Disney Cast Members Banned From Negativity, Forced To Smile

in Walt Disney World

A group of Disneyland cast members, dressed in red and blue plaid vests and blue face masks, line both sides of a street, waving to guests who are walking towards the camera.

Credit: Disney

Increasingly frustrated with unruly guest behavior, Disney cast members are reportedly struggling to keep positive attitudes at work. Recent visitors to Magic Kingdom Park, EPCOT, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and Disney Springs say the discontent among employees is palpable.

Related: Tiana’s Bayou Adventure Canceled: Disney Releases Urgent Notice

More than 70,000 cast members bring the magic to life at Walt Disney World Resort. They work tirelessly, sometimes in less-than-ideal conditions, to ensure guests have the most memorable vacations.

Cast Members cheer on Main Street, U.S.A. in Disneyland Paris
Credit: Disney

Even amid loosened Disney Look guidelines, all Disney cast members must adhere to customer service traditions dating back to the opening of Disneyland Park. The original Four Keys of Safety, Courtesy, Show, Efficiency, plus the new Fifth Inclusion Key, make Disney cast members some of the best in the hospitality business.

But as Walt Disney World Resort guests grow increasingly unruly, starting fights or behaving inappropriately, some Disney cast members struggle to force a smile. According to recent guest reports, their positive attitudes are seemingly more forced than ever. Redditor u/Traditional_Wind_940 alleged that Disney Park and Disney Resort workers are “ruder” than ever.

A large geodesic sphere, known as Spaceship Earth, is illuminated in vibrant rainbow colors against the night sky. Flags can be seen in the bottom right near trees silhouetted by the glow of the lights.
Credit: Disney

“My family just got back from a week at [Walt Disney World], my first time there in 4 years, but I don’t remember encountering many rude cast members,” the guest wrote. “Nothing specific towards me or my party, just generally disgruntled and overly loud/yelling impatient ride workers.”

“Maybe it’s always been that way, and I just noticed because we spent a lot more time in the parks getting on rides than I ever had before,” they continued.

“I did have a run in with a guest relations worker at EPCOT who just seemed annoyed from the beginning of me asking a question. I can understand being out in the heat all day, or dealing with people on vacation can be annoying, I just never would have expected that at Disney World.”

Disney Cast Members welcome Guests as they enter through Magic Kingdom for Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party
Credit: Disney

“I remember a time, pre 2015 specifically, where it seemed like every cast member had a smile, waved at guests, and went out of their way to make magic,” u/Lopsided-Room2726 replied.

Chapek came along (and other management decisions), which caused a shift in things like staffing levels, guest engagement, and taking away some benefits from CM’s, which didn’t make them resentful, but it took away from the guest experience of what once felt like every cast member would go out of their way to make magic for guests and loved their jobs.”

“Don’t get me wrong, there’s tons of great cast members who still work for Disney, but I also think there have been tons of service issues I’ve experienced lately – that never used to occur,” the Disney Parks fan added. “Not necessarily rude CMs, but CMs who are clearly worn out, overworked, etc.”

Mickey and Minnie pose with two laughing guests in front of the Tree of Life at Disney's Animal Kingdom.
Credit: Disney

“I go often and I’ve noticed a shift since COVID,” u/academic_mama agreed. “Not necessarily rude, but more and more seem disconnected from the ‘magic’- notice this more among the attractions CMs- they just seem over worked and over everyone’s BS.”

Overwhelmingly, Disney Parks fans defended cast members who deal with thousands of guests daily.

“They’re just sick of everyone’s shit,” u/pineapples4youuu replied.

A diverse group of Disney cast members, mostly young adults, are standing closely together, smiling, and looking ahead. They are all wearing teal uniforms with badges. Some are holding hands, creating a sense of unity and celebration. The background shows more people in similar attire.
Credit: Disney

“Those poor cast members have to deal with the worst people from all over the world blaming them for every small thing and every large thing that goes wrong,” u/Veryteenieweenie wrote. “I wouldn’t be able to keep my cool.”

“CMs are the same as they have always been,” said u/chuckles65. “People who think they encounter rude CMs are most likely themselves the rude ones and don’t like when their sense of entitlement isn’t rewarded constantly.”

The overwhelming majority of Disney cast members will go out of their way to improve your Walt Disney World Resort experience. Kindness and patience are the best ways to ensure a positive interaction.

Have Disney cast members made your visit to Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort more magical? In the comments, share your story with Inside the Magic.

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