Monday, June 30, 2014

Disney Cast Members: Tell Them "Thank You"

by Gaylin

I have met many a wonderful Cast Member (CM) in my travels to Walt Disney World, as well as Disneyland and one Disney cruise. While I have always thanked them in person, if I have received extra help or extraordinary service from a cast member, I like to send a thank you to them, through Disney itself.

I found out on the Backstage Tour a few years ago that if a CM gets a reprimand on their employment record, it is removed after 6 months with no further reprimands acquired. If a thank you or commendation is received, that stays on their record permanently! If you go to the Walt Disney World main webpage and scroll to the bottom, there is a contact us link. On that link it tells you how to contact them by phone, there is another link where you can go to an email page to contact them.

This is where I go when I want to send a thank you to a CM. The first time I did this, I received a phone call from a representative from Disney personnel, letting me know how much they appreciated my email and that they had contacted each of the CMs I had wanted to thank and commended them in person! I do keep a trip journal where I write their names down as well as take a photo where the interaction happened so I don't forget.

On my recent trip, I had more than a few nice transactions with CMs and wanted to send my appreciation out to 3 of them. When I got home, I sent the following email:

"This is not a question, this is a thank-you to Cast Members.

I was at WDW in May 2014 and on Sunday, May 11, I went to the Animal Kingdom. My mother had
passed away 5 weeks previously and I had forgotten entirely that it was Mother's Day. When I walked into AK and was given a carnation and told Happy Mother's Day, I was startled and sad. It was nice to think of my mom but it was a difficult, emotional day as well.

I stopped for lunch at Tamu Tamu, I was hot and tired and forgot to tell the CM that I had food allergies and could I please have potato chips instead of pita bread so I put the pita bread to the side. A custodial CM, Deborah (college program with UCLA), stopped to chat for a moment, she asked if I was a mother and when I told her about my mom, I nearly started crying. She spent some time with me, talked about mom's, Disney and life in general. It was the human contact I so badly needed that day. She noticed that I had put the pita bread aside and went out of her way to get some of the fresh made potato chips for me. Well, that nearly had me crying again. The time she spent with me changed the whole tone of the day for me, I know that CMs deal with and talk to a lot of people in a day and they need to know that their time and care is wonderful. Thanks so much to Deborah, wherever she is now. Also - thanks for the pin!

At the Magic Kingdom on May 7th, I had a lovely wee interaction with a CM named Sherley, I bought a Mickey Premium from her at the Popping Machine, near Gaston's Tavern. She was bright and cheerful, I sat at a table near the kiosk and watched her interact with guests, impressive. Again, since my mom's name was Shirley - meeting this lovely young lady who was so happy and vivacious, made my day. I asked for a photo and we had a good laugh taking a selfie together.

One last kudo - in the morning of May 7th, I went on the Jungle Cruise with Captain Lisa, she was so fun, it was one of the best cruises I have been on. At the end of the cruise I asked if I could take a selfie with her, it was the first time a guest had asked her to be in a photo and she was happy to do it.

Thanks to all the CMs that do their best to help guests have a magical vacation and if anyone asks if you can have fun at WDW while on a solo trip - the answer is a resounding yes!

You can't send photos in your email to Disney but I can post them here! Here is the photo of Captain Lisa and me.

And later the same day, the lovely Sherley!

About a week after I sent my email to the help centre, I received this email reply:

"Dear Gaylin,

Thank you for writing to us about your visit to the Walt Disney World® Resort.

I am very glad you had such an enjoyable experience and truly appreciate the time you took to share your compliments for Deborah, Sherley and Lisa. Your email reinforces how our Cast Members can make a tremendous difference with each Guest. It is heartwarming to know that Cast Members such as Deborah, Sherley and Lisa exemplified Walt Disney's dream to create happy and memorable experiences for all of our Guests. Please be assured your comments will be shared with the appropriate leadership so they can be commended for the great service they provided you.

Thank you again for writing to us. We look forward to future opportunities to entertain you.

Best Regards,

Janet F.
Guest Experience Services
Walt Disney World Resort"

If you have a wonderful CM experience, remember you can share your thank-you's when you get home, send some magic back to Disney!


  1. what a fantastic idea..i will be doing this on all my trips...I am so sorry for the loss of your mom

    1. Laurie, losing my mom was difficult. I had this vacation planned months in advance and I admit, it was nice to 'run away' from all the sadness at home.

  2. Gaylin, I hope your cast members find this post by you someday! We have written letters for cast members who went out of their way to make our experience special as well.

  3. Barbie,
    One of those Cast Members did learn of Gaylin's gracious and lovely actions ... me! Her letter--the time and care she took, when she didn't have to--is one of the most meaningful gifts I've ever received! It was my joy to Make Magic for my Guests, in Walt's name; especially for Gaylin!
    Faith, Trust & Pixie Dust!
    Deborah Salter Kawaguchi °O°

    1. I'm so happy to hear that, Deborah! Keep up the great work, we hope to be making magic with you some day!


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