The Merits of PhotoPass+

Some of my family taking the big plunge on Splash Mountain.

“If we get just one good photo of our whole group, then the PhotoPass+ will be worth it,” my husband told me a few hours into our recent Disneyland trip.

When I first told my husband about PhotoPass+, he didn’t get it. He just saw I spent $69.95 and had nothing to show for it.

As our group of 10 explored Disneyland, we hit up nearly every PhotoPass photographer we could find. Photographer after photographer snapped photos of us. We started to amass quite a collection. When we snagged our Splash Mountain ride photos for no extra cost, my family thought I was beyond awesome. Ditto when we got the picture of me looking very uncomfortable on Space Mountain: my three-year-old was riding for the first time, and I was scared for him. Not that I needed to be, he loved it.

When we had dinner at Ariel’s Grotto, we were pleasantly surprised when not only did we get digital copies of our photos with Ariel, but they brought us a physical photo package at no additional charge. We got a stack of photos of our kids, as well as the cool Ariel photo frame, something we weren't expecting at all.

Less than three hours into our park adventures and my entire family was 100% sold on the concept of PhotoPass+.

Here’s the deal. Now that I've done Disneyland with PhotoPass+, I’ll never go without it. Why? Four main reasons:

  • it’s easy, much easier than whipping out my own DSLR
  •  it made me more aware of cool photo opportunities
  • we got tons of photos with everyone, me included
  •  it’s cost effective.


It’s easy. Though I used my DSLR and my iPhone to take photos on this trip, letting the PhotoPass photographer was much easier. Their cameras were all set up and ready to go. Their cameras were set up to maximize the lighting (I could have never gotten an awesome night shot of Cars Land in its neon glory). And while they snapped, I could get my kids to look at the camera or be in the shot myself. My daughter was collecting character autographs, and it was so much easier to leave the photo taking to the professionals while I helped her get her autograph book out and ready to go. Over and over again we were reminded much easier it was to have someone else behind the camera.

I was hyper aware of using my PhotoPass+. Because I wanted to make sure I got my money’s worth, there was rarely a photo opportunity we passed up. When we saw a PhotoPass photographer, we stopped. By the third day at the Disneyland resort, even the kids in our group were running to the PhotoPass photographers.

Cruising around Radiator Springs. I'm the one with crazy hair in the back right.

I was in the photos. Most of our vacation photos are either all my kids or my husband and the kids. This trip I’m in almost all the photos. And there are a ton of really great photos with our whole group, 10 people strong. I have photos of my little family. My brother and his family have special photos. My dad got ones with just me and my brother. This alone made the PhotoPass+ more than worth its price.

It’s cost effective. Just the digital downloads of our ride photos alone paid for the cost of the PhotoPass+. Being in such a large group, we had multiple photos on every ride. We went home with pictures from Splash Mountain, Space Mountain, Tower of Terror and California Screaming. Add the photos from Ariel’s Grotto, both physical and digital, and we couldn’t have gotten a better deal.

If you’re headed to Disney any time soon, I highly recommend scooping up a PhotoPass+ before you go. It’s worth every penny. Check back in next month, when I share how I used my PhotoPass+ photos to document our magical memories.