If you are looking for an inexpensive souvenir from Walt Disney World then pressed pennies are perfect! To make a lasting, personal pressed penny collection there are several things you must know. This is my Ultimate Walt Disney World Pressed Penny Guide including where to find pressed penny machines, which pennies to use, cleaning pennies, and how to display them. I am also going to include some pressed penny hacks I have learned along the way.
Ultimate Walt Disney World Pressed Penny Guide
What pennies are good to use for pressed penny machines?
You would think you would want nice, new pennies. New pennies look ok at first, but they end up getting streaks in them during the pressing. This is because newer pennies are made with more zinc than copper. Pennies before 1982 contained 95% copper and 5% zinc. It is kind of reversed now and pennies are made with 97.5% zinc and 2.5% copper. Choose pennies that are made 1982 and older because they will not have streaks and last longer.
How to clean pennies
Many ways can be found online, but I am going to share with you my two favorite ways.
- Eraser. Use an eraser to remove gunk from dirty pennies. This method does take some patience, but it does work. Even though you will probably be prepared with your own stock of pennies at the park, pack an eraser in your luggage and/or park bag to clean up any 1982 or older pennies you discover on your trip.
- Vinegar and salt. This is the best way to clean a large number of pennies. Mix up a concoction of vinegar and salt. Stir it around to dissolve the salt and then dump in your dirty pennies. Mix it up a bit and let it sit for several minutes or a few hours. I had some stubborn pennies and they took longer than a few minutes.
Where to Find Pressed Penny Machines at Walt Disney World
Disney world has pressed penny machines in every nook and cranny at every resort and park. They are easy to find, and if you can’t find the one you are looking for Cast Members are very helpful. The best place to get the maps of where the machines are is HERE, they are the manufacturer of the machines. The website is updated frequently as the pennies do change quite often.
How Much are Pressed Pennies at Walt Disney World?
When I first wrote this post in 2016 all of the machines were 51 cents for a penny. As of 2019, I have noticed a lot of the machines are getting replaced with pressed pennies that cost more. While there are still some older pressed penny machines, I think eventually they will all be swapped out for the new prices.
The new machines are priced at $1 a penny and if you get all 8 that machine offers, it is $5. The $5 is a better deal. The new machines also take credit cards as long as you are getting the $5 deal. They also now supply the pennies so I am guessing they aren’t the best pennies (the older ones). Kind of sad, but still a fun, cheap souvenir.
How many pennies and quarters should I bring?
Well, there are over 1.000 pressed penny opportunities through the Disney Parks. You probably don’t want or need that many. I would set a limit per day that is right for your family. Factor in how much time you want to spend on this activity. It takes time to find the machines and press the pennies, probably about 5 minutes per machine.
I usually find myself doing no more than 20 pennies ($10 in quarters) on a given day. Every once in awhile I will do more if I am trying to find all the characters in one movie or something along those lines.
What is the best way to carry the pennies around the park?
Many people use the containers from M&M Minis or prescription drug bottles. Now that you can’t always use your own pennies, using one container for finished coins is a great idea if you don’t want to put them directly in your pressed penny book.
Displaying Pressed Penny Souvenirs
Walt Disney World does sell pressed penny books you can buy at the park and they are cheaper than the Disney ones you can find on Amazon. If you are looking for something to put all your pressed pennies (from other travel destinations) check out this cool Penny Passport Book. This book is cheaper than the Disney ones at the park and has a more grown-up look to it.
I love making things out of my pressed pennies like bracelets and earrings. I have also seen some cool pressed penny artwork.
Other Pressed Penny Hacks
- On the crank style penny machines, it is better to turn slowly to get a better image.
- If an attraction or character is leaving the park, make sure to grab that penny because usually when the character and/or attraction leaves so do the pressed coins.
Bonus Tip: Consider planning and booking your next Disney trip with an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner you can trust like Favorite Grampy’s Travels. They’ll help you get the best price for your vacation, share expert advice, and their services are totally FREE! Click Here to Get a no-obligation quote now 🙂
Post Originally Shared May 9th, 2016.
Do you collect pressed pennies, what ones do you collect?
Looking for More Souvenir Ideas?