About a month ago I made this post on another message board, and thought I would repost it here. I made a few replies with more info to the original post, so i am just going to copy them all to this post, so some of the responses may seem a little weird.
While I was working at the World of Disney at Downtown Disney this past fall, I ran into this one common misconception that lots of guests and Cast Members have about the store.
The Misconception is as follows:
"The World of Disney has every single product that you see in the parks."
This however is not true and leads to many sad and upset guests when they find this out. While the store is the Biggest Disney Branded merchandise location in the world, it is not that big.
Here is one general guideline that may help if your thinking about buying something in the park but are holding off until the last night of your trip to get it at the World of Disney.
WOD does not carry any product that has a park, ride or hotel logo on it. Of course there are always exceptions such as Pins and a bit of Pirates Merchandise.
I am posting this because I had seen this happen alot while working there for 5 months. This has lead to alot upset kids and adults who waited until their last night to get an item that they thought/were told was at the World of Disney. SO if your staying at a resort, buy what you see at the parks and use resort delivery so you dont have to carry it. If you change your mind about the item, return it to your hotel gift shop and return it. Dont leave your shopping to the last moment.
Yes, I forgot about the front of park delivery as we do not do that at Downtown Disney. But that is a wonderful service too.
Any item bought at the parks, dtd, waterparks, resorts can be returned to any other Disney merchandise shop on property (well, when I say all, there are always exceptions like outdoor carts and glowcarts) . Just keep track of the original receipt as it makes things go alot faster (if you do not, the price of the item has to be looked up and if they do not carry it in that shop it takes a few mins of phonecalls/computer work to find it), if you loose the receipt try to atleast have the tag for the item with the barcode/sku. Without a receipt you will get back merchandise credit that will work at any Disney Merchandise/Food and Beverage Location that will accept giftcards.
Also, Shipping home is a great service too. The most Disney charges for shipping is around $15-$20, and thats for purchases up to $1000 (dont quote me on that.. its been 5 months since I worked there and my mind is stressed with finals this past week). SO if you are buying lots of things at once, ship it straight home. All Disney merchandise locations (with the same excepts as above) can do this. And what is even better is that if you ship out of the state of Florida, you do not have to pay sales tax. If you are a really big spender, you could actually save money by doing this. From what I was told (again.. dont quote me on this) any thing mailed home is fully insured, so if it breaks or something is missing, you can call the mail order number and they will try to help you out (again, I am not guaranteeing anything, but it is Disney and we do aim to please).
One more added note about resort delivery for people who have not done so before. Items normally arrive the next afternoon at your resort's gift shop (with the exception of sometimes if you buy them later at night). You then go and pick up your bags at the gift shop. Also, I was told never to ship back food that could melt/break easily/go bad as the Florida sun is very strong and you never know where the bad will end up during their journey. Some cast members will send them but I however advise you not to.
As for Disney's Days of Christmas at Downtown Disney (where I had the pleasure of working for a few days before Christmas) Personalization services get way backed up during the holidays. If you plan on getting a personalized ordainment around this time of year, there may be a waiting list of up to 4-5 days, so go and get it early in your trip. The store does their best to do all the orders they can. Not only are there the two artists on the floor that you see, there are also several tables set up in the back where they work on them too.
(responce to a poster about how busy WOD is).... at night the store can get pretty crazy, the best time to shop is in the early morning or afternoon.
Another Hint for anyone shopping at WOD... The best/fastest places to get through the checkout lines are the rooms with the most registers. As of this past fall before the remodel these locations are the Princess room and now the new boys/pirates room. I'm sure this is still the same even after the remodel. Also I will add that I always loved working on the registers in the now pirate room that was down on the far end (next to the windows). For some reason no one would really line up down there and we would always have to wave people over (sometimes there would be no line down there and about 5-10 people in line down at the other end).
I've been trying to think of something else to add... so I will share a bit more about shipping. Say you went on a big shopping spree all week and while packing to go home you realize... oh no, you ran out of luggage space. You could do a couple things... a: return the stuff that does not fit (but who wants to do that?) B: Buy a new piece of Disney Luggage (available in several different sizes and a couple different styles) or C do what it called Post Sale Shipping.
You can take your Disney items to any Disney merchandise location and ship them all together for the same rate as you would if you shipped it when you bought it. This is helpful if you have bought on item here and one item there, you can combine them all together and pay for the shipping once. There are a few things to remember while doing this though. First, you must have the original receipt for whatever you are shipping home. No Receipt, no shipping. Next, the items had to of been bought at a Disney Owned Location. This means no items from the Lego store or Planet Hollywood, etc.
This also can be done for Resort Shipping too (and I assume front of park delivery will work too). If you bought something and do not feel like carrying it around any more. Just take your Disney item and the receipt to any Disney merchandise location and they can send it to your resort for you.
Questions, comments please let me know