Why you should purchase a Memory Maker at Walt Disney World: Review

Throwing out $169 for pictures may seem like a high price to pay, but purchasing Disney’s Memory Maker (advance purchase price: $169; regular price: $199) is worth it.

What do you get?

1. All photos taken by Disney PhotoPass photographers

11169938_10204386439033641_4243657927817853037_nThis means everywhere you see a Disney PhotoPass photographer, usually wearing a khaki vest and holding a Nikon camera, is up for grabs. When I first used the MemoryMaker in 2014, PhotoPass photographers were usually at the front of the park (near each park’s landmark) and at character meet and greets. When I visited in 2015, I noticed that PhotoPass photographers seem to be in more locations and in those locations for longer periods of time.

Where can I find PhotoPass photographers (usually)?

Magic Kingdom:

  • Main Street, U.S.A. — Leading up to the castle and near the founder’s statue
  • Liberty Square — Side view of castle
  • Tomorrowland Entrance — Side view of castle
  • Frontierland — Exiting Big Thunder Mountain
  • Fantasyland — Near Ariel’s castle

Epcot:

  • Spaceship Earth
  • Fountains at FutureWorld
  • France — Fountains
  • France — Eiffel Tower view

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

  • Park Entrance — Great Movie Ride in the background
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios Archway — near the entrance to Voyage of the Little Mermaid
  • Tower of Terror

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

  • Ticket Kiosks — Before entering the park, many like to snap a picture under the Disney’s Animal Kingdom sign
  • Tree of Life — Various angles
  • Expedition Everest

2. All photos from character meet and greets

10603785_10204386453233996_828113591478815383_nNot only do PhotoPass photographers snap posed pictures at character meet and greets, but they also capture candid shots. These candid shots can be difficult to capture if you don’t have someone else in your party dedicated to snapping pictures.

11181213_10204386274189520_3606817736356252130_nCandid shots are usually my favorites (above). If you don’t have someone in your party taking pictures for you, the blueberry (a term used for Disney character handlers in blue shirts) will take a picture for you. Usually, they do a great job. I’ve also had blueberries take completely out-of-focus pictures that may or may not contain the subjects (ahem…Darth Vader meet and greet last year…ahem). Using the photos from the Disney PhotoPass photographer guarantees the photos will be high-quality shots.

3. All ride photos

11112295_10204386435913563_9037740285948348139_nYes, you will receive every photo from every ride you venture on that takes your picture. Every ride does not take your picture, but many popular attractions do. If you link your MemoryMaker to your Disney MagicBand, then you don’t have to visit the photo kiosk following the ride. Your MagicBand already knows you were on the ride! It’s fun, convenient, and a little creepy.

Rides that take your picture:

Space Mountain
Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
Seven Dwarves Mine Train (you can’t view these photos following the ride, but they show up on your MemoryMaker…as does a video)
Splash Mountain
Tower of Terror
Rockin’ Rollercoaster
Expedition Everest
Dinosaur
Spaceship Earth (doesn’t show up on your MemoryMaker, but you can email this photo for free)
TestTrack

Did I miss any?

4. Photos with a bit of magic

1467248_10204386484674782_6579620180324435906_nSome of your photos will have some fun effects treated with Disney magic. You don’t know what the effect will be until you look at your photos!

With the MemoryMaker, you get all of your photos digitally for one price. After your trip, you will have about a month to download your photos. You can download the photos once, but you can make as many copies as you would like for your party. One traveling party only needs one MemoryMaker!

If you’re tired of asking strangers to take your picture, it’s time to get MemoryMaker. My husband HATES having pictures made, but knowing that pictures were quick and easy with a PhotoPass photographer made them WAY more manageable. Plus, he liked getting the ride pictures.

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The best tees to wear at Universal Orlando (for less than $20)

If I’m wearing a tee at a theme park (and many times, I am), it is almost a requirement that the T-shirt represent the park I’m visiting. Character tees can be pricey at the parks and shops like Urban Outfitters, so the glorious Internet is the place to go for cheap — yet original — park tees (and other things too, I guess).

Below I’ve created a list of perfect shirts for your next Universal Orlando trip — no Express pass needed. But, for most of these deals, you have to act fast.

Busted Tees
Busted Tees

Shirt: Jurassic Park
Price: $10 (for two more days)
Shop: BustedTees
Perfect For: Taking selfies with the raptors on the Jurassic Park River adventure without getting your phone wet (p.s. – good luck)

TeeFury
TeeFury

Shirt: Expecto Bananum! 
Price: $11 for 7 hours
Shop: TeeFury
Perfect For: Combining the love of two attractions in one shirt? Impossible. Drink a butterbeer while dancing with a minion. Eat a banana while waiting to ride Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. The possibilities are endless.

TeePublic
TeePublic

Shirt: Waybac to the Future
Price: $14
Shop: TeePublic
Perfect For: Crying a little about the Back to the Future ride being a thing of the past, but consoling yourself by meeting Doc Brown himself at Universal Studios. “88 miles per hour and bump him!” He’ll know what you mean.

BustedTees
BustedTees

Shirt: Better Call Hutz
Price: $10 (for two more days)
Shop: BustedTees
Perfect For: Enjoying a pint of Duff and browsing the Kwik-E-Mart. Also perfect for those who love The Simpsons and Better Call Saul… like my husband.

TeePublic
TeePublic

Shirt: I See Humans But Not Humanity
Price: $14
Shop: TeePublic
Perfect For: Smelling the amazing chlorine-esque scent while waiting to ride E.T. Adventure. Seriously, that smell is one of my favorites.

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TeePublic

Shirt: Clever Girl
Price: $14
Shop: TeePublic
Perfect For: Sharing lunch at Burger Digs with your dino date.

BustedTees
BustedTees

Shirt: Clever Girl
Price: $10 (for two more days)
Shop: BustedTees
Perfect For: Taking a break from quidditch to munch on fish and chips at The Three Broomsticks.