Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Is Photopass (or Photopass+) Worth the Money??

Many people traveling to Disney World for the first time always ask us about Disney Photopass. What is it? How do you use it? What does it cost? I want to answer some of your questions and share some of my experience with it. Simply photopass is a photography service set up by Disney throughout the parks as well as at some resorts where you can have a Disney photographer take pictures with a professional camera which are than uploaded to a “cloud” and scanned onto your Photopass card (a free credit card sized card with a bar code and unique number sequence on the back). You can have the card scanned multiple times and purchase pictures from your trip at Disney and off the computer once you get home by using the scanned card.

More complicated is factoring in the price- is it WORTH it to order your photopass CD or buy pictures? That is where it comes down to preference.  What is great about the Photopass photographers is that if you let them take your pictures and scan your card they will almost always take one with your personal handheld camera as well.  They are also at the best photo spots in the parks.  Personally, I find that I NEVER regret pre-purchasing the CD.  It saves you $50 off of the usual price of $169.95 (you pay $119.95) and you can come home, add signatures and borders, and then create as many different variations of images as possible.  In a four day trip my husband and I came home with over 300 pictures not counting the duplicates I created with borders!

Disney has added in another complication with Photopass+.  Now you can preorder the "plus version" which usually costs $199.95 vfor $169.95 and it comes with a plethora of new features! This one you would really need to think about whether or not your family is utilizing the attractions and restaurants in the program. The dining locations included in Photopass+ are: 1900 Park Fare, Ohana (breakfast), Tusker House (breakfast), Chef Mickey’s, Spirit of Aloha, Cinderella’s Royal Table, Hoop de do Revue, and Akershus.  The attractions include in Photopass+ are: Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, Buzz Lightyear, Tower of Terror, Rock’n Rollercoaster, Dinosaur, and Expedition Everest.  I think it is important to note that not all ride pictures come out good, sometimes other groups are blocking you or you are looking down and its not something you would have otherwise paid for.  Additionally the photos included in character meals are the ones when you first enter, Photopass photographers do not walk around and take your pictures while the characters mingle.

Even with the basic photopass some rides and on certain tours you will have a photographer with you or be able to scan your card to add your picture to your account.  Each park also has a “special” picture or two where you will be posed in a certain way and have animated friends added to your images when you look at them later (we’ve gotten Tinkerbell, Stitch, Simba, Mickey & Donald hang gliding, and a bunch of balloons carrying us away). Here are some photopass examples from each of the parks (I used Picnik to turn the 4 pictures into a strip and make them have a vintage look):
Picnik collage What is Disney Photo Pass? %tag
When push comes to shove the bottom line is that you know your family best and how you take pictures so think about what you would gain and how you would use those images later before you make your final call!

1 comment :

  1. Photopass is definitely worth it! I have not been there since they started Photopass+ but I'm super excited to have it available. I've been begging Disney for years to add the rides to the Photo Pass. The couple that were available earlier cost extra to have them put on.

    Since we are a larger family and usually take lots of friends the photo pass works out great. WE usually have 2 or 3 cards combined at the end of the trip and I love doing all the neat borders when I get home. I love the special effects photos too!!

    Great blog!

    Drop by and visit mine sometime!

    Carrie / Cozyflier