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The Best Perks of Working for Disney

Sarah worked for Disney for four years, from 2017 to 2021, in various roles.

Disneyland's castle in California during the 60th anniversary celebration

Disneyland's castle in California during the 60th anniversary celebration

Walt Disney Company's Employee Benefits

Many people dream of working for the Walt Disney Company because of its good employee benefits. Everyone knows when you work for the Walt Disney Company, you get unlimited access to the parks for free for as long as you work there.

However, there are other perks that many people don't know about. In this article, I will discuss all the best perks of working for the Walt Disney Company.

Castle at Disneyland Paris

Castle at Disneyland Paris

1. Unlimited Access to Their Theme Parks

As I discussed above, everyone knows that when you work for Disney, you get unlimited access to the parks for free. However, what people don't know is that you get unlimited access to almost every Disney theme park around the world.

Working as a cast member allows you free access to all four Walt Disney World theme parks: Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios, both theme parks in California: Disneyland and California Adventure, and both theme parks in Paris: Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios, Shanghai Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland.

The only Disney parks around the world that being a cast member doesn't give you access to are the two theme parks in Tokyo. Unfortunately, you still need to pay for those, but you have plenty of Disney theme parks to go to that'll keep you busy for a long time.

Here I am talking about unlimited access, but most of you guys are probably asking how it is unlimited with reservations now. It's true that you need a reservation, so you are limited now, but you still don't need to pay to get access to the theme parks and make a reservation. You can be blocked from visiting a theme park because you can't get a reservation, but it's different than other people that had to pay for their ticket and still can't visit the parks that day.

People that don't work for Disney need to purchase theme park admission to gain access to making reservations, and as everyone knows, even just a 1-day park admission usually costs $100 or more.

Sometimes the cast member tickets are blocked out, though, during peak times of the year like Christmas or July 4th, but most of the time, the tickets aren't blocked out, and you should be able to go to the parks.

2. Ability to Bring Friends and Family

Besides free park admission for yourself, you can also bring friends and family for free too. It's a great way to be able to spend time with your family without paying the super high price. Disney employees, aka cast members, get a certain number of tickets that they can use to bring friends and family into the parks.

These tickets are able to be used at all the parks around the world except for Tokyo Disneyland. Each time they use their tickets to bring others into the parks, they can bring up to three people at once. However, these tickets are subject to block-out dates, so sometimes it might not be possible to bring other people to the parks.

Cast members also get other complimentary tickets that can be used without block outs that can be used at any time and at every park besides Tokyo Disneyland.

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3. Flexibility

A really big benefit of working for Disney is flexibility. If you don't like your schedule, you can easily trade shift times with your coworker. You can also give away your shifts and pick up other shifts without having to go through your manager most of the time.

It's very simple and easy to make the schedule that you want to have, even if your original schedule isn't what you wanted. For example: when working for Disney, I always liked working in the late afternoon and evening, but I kept getting scheduled early morning. Therefore, I was always switching my whole week's shifts with my coworkers.

Louvre museum in Paris

Louvre museum in Paris

4. Ease of Vacations

Something that a lot of people don't know about working for Disney is that it's very easy to get time off to go on vacation. You don't need to talk to your manager to ask for time off, you actually get a calendar for the entire year, and you can request time off online through the calendar.

When you click on the day you want off, for example, April 12th–14th, you'll be able to see if someone has requested these days off or not already. If no one has requested these days off, you can submit your request for these days and automatically get approved for those days off.

If someone has already requested those days, then you will be put on a waitlist, and it will be up to the manager's decision to give you those days off. If the manager doesn't approve them, then you are able to give away your shifts and still take your vacation.

You can take a lot of vacations when working for Disney. You don't get paid for all this time off, but Disney won't fire you for taking vacations often, unlike other companies. As a full-time worker, you get unlimited amounts of time off requests, you do have to average a certain amount of hours a year to keep full-time status, but it's easy to keep your full-time status.

As a part-time worker, you only get ten days of time-off requests per year which is very little, so it's better to be a full-time worker. After working full-time for a year, Disney will also give you seven days of paid holidays that you can use for paid vacation too.

When I was working in 2018 as a full-time worker at Disney, I was able to take vacation almost every other month for one week or more and still kept my full-time status. In February, I went to Europe for one week; in March, I went to Las Vegas for four days. In June, I went to Europe for two weeks; in October, I went to Los Angeles for four days; and in December, I went to Europe for two weeks too.

That is a lot more vacation than any other company would allow for! I wasn't paid, unfortunately, for any of these days off, but I was able to travel a lot and enjoy a very balanced life.

5. Easy to Change Your Job

A lot of people don't know that a big perk of working for Disney is that it's pretty easy to change your job if you don't like it. When you work for other companies, you are most likely stuck in the same position unless you quit the company or manage to move up to a managerial position.

However, at Disney, you can change your job every year if you don't like your position or you just want to try something else. Also, if during training you really don't like your job or you don't do well, you can ask for another position, or HR will assign you a new position.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Sarah Wong

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