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What is Pin Trading? It's FUN - That's What It Is!

While shopping in across Disney Parks & Resorts, what is something you can find at every hotel and every park? While you can find Minnie/ Mickey Ears, shirts and maybe even Ponchos at most places, you can also find Pins to purchase everywhere! Pins are more than just something you purchase; they are an activity all in themselves.

Pin Trading is a fun activity that is FREE, well almost free… that is fun for all ages. You can purchase trading and starter sets of pins in most shops on Disney property for slightly cheaper than an individual pin (the bigger the pack normally the cheaper the price per pin is). If you are feeling adventurous you can venture to a Disney outlet or the "Character Warehouse" and pick up some clearance pins to use for trading. But if you find yourself at your local Disney Store or The Character Warehouse - ask the Cast Members working if they have any pins that are on Sale. More often than not, they will come out with a box from the back that are heavily discounted (you won’t be keeping these pins so don’t worry if they don’t have something you love on them)!

Now onto the important part - the actual Pin Trading itself. 

Where can you Pin Trade? Almost every Hotel check-in desk, gift shop, DVC booths/tables, and all of the Community Halls will have some form of pin board. And don’t be shy when it comes to asking if a location has a pin board, some places don’t keep their pin boards in plain sight but will happily go and get theirs for you.

When you’re in the park keep your eyes peeled for Cast Members who are wearing lanyards or pin belt bags, pin boards in gift shops, pin boards in restaurants and even random stations set up with a Cast Member just for trading pins. One place you will ALWAYS find a pin board is the "Kidcot" stations throughout EPCOT. Pro tip: on rainy days you will occasionally find Cast Members with traffic cones covered in pins near methods of transportation when leaving the park and you might even find a truck inside of Animal Kingdom full of pins

Remember those discounted pins you bought, now is when they come in handy! When you walk up to your pin trading board you can pick any pin that is on that board that you like. Whether you are collecting your favorite Princess, sticking to a theme like different foods or if you are trying to complete a collectors set - like the oh so desired Fast Passes or Transportation Sets. When you find a pin on that board or lanyard that you like, get one of your trader pins out, take the back off of that pin and trade it to the Cast Member for the pin that you picked. More often than not, you are limited to trade one or two pins per person at a time.**Pro tip: if you are traveling with someone who isn’t trading pins have them trade one of your traders if there is an additional pin that you would like to add to your collection!**

In the last few years, more and more different variations of pin trading have been popping up around Disney. Now you will occasionally see wooden boxes with little numbered drawers behind some registers. This is also a type of pin trading, but here’s the catch, these are surprise pins! You won’t know what is in the drawer until you pick a drawer. The Cast Member will then open the drawer and show you that individual pin, you then have the choice to either trade for that pin if it is something you like or to choose not to trade. Our Travel Experts were recently in a gift shop in Magic Kingdom and was able to play a round of Disney Trivia with a Cast Member. When they were able to correctly answer questions of that Cast Member’s choosing, the Cast Member opened up the entire mystery board! 

Pins from Pin Trading are a great, inexpensive souvenir. There are so many ways to display your pins. Some people create pin boards to display around their home, some people create a flip book, and some people leave them on their lanyards, hats or vests until their next Disney trip. Next time you’re at Disney, give pin trading a try and see if you can complete a set or add a few favorites to your collection!

We challenge you to complete a pin trading set on your next Walt Disney World vacation! When you complete a set feel free to take a picture and tag @castleboundtravel on Instagram to show us!

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