We absolutely love Walt Disney World’s ability to continuously be aware of and accommodating to guests that have disabilities. One program Disney World has available is called the Disability Access Service – also known as “DAS”. Check out these 5 things to know about DAS.
1 – All Little Background
Chances are if you haven’t heard of Disney’s Disability Access Service (DAS), you may have heard of the Guest Assistance Card program. The DAS program replaced the Guest Assistance Card program in 2013. The new DAS program is a modification of the Guest Assistance Card program with a new effort to control abuse of the old program. It’s sad to think that people would falsely use a disability program when they in fact don’t need it – but unfortunately, it was happening at an increasing rate! Hence – DAS took over in October 2013.
2 – What Is DAS?
The Disability Access Service (DAS) provides guests in need with a special pass. This pass allows the guest to visit an attraction at a set time, based on the current wait time. Much like a FastPass+, guests will be provided a time they are able to go on an attraction without having to wait in the standby line.
3 – Does Your Disability Require A DAS Pass?
Some disabilities (such as Down Syndrome for example) make standing in a conventional attraction queue extremely difficult. The Disability Access Service (DAS) program is for guests who aren’t able to wait in a queue environment due to a disability. This includes apparent and non-apparent disabilities. No doctors note is required, as Disney does take guests at their word – although Cast Members will ask appropriate questions when inquiring about the DAS pass. Keep in mind the DAS pass is not provided to those in a wheelchair or scooter if their disability does not prevent them from being able to wait in a conventional queue for an attraction.
4 – Step By Step Process
When a guest’s disability requires a Disability Access Service (DAS) pass, they should go to Guest Relations located at the front of the park upon arrival. Guest Relations will review the guest’s needs and provide a DAS pass upon necessity. They will take a picture of the DAS passholder for their records… in an attempt to reduce the abuse of the program. This DAS pass is good for the passholder and up to 6 family or friends for 14 days or for 60 days with an Annual Pass. All people in the party will have their MagicBands scanned prior to leaving Guest Relations. After leaving Guest Relations, head to an attraction and let the Cast Member located at the entrance of the attraction know you have a DAS pass. The Cast Member will provide a time to return to the attraction much like a FastPass+. For example, if Splash Mountain is a 40-minute wait at 11:00, you will be able to use the DAS pass after 11:40. The DAS passholder must be with the party to gain entrance to the attraction. Once ready for the next ride, head to the attraction and see the Cast Member there to align the next DAS pass.
5 – In the Know
Editor’s Note: During the phased reopening of Walt Disney World, FastPass+ is temporarily suspended.
A few helpful points to be mindful of…
- Once the DAS pass is obtained at one of the Guest Relations inside the park, the DAS passholder can park hop and the DAS remains valid for the 14 days allotted (or 60 days for Annual Passholders).
- The DAS passholder does not have to be present to obtain the attraction return time, but they do have to be present when it is time to ride the attraction. This is especially helpful if you don’t want your disabled passholder to get excited thinking they are going on the ride, only to turn around to await your DAS return time.
- A DAS passholder does not have to ride the attraction at the exact return time. Return times are valid until redeemed by the guest.
- The FastPass+ Service can be used in addition to DAS.
- With the DAS passholder present, other people can be added to your DAS pass throughout your stay if they aren’t with you when the pass is first issued at Guest Relations (up to 6 guests total).
- Disney also offers a Handheld Device for assistive listening, captioning and audio description. Guests may additionally ask for a “Guide for Guests with Cognitive Disabilities”.
Questions about your eligibility for the Disability Access Service? A helpful contact at Disney is Disability.email@example.com or 407-560-2547.
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