How much are pins in the parks?

Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by kelemvor, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. kelemvor

    kelemvor Earning My Ears

    Jul 19, 2011

    We're heading to Disney in September and we're wondering how much the pins cost to buy them in the park. There are a ton of them on ebay and things and we want to possibly get some before we head down to have some things to trade with, if they are a better deal online...

    Any pricing info would be great.

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  3. Wall-E1

    Wall-E1 Dis Dad

    May 12, 2008
    They sell for a little under $10 - $20 generally. Some might be a little less or more, but that is the general price range.
  4. stargazertechie

    stargazertechie Toy Story Midway Maniac

    Jun 17, 2009
    Most of the cheap, large eBay lots are illegally produced counterfeit pins (referred to as scrappers in the Pin community). I'm on my cell phone currently, I'll post more info once I'm on my computer.

    If you have a car in Disney, you can drive to the Premium outlet and get authentic pins for $2-$3 each.

    If you must buy on ebay, follow these tips:

    Go check the Collectors board- they have a list of good/bad ebay sellers.

    Do NOT buy pins from sellers that are based in China
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who have "pick your own lot" offering over 300 pins total
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who have large lots (50-100 pins) for less than $1 per pin
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who have MULTIPLE large lots
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who have ANY negative feedback stating that a buyer got a scrapper. Many pin sellers will have 99% feedback, and when you look close they have had 2 or 3 buyers state they got scrappers.

    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who state that the pins will come in individual baggies
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who use phrases like "100% tradeable"
    Do NOT buy pins from sellers who have feedback from making purchases from pin sellers from China

    BE VERY WARY of sellers that only use stock photos of pins, and who state "pins may or may not be the ones pictured"

    LOOK for ebay sellers offering pins in original packaging and/or on original backers
    LOOK for ebay sellers offering single pins for around $2.00 a pin
    LOOK for ebay sellers with NO feedback regarding scrappers
    LOOK for ebay sellers based in the US
    LOOK for ebay sellers on the collector's GOOD SELLERS list

    Honestly, buying pins off of ebay is really risky- most of those large lots are either scrappers directly from China, or locals who buy large lots of scrappers and then take them into the parks and trade the scrappers with CMs to get "authentic park traded" pins.
  5. tallen429

    tallen429 DIS Veteran

    Feb 19, 2009
    The pin pricing is color coded and ranges from about $6.95 to as high as $15.95( I think). Most are in the $6.95-9.95 range.

    Don't buy the ebay auctions for pin lots. They are cast offs and are not authentic. There are people who sell authentic pins online in singles but they are about the same price as the parks. Once in while the Disney Store online has a few in their sale section but I don't think they have any on clearence right now.
  6. stargazertechie

    stargazertechie Toy Story Midway Maniac

    Jun 17, 2009
    Just added a ton of suggestions on finding a decent ebay seller
  7. jcano

    jcano Mouseketeer

    Aug 4, 2011
    Thanks for the warning! If it sounds too good to be true.....:rolleyes:
  8. LBlovesM&WDW

    LBlovesM&WDW Mouseketeer

    Oct 15, 2010
    I always buy the pin sets, usually 7 or more pins on the card, at WDW and I usually look for the more uncommon ones. Little ones tend to choose the cutest pins, while I choose villains or something less likely chosen. These sets start at $30, so I'm paying less than $5 a pin to trade and they are absolutely authentic.
  9. CR Resort Fan 4 Life

    CR Resort Fan 4 Life DIS Veteran

    May 27, 2006
    Pins sold by themselves range from $6.95 - $15.95 depending on it's size. Plus the prices for them aren't listed on the pin backing that comes with it because WDW has a color coded system that list the prices according to the color on the back, so that's something else you need to look out for. Finally bigger pins sold in boxes can range from $20.00 - $40.00 or even more.
  10. bytheblood

    bytheblood DIS Veteran

    Feb 21, 2004
    I am not condoning or questioning ethics, but wanted to share my thoughts on this. This is MY opinion for MY pins. One size does not fit all.

    • Most of the pins you get from CMs come from these same lots. This could mean that you are trading an $8 pin for the same pins that are causing you so much stress.
    • Disney is allowing this, therefore it is not a "Disney abomination" by their standards
    • Disney CMs do not inspect the pins to see if they are genuine or knock-offs.
    • They are not really worth any major significant value. If I pay $8+ for a pin, it is because I really do like it and intend to keep it. If I should trade it for a "counterfeit pin" but I like the counterfeit, then there is no real loss for me as I am still getting what I want.
    • I cannot take them with me when I die.
    • If I am collecting them because I like them and decided I don't want them one day, I am never going to get what I paid for the pin in the park because pin trading is so big.

    Disney allows people with pin books to sit in certain locations within EPCOT and Downtown Disney and rip their guests off. They sell some pins for $100+ and tell you they are retired when they are in fact available. If Disney isnt going to put a stop to this, they really are not that interested in what is being sold on the internet. If they were, they would sue and shut down many of these sites like pin castle, mousepinsonline, etc.
  11. arcurioa

    arcurioa Mouseketeer

    Jul 9, 2008
    We used to make sure that all of our pins were authentic, but it is nearly impossible now. Not to mention 8 times our of 10 your kids are going to trade it away for another scrapper from theCM's lanyard. If they like it, I do not care. If Disney had a huge issue with the sale of scrapper they would close the sellers down- they do it all the time with other copyright infringement items on eBay. I think they look at it as a loss leader. People trade them, bit spend times more $ buying other pins at $7 -$20+ a pop.

    So you can spend a lot of money on traders, but know that you will get scrappers if you trade with cast members.

    Good luck an have fun.
  12. lovelybellanotte

    lovelybellanotte Original Mouseketeer

    Dec 1, 2011
    bytheblood is certainly may end up with one of those counterfeit eBay pins if you trade in the parks. I traded pins years and years ago when the pin craze first began and didn't have to worry about getting fakes. Our last trip, my husband wanted to get into trading and bought one of the packs with the lanyard in the Emporium. By the end of the day, we began to realize that most of the ones we had traded for we're counterfeit.

    Really leaves a bad taste in your mouth when you realize that you paid for authentic pins and got scrappers.

    I advise you to look up ways to tell if pins are scrappers and check any pins before you trade. You will almost always notice sub-par paint jobs on them but there are other ways to really be sure as well. Cast members DO NOT look for these things!

    Pin trading is super fun but you have to be smart about it!!

  13. siskaren

    siskaren DIS Veteran

    Aug 8, 2007
    This thread is almost 2 years old (well, it was until it got revived today ;)); the OP has long since come home from their trip.
  14. rwdavis2

    rwdavis2 DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2007
    I bought 3 space-related pins because I build spacecraft for a living. Not to collect them. To me, collecting pins was like buying those "collectable" plates that seemed to be the rage years ago. They never had any value as they made too many. So hopefully people bought the plates (and pins) because they liked the way they looked and not for an investment. Sort of like Beenie Babies.
  15. MassFamily

    MassFamily Mouseketeer

    Jan 13, 2010
    I appreciate the information, but it took the wind out of my sails. My daughter started collecting pins on our last trip, 4 years ago, and I was excited for her to revive that again and was going to buy some for her to trade, all she has now are the ones she bought and I hope she would still like those.

    But now, knowing that I have to watch her trades to make sure they are authentic, and don't want to have to explain fakes to a 9-year-old holding onto her innocence, changes my thoughts.

    My thoughts on the whole collecting thing is that you won't get your money back, but seeing the kids look at the racks of pins for that one special that they will love is priceless.
  16. twinklebug

    twinklebug Next Life: Imagineer

    Mar 25, 2005
    Therein lies the value of the pins to me. It's not the pin, but the memory brought on by looking at that pin that is priceless.

    I have an old lamp at home I've got all of my kid's most favorite pins stuck to the shade on as well as a few that just called to me (First year we were AP holders etc). I call it my Disney lamp and wouldn't trade any pin on it for anything :)
  17. DizzDoll

    DizzDoll DIS Veteran

    May 11, 2007
    I bought a couple of those "trading packs" a few years ago and did some trading - it was only OK. I buy my pins because those are the ones I really want. I have 8 lanyards filled with pins and plan on buying at least 2 more lanyards full this year. I happen to like collecting pins, and my son already laid claim to the collection when the time comes (my daughter claimed the countless photo albums!).
  18. mom2AidanAndEli

    mom2AidanAndEli DIS Veteran

    Apr 19, 2013
    I'll probably get blasted by the trading purists, but here's my spin....

    My kids have decided they want to trade for the first time on our next trip in August. I bought one of those 50-pin lots on eBay. Yes, probably a bunch of scrappers. But as long as Disney doesn't care, I'm good with that!

    They got so excited just going through that group and picking out which ones they wanted! Some they'll keep, some they'll trade. They've both decided some things they want to try to collect while there--ride specific, Donald Duck, Pixar, etc. Now, do they care if they're scrappers???? Not one bit! They'll just be thrilled when they find them!

    If I'm going to spend $5, $10, $15 or more for a pin, it's going to be for one they like and want to keep--not one to trade away. That's a valuable souvenir they can keep.

    If we're doing it just for the fun of trading and the "treasure hunt" aspect of finding the types of pins they're looking for--which will probably be scrappers themselves---then trading those second rate pins is fine by me!

    I first read all the pin trading pro's posts on here and started thinking the pin police were going to track us down if we dare to trade a scrapper!!! They got me paranoid and thinking it absolutely HAD to be an authentic, expensive pin or I was somehow some lowlife trying to take advantage of others.

    Truth is 99% of the kids don't care how much their pin is worth. They know what they like and what they want and are thrilled when they find it--whether it was part of an eBay lot or bought at an authorized store. If the adults are more concerned about getting their money's worth from pin trading, maybe they need a different hobby.
  19. gwmort

    gwmort DIS Veteran

    Feb 28, 2012
    Thats basically what we did.

    My kids have a special lanyard each with ride pins, we have a new rule whenever they get the nerve to ride a ride they haven't yet (usually because they were scared) they get the pin for that ride (bought new in park). Those aren't for trading.

    We have a cousin that is a big trader with lots of albums and such. We had her get us a lot of 50 pins for $35 online, split them among the kids and they used those for trading on our last trip. they each picked a style or two they liked and looked for members of the sets (vinylmation shaped ones, villains, etc...). I told them several times each no matter what our cousin said the only criteria they should use in trading is if they liked the one they were getting more than the one they were giving and not worry about any value it may have.

    The kids had a great time and we would do it again.
  20. Cherinva

    Cherinva Co-Host of the Va. DIS Meet and avid pin collector

    Oct 24, 2007
    You won't get blasted from me....I trade for the pure fun of it. The cost of the pins that Disney sells can seriously run into a ton of money....I buy only the ones that mean something to me for that trip and those I keep. (don't get me wrong, I have a lot of pins)....but for simple trading, I do buy from Ebay...I am careful of who I buy from, but it's just for the fun of it.....

    On several trips, I have been approached by little girls looking at my pins..if they see one they like, I don't trade it...I give it to her.....that is the best feeling in the world to me....I love seeing the smiles.

    Pin trading can also start up some good conversation with CMs
  21. chartle

    chartle DIS Veteran

    Jul 10, 2008
    Me too I only buy pins I want, like for favorite rides. Now my family, thats another story. My DW was very hesitant about the pin trading thing, she thought anyone could come up to her and DEMAND that they trade with her and she had no choice in the pin she gave them. :goodvibes

    After she figured it out she was a pin trading demon :hyper:. She would come back after an adventure asking me what she just got. Once it took us forever to find the right CM to tell her that the odd mystical tribal pin she had was the shower curtain design at the Poly. :rotfl:

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