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  • Lindsey Markwood

Pin Trading at Walt Disney World and Disneyland

Updated: Sep 18, 2023

Have a pin collector in your house? Have you tried pin trading at Walt Disney World? This article will give the background on pin trading and how to trade pins during your next vacation to Walt Disney World.


What is pin trading?

Pin trading is a fun way to interact with cast members throughout Walt Disney World and DisneyLand Resort.



A cast members displays a circular cork board with various pins that can be traded with park guests
Pin trading with cast members

How it works

For traditional pin trading, find a cast member wearing a lanyard with pins on them. Bonus: It is a fun excuse to strike up an excuse to talk to some awesome cast members. Trade a pin you have on your lanyard with theirs. Yes. It is just that easy. there are also pins that guest cannot be purchased - they can only be received by trading with a cast member.


If you see another guest with pins on their lanyards – ask them if they are willing to trade. You never know, they might say yes if they like the trade offer.


You may also find cork boards with an array of pins on them. Trading works the same way. You trade one of your pins for a pin on the cork board.


Disney introduced a new pin trading concept in Fall 2021 – pin trading mystery box. You trade your pin, but instead of picking out the pin you receive you pick a number on the mystery box and get the pin inside. It is a great concept for guest who like surprises.


What pins to collect:

Many guests like to collect pins by favorite character, attraction, holiday and more. You might see a lanyard full of Olafs on one guest while another guest has the yearly Hanukkah pin. Disney often releases limited edition pins for things like celebrations like Magic Kingdom’s 50th anniversary celebration and festivals such as the Flower and Garden Festival at EPCOT. These limited-edition pins are coveted. Some guests like to display them at home and others wear them proudly on their lanyards.



Where to purchase:

• In person: There are a lot of in person options at Disney Springs, gift shops at the various Disney Resort, at the theme parks. You can purchase one of the many tarter kits you can get (pins and a lanyard) or you can just purchase individual pins

• On line: I recommend Shop Disney A word of caution: If you buy pins in bulk prior to arrival outside of Shop Disney, make sure it is authentic. There are a few sellers that sell counterfeit Disney pins.

• Pro tip: Keep an eye out for scavenger hunts – some of them include a pin one you complete it.


How to wear:

Most guest wear the pins on a lanyard, but I have also seen them on backpacks and hats. It is personal preference. I like to wear mine on a lanyard.


Pro tip: As you pin collection grows on your lanyards, it can feel heavy. For this reason, I recommend only wearing the ones you want to trade w/cast members to the parks. The ones you want to keep put on a different lanyard. Doing this also prevents you from giving away one of the pins you really like.


History

Pin trading at Disney began in 1999 at the Millennium Celebration. It has grown leaps and bounds since then. Now you can find entire events dedicated just to pin trading.





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