Florida Guide > Disney General
Disney for Those with Special Needs
Disney for those with Special Needs
Disney World is a magical place and need be no less so for those with special needs. If you have any concerns your first port of call should be to Guest Relations located at the entrance to all the parks. Here you can collect a ‘Guidebook for Guests with Disabilities’ This provides details of services and facilities available for Guests with disabilities including information about parking, toilets, telephones, transport and specific attraction entrance and boarding instructions. If you have very specialist needs then it may be advisable to take a letter from your doctor explaining these. The staff in the Guest Relations department will be happy to provide individual advice but this is some general information.
There is a special parking area for Guests with disabilities at each park but a valid disability-parking permit is required, you should ask to be directed to this area at the entrance to the specific park. If you can walk short distances and step up onto the courtesy trams then park in the main car park and the tram will take you to the entrance.
The rides can be a long walk apart and also queues can be tiresome, particularly in the heat. Whilst you may feel full of energy at the beginning of the day, a few hours later it may be a different story! Wheelchairs & electric scooters can be hired in all parks from US$10 per day. If you are not used to an electric scooter though a crowded theme park may not be the best place to gain experience! Prams (strollers) can also be hired from the same area and are great for hot, tired children (and very useful for baggage when they feel like walking!)
Newer rides have been designed so the queuing area is wheelchair friendly but on the older rides it is sometimes necessary to use the exit for the entrance or to use the ‘Fast Pass’ entrance. The guidebook will tell you which is which. Some rides require passengers to transfer to carriages, others do not, again the guidebook has details and staff are always very helpful.
Most restrooms (toilets) have specific wheelchair friendly compartments & baby changing areas for males and females.
There is a first aid location at all parks. Medication can also be stored here if you do not wish to carry it with you.
e.g. Guide Dogs are permitted in the parks as long as they are ‘in harness’ all the time. Staff can advise on special facilities for them. Service animals are even allowed on some rides but for the rides where they are not, someone must hold them at all times.
All the Disney restaurants can cater for special dietary needs, again contact guest services on arrival with your special requests & they will advise the best places to eat. Water fountains are positioned all around the parks.
Special Facilities for the Visually impaired & Hard of hearing:
Again a trip to guest services will inform you of facilities which will help you make the most of your day from audio loops to special Braille guides.
Most of all, don’t be afraid of asking for assistance! We have always found all staff more than happy to assist or give advice which could make the difference between a great day and a magical one!! Have Fun!!
Author: Dawn Axon and sisters (Villa link: click here)
Other articles by this author: click here
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Page added on: 26 July 2005
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