Passport to Disney World’s Future

At Disney’s Animal Kingdom today we spotted this nice looking jacket. The price was a little out of our range, but it looked warm and comfy.

Flipping it over, we noticed a nice embossed looking logo on the back:

Who can tell me what’s wrong with this picture?

We had a quick laugh. These sorts of mistakes have been known to happen in any manufacturing process. If it was a collectible, it might even be worth something. We took it up to the cash register and showed the error to the cast member asking what he wanted us to do with it. The reply? Just put it back on the rack. Someone will buy it.

Obviously, that is not the right answer. This cast member needs to care about his customers more, go the extra mile. I think that with more training about what it means to be a cast member at a Disney theme park, this would have been handled better. Alas, training is just one of the things Disney has cut back on at parks.

Disney World does a lot of things wrong, but they continued to be outweighed by the magic. Cast Members play a large part in making that magic, but a lot of the magic is controlled from behind the scenes. It’s those people that one of Disney World’s best critics has targeted in her year end review of the resort.

Passport to Dreams continues to be the number one blog when it comes to insightful updates from Walt Disney World. Foxx Furr took a few extra days, but she’s finally chimed in with her report card on WDW’s 2011 progress. Like everything she writes, it’s worth reading.

What grade would you give Disney World’s 2011 experience?

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19 Responses to Passport to Disney World’s Future

  1. Lou Prosperi says:

    I got this same jacket (minus the error) for Christmas from my wife. It is indeed warm and comfy!

  2. Oooooh! You should have bought one. Mistakes like that turn into collectibles!

  3. Sergio says:

    When I worked at the Emporium in Magic Kingdom whenever I spotted errors like that my managers would have me take them off the shelves to be “damaged out.” They usually end up selling them at the cast member outlet.

  4. SuperKevin says:

    I got that jacket last August at Cast Connection (I’ll have to check to see if mine has the error). I just love it, very comfy. Once at Animal Kingdom, we found a backpack that had the screen printed design upside down. We showed it to a cast member and they immediately took it backstage.

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  7. luke says:

    What response do you think they should have given you? Just curious.

    • John Frost says:

      I’m sorry sir, I’ll make sure no one buys that jacket and experiences disappointment when they realize the back and the front don’t match.

      • Luke says:

        Disney doesn’t employ robots. And the CM was correct, someone will buy it, doubtful they will not be happy with it.

      • John Frost says:

        Luke, Disney used to be known for exceptional guest service. It was one of the selling points that justified the high cost of admission, food, and merchandise. “Someone will buy it” is not exceptional, it’s not even acceptable. We’re not asking for robotics, we’re asking for show.

      • TJ says:

        The jacket really should’ve never made it onto the sales floor to begin with. When I worked retail at a non-Disney location we had to inspect everything when we unpacked it. There’s no reason to expect that the Disney CMs shouldn’t do the same.

  8. Dylan Malone says:

    So, what’s wrong with this jacket? The “Disneyland Resort” branding at WDW? For some reason I’m not seeing it….

  9. TJ says:

    I’ve also had some less-than-stellar Cast Member experiences on my last few visits. We had a CM throw my boyfriend’s credit card at him at Mouse Gear, saw a CM sitting down on the floor behind the counter at the Chapeau store at MK, and a few other experiences that just did not sit right with us.

  10. Jeff says:

    Disney employess are just fine.
    It’s human nature for people to say “things were so much better back in the day”.
    But they probably weren’t.
    I have no problem with this employee’s reaction.
    My problem is actually with John taking it up to the register and hoping the employee would fall over themselves apologizing and take it out of inventory.
    I love Disneyland and DisneyWolrd, and have for over 40 years.
    Some people need to get themselves out of this fantasy “bubblebum and candy cane” dreamland they think Disney Parks should be.
    Despite what you think, it never was like that, and never will be.

    • Luke says:

      Well said Jeff. The CM did nothing wrong in this situation. The problem is that there is an incorrect mindset that if a CM doesn’t give the exact answer the customer wants it becomes “bad service”. Nothing could be further from the truth. I actually would be willing to guess that in this situation an offer of this item reduced in price was the desired response from the CM and when that wasn’t done it was upsetting, leading to the rant about Disney service.

    • John Frost says:

      You can’t possibly be saying that the correct action is for a cast member to let a guest buy a piece of defective merchandise?

      As for the other stuff, you’re reading way too much into my statement. All I’m saying is that standards for training have slipped, and you’re assuming I’m now equating Disney World with the local 7-11 (my local 7-11 has great service, btw… even if the products lack). The reduction in training is quantifiable. So again, I fail to understand your argument.

  11. The Mommy says:

    I agree that it should have been removed (as someone else mentioned – Disney wastes little – it would have gone to the employee outlet). I tend to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, though, so maybe the CM was new? Even WITH training, I’m sure newbies make mistakes…just like the rest of us. Did you check back later? Maybe he asked a “superior” and they gave the correct answer and removed it?

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