DAS changes coming WDW May 20/ DL June 18, 2024

Are we really this far into this and people are still missing that Disney is not telling ANYONE that there are NO accommodations if you do not receive a DAS? They are saying there are other accommodations, which are available to everyone without applying. You just have to tell the CM you have a need and they will work with you, just like any other public venue visited- where you don't apply but just show up and work with them.

And yes, we've had to leave lines and talk to a CM before, with rare exception it's really not that bad. For the most part if you are leaving a line, there is a CM nearby when you duck out of it.
On face value, I’m in agreement. It looks and sounds like AQR should be available to everyone who needs it and should be relatively easy to access. Apart from the difficulties involved with mobility devices needing to leave a line, which I’m not qualified to assess so I’ll leave that to those who are, I think the missing piece is that folks aren’t really sure AQR will work for them until they have more reports from people actually using it and/or they experience it themselves. Right now, it’s a lot of guessing and hoping.

I’m one for whom on face value, DAS is probably the most appropriate accommodation: I’m solo 90% of my visits, and the actual line environment is my problem - i.e. a “bathroom pass” isn’t what I need, and I need accommodation at every line with a wait of more than around 15 minutes. BUT because 1. I seldom am able or willing (for various reasons, not only due to my disability) to do more than a few rides per day, 2. I try to visit when wait times are lower to start, 3. I know the WDW parks and queues inside-and-out so I’m pretty proficient at knowing good spots to exit and have a decent feel for which are going to give me more trouble than others, and 4. I’ve got a pretty good handle on when I need to get out of a line before my condition is triggered instead of it turning into an emergency, I actually think I could make AQR work and get off the DAS rolls. IF I can actually use AQR to avoid being in the line environment longer than I can tolerate, and IF it will really be available to me as a solo visitor - it’s those darned IFs that are still hanging out, waiting to be answered. I’m really hoping to gain some first-hand clarity this weekend and I’ll report back for others still wondering, but for them I’m still just one report from an internet stranger - I’ll totally understand that many won’t be sure whether my reporting is any more accurate than others.
 
Normally, they don't...they will rarely provide a higher level of accommodation, but that tends to take a lot from the customer.

Universal's overall rides are less accessible with many more motion-sickness causing rides and many more high end thrill rides. So, the issues of better accommodation for most don't really come into play, b/c if you can't wait in their express lines, you probably can't handle the high speed upside rollercoaster either...or the 5th motion simulator in a row...
Don't tell our 23yo son. We can barely handle teacups and silly swings.

We're getting to the point where we need to an addentant to go with him around the park. At least he let's us strap him in and ride some rides with us just watching on the sidelines.
 
On face value, I’m in agreement. It looks and sounds like AQR should be available to everyone who needs it and should be relatively easy to access. Apart from the difficulties involved with mobility devices needing to leave a line, which I’m not qualified to assess so I’ll leave that to those who are, I think the missing piece is that folks aren’t really sure AQR will work for them until they have more reports from people actually using it and/or they experience it themselves. Right now, it’s a lot of guessing and hoping.

I’m one for whom on face value, DAS is probably the most appropriate accommodation: I’m solo 90% of my visits, and the actual line environment is my problem - i.e. a “bathroom pass” isn’t what I need, and I need accommodation at every line with a wait of more than around 15 minutes. BUT because 1. I seldom am able or willing (for various reasons, not only due to my disability) to do more than a few rides per day, 2. I try to visit when wait times are lower to start, 3. I know the WDW parks and queues inside-and-out so I’m pretty proficient at knowing good spots to exit and have a decent feel for which are going to give me more trouble than others, and 4. I’ve got a pretty good handle on when I need to get out of a line before my condition is triggered instead of it turning into an emergency, I actually think I could make AQR work and get off the DAS rolls. IF I can actually use AQR to avoid being in the line environment longer than I can tolerate, and IF it will really be available to me as a solo visitor - it’s those darned IFs that are still hanging out, waiting to be answered. I’m really hoping to gain some first-hand clarity this weekend and I’ll report back for others still wondering, but for them I’m still just one report from an internet stranger - I’ll totally understand that many won’t be sure whether my reporting is any more accurate than others.
Our most recent trip was end of April/start of May - so before any of this took effect. I am going to tell this story only because it may relieve a touch of anxiety for someone somewhere.

We are in line for that newish Mickey/Minnie runaway railway ride. It's a posted 45 minutes, so snack/bathroom out of the way. After about 10 minutes in line we saw half of a party a couple rows away disappear. A few minutes later they rejoined. The family in front of us had grandpa on an ECV, he had to get out and everyone moved/unchained things and people happily let him out. A bathroom emergency came up in my family and two disappeared. While they were gone, we passed a switch point where everyone helped "grandpa" come back (that family didn't speak English, and amazingly a bunch of hot sweaty people standing in the sun still all worked together to help) Second half of my group returned a good 15-20 minutes after leaving us.
Nobody complained. People came and went. Nobody even interrogated to check status of disability or really cared beyond someone had to go potty.

I don't think just because Disney has officially stated people should be doing this it would be any worse. I know half of the issue of leaving the line is the anxiety of leaving the line, but we all adjust once we have to do things. Obviously solo it will be a bit different, and you are more likely to need someone, but I would remain calm about how strongly anyone is going to interrogate you unless it happens, at which point I would seek out guest services the next time it's an option.
 
So what happens to people who don't have that diagnosis title, but the same or even more need than a person who has that label?
Tough bananas, go get yourself seen by a doctor is the attitude in most places. Again because otherwise its a honour system that a huge number of people will cheat, causing waste and eventually loss of goodwill and a collapse.

Another example is service dog designation, which is run on an honour system in the USA and is more official elsewhere.

But I appreciate that asking for proof of such things isn't the American way. The entire governmental and medical system is set up differently.
 
Tough bananas, go get yourself seen by a doctor is the attitude in most places. Again because otherwise its a honour system that a huge number of people will cheat, causing waste and eventually loss of goodwill and a collapse.

Another example is service dog designation, which is run on an honour system in the USA and is more official elsewhere.

But I appreciate that asking for proof of such things isn't the American way. The entire governmental and medical system is set up differently.
As has been discussed repeatedly, cheating will happen either way.
 
What Disney inadvertently created over time is a DAS system that was the equivalent of showing up to the stadium and getting a suite on the 50-yard line with butler service for you and 20 friends.
This is exactly what our last trip felt like. Using DAS, along with Genie+ and ILL$, we felt like VIP's using the LL for almost all of the attractions we rode.

It was a short (2 day 4 parks) trip, where the goal was to have DS 20 (the DAS holder) not hate Disney. He had a bad experience with Marathon weekend crowds when we moved DD 20 to Flamingo Crossings for her DCP in January. DD is actually the one who learned about DAS and suggested it for her brother. The 30 day window for applying opened just as the changes were announced, but he registered and our trip was completed before May 20, so all under old rules.

Our trip was very short because we squeezed it in before moving DD back home at the end of her program. DS actually asked for the trip, which after his experience in January I thought he would hate Disney forever, so I was thrilled. In addition to DAS, we bought Genie+ and 4 ILL$, and we used Minnie Vans 3 times.

The trip was a success, in that DS had a great time and is ready to go back. However, we appreciated his DAS experience for what it was: a VIP type experience that only happened because the stars aligned and the trip happened before the changes. While DS may apply for DAS for our next trip in 2025, he may no longer qualify. We will be structuring the next trip differently in some ways (longer trip with more resort time, Skyliner resort for better park access), while using what worked for us this time (Genie+ and ILL$ and Minnie vans and a dessert party for HEA viewing).

I appreciate DAS for helping my kid enjoy Disney again, but I understand that the system was not sustainable in its current form.
 
I don't think just because Disney has officially stated people should be doing this it would be any worse. I know half of the issue of leaving the line is the anxiety of leaving the line, but we all adjust once we have to do things. Obviously solo it will be a bit different, and you are more likely to need someone, but I would remain calm about how strongly anyone is going to interrogate you unless it happens, at which point I would seek out guest services the next time it's an option.
Yeah, I’m personally not super worked up about it - to be fair, I was approved for DAS, so I have it to use for a while. But like I said, if AQR were to allow me to exit and return via LL (or wherever, as long as it’s not spending MORE time in the line causing my issue) at every attraction I need it, it would be an adequate substitute for DAS. I just haven’t see any report yet of that happening, so I’ll need to test it out myself to see.
 
I've always said you can't compare the two products as they function differently (I've said it in this thread as well) but I think people are just pointing out that they feel more relief using Universal's system because they can and are will to provide proof. As I stated a page or two back outside of people comfortable with providing documentation most posts seem to come from international guests who are more used to that. I can relate to that "whew it's over here take my document and now I can go plan the trip" type thinking without agreeing that it would work the same at Disney (because I don't think it would work the same).
The problem with just accepting a diagnosis for granting DAS is that Disney would have to give everyone with the same diagnosis DAS regardless if their level of disability doesn't require it.
 
The problem with just accepting a diagnosis for granting DAS is that Disney would have to give everyone with the same diagnosis DAS regardless if their level of disability doesn't require it.
The other problem is that there would be ads all over the internet from less than ethical doctors who would give a DAS diagnosis to anyone who wanted one in exchange for a fee.
 
Are they misjudging situations at times and incorrectly denying DAS to people who need it?
This was my point. Disney's current criteria is very similar to your proposed "impossible"/"near impossible" standard and its just too hard to consistently draw that line so a lot of it just depends on randomness like which Cast Member you happen to get.

That said, the new standard is a huge improvement over "difficulty tolerating extended waits."
 
Even the DMV has a virtual line, at least in my area.
Ours does too for our county well you put yourself in for that but the time fluctuates around or you could be like me and get there when the entire state's system goes down when you're 2nd in line after spending 6 hours there already however that nightmare of a time was a while back, the text in option for virtual is not very reliable here. There's only about 8 locations within the entire state that do this option.

There's appointments too but that is only newer-ish due to the pandemic but they are also have specific offices for specific things so you need DL stuff that goes to one location, a different one for vehicle tags.

I will say a significant improvement is being able to do your DL online but 1) you have to be eligible (I am now that I've gotten a REAL ID) 2) you need to submit vision test results taken no less than 12 months prior as this is a requirement (if you do this in person they do the vision test).

I was lucky when I went in for my REAL ID appointment in 2022 I was in and out; my husband spent 2 hours there even with an appointment made several weeks prior.

YMMV but the point being we all have felt the pain of being in a long line, count yourself lucky if it's never been the DMV :)
 
I can’t think of a single instance where there are lines over 15 minutes in my day to day life outside of a theme park.

Agreed, not a lot of lines. But there are many waiting situations I can think of:
  • The most applicable situation is getting stuck in traffic—if you have to go, you could be far away from an exit or building with a bathroom.
  • Same with waiting for a city bus/train
  • A crowded restaurant without a reservation waiting for a table
  • Airport security
  • Getting in and out of sports/concert venues with large crowds
  • Or how about leaving a fireworks show - does Disney have those? HA
I predict responses to these would sound like, "I can plan around some of those and/or prep before going or adjust my schedule."
 
I would submit that theme parks are very different than any other type of venue...ensuring that there is accessible seating that provides good views, sounds (whatever the case may be) is very different than trying to manage accommodations for waiting in lines.

If abuse/overuse is bad now, imagine anyone being able to demand accommodations at any line for any attraction at a theme park. Totally unworkable. For most accommodations at Disney, as far as I'm aware, you don't have to be vetted and approved in advance - just for DAS.
I'm not debating that it's very different - in fact that was my point. The person I was responding to asked someone else about their experiences applying for disability accommodations at other locations. My whole point is that isn't really a thing at other locations. It's really pretty specific to theme parks.
 
Legoland and universal paid systems simply is a ratio guarantee. Disney tries the opposite by booking times ahead and goal to predict demand with that and manages by adjusting the ratio to meet that demand

As far as an accommodation to lines and queues, if the standby line is over an hour, the typical waits for fastpass is 30+ min and becomes a nonstarter for those having trouble with queues. How does universal ha dle those situations for people with their aap accommodation?

Legoland is also an autism friendly park. Their equivalent pass the "hero pass" is super easy to get. However we have hardly ever needed to use it as the lines are just not there. Its a much smaller quieter park. Lots of places to sit. Lots of space for kids to play. It's very disability friendly.
 
NFL game sounds super epic!

Do the venues that lack accommodations refund any costs that you might have already made to visit said venue?? Tickets, hotels, travel? Or do you contact them before making any definitive plans? If before, with how much time in advance? I guess what I'm trying to find is if other places have the above and beyond customer service that is apparently expected of Disney Parks. Or if folks simply have unrealistic expectations of Disney Parks simply because of the Disney Brand.
I research everything ahead of time. If I can't find answers, I call. I don't make non-refundable commitments without knowing this information, especially for things that are thousands of dollars. It's a significant amount of planning - more so than typical families need to do. In many ways, being a Disney adult before I had Dd certainly gave me the planning skill set needed to be prepared for such research.

We typically don't choose to go to places that will be inaccessible. That's often a result of things like field trips where access to DD's peers is more important, so no there's no refundability there. I'm not taking my school to task for money because a venue wasn't accessible. I am, however, advocating with the district that they put procedures into place to ensure accessibility is included in field trip planning. Students shouldn't be excluded from field trips because there was no plan even attempted to accommodate them. (And this does happen, esp. with students who use wheelchairs - their families know there are no accommodations and so the kids just miss out entirely).
 
I research everything ahead of time. If I can't find answers, I call. I don't make non-refundable commitments without knowing this information, especially for things that are thousands of dollars. It's a significant amount of planning - more so than typical families need to do. In many ways, being a Disney adult before I had Dd certainly gave me the planning skill set needed to be prepared for such research.

We typically don't choose to go to places that will be inaccessible. That's often a result of things like field trips where access to DD's peers is more important, so no there's no refundability there. I'm not taking my school to task for money because a venue wasn't accessible. I am, however, advocating with the district that they put procedures into place to ensure accessibility is included in field trip planning. Students shouldn't be excluded from field trips because there was no plan even attempted to accommodate them. (And this does happen, esp. with students who use wheelchairs - their families know there are no accommodations and so the kids just miss out entirely).
That's such a shame that your school district plans trips that all kids can't go to. We aren't allowed to plan any trips that exclude anyone, as it should be. In fact, if a student requires a parent or nurse and neither can make it (epipen, meds etc), the trip gets canceled and no one can go. We had an instance that a nurse didn't show up day of, the entire trip was canceled on the spot and no one went. This particular instance, the medical need was benadryl prior to an epi. The student isn't self administer for benadryl so a nurse or parent/guardian has to attend to administer the benadryl. Teachers aren't allowed to give benadryl or any medications, however we are all certified to give an epipen. It's awesome how you advocate for your daughter.
 
















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