Today's role spotlight is a look into the life of an attractions host. Particiapants placed in attractions can be stationed at a ride area, as a park greeter (Read more about that here.), or as parade audience control. Attractions hosts work in all 4 parks as well as Disney Springs. Today's post features the experiences of 4 attractions hostesses: Megan worked Agent P's World Showcase Adventure, Sarah worked Peter Pan's Flight and It's a Small World, Molly worked Parade Audience Control on Main Street, and my sweet friend from my program, Amber-Lynn, worked Spaceship Earth.
Megan: Agent P's World Showcase Adventure (Epcot)
Program: Fall 2015
Other Locations: American Garden Theater
Role Description: I handed out phones to secret agents so they could save the world! I also park cleared at the end of the day to make sure there were no guests left in the park. At the American Garden Theater, I helped with making sure the food and wine performances went smoothly.
Training: I had a few days of on the job training and then an assessment
Hours: 30/week, 6 hour shifts with 2 15 minute breaks
Likes: I loved it! I really liked all of the guest interaction
Dislikes: Park clearing wasn't my favorite but I loved the role anyway!
Favorite Memory: My favorite stories all have to do with park clearing or New Years. I loved the crowd and doing crowd control, and many of my stories have to do with that. I have too many to pick just one!
This is my sixth post in my role overview series, to read the rest click here. Housekeeping is listed as a high need in the Spring 2017 application. High need roles mean you have a high chance of getting accepted for them because they need a lot of them, it also means you will work lots of other CPs. To read more about high need roles click here.
Today's Interview is with Victoria, a housekeeper at the Yacht and Beach Club resort for the Spring Advantage 2016 Program. She didn't share a picture, but in most locations, including the Yacht and Beach Club, resort custodians wear the same costumes as housekeepers, that's why you're seeing a picture of me in my costume.
How would you describe your role?
"I worked eight hour shifts that included me cleaning 16 rooms a day. I usually worked 40 hours a week. Working at Beach Club as a "Mousekeeper" was a love-hate, bitter-sweet experience. If you aren't aware, housekeeping is a very physical, highly active role. I think the advantages included how friendly my co-cast members and how helping they truly were. Especially, since they were so use to seeing us Disney College Programmers come and go. In a day, I would wake up between 5:30-6:00am, I would grab breakfast, meet up with my best friend then she would drop me off at my location. I'd go to costuming (which was located inside the break room) and change quickly so I could clock in at 7:45am. I'd go to "break-out" where all the Housekeepers would get there boards for the day. I'll be honest, it was the hardest job I've ever held but it was also the most rewarding, too! It couldn't be too bad because I just accepted this role to do it again! Also, I don't want to get you future "mousekeepers" too excited but there is something called ADO and it's your best friend!"
Lifeguard is one of the most common roles for CPs and on the newest version of the DCP application it's listed as a "high need" role. (Read more about high need roles here.) Two Spring 2016 alumni, both named Morgan, shared their experiences for you!
Morgan: Typhoon Lagoon and Caribbean Beach Resort
Where did you work?
Typhoon Lagoon and Caribbean Beach Resort
How would you describe your role?
Overall, it's a ton of walking and standing in the sun. Not a lot of guest interaction but there is some. There is also a lot of yelling at guests because they can't follow simple rules (I enjoyed this because I have little patience for stupidity lol probably shouldn't have worked at Disney because of that). Working in a resort and at park are two completely different worlds. At the resort I jumped in nearly once a day while at typhoon it varied from no jumps for days to multiple jumps a day.
What did your training look like?
3 days of Ellis training then 2 days of location training. Ellis training makes guarding seem a lot more dramatic than it is.
How many hours you were scheduled per week?
It varied because hours changed with the season and the location. At CBR my hours ranged from 8hr-12 and if there was in service it could be longer. At typhoon the hours were typically around 8 but if there was an event it could be up to 12 or as low as 4. One day though I would like 16 hours. Per week, at CBR it was always under 40. At typhoon it was understaffed so it was always between 40 - 60 hours. A lot of overtime was nice money wise but I had no free time.
How long were your shifts?
30 min - 15 min
What did you like about your role and locations?
The people were nice and the bus ride was short.
What did you dislike about your role and locations?
Parents don't watch their kids who can't swim so a lot of the times you jump in and the parents have no idea. Creepy guys ask for mouth to mouth all the time.
I flew to my first DCP last spring, and it's looking like I'll be flying again this year. Last year, I did a lot of research, and figured a lot of things out. I learned more about the best way to do that while I worked at Disney, and since then I've moved across the country by plane twice, learning from my mistakes each time. I have a few tips with you to help you plan to fly to Disney for this magical experience!
Tip 1: Research the best times to book and fly
I highly encourage you to do some research on your own, Google and Pinterest have helped me a lot in searching for useful information about this. There are thousands of travel blogs that want to help you book the cheapest flight! If you're not going to do any of your own research, here are the two points I've found in my research: 1. Book your flight on a Tuesday 6-8 weeks before your flight, this is when they're at their cheapest. 2. Compare different times of day and days of week (if you can). Flights late at night, early in the morning, and in the middle of the week are usually the cheapest, Saturday flights are also cheaper than Friday, Sunday, or Monday flights.
A year ago, I had declined my first Disney College Program. It was a long and hard decision to get there, but I'm thankful for the journey, and I'm thankful for the decision I ended up making. A lot of people ask me why I declined the program, so I wanted to share the full story with you, including my magical moment at the end.
I was accepted for my first Disney College Program the first week of October 2015, only a week after my phone interview. I found out while waiting for the bus home from Target, and called my sister right away! I quickly found the Facebook groups and started a countdown poster.
Last week, we looked at what it looks like to be a quick service food and beverage cast member, today we're looking at merchandise. While not one of the "high need roles" listed on the application, they are a high volume role, which means that many CPs are cast in this role. Robert, Breanna, and Jared have helped me provide more info about this role, all three were friends of mine at Disney World in spring 2016.
"As a merchandise host I had a variety of tasks that ranged from operating the registers, stocking the merchandise around the store, and greeting guests that come into the store and assisting them with their shopping experience. In merchandise you have a unique opportunity to interact with guests not just behind the counter but also throughout the store, which is something Disney calls "Merchantaining" (merchant + entertaining). Often you will be rotated around to different positions within the same shift, including moving from one store in your zone to another. Depending on where you are located, other responsibilities may involve food handling and/or PhotoPass assistance." (Robert)
"Run the cash register, restock the floor, greet guests entering the resort, sort merchandise, occasionally participate in dance parties" (Breanna)
" I worked at Hollywood Studios at various merchandise shops. You could see me playing with BB8 from star wars which was called merchantainment, you could also see me ringing register." (Jared)
Quick Service Food and Beverage is probably the most common role among College Program participants. The application lists custodial, housekeeping, lifeguards, and quick service as high need roles. Out of these, Disney in general hires more quick service hosts than the other roles, so they hire the most CPs in this position. That's a huge perk for this job as well, you'll likely be working with other CPs and it makes it a lot easier to pick up, trade, and give away shifts. As a Quick Service host you could be placed in Outdoor Vending (food carts and stands), a Quick Service Restaurant (QSR), or in a resort food court; however you can pick up shifts in any of them even if that's not the place you usually work. Four alumni have partnered with me to be able to provide you more info on the role.
Who They Are:
Lyndsie: ODV, Epcot World Showcase, Spring Advantage 2015
Kaitlin: QSR, Pinocchio Village Haus, Spring 2015
Sami: QSR, Sunset Ranch Market, Spring 2016
Taylor: Resorts, Saratoga Springs, Spring 2015
"Every day that I worked I was either on the register, filling orders by filling drinks, making ice cream, croissant doughnuts, hot dogs, or chicken nuggets & fries, or I was cooking. At the end of the day we had to clean everything as well." (ODV, Lyndsie)
"I was trained in seven different quick service locations in Hollywood Studios, serving anything from barbecue to pizza to ice cream. It was split up into two different locations on my schedule, Sunset Market and Sunset Boulevard - if you were scheduled for Market, you'd go back and forth between two locations (or just stay at one location), and if you were scheduled for Boulevard, there were five quick service locations I could have been at, though it wasn't likely I'd be at all five throughout a shift, more like one to three a day. Though some quick service locations only allow you at the front or the back, I did everything from cooking hamburgers in the oven to being at the register to bussing tables to doing the drink orders to giving out the trays of food to guests." (QSR, Sami)
This time last year I still didn't think I'd get the opportunity to interview for the Disney College Program, I wasn't extended the offer to schedule a phone interview until the end of September. Fast forward to the end of January when I finally make the step to venture out on my own. I didn't know anyone, I had a few friends I'd met on the Facebook group and was excited to meet, but unlike moving to college, I really didn't know anyone. I have a few uncles in Florida but both live a few hours from Orlando so I was really venturing out all on my own for the first time.
I flew back from Minnesota to New Mexico a week before I had to leave for Disney. I started packing up all my belongings and wrapping up loose ends. I had to say goodbye to lots of friends and return some of my work uniforms. This week flew by faster than I ever guessed it could! The hardest part was going to my last Nav night for the time being and saying goodbye to all my friends there.
I love telling funny stories about my last program, this is one I've been telling my coworkers all week. I don't know why I remembered it, but it's definitely one of my favorites!
So I arrived for my shift, a PM shift from 3:30 until midnight. I go to the meeting and learn that I'm scheduled for Yacht Lobby (which includes the lobby and the lobby bathroom and steakhouse bathroom). After the meeting I head right down to check my bathrooms since I know usually they don't get checked from 3pm until I get there. I go to check the lobby bathroom first since I know it has more traffic at this time of day. As I walk in I'm hit with an overwhelming smell...of crap! (Pardon my language, it just makes the story so much funnier!) I figure someone just had rather smelly dump, nothing out of the ordinary. I spray some Zero Odor which gets rid of and masks smells. After doing the rest of the things I usually do when I check restrooms I leave to check the other restroom. Half an hour later (I always check my restrooms every half hour) I return to check the restroom and it still smells! I figure there must be a diaper in the trashcan so I empty the trashcans, all of them and the sanitary bins! I spray more zero odor and move on. I return another half an hour later, it still smells! At this point I'm very confused, it must be on the toilet or something! I cleaned all the toilets super clean (a way they're only cleaned usually by 3rd shift), I did find some crap smooshed in between the seat and toilet in one of the stalls so I sprayed some more zero odor again and moved on. Once more, I returned to check the bathroom and it still smells! At this point I'm considering radioing for my coordinator because I'm so confused. As I'm looking in the stalls for something I might have missed my foot slides and I realize there's crap on the floor. This bathroom has tile floors and it was smooshed in so it just blended in. I mop the floor really well, spray some more zero odor and say a prayer before leaving. When I return it finally smells fine! Hallelujah! So that's the story of the day I cleaned crap off the floor.
Do you have a funny story from your CP? Do you have a funny story about cleaning? Comment them below!
During my 2016 college program I conquered fears that have been haunting me my entire life. When I started my program I was terrified of rides that go high, spin, get wet, go fast, and definitely those that go upside down! My favorite ride was Pirates of the Caribbean ride. I refused to go on Splash Mountain, the Teacups, the Tower of Terror, and certainly any and all roller coasters.
My dear friends Robert and Sarah took me to Magic Kingdom for the first time the day after my Traditions class. After riding Pirates of the Caribbean they talked me into riding Splash Mountain (and tricked me about when the big drop many many times) and I loved it! After a snack I let them talk me into Big Thunder Mountain. While waiting in the line I got more and more scared I became but I didn't chicken out! I was not such as much a fan of this ride. I was eager to try riding it again but not for a long while.