The Perks of Being a Disney Nurse

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Written by Ayana Dunn, BSN, RN Content Writer, IntelyCare
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Reviewed by Morganne Skinner, BSN, RN Content Writer, IntelyCare
A disney nurse stands outside in blue scrubs.

What comes to mind when you think of the Disney theme parks? Colorful fireworks bursting behind lavish castles? Beloved childhood characters and exhilarating rides? Do you wonder what it’s like to work as a Disney nurse? This one-of-a-kind career sounds hard to pass up.

Keep reading to learn about the perks and pitfalls of working at one of Disney’s theme parks, how to get a job as an amusement park nurse, and answers to commonly asked questions.

What Is a Disney Nurse and What Do Disney Nurses Do?

Disney nurses are RNs who can be called upon to help park visitors and staff. Unlike most nursing specialties, nurses who work for Disney’s theme parks can act as first responders. In other words, they’re the first health professionals to arrive when an issue arises in the park. Disney’s amusement parks are open year-round, so Disney nurses must be prepared to work in difficult weather conditions and during events held at the park.

Typical duties for a nurse at Disney include:

  • Providing first aid to Disney staff and visitors
  • Stabilizing patients who need to be transported to medical facilities until EMTs arrive
  • Documenting the situation, assessments, and outcomes in the medical records
  • Providing age-appropriate care

Who Qualifies to Work as a Nurse at Disney?

If you’re interested in Disney nurse jobs, you’ll need to gain some experience first. It’s also helpful to have strong interpersonal skills and flexibility to qualify for this job. Typical qualifications for this role include:

  • At least three years of clinical experience
  • Experience in a variety of settings or with occupational health preferred
  • Skilled in customer service and time management
  • Excellent soft skills when communicating
  • Enough physical strength and stamina to assist various body types in different locations
  • Current RN license and basic life support (BLS) certification

What Makes Being a Nurse at Disney Unique?

Nurses who work for Disney’s theme parks practice in an environment like no other. Disney operates 12 theme parks around the world, in addition to cruise ships and shopping centers. This creates a wide range of nursing roles and locations available with Disney:

  • Disney World nurse: Work at one of four theme parks or associated resorts in Florida.
  • Disneyland nurse: Find a job at two theme parks or nearby resorts in California.
  • Disney international nurse: Travel the world to work at one of Disney’s theme parks in Paris, Shanghai, Hong Kong, or Tokyo.
  • Disney cruise nurse: Take your nursing skills out to sea on one of Disney’s cruise ships.

While most of the positive and negative aspects of this job are a matter of opinion, below are some general pros and cons of this role.

Pros of Being a Disney Nurse

Unique Opportunities to Make People Smile

Imagine you’re treating a child with a dislocated shoulder. You prevent the pain from intensifying by providing ice and acetaminophen, and you manage to put the shoulder back in place. You provide emotional support to the child and family to minimize the impact of this incident on their vacation.

You suddenly have a bright idea — you ask one of your costumed coworkers to speak to them. Picture that child’s eyes lighting up when Ariel or Mickey Mouse hugs them before they resume their time at the park. That small gesture on your part can become one of their dearest memories.

Novelty Is Always Around the Corner

As a nurse at Disney, you have the chance to meet an interesting variety of people from all walks of life. You may interact with individuals from faraway countries, costume designers, actors, and maybe even the occasional celebrity. If you’re a person who likes variety, working for Disney could be a great fit for you.

Great Employee Benefits

Disney offers typical benefits that you can expect from a large company, like health insurance, tuition assistance, and a retirement fund. On top of that, they offer career development, commuter assistance, employee discounts, and free entrance to Disney’s theme parks!

Cons of Being a Disney Nurse

Language and Cultural Barriers

The flip side to constantly meeting people from different cultural and professional backgrounds is having to navigate the variety of potential misunderstandings. This can slow the pace of care and lead to misinterpretations. It helps to have strong cultural competence in order to better handle such scenarios.

Traveling Long Distances to Reach Patients

You may have to treat people throughout the park premises, including parking lots. You won’t be the only nurse on duty, but you might still have to travel a considerable distance before reaching the area you’re searching for. Then, you may need to find your way through rides and crowds to reach your specific patient.

High Costs of Living

Disney’s theme parks are often in cities with high costs of living, such as Anaheim, Paris, Tokyo, and Hong Kong. Make sure you’re financially prepared for life outside of work.

How Much Do Disney Nurses Make?

A Disney nurse’s salary range can vary based on location, currency exchange for nurses working in theme parks outside of the U.S., and experience level. Disney typically doesn’t publish its salaries, but according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for an RN is $89,010 per year.

How to Work as a Nurse in Disney World

Make sure you meet the qualifications listed above. If you’ve got what it takes to be successful in this role, keep an eye out for openings on the Disney Careers website. They hire nurses throughout the year for their various locations.

Your Nursing Career Can Take You Places

The unique and exciting career path of a Disney nurse isn’t the only way to shake up your career. Need a change of pace? Check out all the nursing jobs available right now on IntelyCare and find one that fits your needs.