Shopping – an expert guide

Themed Disney stores – designed to blend into their surroundings – appear everywhere across the Parks

In every corner of the parks, from Main Street to the kiosks outside themed rides, you will find Disney Stores of all shapes, sizes and themes. The choice seems overwhelming and it’s not helped by each store selling slightly different merchandise.

Exclusively Disneyland Paris?

Some merchandise on sale is exclusive to Disneyland Paris

Some of the items that you can buy from the Disney Store contain tags with Disneyland Paris logos and the word ‘exclusivite’, which implies that it’s exclusive to the parks – but some of the items can also be bought from the Disney Store’s UK website.

This can be a bonus if you see something and wish you’d bought it at the time!

The range on the website is limited, but it’s helpful, especially for some of the more fragile items that you’d rather not risk in the baggage hold or the bottom of your rucksack.

Prices on the UK Disney Store are also comparable to the Euro price and, of course, there’s no faffing about with changing currencies.

Exclusive offers

Shops in the Disneyland Paris parks all have a range of special offers – it might be the chance to buy Mickey towels or bags for half-price. In another store, Frozen pyjamas were on offer if you spent 30 Euros.

The deals are great … but they can’t be mixed and matched across different stores. And if you can’t make up the 30 Euros worth of goods from the one store that’s offering the deal, you’ve lost it.

Straight to your hotel

Each Disney Store operates a brilliant service that enables you to shop and have the goods sent straight to your hotel room for free. It does require a bit of paperwork to be filled in, so the purchase will take longer.

You also need to buy before 3pm on the day. Goods are sent to your hotel’s gift shop by 8pm and you can collect them by handing over your copy of the collection receipt.

Be warned that the hotel will hand the goods over to anyone with the collection receipt, so if you lose your receipt, someone else may collect your goods.

Charged to your hotel

Your hotel can arrange an Easy-Pass, which allows you to buy goods in one transaction, saving you on currency conversion fees

If you’re staying in a Disney hotel and have set up the Disney Hotel Easy-Pass instead of paying for goods in shops with cash or credit card, you can have it all charged to your hotel bill.

This is especially handy if your credit or debit card charges a handling fee for every transaction made in Euros in addition to the exchange rates.

Instead of having lots of little transactions that all acrue a handling fee of (say) £2, you’ll have one £2 charge for everything. Makes sense and there’s no cost from Disney for having this service. But do check your bill before you check out the hotel!

Receipts straight into the bags

When I was a Saturday boy working in Debenhams, our security staff would constantly remind us never to place receipts into bags – if your carrier bag was stolen, then unscrupulous people could take your bag back to the shop and demand a refund. If you’d paid in cash, then the refund would be in cash.

So it’s a bit of a bugbear to see shop assistants place the receipts straight into the shopping bag: take them out straight away and put them into your wallet for safe keeping, especially if you’ve paid in cash.

No park tickets? You can still shop

The Disney Village features a wide range of stores, offering Disney merchandise without entering the parks

Entry to the Disney Village area is free and there are a wide selection of shops. The most prominent is the World of Disney, right by the security entrance.

Elsewhere, there is a Disney Store filled with a selection of merchandise, a clothing store, a Princess-themed store and a Lego store.

The Lego store is brilliant as it contains a play area allowing youngsters to make something rather than just look at all the precious things in the shop.

Some of these shops are interconnected – but you have to buy in the relevant sections rather than lump it all together as one purchase.

Do you have any shopping tips to share? add a comment and help us make the best possible guide!