Disney World Visit

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2003
Disney World Visit
6
Mon, 06-02-2003 - 4:26pm
Hi! My son Nicholas is 6 with PDD. NOS. We are really fortunate in that he's done great and is now very verbal and related. the last pieces of the puzzle for us is dealing with frustration , stimulus etc. Here is my question/cocern: we had used an accessibility pass at Sesame Place, who were VERY insistent, we go to the head of the line (Nicholas can with cajoling manage about a 15 min wait). I knew Disney had a disability program ( my other-wise healthy but post foot surgery uncle skipped every line in his wheelchair). Now, I'm being told on a Disney site that , no, they don't do go-to the head of the line ( or to a shorter line) and that I need to bring medical documentation and they will decide what accomodation to give us on-site after they see Nicholas. I know Nicholas will look totally typically developing in Guest Services, but will melt down entirely 20 minutes into the first wait. Has anyone gone lately and how did you manage this ? I'm really upset because I would have never let Grandpa book the trip if I thought this was going to be an issue. I know in the scheme of things this is small, but I was really looking forward to a relatively smooth (as much as it can be) trip. Thanks
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-24-2003
Mon, 06-02-2003 - 6:07pm
You know, that is a great question, and i am glad you asked that. I have a friend in California and another in Florida, and both have welcomed us out for a vacation and both have mentioned taking our 3 year old to Disney World. But the thought of an amusement park with people constantly coming and going, and then standing in lines for waits, just isnt sounding great to me. I never knew that had such programs like the program you are speaking about.

Thanks for asking, and i personally dont think it is trivial based on whether it will make or break your vacation. It is supposed to be smooth and relaxing, not miserable and a battle at every turn.

Good luck and i am looking forward to reading the answers as well....

Helen

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Mon, 06-02-2003 - 7:57pm
Well, here's how it has worked for my sister who takes my kids to Disneyland every August. She goes to the "Lost Parent's Center" with a note from the kids' drs explaining that they have very short attention spans, cannot understand the concept of time/waiting because it is abstract, and explains what a 'meltdown' looks like. Every year it is the same thing. They give Jade, who is a bigtime stimmer and ticer (handflapping to the point of whole body shaking, loud noise maker, etc) a 'princess pass' that lets her and one attendant from her party go to the head of the line. But Ayla, who does not tic or stim in public, is never given one, so she has to wait in line with everyone else......at least, that's what THEY think. Because Ayla is so much older than Jade my sister gets slick and sends Ayla to the front of the line with Jade as her attendant...LOL.

I personally haven't been there for this so I may have some of this wrong. But that's how it has been explained to me.

Candes

Peace,
Candes  
Avatar for maresgood
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Mon, 06-02-2003 - 7:57pm
Hi, we've never been to Disneyworld only Disneyland since we live in San Diego. We go in the off season when it is slow & the lines aren't as long. Usually in Feb. which is my dd's birthday. My A.S. dd doesn't do well waiting in lines & I'm just as bad LOL! We use Fast Passes which do let you go to the head of the line. Pirate's of the Carribean has that as well as some of the other popular rides. Some of the little kid rides don't though in Fantasyland. I think Disney has turned into a money-making machine & it has lost alot of it's appeal for me. They now charge anyone over 9 as an adult. Plus they raised their prices this year. I would check into the park operations center when you go to MainStreet & tell them your ds needs a Fastpass of some sort. They should be able to offer something. If not, make a stink and get loud, as I do!-MaryAnn
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-02-2003
Tue, 06-03-2003 - 9:34am
Thanks for the info and support!!! I'm so grateful that we have this wonderful community of parents.
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-01-2003
Tue, 06-03-2003 - 4:53pm
Did you hear that about Disney World or Disneyland? We went to Disney World in Fla. last year with my AS daughter. When I called, I was told not to bother bringing medical documentation because they're not allowed to ask for it! We didn't bring anything, went straight to guest services and we were give a disability pass for all 4 of us--no questions asked! We were allowed to use the handicap entrance on any ride we decided to use it on. We, however, didn't use it on every ride because we didn't want to take advantage--we worried that if folks take too much advantage of the passes that they would stop allowing them. Plus, using the fast pass (where you check in and get a time to come back later) worked great for us. On the other hand, I heard that Disneyland in Cal. was much stricter. HTH!
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-01-2003
Wed, 06-04-2003 - 9:13am
I used to be the CL of the Disney Vacation board here at Parent Soup AKA debbiedoesdisney and have been to Disney World many, many times and to DL once. I also have two kids with varying severity of mental illness. Disney will give you a disabilities pass so that you can bypass the line. Some of the attractions such as the shows will still have a wait but you will not have to wait in the crowded lines with the general public. Some of the attractions will have you use the fast pass line where you will still wait in line but again, not nearly as long. Some attractions will put you in front of everyone else. When you get to Disney, go directly to Guest relations. You will find this at the front of every park. Disney can be very accomidating and will usually bend over backwards to make your trip enjoyable for you and your child. HOWEVER, please be aware that not everyone at Disney will be so accomidating. Others have had horrible experiences with cast members that, like the general public, do not have a clue about unseen disabilities. An aquaintance of mine with a bi-polar child was humiliated by a cast member at the haunted mansion in front of the entire line and told her that bi-polar didnt exist. If anything like this happens, PLEASE report them immediately!!! Some people have said that they didnt need a note from the doctor and others said they did so maybe a short note wouldnt hurt to have them along. Also try make your trip during the less crowded times of the year. If you havent already visited the disney board, please do so as there are many regulars on that board that also have kids with hidden disabilities.

Debbie