We have recently returned from a vacation to Orlando and spent 6 days in the Disney parks with the new disability system. If you aren’t familiar there are links in this article and at the bottom. The new system in a nutshell, works very similar to the way Discovery Parks does their program. (Sea World, Sesame Place and Busch Gardens) We have been to those parks dozens of times and have never had a problem, so I wasn’t as worried as some people were. I have read and researched much regarding this trek and have fully supported the idea that if it doesn’t work out, Disney will fix it. I can say, even though it is a little different than before we were no worse for wear overall. Were there occasions I thought the card failed? Yes. But I expected that. Most importantly, when trouble seemed to brew did the cast members put it right, and the answer is also yes.
The new system is not perfect, nor is it terribly flawed. In a sense, it is much like anything with autism; you have to have a flexible attitude. Same can be said for the way the pass worked previously. I can say, it does work best with the new My Magic+ which anyone who has park passes or magic bands can add 3 fast passes to their passes/bands on the My Disney Experience App. Even before they leave for Florida. You can also make changes to it at any time before the time range has passed on your fast passes.
Every kid is different, and children with autism also have their own unique challenges and strengths. In regards to my son, he tires easily from a lot of activity. Which can result in either burst of scattered mad hyperactivity (so he looks energized but it’s really a trick he is pulling on his own body) or abject fatigue where he must stop walking. So everything takes longer than we may think. For us to achieve all rides in a day or even half the park of Magic Kingdom has never happened. So I have learned to plan more time into the trip. He also doesn’t do well with huge crowds, or waiting for very long. And as any parent of a special needs child knows, this is more extreme version than that of a typical person. When being in other places where there are no disability passes, he just didn’t ride when he couldn’t take the wait.
You get your pass at City Hall in the front of Magic Kingdom. I am unsure if you can do so at Guest Services of Epcot at its back door, we were simply too excited to be there and walked right by it. Obtaining the pass is simple. You tell them your needs, they photo your child, put your party number down and the dates of your visit, it’s printed and off you go. You can obtain your first Fast Pass/ Ride time here also. So if you already set up 3 with the Fast Pass plus, you can then check either the App on your device, or one of their kiosks here to check the wait times, anything that is 30 minutes or less, you won't need it, because you will still get instant access as before Click here for more information about how this trip went and part 2 of this article.