder because of the money savings - it definitely isn't cheap, but I really think it's worth it - especially all the customizations of the photos that can be done online (which I should have mentioned but didn't... whoops) and the ride photos! Especially with the new Tower of Terror video - I really hope that's on-ride footage, but they haven't released too many details yet!

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  11. I believe it's 30 days now, but I'm not positive!

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  12. We didn't order it last time and wish we had - I think for us with the 2 little kids, we definitely have more photographic evidence when we pay for it!

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  13. I totally agree, Jenn. When we go as a family, I always buy it. This next trip is for Ashley's 21st birthday and will be me, Ashley, and a friend. That's why I'm wavering. I'm thinking as 3 adults we can probably get plenty of pictures on our own. Yet . . .

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  14. Expense has always been the problem for me using this service. But I do think that if you are traveling with other families, splitting the cost would then make this an awesome package!

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  15. We just decided to add this to our fall trip. When they started adding the video(s), I was sold! I can't wait to see what all we come away with! :) great review

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  16. We haven't used Memory Maker for the two of us lately but I am thinking about purchasing it for our family trip in December. I think, like you, we'll end up taking a lot more photos!

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  17. We are kicking this around and just waiting for the trip when I can get the most out of it. My husband does not like to be in photos and this takes away from the value. Boo! :(

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