We're being told that Disney is moving toward sending out more pin codes and giving fewer general public discounts. A pin code is a discount that's specific to you. They're generally a little better than the general public discount that's available. You get them by signing up at the Disney.com site and then you wait. Some people get them every month, some never get one. There really doesn't seem to be a surefire method for getting one, but we've heard that if you play around with the vacation portion of the site, your chances of getting a code are higher. In the past, Disney didn't send out a lot of pin codes, but this summer the number of pin codes available seems to have exploded.
The newest pin code, called "Game On" offers room discounts and free quick service dining at the values. There are a few catches with these pin codes, for example the room discount is non-refundable in some cases, But, the one issue that's been cropping up and causing a lot of complaints is that some of the codes that are being sent out aren't a discount at all! They're rack rate. So make sure you get a code that's an actual discount.
You can do one of two things to ensure that your code is actually going to save you money. One, call your travel agent and have her take care of it. She'll call Disney and see if this code is for an actual savings. Or, if you're working on your own, before you call Disney, go to the Disney site and run the dates you want for full price. Once you have that number, call Disney and have them apply the code. Some of the cast members don't recognize these codes as not being actual discounts. It's not their fault, because the code can be confusing. You're on your own to determine whether or not you're going to save money.
This isn't new. I've had clients send me pin codes that are for full rack rate in the past. In one case, the client is a very Disney-savvy guest, so it isn't like these codes are easy to discern from actual pin codes. If anyone would have known the difference, she would have. Just be wary of these "codes" and know what you should expect to pay for rack rate before you go in and you'll be fine.