Have you already met the Fab Five and the classic Disney Princesses and are looking for even more character fun? This post is for you! I am going to share with you how to meet rare Disney Characters.
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How to Meet Rare Disney Characters
First, let’s start off by defining what makes a character rare. A rare Disney Character is one that is not normally around in the four Disney Parks, they do not have a regular meeting place. Rare characters can include villains, sidekicks, princes, and older Disney characters. Rare characters also include regular Disney Characters in special outfits.
Let me let you in on a secret, rare character greetings that happen more than just at paid events like Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party or Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. I am going to talk about those events, but there are many other ways to see some rare Disney Characters.
New! Resort Character Greetings
These character greetings were announced in August 2019.
New character interactions coming to select Walt Disney World Resort hotels for a limited time
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. Chip and Dale can be found in and around the lawn area at Wilderness Lodge.
Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Chip and Dale will be interacting with guests at the Contemporary Resort playing lawn games like corn hole
Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. Lilo, Stitch, Mickey, and Pluto can be found in the lawn outside of the Great Ceremonial Hall.
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Pooh and Tigger can be found around the various sidewalks at the resort, whereas Mary Poppins can be found by Main Pool topiaries. Alice and the Mad Hatter will be found in and around the Mad Hatter Tea Party pool.
Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resorts. Daisy, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy will be in and around the pool area ready to catch some sun with guests.
Disney’s BoardWalk Resort. Daisy, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy will also be around the pool area at the BoardWalk to partake in the fun
*Meetings are meant to be informal. No end date was given. No daily schedule available.
Disney Holiday Parties
Holiday parties are one way to see rare characters. The waits for some of these Disney Characters like Jack and Sally can exceed 5 hours (almost the entire party).
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party/ Boo Bash
Here are the rare Disney Characters you can possibly meet during the 2021 Boo Bash. The characters may change slightly from year to year but this is a good list.
- Mickey Mouse at Town Square Theater (dressed in Halloween costume)
- Jack Skellington and Sally
- Seven Dwarfs
- Queen of Hearts, Alice, Tweedle-Dee, Tweedle-Dum, Mad Hatter
- Pooh, Eeyore, Piglet, and Tigger (dressed in Halloween costumes)
- Ariel and Eric
- Minnie Mouse (dressed in Halloween costume)
- Cruella DeVil
- Daisy Duck (dressed in Halloween costume)
- Goofy (dressed in Halloween costume)
- Donald Duck (dressed in Halloween costume)
- Stitch (dressed in Elvis costume – special for 2018)
- Tarzan, Jane, and Terk
- Captain Jack Sparrow
- Aladdin, Abu, Genie, Jasmine
Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
- Aladdin + Abu, Jasmine + Genie
- Captain Jack Sparrow
- Jack Skellington as Sandy Claws
- Ariel and Prince Eric
- Rapunzel and Flynn Rider, Aurora and Prince Phillip, Cinderella and Prince Charming, Tiana and Naveen
- Snow White and her Prince
- The Seven Dwarfs
- Santa Goofy
- Mary Poppins and Bert (next to Mickey’s Philarmagic)
- Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps
Like the parties, this is a more expensive way to meet rare Disney Characters. The longer the race is, the rarer the characters. I have done the 10K and there were a few rare characters along the run. Sadly, I was too slow to stop for character pictures.
Characters for runDisney races usually have a lot to do with the theme of the race. The Star Wars runs are the only way to see rare Star Wars characters that I know of since Disney stopped Star Wars Weekends. Characters are present before the race, along the race course, and at the end of the race.
runDisney Character Training
Here is a secret. Since rare Disney Characters are used for races, a lot of the characters don’t have much practice meeting guests. Disney will have surprise, unplanned, unannounced rare character meet and greets. The few days before the race be on the lookout. Some of these will happen at the Character Palooza (explained further down this post) but some are just random greetings.
Now we are coming to my favorite rare Disney character greetings. these ones are either included in the price of your park ticket or are completely free because they are at the resorts.
During Valentine’s Day Disney has couples out. Each park will have 2-4 extra characters. I have noticed these change every year so you never know who you may encounter. Some ones I have seen/heard of include:
- Ariel with Prince Eric
- Jane and Tarzan
- Flick and Atta
- Tiana and Naveen
During Easter at Disney rare characters come out to play at the resorts and not just the deluxe monorail resorts. Each resort will have a schedule of who is coming out to greet guests and their location. You do not have to be staying at the resort to meet the characters. You can not park at the monorail resorts, but other resorts may allow parking if they are not too busy. Best bet would be to park at Disney Springs or the TTC and bus over to the resort of your choice.
On Earth Day, Animal Kingdom is the place for rare character greetings. I know for sure Jiminy Cricket makes an appearance.
Photopass day is Disney’s celebration of World Photography Day. During this day, Disney releases a lot of rare characters in all four parks along with some special magic shots too! Last year Disney had some villains out, so the Halloween party is not the only time to meet Disney Villains.
To find out who will be out during Photopass Day, check out the Disney Parks Blog the first week of August. They usually have the schedule out by then.
During Christmas, there are characters at all the resorts just like at Easter. The schedule will be posted at the resort.
Character Palooza is a secret meet and greet at Disney’s Hollywood Studios that occurs every day. The characters are characters that are in Fantasmic. You can often find rare Disney characters like Brer Fox, Max, or Robin Hood at this event that you might not find anywhere else. Since Disney does not want tons of people standing around waiting, if you ask Cast Members, they will act like they know nothing about it.
Character Palooza typically takes place between 4 pm and 7 pm and can happen by Tower of Terror or around Echo Lake.
There is not a Photopass Photographer available but many times other guests or the character attendant will use your phone to take the picture for you. Characters who can sign autographs will. This is a very special experience.
Disney is always having special events like weddings, cast member parties, and other events that use rarer characters. To train these characters they make surprise appearances in the parks.
Unexpected Magical Greetings
Sometimes Disney will put out a character just because. I have met many characters like Queen of Hearts, the Tweedles, Pinnochio, and the Beast just out of the blue.
Tips and Secrets for Meeting Rare Characters
- Have a Camera Ready. During some of the rare characters greetings, there is not a Photopass Photographer. Have your cell phone or camera out and ready. A character attendant may take the picture for you with your camera.
- Have Your Autograph Books Ready. If the characters sign autographs, have whatever you are getting autographed ready. My favorite book to use is Disney’s Who’s Who book, so many of the characters are in the book and the book makes for great character interactions.
- Have a Plan for Holiday Party Popular Characters. Jack & Sally, the Seven Dwarfs, Sandy Claws, and the villains are very popular. One strategy is to line up for the character as soon as you enter the park for the party, not the party official start time but the time party goers can enter the park. You may be not riding rides during those 2 hours but you are getting your prized character greeting out of the way early to enjoy the rest of the party. Another plan is to go late in the party, like 30 minutes before the park closes. Lines are usually low then.
- Get in Line. If you are walking by and see a character you usually don’t see in the parks or are not in the My Disney Experience App, get in line. They may not be there 20 minutes later.
- Plan on Long Lines. Rare characters bring crowds and sometimes even with the best planning, there will be long lines. These character experiences do not have Fastpass. I have a list of 20+ things to do while waiting in line to help pass the time.