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Old 07-02-2013, 09:38 AM   #16
jtowntoflorida
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Originally Posted by fairy8i8 View Post
And pregnancy complications can need extra help. I went with a friend to Disney when she was 6 months pregnant. She had medical issues and because of birth defects she couldn't be on her normal medications, so her MD said she could go, but she couldn't walk around the park and needed to be in the shade and cool. We of course went to Guest Relations and explained her circumstances. We had no idea at the time what to expect. They gave us a card for having shade options, but thankfully most lines now accommodate wheelchairs because there are a lot of people who don't have stamina for the parks and the heat. Also, most of the lines were covered and often air conditioned. I think everyone likes that! It's sad that people try to take advantage, but it can also be difficult because I feel like every guest relations CM starts out with the assumption that you are trying to cheat the system unless you have something quickly identifiable by a single word like Autism.
With all due respect, the person the OP posted about just said, "I'm pregnant." She didn't say she was having pregnancy complications. An uncomplicated pregnancy is NOT a disability. The #2 thing I hated about being pregnant (behind actually being pregnant and having another human being inside me) was people treating me like I was an invalid just because I was pregnant. Nearly all women will experience pregnancy at least once in their lives. It really isn't that big of a deal.
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:07 AM   #17
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I just worry that they won't give passes for people who actually need it. My dad has an autoimmune disease, but you can't tell looking at him. Aren't you not supposed to have to divulge medical info in order to get assistance? Now it seems like you will have to give a medical history.

And pregnancy complications can need extra help. I went with a friend to Disney when she was 6 months pregnant. She had medical issues and because of birth defects she couldn't be on her normal medications, so her MD said she could go, but she couldn't walk around the park and needed to be in the shade and cool. We of course went to Guest Relations and explained her circumstances. We had no idea at the time what to expect. They gave us a card for having shade options, but thankfully most lines now accommodate wheelchairs because there are a lot of people who don't have stamina for the parks and the heat. Also, most of the lines were covered and often air conditioned. I think everyone likes that! It's sad that people try to take advantage, but it can also be difficult because I feel like every guest relations CM starts out with the assumption that you are trying to cheat the system unless you have something quickly identifiable by a single word like Autism.
I think it's pretty obvious that the VIP Guide who was quoted, above, was speaking in general terms about how people try to wangle a GAC when they don't really need one. And I imagine that the CMs in Guest Relations are pretty adept at being able to tell when someone is truly discussing a need vs. trying to game the system.

From what I've noticed, the people who truly need GACs are the ones least likely to ask, and when they do, they ask for them by providing specific information. They're not going to go up to GR and say, "My mother is old, she needs a card". They're going to say, "My elderly mother has some problems being in the sun too long; is there a way to limit her time in the sun when waiting for rides?" Someone who truly needs a GAC isn't going to ask for one because they sprained their wrist or because they have pinkeye. They're going to be pretty clear and specific about what type of help they need because they've been dealing with the issue for a long time and they know what they're talking about. They're not going to walk up and flippantly ask for a card because their child is "artistic".

Guest Relations can tell the difference.

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Old 07-02-2013, 10:09 AM   #18
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With all due respect, the person the OP posted about just said, "I'm pregnant." She didn't say she was having pregnancy complications. An uncomplicated pregnancy is NOT a disability. The #2 thing I hated about being pregnant (behind actually being pregnant and having another human being inside me) was people treating me like I was an invalid just because I was pregnant. Nearly all women will experience pregnancy at least once in their lives. It really isn't that big of a deal.
Your right. I didn't mean that it's a good reason to want special assistance. Those reasons are no brainers for turn down of any special assistance and make for a good laugh. I was just voicing my concern about them "cracking down." I just know that sometimes CMs are not kind and already give a hard time if you ask for special assistance and it has made people with whom I have traveled uncomfortable. The point is to give people with disabilities abilitiy in the parks, not make them feel like they are on jury to see if their disability "qualifies" while they look at you like you are making the whole thing up.

At least these boards have been helpful in helping those with needs know how to better access it in the park and strategies for making experiences smooth and fun for everyone in the party.

I am glad those places that gave tours with a disability card shut down! It's sad that they would do that in the first place, especially when private concierge companies and tour guide companies in Orlando can get approved to offer some privileges in the park. There are plenty of legitimate options, though you do still have to stand some lines, especially for those without Fastpasses. I just wonder how someone with enough need to get immediate access had the stamina to give tours!

OP, if you have a Trip Report I'd LOVE to read it! I may not be able to get a VIP Tour Guide right now, but I would love to read about it and your thoughts in more detail! Thanks for posting and letting us know that those companies shut down and that Disney is trying to prevent fraud so that they can better give abilities to those that need special assistance in the parks!
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:22 AM   #19
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From what I've noticed, the people who truly need GACs are the ones least likely to ask, and when they do, they ask for them by providing specific information.
And will more than likely have a condition where they have already visited their doctor, told him/her about going to Disney World, asked about limitations and will have a note or be able to communicate what the doctor has told them.

I've toured Disney World while five months pregnant, with a broken neck, and pushing my husband in a wheelchair and I've never even considered getting a Guest Assistant Card.
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:38 AM   #20
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And will more than likely have a condition where they have already visited their doctor, told him/her about going to Disney World, asked about limitations and will have a note or be able to communicate what the doctor has told them.

I've toured Disney World while five months pregnant, with a broken neck, and pushing my husband in a wheelchair and I've never even considered getting a Guest Assistant Card.
So true! I have yet to get my dad to get a GAC or even a wheel chair (he absolutely refuses) so we walk slowly and take lots of breaks. Lots of hand sanitizer and avoiding public restrooms, etc. When he is along, we are definitely a "smell the roses" group. It's just that I have a lot of natural commando in me I have to suppress

However, I just feel bad because there have been times that he has gone home from vacation and been really sick for 2+ weeks for things I think we might have avoided if he had some assistance. I have actually considered saving up for a VIP Tour Guide myself just so that my dad could come to the parks and we could have accommodation without him feeling like his illness was affecting our experience (usually he needs to get OUT of line fast, more than he needs to get IN line, and I think a guide could help do that a lot more quickly and smoothly).
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:45 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by fairy8i8 View Post
I just worry that they won't give passes for people who actually need it. My dad has an autoimmune disease, but you can't tell looking at him. Aren't you not supposed to have to divulge medical info in order to get assistance? Now it seems like you will have to give a medical history.

And pregnancy complications can need extra help. I went with a friend to Disney when she was 6 months pregnant. She had medical issues and because of birth defects she couldn't be on her normal medications, so her MD said she could go, but she couldn't walk around the park and needed to be in the shade and cool. We of course went to Guest Relations and explained her circumstances. We had no idea at the time what to expect. They gave us a card for having shade options, but thankfully most lines now accommodate wheelchairs because there are a lot of people who don't have stamina for the parks and the heat. Also, most of the lines were covered and often air conditioned. I think everyone likes that! It's sad that people try to take advantage, but it can also be difficult because I feel like every guest relations CM starts out with the assumption that you are trying to cheat the system unless you have something quickly identifiable by a single word like Autism.
From what our guide said, they will give everyone who asks and has a medical condition a pass. A sprained arm will not need one and just being pregnant is not a medical condition nor is being old. But preeclampsia etc are medical conditions related to her pregnancy. Alzheimer's is a condition with aging.. Her point is like you said, most rides are wheelchair accessible. But she said they get people who say they need the pass because they can't be in the sun- they get the shade pass which does not get them front of the line. If they say their child has autism, they get the shorter line pass, but when they say their child is "artistic" she said that rubs them wrong.
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:51 AM   #22
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Glad you enjoyed your trip. No offense, but the VIP guides allow those with enough money to bypass the lines. While I thoroughly agree that those folks selling their GAC benefits as tour guides is wrong, I also have a problem with the whole vip guide.

The only real difference here is that the money was going into Disneys pocket instead of someone else
I can understand why you may see it as only for those with money.that is not my case. Because of scheduling, we only had one day for Magic Kingdom. Without the guide and with new time enforcements for fast passes, we would not have done all we wanted todo. And we had a child with us who had never been to Disney and had always dreamed of going. This would probably be her one chance until she is much older. It was a huge expense but I know there are those here who want to know if it is worth it. For us? Yes because we got to ride every ride once and in the heat and with the crowds,it was
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:03 AM   #23
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The instance with the pregnant girl is she walked up and said, "I am pregnant and someone told me I can get a card to bypass the lines". When the CM said pregnancy was not a condition, she then said," we'll my mom is old does that get me something?"

The man with the "artistic son" did get the autism type a pass but it obviously was not enough to allow his entire group in. Two people after him was a women who had a suspicious story but essentially what she asked for was a shade pass which is different from the type of pass they give families with autism. When she signed her name, it was the exact same unusual name as the man with the " artistic" son
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Old 07-02-2013, 12:16 PM   #24
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But autism doesn't automatically get you a pass, let alone a "shorter line one". The GAC is based on need, not diagnosis. Your guide was in the wrong for generalizing and you quoting him isn't really helping matters.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:43 PM   #25
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...lastly, a guy said he needed one because his son was "Artistic".
That doesn't mean anything at all. I've known many people who genuinely mispronounced the names of diseases and surgical procedures their family members, and even they themselves, unquestionably had.
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Old 07-02-2013, 04:12 PM   #26
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Per the pregnancy complications: I had Placenta Previa with DD and was so restricted it was depressing for four months. Had to cancel a trip we had planned and was only allowed to go to work because it was near my doctor's office.

Any pregnant woman with serious complications would probably not be on vacation in a place that involves lots of walking and rides that might jar you.
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Old 07-02-2013, 04:36 PM   #27
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I've toured Disney World while five months pregnant, with a broken neck, and pushing my husband in a wheelchair and I've never even considered getting a Guest Assistant Card.

A person in a wheelchair is already getting accommodations, so they don't need a GAC. Saying, "We had a wheelchair and never asked for a GAC" makes it sound like you somehow soldiered on without assistance or accommodation which is almost certainly untrue. The wheelchair served as your GAC- it alerted CMs to the fact that that guest needed special assistance.
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Old 07-02-2013, 05:02 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by fairy8i8 View Post
I just worry that they won't give passes for people who actually need it. My dad has an autoimmune disease, but you can't tell looking at him. Aren't you not supposed to have to divulge medical info in order to get assistance? Now it seems like you will have to give a medical history.

And pregnancy complications can need extra help. I went with a friend to Disney when she was 6 months pregnant. She had medical issues and because of birth defects she couldn't be on her normal medications, so her MD said she could go, but she couldn't walk around the park and needed to be in the shade and cool. We of course went to Guest Relations and explained her circumstances. We had no idea at the time what to expect. They gave us a card for having shade options, but thankfully most lines now accommodate wheelchairs because there are a lot of people who don't have stamina for the parks and the heat. Also, most of the lines were covered and often air conditioned. I think everyone likes that! It's sad that people try to take advantage, but it can also be difficult because I feel like every guest relations CM starts out with the assumption that you are trying to cheat the system unless you have something quickly identifiable by a single word like Autism.
I am sorry but if you are 6 month pregnant with complications and the life or health of your child you don't go on a Disney vacation. That is just absurd.
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Old 07-02-2013, 05:07 PM   #29
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But autism doesn't automatically get you a pass, let alone a "shorter line one". The GAC is based on need, not diagnosis. Your guide was in the wrong for generalizing and you quoting him isn't really helping matters.
She said they cannot ask specifics. But she said If someone says they have a child with autism, they try to give them the pass with the shortest wait time unless the family asks for something different like less shade etc. I'm not here to give specific information. I mainly wanted people to know that Disney is working on fraud but that they are still compassionate to those with true need.
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Old 07-02-2013, 06:56 PM   #30
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And will more than likely have a condition where they have already visited their doctor, told him/her about going to Disney World, asked about limitations and will have a note or be able to communicate what the doctor has told them.

I've toured Disney World while five months pregnant, with a broken neck, and pushing my husband in a wheelchair and I've never even considered getting a Guest Assistant Card.
Disnut8, I've been reading your great trip reports for years on another Disney board, and I just want to say that I LOVE your wit! I know you didn't intend it that way, but that just read so funny!
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