I was determined to do some character meets during this trip as I had never done any before on the trips I went on when I was younger. I had a list of characters I really wanted to meet and I was lucky enough to be able to meet three of them; Moana, Pluto and Jessie. The other two characters I was desperate to meet were Woody and Buzz but we chose to try and do the character meets on our second (and last) day and sadly Buzz wasn’t out at all for some reason that day, and unfortunately a cast member gave us the wrong time for Woody and when we went it was Jessie again (who we had already met the day before) and Woody wasn’t going to be coming out until much later and I was in too much pain to wait and we had to go back to the hotel so sadly I missed him 😪
Although we had planned to do Character meets on our second day, we actually met Jessie on the first as we just happened to be walking by when she was out so it seemed like a good opportunity to do it. I had my green disabled pass so we went to the disabled queuing area and were the only ones there at that time. The cast member with Jessie was absolutely fantastic and we only had to wait for one family to finish meeting Jessie before he let us have a turn. Jessie was the absolute CUTEST! She adored my Toy Story ears made for me by my amazing friend Lydia of Mermade Handmade Treasures and loved looking at all my pins and brooches. We didn’t have a photo pass but the cast member with her was more than happy to take some pictures of me and my Mum with Jessie together. I really had the best time meeting her, it was the highlight of the holiday for me!
The next character we met was Pluto, on our second day as planned and we actually met him during Extra Magic Hours (if you stay at a Disney Hotel, you get to enter the park an hour earlier than other visitors). Again, we joined the disabled access queue as I had my green pass. There was one family ahead of us, and we did have to wait a lot longer than with Jessie the day before as they would let a few families from the other queue go before they would let someone from the disabled queue go; but it was still a lot quicker and easier than if we had had to join the main queue. Again, Pluto was absolutely adorable and I had a great time meeting him. He was really playful and cheeky! As usual, my Mum took photos of me and Pluto together on our own camera, and then the cast member with him took some of the three of us together. There was an actual photo pass photographer with Pluto too and she did take photos of us also and gave us a photo pass card but we didn’t get any printed as we were happy enough with our own photos. I just wanted to mention here too that we tried to go and queue to meet Donald and someone else but can’t remember who now, during the Extra Magic Hours too but it was a little annoying as we were told that they wouldn’t let any green pass users meet them until after 10am when the park opened for all visitors so I thought that was pretty unfair as EMH are meant to be for all guests of Disney Hotels to be able to do stuff early before other guests arrive so it was pretty annoying that we were told we couldn’t do that, especially as all the other areas of the park that should have been open for EMH were all closed until general opening that day for some reason. So all we could do during EMH on that day was character meets but we weren’t allowed to do any except Pluto so yeah, I wasn’t impressed by that.
The final character we met was Moana! The line for her was pretty long so when we went in and went to the disabled queuing area, they gave us a slip of paper with a time to return on it for about 45 minutes later but that worked quite well for us as we were ready for a rest so we were able to go and have a drink in a cafe whilst we waited. When we got back at our time, we did then have to wait about another 10 minutes but it wasn’t too bad and I was enjoying watching the little kids meet her and seeing their happy faces 😍 Now, Moana was absolutely lovely but I have to say, I did find it a little awkward 🙈 I just think I prefer the non-talking characters in the full character suits. I just found it a bit weird talking to her so I think if I were to try meeting human characters again in the future, I would definitely have an autograph book for them to sign so there was something to “do”and break the ice a bit. She asked me what my favourite song was and if I enjoyed her story, and we spoke about her Grandma Tala for a bit. It was nice but yeah, I definitely found it a bit weird lol, but I’m sure kids would find it amazing 💖 Again, my Mum took photos of me and Moana and then the cast member with Moana took photos of the three of us together. Moana even got my Mum to pose so I was impressed by that 😂 Also, as with Pluto, there was a photo pass photographer there who took photos too and gave us the card but we didn’t get any printed. One thing to mention quickly too was that the lighting in there was a bit weird so some of our photos didn’t come out particularly well so you might want to test your camera settings whilst you are waiting.
I did want to meet some more characters but the park was so busy that day and the weather was pretty bad and I just got a bit too overwhelmed and tired and I was in a lot of pain so sadly we ended up having to go back to the hotel quite early so we didn’t get to meet any more. The green pass was amazing for the meets though (except for the issue mentioned earlier when we weren’t allowed to meet some during the Extra Magic Hours) and it was a great help. If we hadn’t had that, I don’t think we’d have managed to meet any at all as I just wouldn’t have managed the long queue times so if you can qualify for one, I definitely recommend you get one and use it for the character meets as well as the rides.