Questions for cast members

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Questions for cast members

Hi all,

I know that we have cast members on this forum like Mandy for example or perhaps former cast members too. I thought I'd start a thread that would be for questions to cast members. I know I have some that I've always wanted to ask.

Realizing that cast members can't give away secrets, we probably should keep them rather general.

So, my main question is, what type of access to Disney does a cast member get? Let's say you would like to see HM with lights on. Can you just go after hours and see it? Are you allowed into the parks after hours if you want to see how things work etc.? I'd be all over that if it were possible!

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Unfortunately we can't do that. We can't just walk in after hours and ask to see how things work. With that said, many areas will offer various backstage tours to their cast. its often a drawing to see who can go. If you know someone in attractions and they are closing, they will often let you ride along on one of the last rides of the day.

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Awesome... Thanks, Mandy! I've always wondered how that all works. I suppose it is like most companies in that the higher up in rank, the more access one has?

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I have one Mandy - do you get to choose where you work or how long you are assigned? Are you guys rotated around to different places or jobs?

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Do ya'll have what is essentially a CM "Annual Pass"? What if you wanted to go to DL?

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KenJ wrote:
Awesome... Thanks, Mandy! I've always wondered how that all works. I suppose it is like most companies in that the higher up in rank, the more access one has?

You're welcome Ken! Yea kind of but not really. I think maintenance has the most access out of everyone because they fix everything. Like Bob Iger can't show up andjust walk into a ride (he probably could) but he would most likely give a heads up so everyone is prepared.

disneydoc wrote:
I have one Mandy - do you get to choose where you work or how long you are assigned? Are you guys rotated around to different places or jobs?

No we don't really get to choose anything. In attractions and qsr foods, we have different rotations that go out through the location. So at work we go from one position to another then to another then to another then the last person on the list goes back to the computer to get another assignment which could be their break, bump out, another rotation or a task (like greet guests for 15 minutes). Sometimes we can choose which position we want, one morning before we opened, I picked up a task and the coordinator looked to see which positions were available and I was able to say I want this one position over the other, he did that for me. We are statused in one location, I am statused at Trolley Car and that's the only place I can be scheduled. Now in attractions if you are trained in more then one location, they can scheduled you at one but then pull to another if they are short. In the very unlikely circumstance, they could schedule you in different locations in one shift. On next weeks schedule my one friend that works at the Great Movie Ride was scheduled a couple hours at the fastpass+ kiosks then GMR then audience control for fireworks all in one shift. We can't choose though. I hope all that makes sense.

JMed wrote:
Do ya'll have what is essentially a CM "Annual Pass"? What if you wanted to go to DL?

We can get into all the parks but Disney Tokyo Seas. Tokyo is owned by a different company but licenses out the rights to use Disney. So I could get into Disneyland if I wanted to or Disneyland Paris or Disneyland Hong Kong and hopefully Disneyland Shanghai.

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Cool! 2nd part to my question...

Can you go anytime you want? Are there any blackout dates?

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"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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we can. the only time we can't go is on the 24 hour day.

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Thanks again for answering these questions Mandy. It's really interesting to those of us that aren't cast members to hear how it works.

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Can CMs go through the FP line without a FP?

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I don't know if this is information that all CM's would have access to or are allowed to share (please don't tell us anything that would get you in trouble!), but I have three burning questions about the parks:

1. In the Unofficial Guide, they talk about the wait for TSM being 4 minutes per 100 riders ahead of you (meaning that on a 12-hour operating day, TSM can process 18,000 riders). Not only is that number mind boggling, but that would mean that when you enter an hour-long queue, there are 1500 people in front of you! (I feel like it doesn't look like that many people when you're in line.) I know if depend on the efficiency of the ride operators, but on average, which rides would you say have the highest and lowest hourly capacity in each park?

2. Given the tremendous ride capacities plus the number of people still ambling around the parks, each park most hold A LOT of people! What is the approximate range of attendance from a "low crowd" day to a "high crowd" day?

3. What is Disney's annual (or daily) fireworks expenditure?

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JoAnn C wrote:
Can CMs go through the FP line without a FP?

The answer is technically no but if you have friends that work attractions, they can make a little extra magic. wink

alicemouse wrote:
I don't know if this is information that all CM's would have access to or are allowed to share (please don't tell us anything that would get you in trouble!), but I have three burning questions about the parks:

1. In the Unofficial Guide, they talk about the wait for TSM being 4 minutes per 100 riders ahead of you (meaning that on a 12-hour operating day, TSM can process 18,000 riders). Not only is that number mind boggling, but that would mean that when you enter an hour-long queue, there are 1500 people in front of you! (I feel like it doesn't look like that many people when you're in line.) I know if depend on the efficiency of the ride operators, but on average, which rides would you say have the highest and lowest hourly capacity in each park?

2. Given the tremendous ride capacities plus the number of people still ambling around the parks, each park most hold A LOT of people! What is the approximate range of attendance from a "low crowd" day to a "high crowd" day?

3. What is Disney's annual (or daily) fireworks expenditure?

1. I have no idea on how they figure out the wait times. I know they have certain points in the queue where they can be like its such a wait from that point. I know Peter Pan's Flight at MK has a very low capacity which is why it's a forever wait almost all day. I know that Star Tours has a high capacity because they have over 400 people either on the ride or waiting to board at any given moment. That's all I know for ride capacity.

2. At Hollywood Studios a 20,000 attendance is low and like 30,000-40,000 attendance is high. While at MK 40,000 is a relatively low day while 60,000 is a high day. I have no idea for the other two parks.

3. I have no idea on the fireworks but I do know that the Walt Disney Company is one of the largest fireworks buyer in the world.

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I read somewhere that the fireworks were $200,000 per day eek
I'm not sure if thats accurate or not though as it wasn't an official Disney book. I also think that might have been for just Wishes

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I'm just trying to picture the amount of spent shells at the bottom of World Showcase Lagoon! eek

You can also see the shells strewn amongst the forest if you take the steam train around MK along the north side of the park.

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Mandy wrote:

alicemouse wrote:
I don't know if this is information that all CM's would have access to or are allowed to share (please don't tell us anything that would get you in trouble!), but I have three burning questions about the parks:

1. In the Unofficial Guide, they talk about the wait for TSM being 4 minutes per 100 riders ahead of you (meaning that on a 12-hour operating day, TSM can process 18,000 riders). Not only is that number mind boggling, but that would mean that when you enter an hour-long queue, there are 1500 people in front of you! (I feel like it doesn't look like that many people when you're in line.) I know if depend on the efficiency of the ride operators, but on average, which rides would you say have the highest and lowest hourly capacity in each park?

2. Given the tremendous ride capacities plus the number of people still ambling around the parks, each park most hold A LOT of people! What is the approximate range of attendance from a "low crowd" day to a "high crowd" day?

3. What is Disney's annual (or daily) fireworks expenditure?

1. I have no idea on how they figure out the wait times. I know they have certain points in the queue where they can be like its such a wait from that point. I know Peter Pan's Flight at MK has a very low capacity which is why it's a forever wait almost all day. I know that Star Tours has a high capacity because they have over 400 people either on the ride or waiting to board at any given moment. That's all I know for ride capacity.

2. At Hollywood Studios a 20,000 attendance is low and like 30,000-40,000 attendance is high. While at MK 40,000 is a relatively low day while 60,000 is a high day. I have no idea for the other two parks.

3. I have no idea on the fireworks but I do know that the Walt Disney Company is one of the largest fireworks buyer in the world.

Cool! Thanks, Mandy mickey So on a low attendance day, using our TSM example, you could just about get everyone in the park on the ride one time. Assuming of course that my capacity recollections and calculations are correct, on a high crowd day, fewer than 50% of the guests at the park that day would even get to ride once!! Now I feel bad for double dipping!! Well...maybe not REALLY Innocent Innocent Innocent Innocent

Spook wrote:
I read somewhere that the fireworks were $200,000 per day eek
I'm not sure if thats accurate or not though as it wasn't an official Disney book. I also think that might have been for just Wishes

WOW!! I asked the gal who did our UnDscovered Future World tour a few years ago, but she wasn't sure of the answer. She did say that she was pretty sure that they get a bulk discount, which would of course make sense, and that there are proprietary Disney fireworks colors! Disney has actually worked with the manufacturers to create specific shades of fireworks to represent its characters in the shows! I think our town spends like $25,000 for July 4 fireworks and they're like I'm sure most other people's hometown fireworks are...meh. Wishes is certainly 8xs the show that good old Hanover, PA puts on! LOL!

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Trip Reports:
December 2013: 10th Anniversary, 1st DVC Stay | April 2014: Birthday on the Boardwalk | May 2014: Star Wars Weekend, Navigating WDW with a wheelchair | August 2014: Villains Unleashed | September/October 2014: MNSSHP, F&W, Tower of Terror 10-miler | March/April 2015: Disneyland and California Coastal Cruise | November 2015: Wine & Dine Half, Food & Wine, 1st Disney Cruise | February 2016: Presidential Classic Gymnastics Meet | March 2016: "Work" Trip, Tours, F&G Festival | April 2016: Conference at Disneyland | Fall 2016: Festive Fall Fun | January 2017: Festival of the Arts | May 2017: AbD Backstage Magic | July 2017: AbD San Francisco | Sorry I had to give up doing trip reports. Too many time commitments right now.

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This is by far one of my favorite threads! Thanks for being out "insider" Mandy!

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"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell."

"It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell."

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KenJ wrote:
I'm just trying to picture the amount of spent shells at the bottom of World Showcase Lagoon! eek

You can also see the shells strewn amongst the forest if you take the steam train around MK along the north side of the park.

Two years ago when I worked in showkeeping (custodial) at Hollywood Studios, I was put on the firework clean up crew after the July 4 fireworks and there was a lot of cardboard that needed to be cleaned up. We felt under pressure because there were a lot of folks waiting to go on Toy Story after the fireworks.

JMed wrote:
This is by far one of my favorite threads! Thanks for being out "insider" Mandy!

You're welcome.

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This is such a great thread Mandy, thank you!

Aside from park access, what is your favorite Cast Member "perk"?

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Kristen K. wrote:
This is such a great thread Mandy, thank you!

Aside from park access, what is your favorite Cast Member "perk"?

You're welcome. Boy that is a tough one. I do appreciate free parking but it would have to be the discounts. Not only do we get discounts on WDW property but lots of local businesses also offer discounts to cast members. Most of those discounts are known by word of mouth or just asking if they offer a discount then telling others about it.

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Very interesting thread! Thanks for asking and sharing everyone!

The US Military and WDW purchase the most explosives annually!!! It's crazy WDW houses as much if not more than the armed forces!

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Eeyore wrote:
Very interesting thread! Thanks for asking and sharing everyone!

The US Military and WDW purchase the most explosives annually!!! It's crazy WDW houses as much if not more than the armed forces!

Wow... I never thought of it that way. Impressive indeed! awesome