Yesterday I filled you all in on the rumors that there would soon be changes to the Guest Assistance Card at Disney Parks. There has been a lot of conjecture about what those changes would be. Today I have an official statement from Disney about the upcoming changes to share with you. The Guest Assistance Pass will be changing to the new Disney Disability Access Service Card as of October 9, 2013.
Disney has an unwavering commitment to making our experiences accessible to all Guests. After careful consideration, we will be replacing the Guest Assistance Card with the new Disability Access Service Card on Oct. 9 to create a more consistent experience for all our Guests while providing accommodations for Guests with disabilities. Until Oct. 9, we will continue to use Guest Assistance Cards. We look forward to sharing more information about the Disability Access Service Card as we get closer to implementation.
In anticipation of the many questions people will have, Disney also offered the following information:
Frequently Asked Questions About the Changes to Disney’s Guest Assistance Pass
The Disability Access Service Card will offer Guests a return time for an attraction based on the current wait time. Guest Assistance Cards will continue to be in effect until Oct. 9. We look forward to sharing more information as we get closer to implementation.
Did Disney receive assistance in developing the Disability Access Service Card?
Yes, Disney is engaging disability groups, and Autism Speaks was instrumental in providing feedback as we developed this new process.
Why is Disney making these changes?
Given the increasing volume of requests Disney receives for special access to our attractions, we are changing our process beginning Oct. 9 so that it creates a more consistent experience for all our Guests while providing accommodations for Guests with disabilities.
Who will be eligible for a Disability Access Service Card?
Our goal is to accommodate Guests who aren’t able to wait in a conventional queue environment due to a disability (including non-apparent disabilities).
Will Guests on wish trips also use Disability Access Service Cards?
No. Guests who are visiting through wish-granting organizations will have access through a separate program.
What should Guests do if they have concerns?
Guests should contact Guest Relations to discuss their assistance needs.
I will be anxiously awaiting news of how the new Disney Disability Access Service Card helps to improve the experience of many special needs families. I sure hope this puts in end to the things we experienced last Spring with people abusing the Guest Assistance Pass at Disney.
Our travel writers, Autism TravelingMom, Disabled TravelingMom, Special Needs TravelingMom, and myself, Wheeling TravelingMom, will be covering how this impacts our families travels to the Disney Parks. Make sure to follow our posts for real life travel stories of the Disney disability pass changes.