Disneyland - the template for exemplary
hospitality and customer service.
Working at Disneyland Resort has been one of the wildest, jerkiest roller coaster rides I have ever had in a job experience. When I started, I was extremely excited. The reality is much different than what you are sold during the interview.
In between the time of the interview and beginning my training I searched the internet for what my experience might entail. I couldn't find anything that would clearly and precisely explain what my job as a vacation planner would be.
In this post I'm just going to give the outline and surface level details of what you do day in and day out as a vacation planner. I will be soon podcasting with former Disney employees to give you our real opinion, but here are the basic details of being a vacation planner in the Main Entrance.
It starts at minimum wage which in California is $10.00/hour. You start off part-time and it’s an average wait of 2-3 years before you are eligible for a full-time schedule. During Christmas and Spring Break I got 20-30 hours a week, but during off season I was getting 6-16. Imagine those paychecks.
Being late is clocking in 6 minutes after you are supposed to start. That gets you 1.5 points. Calling out of a shift for personal or transportation reasons is 3 points. You can get 36 points before being fired. I had like 25+. If you get 21 points in 3 months they call you to the principal’s office—oh I mean manager.
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Uniform for Vacation Planners/Main Gate
You wear a bright, mustard yellow button up with ride piping and mickey mouse buttons. The pants are high waited, dark blue and baggy. A uniform belt and your own black socks and shoes are required. Under shirts have to be white. They have strict dress code rules including hair color, nail color, nail length, sunglasses color and so on. Forget being an individual. You are a cast member now.
Day to Day Tasks
Vacation Planner is “Disney Speak” for Ticket Sales and Guest Control. When I took the job, I was unaware that I would be standing outside guiding guests to open ticket windows. Rain or shine. Some shifts you are in the booth selling tickets and annual passes, and sometimes you are outside searching for shade and pointing out an obviously open window to a distracted guest. At the end of booth shifts you have a tedious cash out process requiring cash counting, entering data, counting and documenting every ticket that was returned or upgraded, and filling out forms. Cashing out takes about 25 minutes.
Working at the Park
Employees have to park at lots off site. It takes about 20 minutes from the time you park 'til the time you get to wear you can clock in. I was late almost daily. My bad.
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