Since 1999, one of the most popular hobbies when visiting Disney® Theme Parks have been the collecting and trading of Disney-themed pins. From Disneyland to Walt Disney World and beyond; fanatics have searched high and low for rare pins of Mickey and other popular Disney characters. Not sure where to start? We've pulled together a few tips to make the case on why you should try pin trading during your next trip to the Disneyland® Resort.
Photo courtesy of Disneypinslondon on Instagram
Where To Start
How you store your pins is a personal preference, but beginners should keep an eye out for lanyards. Pin trading starter kits can be found all over Disney parks and will come complete with your lanyard along with five or six pins for just $30. Not bad to get your collection started! After you've purchased a kit, individual pins will typically range between $8 and up at most shops in the park.
Photo courtesy of Pinexplorers on Instagram
Tip 1: Missed this information but still in Anaheim? Head to the kiosk near the Downtown Disney Monorail to find plenty of unique pins.
Tip 2: If you purchase a pin inside a Disney store there is an option to have whatever you bought taken and delivered directly to your room (if you are staying at a Disney Resort) completely free! If you're worried about losing a pin you've just bought, have it sent up to your room to keep safe!
Find Your Identity
Most Disney pin collecting experts will say that while it's great to grab as many pins as possible, it is a good idea to find your niche or topic that truly fits your personality. Choosing a category or even a favorite Disney movie can help create your very own 'pin collecting persona.' Who know's, you may start a new trend for Disney fanatics to follow!
Photo Courtesy of dtradespinsduuh on Instagram
Tip: Look for commemorative pins. If you happen to arrive during a special time at the Disneyland Resort, chance are that a commemorative pin is out there ready for you to collect it.
I'll Trade Ya!?
Now you've got a lanyard, started your collection and are ready for the real fun to begin. Pin traders have the distinct pleasure of trading pins with Disneyland cast members throughout the park! Not only is this practice fun, but it also a great way to meet new friends from in and around the Disney community. The first way you can trade is with Disney cast members, which is the easiest and most rewarding for rare pins. Disney cast members MUST accept all trade offers that come their way so don't be shy to ask! (Keep this etiquette in mind)
The second way to trade is regular people displaying their pins around the park. If they are wearing their pins in plain sight, chances are they are okay with you approaching them about trading, but it's always important to be cautious (because they still are strangers).
Photo courtesy of mlle.walt on Instagram
Tip 1: Ask to check the pin you are looking for before trading to make sure there aren't any blemishes or issues that may make you change your mind. Better to be safe than sorry.
Tip 2: Not sure if the pin is real or not? Bring a small magnet with you to see if the pin sticks to the magnet. Most real pins will stick to the magnet, if it doesn't, it may be fake.
Looking to stand out in the Disney pin trading community? Here are a few rare pins to keep an eye out for:
1. Cast Member 45 Year Service Award Pin
2. Mad Hatter Pin - Released in 2003
3. Club 33 Space Mountain Pin - Released 2005
4. The Flubber Mastery Pin - Released in 2000
5. It's a Small World - Peter Pan and Tinker Bell - Released 2009
Need a cool person to follow? Check out local expert Sarah Snitch's video on your very own guide to pin trading at Disney!