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authentic Disney pins


Whether you’re new to Disney or a mouse-eared veteran, you’ve probably heard (or seen) the pins that visitors to the parks wear proudly on lanyards around their necks. You’ll spot them on Cast Members, too, and it’s okay to ask about them…as a matter of fact, it’s encouraged!  Let’s talk about Disney Pin Trading!

Disney Pin trading began with Disney’s Millennium Celebration back in October of 1999 and as of this writing, thousands of designs exist. THOUSANDS! You can’t enter a gift shop on property without spotting a display of them, and they’re available in pretty much any Disney character, attraction or milestone imaginable.

character, attraction, milestone

I should warn you: Disney pin trading and collecting is addictive! We started off with some favorite characters, but once we discovered how much was out there we were all HOOKED. My boys have huge collections: James is a Stitch disciple; Austin has two lanyards, one for his favorite rides and the other strictly for Star Wars related pins. They love pin trading in the parks, but once they’re home they display them on plain black canvases we purchased at JoAnn Fabrics. They’re a sort of growing souvenir of our family trips, and I know the boys love that they’re completely unique and ever changing. I keep my favorites on a board over my MickeyTravels desk with my own most treasured pins: a peace sign Mickey head, Cinderella’s carriage, the Grape Soda bottle cap from UP my husband gave me on our most recent trip, and of course more than one Mickey: as Steamboat Willie, in his full-color glory, and Mickey wearing a Santa hat.

authentic Disney pins

One of my favorite parts of this kind of souvenir is that no two will ever be alike…each month Disney issues new pins and retires old ones so that there are a constantly changing variety of them.  So if you see a collection you love, well, you should probably snap it up because next time you visit one of the parks it might be gone.  Then again, you can make the collection by trading.  Sure, it’ll take a while, but isn’t that half the fun?

Getting started with Disney pin trading is simple: you can check out the Disney Store online for current editions and order a starter set. If you’re lucky enough to be in the parks, you can grab a few in the nearest gift shop. Be sure to get a lanyard too; you’ll want it to display your favorites. And then you trade! With other resort guests, with Cast Members working anywhere on Disney grounds, you name it! Simply approach the cast member and say, “I’d like to trade.” Be sure to offer one they’re not already wearing and offer your pin first, with the back intact. They give you the one you selected, and just like that, you’re a pin trader!

One note: be sure that you’re trading for authentic Disney pins. You can do this by checking the back stamp: it will classify the manufacturing date, whether or not it’s a limited editon or series, and the official Disney mouse-ear logo.

For some real excitement, be sure to stop in at Pin Central in EPCOT or Pin Traders at Downtown Disney…they’ve got amazing assortments of pins to purchase, in addition to trading boards and usually a pin trader or two. Let’s get started with your Disney pin trading!  Have fun and happy trading!

Contact us today to learn how you can experience the thrill of Disney Pin Trading and for all our other free Disney vacation planning tips and services!

Nicole Courson
Authorized Disney Vacation Planner
MickeyTravels, LLC

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