Should you use PhotoPass on your trip? – PREP003

PhotoPass can be kind of hard to understand. I've got some info on who should use it and what I think you should purchase from the PhotoPass service.

I've also got tips on planning Table Service meals and a way to make your child easier to find inside one of the attractions at Hollywood Studios.

Can you get away with 2 Table Service meals on a week-long Disney World trip?

My friend Casey posed this question to me and I posted it on the Facebook Page. There were lots of replies and the consensus seemed to be that it's definitely possible (especially if budget is a primary concern), but not eating in the restaurants means missing out on a big part of Disney World. It also means missing out on a chance to sit down and take a break from the huge amount of walking involved with Disney World trips.

To submit your question, email podcast at

PhotoPass pros/cons and some tips

PhotoPass is Disney's service where you approach photographers within the parks, they'll take your picture, scan a PhotoPass card and hand it to you. You can then go online or to a PhotoPass kiosk in the parks and type in that number to order things with your pictures.

Some good reasons to use PhotoPass:

  • All family members can appear in the pictures (instead of the photographer in the family always be missing)
  • PhotoPass photographers use high quality DSLR cameras which may be better than yours
  • The ability to have "magic shots" added to your pictures
  • Ride photos can be included if you purchase PhotoPass+

Some reasons you might not want to use PhotoPass:

  • It can be hard to locate PhotoPass photographers
  • The expense of ordering through Disney (although buying the PhotoCD tends to be the best value)
  • If you have a good camera, you might just want to use that. You can hand it to the PhotoPass photographers and they'll take pictures with your camera.

Some tips for people who want to use PhotoPass:

  • Buy the PhotoCD and print your pictures somewhere less expensive. You can save $50 by purchasing these online before your trip using the links below.
  • Be sure to order your PhotoPass products within 30 days after your trip
  • Take pictures of your PhotoPass cards so you have the number in case you lose your card
  • Share a PhotoPass CD with other families - enter all of your PhotoPass card numbers online and order a CD with all of the pictures (you can order multiple copies for a small additional fee)

For more info, please check out my article that has even more info on PhotoPass at

Quick tip

If you plan to have your child(ren) play on the Honey I Shrunk the Kids playground at Hollywood Studios, snap a quick pic before they go in so they'll be easier to find when it's time to go. Cast Members monitor the entrance and exit but kids can be hard to find. Having a pic to show the Cast Members will make it a quicker process.

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Lynn S

Another great benefit to the Photo Pass is after getting the first picture taken, when we are there with the grandkids, I text their parents with the card number and the password to use. They can then go online and follow where we are and what we are doing at Disney World as we get our pictures taken at each new location (there is just a short delay until Disney posts the pics online.) They also can purchase pics later if they would like.


We just returned from an awesome Disney vacation and I pre ordered Photo pass+. I didn’t want a tee shirt or sweatshirt as a souvenir but I did want lots of photos. It was definitely worth it for me to get the hysterical pictures of my daughter’s face captured on the ride photos!

Jessica Derosier

Hi! BIG fan of your website…I leave for Disney with my Birthday Princess who is turning 7 in October. I have pre-ordered the PhotoPass+ with my travel agent. Quick question though, I heard that the photopass pictures can be shared on Facebook…is this true?!? Thank you…I look forward to all your posts….especially love the binder! I created one for my trip too! 🙂


Not sure if it’s just me but the volume was really low on the audio file – I could just about hear the music then it went silent…I had to turn all my volume controls to full to hear you talking (if I play my music with these same settings it’s pretty deafening). Just a heads up in case it’s not just me. 🙂


Thanks for your great WDW advise! Your web page has been my bible for my trip next month!! I’ve seen your previous post on the “Awesome Photo Pass Photographers” and used the prepurchase link for the photopass+ CD (thanks!) However I received an email the following day after my purchase mentioning that my photopass order has been shipped. I haven’t even left for my trip. What are they shipping? What must I do once I receive this order? Is there another step to this process before approaching my first photopass photographer? I’ve read elsewhere that this order is a lanyard… Read more »

alex G

Shannon, so is there an ADITIONAL fee for the photo pass+ CD? or is that included in the $199 for the Photopass+ voucher???
Thanks I love your site!

alex G



We always take advantage of photo pass but never spend the crazy amount of money on the CD. The best photo pass tip I ever got was to buy the calendar. A calendar can feature up to 25 photos- one on the cover and one large, or two small, per month. Each month has a border featuring that months theme or holiday. And each month can be personalized with titles or descriptions of the photos. The calendar is held together with a spiral binder. Our calendar was for 2010 but, each year since then, we simply fold the calendar in… Read more »

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