Rant: Disappointed And Saddened Fobbed Off By Disney Cruise Line Over Photos
We recently sailed on the Disney Wish (which we will be publishing reviews soon) and couldn't be more disappointed with how the photo system works on Disney Cruises. On the Halloween night, we got dressed up and stood in line for a while to meet Chip and Dale to get a nice Halloween photo. Lorna was super excited to meet them in our and their Halloween costumes and said that she'll be happy paying for the digital photo.
By the customer service desks, there's a host of screens where you can view all the photos you've had taken. The next morning we had a look and the photos were not on there yet, no big deal, we'll try later. On the final morning, we noticed a photo we had taken on the very first night finally went on there. We didn't want to purchase that one so we went off to enjoy our cruise waiting for our Chip and Dale photo to appear. We only wanted to pay the $20 or so for the digital Chip and Dale photo. At that point, it said on the screens we can access our photos via the Disney Cruise website. If you've been on a Disney Cruise you know the wifi is painfully slow, but I managed to log in and eventually see the first-night photo.
Towards the end of the final night, we walked past the photo screens and went to see if the photo appeared yet, and it did! There were some instructions on the screen telling us to use the website to download our photos after we disembark and got home. No problem I thought, I'd just do that.
With Walt Disney World and Disneyland Paris photos, you have the option to view and buy them once you get home (if you didn't purchase Memory maker) and we assumed the same for Disney Cruise Line, especially as the Photopass computers told me I could do so. Sadly, that's not the case.
When we got off the ship, the website kicked me off telling me I wasn't on board anymore. That's odd, I thought. Then I went to the Disney Cruise website under the "Cruise Photos" section and then entered my Castaway club ID and logged in- no photos were there. Not even the one on the first night. Disney Cruise Line has a dedicated contact email for photos, so I filled out all the information asked to locate the photo so I can purchase it. A week later, no reply. So I sent another.
5 weeks later I finally got a reply telling me that she cannot assist me because I had to purchase the digital photo on board.
Thank you for your message to Disney Cruise Line.
We apologize that you were unable to purchase your desired photos during your cruise. We truly wish we could assist you with your request to view or purchase photos after your sailing. Photos are available for pre-reservation online or in-person purchase onboard. Regretfully, we are unable to share or sell photos after your sailing has been completed. We are so sorry for any disappointment this may cause.
Thank you again for sailing with us.
I was completely gobsmacked how:
1) How long it takes the photos to come through which meant our only chance to purchase it was the last thing on the last night. I really wish I just bought it on that final night when they finally appeared, and wish I didn't trust the verbiage of being able to do it when I'm home.
2) It wasn't made clear at the time I had to purchase it then as the Photopass computers said I could download photos at home.
3) that it took over 5 weeks to get a reply.
I guess this is a bit of PSA to let you know that if you don't purchase the expensive ~$250 Photopass package and the photos do not come through in time, you won't be able to purchase them, and Disney won't help you get them. We really wanted that photo and could not be more disappointed. Should I have really spent the extra time to know the photos don't work like other Disney locations? Sure. However, it says pretty clearly that I can view and download them at home. Nowhere did it say "buy now or lose them forever".
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