My kids love “collections”. I, as someone who likes to purge “stuff” get hives thinking about their growing collections of boxed Star Wars cars and LEGO minifigures. However, knowing the boys love collecting, I thought Disney pins would be a collection I could tolerate because pins are small and easy to store or display. I also was encouraged that this was a collection they could work on together and continue to refine in our future subsequent trips to Disney.
Before the trip, we bought a couple pin starter packs with lanyards to get us going. Tip, you don’t need pins the kids actually LIKE because they will trade them anyway. If they love Cars for example, and you get the Cars starter pack, they are probably not going to want to trade away their pins. On the other hand, if they just want to wear pins and not trade, then they would probably be happy with a pack they love. There are pin lots available on eBay, but I hear the quality of some of them are questionable, so you might be better off buying from Disney before your trip or when you get to the park.
I gave the kids their pins and lanyards when we got in the car to drive to WDW. They were entertained for at least 20 minutes as they positioned their pins on their lanyards.
Before going to the parks, familiarize your kids with the rules for pin trading. Since the boys are only 4 and 6, I was worried that they would be too shy to interact with the cast members. The first few trades the boys were lucky enough to find cast members who said “Hey, I like your pins, Would you like to see mine?” As the boys gained more confidence, they would ask, “May I please see your pins?”
If you ask my husband, he’ll say he was not a fan of pin trading. He did not like stopping for the boys to make their transactions. However, the boys absolutely loved it. Our favorite trading places were the shops at Downtown Disney (soon-to-be Disney Springs) and the countries at EPCOT (because they didn’t find much else in that part of EPCOT interesting, besides the food. Note: They loved the RIDES at EPCOT and the aquarium was first class.)
Here’s our oldest wearing his pin lanyard (with a portable fan attached to keep him cool in the FL heat) at T-REX. We had an awesome dinner in the ice room at T-REX. The food was really good and reasonably priced (my husband and I had the chicken wrap, our friend had the chicken salad, Bud had the Corn Dogs, and Little Guy had a burger – and everyone was very happy with their selection).
I want to thank my gal, Mama Cheaps, for getting us started with pin trading. What are your best pin trading tips?