2019 Disney Cast Member Review

After my recent trip to DisneyWorld, I knew my planned posts would be overwhelmingly negative. I want to post this review as quickly as possible so that it is helpful for others, but I do not want my first post to be a negative one. Therefore, I will first be posting my 2019 Disney Cast Member review and will only touch briefly on the bad cast members. I will write full reviews of the bad cast members in separate posts so I can include as much information on them as possible, in order to help those in charge deal with the problems properly. Please note that I waited a few months after my trip to post in order to provide an unbiased review of my experiences.

I am still hopeful that Disney will reclaim the wonderful customer service that they once had. The magical customer service was something that really set the company apart and I hope they will soon realize this. I retain my love for Disney despite some unfortunate experiences and will probably never give up on the company.

The Good

The first good Disney employee we interacted with on our trip was Lexi from the Pineapple Lanai at the Polynesian Resort. She was very kind and chatted with us while she worked to make the wait time seem shorter. She made our order and even apologized when some of the dole whip fell onto the counter (which was not her fault at all) and offered to make us a new one. She seemed happy to be working for the Disney company and I definitely think she deserved her spot in the Disney company. I only hope that other DCP members can take tips from this young lady.

One of the most memorable cast members from me was one of our Minnie Van Drivers. We had two female drivers and two male drivers during this trip. One of our female drivers was a young, blonde woman from Texas. She was very kind and talked to us the whole way back to our hotel about the company and why she loved working for them. She said she was a part of the Disney College Program and absolutely loved it. I was impressed by how motivated she was to help other people and make their lives as good as possible. She is one of the few DCP members who I thought met Disney’s original standards for their cast members.

Our other female Minnie Driver was very kind as well. She was quieter than the other but asked us questions about our stay and answered our questions about the parks. She also said that she enjoyed interacting with and helping guests. She is another individual whom I believe deserves her position and does very well in her job. I believe her name was Silvia, but I am not sure. She was a small young woman with very short hair.

Our servers at Les Chefs de France and Via Napoli were also very kind. They were helpful and kind, also seeming to enjoy their jobs. Our server at Les Chefs de France helped us with our French pronunciations (we all speak French but struggled with pronouncing a few words). She assured us that our pronunciations were fine and told us how she was very embarrassed to speak English in her class back home because her pronunciations were bad at first. She was always smiling and was very kind to everyone.

Our server at Via Napoli was also very good. She was very respectful and kind to us and answered all of our questions. She came to refill our waters once while we were talking and apologized for interrupting us before asking if we needed anything. Most servers I have dealt with do not acknowledge the fact that they’re interrupting and simply ask their question before leaving. This woman was incredibly sweet to us the entire time, even though she was obviously very busy. It is so nice to see someone who can remain kind despite annoyances or troubles at work.

At Be Our Guest in Magic Kingdom, we had a wonderful server named Patrick. He was very kind and helpful with all of our party’s dietary needs. He even had a few dishes specially made when we couldn’t find anything on the menu that we could eat. He was extremely kind, understanding, and helpful throughout the entire dinner. He was working at a few other tables around us and was just as kind to them as he was to us. The woman who led us to the table (whose name I unfortunately did not catch) even said that he was an amazing waiter. He was a phenomenal cast member who definitely deserves his position in the company. He would be a great example for other cast members. There was another woman by the name of Marge who was helping Patrick out at one point. She was very sweet, although we did not really interact with her a lot.

At the same restaurant, there were one other individual who stood out. The woman who led us to our table was very kind and told us all about the restaurant and its story. We asked her some questions and she answered in a perfectly Disney manner, not missing a single beat. She was a great cast member who seemed to thoroughly enjoy her work. 

At guest relations, a cast member named Charles was helpful. When the people at the gate were unhelpful, he provided us with a backup solution. We had a very brief interaction with him but in comparison to the others, he was incredibly helpful.

Our server and the manager of Akershus on March 2, 2019 were extremely helpful with our party’s dietary needs. They had dishes specially made for us and made sure we were satisfied with our meals. The princess as well got through all the parties in attendance quickly and were very kind. Even though there weren’t a lot of options for our dietary needs, everyone working there was incredibly helpful and kind.

The assistants at the Pandora gift shop were very kind and helpful. They seemed very cheerful and were happy to help us at all times. When we visited Pandora last year the assistants seemed bored and not happy with their jobs, but this time everyone was so lovely. There was a woman with beautiful curly hair and a very cheerful man who helped us with our custom Na’vi dolls and a shopping attendant who enthusiastically showed us the new Pandora-themed shopping baga they had just received.

The Medium

While our male Minnie drivers were decent, they could not compare to our female Minnie drivers. One of them was playing rock music, which I found unusual since our other drivers played Disney music during our rides. Both were nice and respectful but still could not compare to the female Minnie drivers who were the epitome of a Disney employee.

Most of the employees we dealt with could be placed in this category. They were kind and helpful, but not necessarily any more than an employee somewhere else. I joked to some members of my party that some of them didn’t seem to be sure if they were working at the happiest place on earth or the local Target.

The Bad

Someone who seemed to be a gate manager (he was holding a tablet and walking around) at Epcot did not seem to know what he was doing. Perhaps he was unexperienced, but he gave us incorrect information and sent us to guest relations. We were told almost immediately that there was nothing wrong with the tickets on our magicbands (as the manager had told us there was) and that we should return to the gate. Thankfully, the individual at guest relations also gave us cards to use in case the magic bands did not work. We had to wait in line again and our magic bands did not work once more. The attendant called the manager over again and he basically shrugged and said there was nothing he could do. We told him that Charles from guest relations told us there was nothing wrong with our magicbands and asked why this was happening only here. He just shrugged again and walked away. He seemed very bored with his job and did not give us any sort of information or help. I am grateful to Charles for actually helping us and providing us with a solution after this cast member was particularly unhelpful. This man was working at Epcot in the morning on February 25, 2019.

We had a very creepy experience with one of the guards at the Polynesian monorail. I have written another post about this because the way in which the guard handled the situation was unsettling. I’m very glad that the young lady’s parents returned to help her because I’m not really sure what would have happened if they hadn’t been there.

Two of Gaston’s character attendants on March 2, 2019 were acting very unprofessionally towards several groups. I actually observed these cast members while waiting in line and saw them interact badly with several parties. I have written a separate post about them as well.

My Conclusion

When going to DisneyWorld, you will (probably) deal with all of these types of cast members. About 25% will be amazing, 50% will be decent, and 25% will be terrible. Cast members at Disney used to be so phenomenal but they have gone down in quality since around 2015. I really hope that Disney can come up with a solution to improve their service, so it is as great as it once was.

I really commend the individuals who continue to uphold the standards of Disney and hope they can serve as an example to those needing one. In general, Disney’s cast members are not terrible, but they are currently more like an average employee at a local store than the famed Disney employees. Still, I am holding out hope that they will return to their former greatness.

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