Disney Pin Trading – Everything You Need to Know
Pin trading in the parks is a fun way to add more Disney magic into your Disney vacations. But how does it work? Nearly every store in Disney sells pins featuring rides, attractions, characters, or themes related to Disney. By purchasing pins, the possibility of trading opens up! Nearly every cast member who works at the parks has a lanyard with pins on it. You can walk up to any cast member and ask to trade! But first, be sure to read these tips.
1. It can be a surprise
The element of surprise is evident in many different aspects of pin trading. Mystery pin packs are sold in almost every gift shop in the parks. Typically, a mystery pack will contain a few pins from a specific pin collection that come in mystery blind bags. You never know which one you’ll get! But don’t worry if you get a pin you don’t exactly like- those are the ones you can trade! A cast member can also trade a “mystery pin” on their lanyard. This is a pin that is facing backwards with the pinback facing forward on their lanyard instead of the pin. Sometimes, a cast member will ask a trivia question in order for an exchange of a mystery pin.
2. Cast members can’t say no to trading pins
If you go up to a cast member and ask to trade pins, they technically can’t say no. This is because the pins don’t belong to them, they belong to the parks. Because nearly every cast member has a lanyard with pins, the trading opportunities are endless! Be sure to ask to see the pins before you touch a cast members lanyard.
3. Beware: Some pins are fake
Pin trading can become expensive after awhile, making cheap knockoffs popular on sites like Ebay and Amazon. Although these pins appear real, they lack some of the major qualities that authentic Disney pins possess. In the pin trading world, these are called “scrappers”.You can tell if the pin you are trading for is authentic by looking closely at the quality and color of the pin. Look for things like serial numbers and trademark logos on the back of the pin. As for the appearance of the pin, the coloring, neatness and clean metal cuts are clear signs of the pins authenticity.
4. Some pins are rare and can be worth a lot!
Rare and special pins can be found in some pin packs, called “chasers”. Only limited amounts of these pins were made, which often feature a twist on a pin that already exists. Some pin collectors would pay good money for a chaser pin, but it’s up to you whether you decide to keep it,sell it, or trade it for more pins. These pins are typically found in the mystery packs, where it’s impossible to see what’s inside until you open it. That just adds to the fun!
5. Pin trading isn’t just in the parks
Disney Pin trading can happen in any park all over the world. It can also occur online and over social media! There are thousands of active users who trade pins over Instagram, Youtube and Facebook. This can open up the possibilities to receiving pins from all over the world! Different parks have different pins, so online trading is one of the only ways to get international pins (unless you decide to plan your own trip abroad).
6. There’s such thing as “pin etiquette”
Be sure to always ask a cast member to see their pins before grabbing their lanyards. When you ask, they’ll display the pins on their necks for you to see, and take the pins off themselves. You may only trade two pins per cast member to make things fair. You may also not trade a cast member for a pin that they already have on their lanyard. Nobody likes duplicates! And in reference to the “scrappers”, please always trade official Disney pins!
Special thanks to Molly Kelly for writing this article! Molly Kelly is a loyal Disney fan of 22 years who aspires to become every Disney princess combined into one. She is a recent graduate of SUNY Plattsburgh in Upstate New York with a Bachelors Degree in Communications and Marketing. Some of her lifetime goals include being an annual pass holder to Disney, to own many dogs, and to incorporate Disney magic into her day, every day.