People always say that Disney is the most magical and wonderful place on earth, and for many of us, that's probably super true. We might have begged our parents to take us to Disney World or Disney Land back when we were growing up. Maybe our cries and pleas worked and we got a magical vacation out of the whole deal... or maybe our mom and dad said no and took us to the beach instead (which was still pretty awesome, even if we whined about it -- hey, we were kids, give us a break).
The truth is that working at Disney is a lot different than just visiting one of the parks and having tons of fun. The employees that help customers create amazing memories have to follow a whole bunch of rules. Sure, we totally get that people have to follow rules and that nothing is all that simple, but we might be surprised by some of the things that Disney employees have to do (or not do, as the case might be). Some of these might never have even crossed our minds! Ready to find out more?! Read on to find out rules that Disney employees absolutely have to follow!
15 The Physical Requirements To Become A Princess Are CRAZY Specific
Back when we were kids, we probably dreamed about being a certain Disney princess. Maybe we were all about Belle or Snow White or Sleeping Beauty. The truth is that if we literally want to be one of those princesses (aka we want to get a job at Disney and dress up as one of them), there's a catch: we have to be a certain height in order to snag the position.
Yup, there's a rule about how tall princesses can be. If anyone wants this job, they have to be between 5'4 and 5'8. Yes, it's really that specific. Why is that rule in place? Honestly, we're not really sure. But that's the rule and that's just the way that it is. Everyone has to follow it.
14 There Are Strict Rules In Place That Prevent Employees From Talking About Their Job
Disney employees have to keep things about their jobs and what happens at the park super hush-hush. They can't talk about their job when they leave, and they definitely can't talk about it online. That's a huge rule that everyone has to follow.
We totally understand why this rule would be in place, right? It would definitely be pretty tempting for people to share all kinds of things that happen when they're at work, and since Disney is such a massive, popular brand, that might not be good PR at the end of the day. We bet that a lot of people have probably broken this rule because they either forgot or weren't thinking or just didn't care... and they probably didn't end up staying at the park very long.
13 They Have To Keep Their Costumes On No Matter What, Even When There's A Heat Wave
Yup. Disney employees can't be out of costume or character ever, so if they want to show up to work in clothing other than what their princess or prince wears, it's a no-go.
This is in keeping with some of the other rules since employees aren't allowed to talk about their jobs whether to other people or online and they aren't allowed to talk about things that have nothing to do with Disney, either. It's just all Disney, all the time. But maybe this is a good thing, right? After all, if we worked there, we would definitely want to get into the spirit of things all the time and that would mean staying in character. Otherwise, we might not do as good of a job playing make-believe which is of course the entire point of the job.
12 They Can Never Say That They Don't Know The Answer To Your Questions
Oh yes. This is definitely a rule that Disney employees have to follow.
If someone asks them a question and they don't know the answer, they actually can't say that they don't know the answer. They basically have to find out the answer right then and there. How would they do that? People say that they can ask around and try to find someone else (aka another Disney employee) who knows or phone someone that can give them the information that they need. This is a rule that makes sense since there's nothing more frustrating than being a client or customer somewhere and needing some info or needing some help and not being able to get what you need. But it's still a rule that we would have no idea was actually a thing.
11 Their Hair Has To Be Perfectly Brushed And Neat 24/7
According to Brit + Co, there are a lot of rules about what employees' hair has to look like. This goes for women in particular. Female hair has to be "neatly combed and arranged in a classic, easy-to-maintain style... The Disney Look does not permit extremes in dyeing, bleaching or coloring. If the hair color is changed, it must be natural-looking and well maintained. Subtle highlighting or frosting is permitted as long as it creates a uniform look over the whole head."
We do think that it makes sense that Disney wouldn't want its employees to have crazy hair colors or anything like that since it would be pretty distracting, but... isn't everyone wearing a wig anyway? You know, since everyone's in costume? That's what we would assume.
10 They Can't Eat While On The Park Grounds...No Exceptions
Okay, okay, so technically Disney employees can eat. That would be crazy. And not cool at all. But they aren't allowed to be seen eating something while they're working at the park and during their shift.
We're pretty sure that they get breaks so they can have lunch or snacks or whatever, but at first glance, this does seem like a pretty rough rule to have to follow. After all, employees are standing around for hours, right? What if they get low blood sugar or get super starving and just want to grab a banana or a granola bar or something? Maybe this rule was put in place because people were taking advantage and chowing down on cheeseburgers and fries while giving tours or talking to kids or something...
9 If You Have To Wear Glasses? You Can't Get The Job
If someone has glasses and gets hired at Disney, they're not supposed to wear ones that are too crazy or colorful. It's against the rules. Yup. It's in the handbook and everything.
As the Daily Mail reported, quoting the Disney handbook, glasses have to be "a conservative color and style" and "Eyeglasses and sunglasses should not detract from the costume or contradict the theme of the show." We do think that makes sense and seems logical, although at first, it does seem like a super harsh rule. Maybe someone just has to get used to wearing contacts if they get hired at Disney. And if they really don't want to give up their bright red glasses, maybe they just have to look for another job.
8 They Have To Clean Up Garbage
Yup. We might have never thought that Disney employees have to pick up garbage when they see it, but this is a rule that everyone has to follow.
Any Disney employee that sees garbage on the ground or anywhere in the park has to clean it up. As in it's actually part of the requirements of working there. Apparently there's a method to picking up garbage, too: they have to "swoop" it up. Seriously. It might sound kind of silly but that's a much prettier and more graceful way of picking up garbage, so that's why it's a rule. If any of us have been to a Disney park, maybe we even noticed this happening and wondered why. Well, now we know that this is part of the rules.
7 They Have To Point With Two Fingers
If anyone works at Disney, they can't point at something with one finger. They have to use two fingers.
This might sound like a joke... but it's not. It's the honest truth. This is a rule. And it's a rule that everyone who works there absolutely has to follow. Why is this a thing? According to Brit + Co, using one finger is super offensive in some places, and since people visit Disney from all over the world, this has to be a rule in order to be as inclusive and nice as possible. Hmmm. That does seem logical, of course, but if we didn't know that this was a rule and we asked for directions and saw someone point with two fingers, we would be pretty confused. It just wouldn't make any sense.
6 They Have To Only Chat About Disney-Related Things, Nothing Else
Employees can talk about anything that has to do with Disney when they communicate with costumes, but they're not allowed to let the conversation steer away from that.
That might seem like it can't possibly be a rule... and yet it is. It's definitely a rule. So if any of us go to a Disney park and mention something else, we won't get an answer. It's good to know this because otherwise, we might think that the employee was being super rude and insulting but in fact they would just be following the rules. The more you know, right?! Of course, people might still find this really confusing since chances are, people don't know about this rule... But it's obviously in place for a reason, even though it might not make a ton of sense to us.
5 There Are Top-Secret Code Words And Phrases That They Must Use
And they're mostly about, well, bodily functions. Yeah. We know. So lovely and so pleasant to think about. But this is an amusement park that we're talking about... There are definitely all kinds of gross accidents that happen all the time. After all, we're also talking about an amusement park where a lot of kids go... This is definitely a part of the job that isn't as much fun as dressing up like a pretty princess. It's actually no fun at all.
So what are some of the code words? If someone pees, it's a Code U and if a horse, um, goes to the washroom, it's Code H. And Code V means that someone got a little too sick on a ride (and maybe ate too much junk food beforehand).
4 They Have To Learn Their Characters' Autograph Before Getting The Part
If little kids want to get an autograph from their all-time favorite Disney character, that employee better know the right autograph to write. Because it's literally a rule that employees have to follow. And if someone gets it wrong, well, we're not sure what happens, but they would probably get in trouble.
We have to wonder how long it takes them to learn something like this. Maybe some people are more creative and super fast learners so it's really no big deal at all, whereas others honestly take forever to recreate the autograph flawlessly. It's a pretty interesting thing to have to do as part of your job, we have to say. It's probably more fun than learning code words for people who have peed on the ground or thrown up after a ride... Just a guess.
3 They're Banned From Using Any Form Of Social Media
Since Disney employees aren't supposed to chat about the fact that they're, well, Disney employees, it also makes sense that they wouldn't be allowed to use social media.
This is obviously for PR reasons and for good reason: it would be devastating if employees were constantly sharing their days and experiences on social media. Sure, most of the time it would probably be pretty harmless and even fun to see what they were posting, but if anyone complained about their job or said anything negative, it wouldn't look very good for the overall brand. We have to say though that since it's 2018 and we all love our social media platforms, this does seem like a tough rule. Would we be able to give up our constant use of Instagram?!
2 Speaking Of Social Media, They Also Have A Strict No Cell Phone Policy
This is the same rule as the eating one: employees can never use their phones when they're working. That means no texting, checking email, and posting on social media (as we already mentioned, of course).
This is probably the hardest rule for employees to follow. How many times have we been bored during the day or had a ten-minute break so we texted our boyfriends or best friends? How many times have we checked our social media accounts for the tenth time that hour? We just can't quit our obsession with our cell phones. Well, if we worked at Disney, we wouldn't be able to check our phones if we wanted to keep working there. We would just have to get used to living phone-free (at least during our work day).
1 Their Physical Appearance Is Often Checked Up On And Regulated
It makes sense that if you work at Disney, your appearance is going to be super important. After all, you're dressing up as people's favorite characters. So your looks are really your entire job.
Disney employees have to keep their nails fairly short and they're not allowed to have tattoos, either. That's bad news for women who want to wear colorful and crazy glasses and have cool tattoos, right?! Oh well. This might not be the job that they want to have since they would be told to change up their appearance (or maybe they just wouldn't be hired). Guys also have to keep their beards clean and fairly short so anyone with a long hipster beard is out of luck. Who knew that there were so many rules at this magical park?!