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What Exactly Is a Cast Member?

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A Cast Member at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

There are certain terms that you will hear thrown around all the time when it comes to planning a Walt Disney World vacation. One of those terms is “Cast Member”. If you’ve heard someone talk about Cast Members and could not figure out who exactly falls into that category, you’re in the right place.

Quite simply, a Cast Member is a Walt Disney World employee. Those who work for other Disney Parks are also known as Cast Members, as are those who work at a Disney Store. The employee does not need to be in the entertainment field in order to be a Cast Member, they just need to be an employee.

Most Cast Members wear name tags, and the name tags are all of a similar design. If you see someone who is wearing a different name tag, the store or restaurant that you are in most likely is not owned by Disney. A Cast Member name tag will have his or her first name on it, and also their hometown. If there is a college listed instead of a hometown that Cast Member is part of the Disney College Program.

You will see thousands of Cast Members each day that you spend in a Walt Disney World Park. There are more than 70,000 of them, which makes Walt Disney World the largest single site employer in the United States. There are over 3,000 different job classifications, and you’ll only see a fraction of the different positions while you are there.

Being a Cast Member is not always easy. The hours can be a bit crazy, the weather in Central Florida can be brutal if you have to spend hours outside, and there are plenty of rude guests. They still want to do all that they can to make your day special. Be polite to the Cast Members, even if your day isn’t going as you had hoped. Thank them for all that they do, they do not hear that often enough. Ask questions about their favorite Walt Disney World rides and restaurants. Most Cast Members are also fans, and they might have a recommendation for you that you wouldn’t have tried otherwise.

If you met a Cast Member who made your day extra special, consider letting them know about it at Guest Services before you leave the park. Disney loves hearing compliments about their employees! If you meant to leave a compliment and forgot, use the contact form on the Walt Disney World website.