Thursday, 17 September 2015

Memory Maker - is it worth it?

For the first time in forever I have holiday photos with me in them thanks to using the Memory Maker package.

We decided to purchase Memory Maker before we went on vacation and paid the $169.

My tech gear I took

Being an avid photographer with a fairly decent DSLR (Canon EOS 70D) and GoPro a couple of friends wondered why I would pay for photos when I can take my own.  The main advantage for our vacation was simply the ability to have me in the photos, particularly at the character meet and greets.

Why Memory Maker and not just PhotoPass?

Memory Maker gives you the additional added benefits of:

  • Attraction photos and videos
  • Magic shots
  • Dining photos

Reading various blogs about the PhotoPass photographers you can easily get a mixed message about the value and quality of their work.

This is our experience.

  • Without fail, every single PhotoPass photographer was polite, helpful and keen to take our photo.  We never felt rushed to have a photo taken (apart from when meeting characters)
  • Whilst most of the photos are standard shots taken at each location with standard settings we asked a couple of times for specific shots and the photographers were happy to help.  We wanted one photo of just our MagicBands which they were happy to take.
  • We do not appear to have any missing or lost photos and all the photos were seamlessly added to our account.
  • It was really good looking at the photos (via the website) on mobile devices whilst in the parks.  Since coming back from our vacation, there is now good integration of the PhotoPass system into the My Disney Experience Mobile App - it would have been brilliant if that had been available while we were away.
  • The attraction and rides photos worked well and after an initial confusion about selecting your photo from the screen with our Magic Band it all worked well.  We love the couple of ride videos - they were lovely.
  • The magic shots are nice.  We felt a little odd at times holding a strange pose but the photos are very sweet.  This is a nice touch.
  • The extra photos you get added each day of characters and the parks are good.  If you do visit the same park more than once you will get multiple copies.
  • The PhotoPass website works well and the level of customisation of photos is good.  You can add borders and other effects.  It is nice to see your photos grouped by date and park.
And now for the disappointing part ....

  • Downloading your photos as a ZIP (or multiple) files is relatively straight forward and we were able to do this easily when we got home.  I like to organise my photos and make good use of the metadata.  The additional meta data does include the date and time the photo was taken but this is not incorporated into the filename or date created.

In conclusion I am really glad we used Memory Maker and would definitely use it again.