Disney Advice

Wednesday, February 23, 2005 9:59 AM
Hey coaster friends. I need some help. A friend of mine is headed to Disney and I want to give her some advice. They have never been, and she is taking her husband (who is in a wheelchair), a 12 year old, and a 3 year old. None of them have ever been and they want to make this trip a memorable one. Is there any extra advice that I could give them to maxamize their stay?
I really appreciate it...Thanks
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Wednesday, February 23, 2005 10:14 AM
Depending on when they are planning on going, the off season is always good to keep crowds away. There may also be the on again/off again extra hours for staying on site. I'd also suggest the Park Hopper option so that if they aren't happy with the lines at one park one day, they can switch to a different park, or enjoy part of a day at one park (say Animal Kingdom) and close out the day at another (like Epcot for the fireworks).
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Wednesday, February 23, 2005 10:47 AM
Here is a few good site's with alot of advice on the parks.

http://www.wdwmagic.com/whatsnew.htm

http://www.intercot.com/

http://allearsnet.com/ *** Edited 2/23/2005 3:54:32 PM UTC by supermandl***

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Wednesday, February 23, 2005 11:13 AM
There's a lot of good information at http://www.disboards.com - including a forum that may help those visiting in a wheelchair.

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Wednesday, February 23, 2005 12:09 PM
Thank you all so much
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Wednesday, February 23, 2005 3:31 PM
Let me add one more site to look at. http://www.mousesavers.com keeps track of how to save money going to Disney and make your money go further.
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Thursday, February 24, 2005 12:52 AM
My biggest suggestion would be to stay at a Disney resort. While sometimes they cost more than staying off property, but you can use their bus service, that will take you to all the park and Downtown Disney. You should be able to get everywhere with ease.

If you stay at the resorts, you'll be able to use Disney's Extra Magic Hours. A park will be either open early or open later almost everyday. This can only be done by those staying at Disney resorts. It'll let you ride the more popular rides with low lines.

Its hard to give general tips, and I work here. Make sure they come by the Living Seas and say hi to Jeremy!
~ RCTfan

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Thursday, February 24, 2005 8:43 AM
RCTfan, were you working this past weekend during the CMN shoot? Apparently my daughter (who was with my parents not me) got in on the filming. We're waiting on the video from Disney. The VP of commercial productions gave us his email to ask for the video. Just wondering if knew anything about when/if that might air on TV.
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Thursday, February 24, 2005 8:46 AM
Let me also suggest TourGuideMike. Even as veteran Disney visitors, we got a lot out of his web site when we planned last year's trip. Worth the money.

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Thursday, February 24, 2005 9:49 AM
They're in for a good time. There's nothing better than Disney World for appealing to a broad range of ages and physical abilities.

* Review the latest Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World. It's published by Fromers, and includes a section for guests with disabilities.

* If possible, stay in a Disney Resort and take advantage of the Disney Transportation system, which includes wheelchair accessible busses.

* Have each guest (including the 3-year-old) select one or two 'must see attractions' for each park. Disney's free Magical Gatherings software might help. Differentiate betweeen 'must sees' and 'would be nice to see' because there probably isn't time to experience everything. (I've spent ~10 days in Disney parks and never once took time to watch a parade.)

* Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom are very stimulating for kids and may build expectations for EPCOT and Disney-MGM Studios, which are more education-orientated. With typical 3-year-olds in mind, I suggest going to EPCOT and Disney-MGM Studios first.

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Thursday, February 24, 2005 10:02 AM
Disney is very good with being wheelchair and handicapped accessible - I know from the past as my brother was a cancer patient in a wheelchair. Have them go to Guest Services at each park to get set up with whatever the current accomodations plan is for guests in a 'chair!
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Thursday, February 24, 2005 11:20 AM
My friends mom uses an electric scooter and stayed on site their last trip. She said not every bus could accomadate her scooter and often had lengthy waits for another bus. She also was not given a handicap room upon check
in. So just make sure if they plan on staying on site they inquire just how many busses are equipped to handle wc and before they leave the front desk make sure the room is handicap accessible.
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Friday, February 25, 2005 2:53 AM
I don't know anything about a CMN shoot, nor what it is! :P This weekend is ESPN weekend at MGM though!

With wheelchairs, you can approach the Cast Member at greeter at each attraction (Every attraction has one) and they will be happy to point you into the direction of the entrance for wheelchairs. At the Living Seas, its the same entrance as everybody else.

Like someone said and I did as well, definitely stay at a Disney hotel. You'll get their free transportation as well as Extra Magic Hours where before opening or after closing a park will be open extra for resort guests only. There will be short lines more than likely.

If you guys have any other questions, I'll be more than glad to do my best to answer!

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Friday, February 25, 2005 8:08 AM
RCTfan, the Children's Miracle Network was there last Saturday morning, it might have been Sunday. They had Mickey scuba diving, and were filming children. I personally would suggest staying at a Disney resort, it makes things easier.

Also, if you're going after May 5, check into the free luggage service. Disney will get your bags for you at the airport, and transport you to your Disney resort. Quite a nice service, but it's only available on certain airlines.

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Friday, February 25, 2005 9:00 AM
Go check out some Disney sites, the personal one I'm on (and my favorite) is forums.wdwmagic.com, nice people, just make sure to search first.
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Friday, February 25, 2005 10:02 AM

RedLaFrance said:
My friends mom uses an electric scooter and stayed on site their last trip. She said not every bus could accomadate her scooter and often had lengthy waits for another bus. She also was not given a handicap room upon check
in. So just make sure if they plan on staying on site they inquire just how many busses are equipped to handle wc and before they leave the front desk make sure the room is handicap accessible.

Good point RedLaFrance. I forgot about that. The buses I saw almost always had room for normal-sized wheelchairs, but not all could accomodate electric scooters. In 2001, while waiting for a bus to the Value Resorts, I also witnessed problems with a scooter whose batteries were drained from running around Animal Kingdom all day. The scooter could still move, but didn't have enough power to drive up onto the bus's elevator ramp. At the time the driver said that he was not allowed to touch wheelchairs or scooters -- the guests had drive onto the elevator ramp themselves, then he would hoist and secure them in the bus. 7 minutes later (when my bus arrived) both the driver and the guest still frustrated in their efforts to board.

*** Edited 2/25/2005 3:03:34 PM UTC by greatwhitenorth***

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Sunday, February 27, 2005 4:06 PM
I second TourGuideMike. A bargain at twice the price.
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Monday, February 28, 2005 5:21 PM
Hey Scoaster,

I had a few ideas that I posted last week, but for whatever reason got deleted. I suggested things like the "Wishes Cruise" or "Illuminations Cruise." These things really can set your trip apart from a 'normal' visit to WDW and can make for a VERY memorable evening.

There are several other 'behind the scenes' tours and events that you can look into from some of the links above that people have already mentioned that would be very appropriate for the group you mentioned. They aren't that expensive when you consider what you are getting in return, and it's something that not a lot of people do. If you're looking for make a trip 'special' this is the way to do it!

When Elissa and I got married at WDW, we did several of these things (Wishes Cruise, Segway Tour, Private Illuminations Party, etc) and it made our trip much more 'magical.' All within a very reasonalble budget.

I'd post a link to our photos here as an example, but I think that's what got my first post deleted. Anyway, if you want to see the photos, you know where our site is. ;) And if you have any questions about it, please feel free to email me as I'd be happy to help you with suggestions to make your trip more 'memorable'

--Robb "Visits WDW more than the Disney park 60 miles away from me!" Alvey

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