What is Disney PhotoPass?

Walt Disney has photographers at hundreds of locations available to snap photos for you and your family. It’s great because no one in your group has to step away to take photographs of memorable moments. This is especially important if you’re seeking that perfect group photo in front of the castle.

Having your photo taken by a Disney PhotoPass photographer is free. However, if you want a copy of a photo taken with a Disney camera, it’ll cost you.

Team Tip: After a PhotoPass photographer takes a bunch of poses with the Disney-owned camera, ask them to please take a photo with your personal camera or phone. That way you’ll have at least one well-positioned group photo on your personal camera.

If you have a Magic Band, PhotoPass photographers will link your photos to your account. If you don’t have a Magic Band, the photographer will give you a card with a website where you can access your photos later.

From the website, you can purchase or download a copy of the photos you want. Purchasing individual photos is extremely expensive—almost $20 for two 4 x 6 photos and over $20 for one 5 x 7.

Team Tip: Instead of individual photos, there’s an option to purchase a photobook for $40, which has space for 45 photos. You can also make a 12-month calendar for $25. It has room for up to 36 photos.

And this is where the Memory Maker comes in. Memory Maker allows unlimited downloads of all photos taken during your trip. It costs $169 if you purchase it in advance (3 days before you arrive on your vacation) and $199 if you don’t. Admittedly, $169 seems rather pricey, but you’ll be amazed at how many PhotoPass photos you can rack up on a vacation. Possibly as many as 100. PhotoPass photographers are stationed in front of all the parks’ icons and scenic locations and at all character meet-and-greets. Automated photos are taken on a number of attractions and you can have more shots taken at the virtual studio in Disney Springs. 

You can take Memory Maker one step further and add-on a USB flash drive that will have all your personal photos loaded and ready to go AND Disney will add to it 400 of its best professional shots of the parks and resorts. (If you only knew how difficult it is to take a decent photo from a moving vehicle on an attraction or of a fireworks show, you’d understand what a perk these extra downloads are.)

Team Tip: Currently, Disney Annual Passholders get unlimited PhotoPass photo downloads so DO NOT buy a Memory Maker package if you are a Passholder.

Memory Maker Pros

  • Professional photos
  • Everyone in your group will be in the photo
  • You won’t feel the need to have your screen out all the time
  • Magic Shots (special effects only PhotoPass photographers can do)
  • You get to download, share, print and keep ALL your PhotoPass photos
  • The USB add-on gives you hundreds of professional shots that you could never take yourself

Memory Maker Cons

  • Not all your vacation photos will be taken by you
  • An extra $170 to $200 cost to your vacation
  • Sometimes there’s a line to get photos taken at popular PhotoPass locations
  • You don’t do characters meets or ride many attractions, so you’re not likely to accumulate a lot of PhotoPass photos
  • You don’t want photos of things you didn’t actually see (for example, you don’t want a photo of the Haunted Mansion at night, when you visited it during the day)

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