Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by VinceysMom, Jun 19, 2012.
I actually don't know! We don't usually go for more than one day at a time since we live here.
It is good for the length of your trip and all parks. I suggest getting it at the MK - the other parks never seem to have as well trained guest services CM's.
You get one for all days up to two weeks at Universal, Seaworld and Disney.
Thank you, thank you for the responses and info! It's very helpful!
We were also able to obtain a guest assistance card both for me and Emma because the insulin would quickly degrade if we stood in the heat for too terribly long.
FWIW, Disney's Epcot Center will not give out GACs because most of their rides are indoors where there is air conditioning.
The following is from CWD's events coordinator, Laura B. (from this week). She works very closely with Disney.
"Several people alerted me that they had difficulty getting Guest Assistance Cards over the past few months, and in fact, a few were denied. I followed up with our contacts at WDW, who investigated, and came back to me with the following information and suggestions.
1. Disney ? all parks ? take the special needs of their guests very seriously. The want to work with you to provide the best and safest experience for your family.
2. If you are in need of a Guest Assistance Card, go to any Guest Relations area in any of the parks. State to the person that you would like to request a Guest Assistance Card. They will ask what your special needs are, and you will have that conversation. They are trained to listen closely to what the family states their needs are ? so be prepared to be very specific. For example, when my family goes to MK and it is a very hot day, I explain that my son?s insulin is affected by exposure to the heat, and we need to minimize the time spent outdoors. We request a pass the allows either an alternate entrance to an attraction or a wait in an air conditioned area. Either is fine with me, and both usually happen within the same day. (note ? that doesn?t mean that your wait in the air conditioning will be any shorter than in the hot line, but at least you will be comfortable)
You might say something different, according to what your needs are. You may have a more challenging situation than ours ? different medical or behavioral challenges ? that require different kinds of assistance. State your case.
3. What not to say: I have diabetes and need a Guest Assistance Card. There isn?t a blanket rule that covers diabetes. The staff want to know specifically how they can help with your challenges on that day.
4. If you are going to be in the Disney parks more than one day, tell them the entire duration. The passes are good for your whole stay.
5. Suggestion: Hang onto you GAC for your next visit to the parks. I?ve found it?s easier to bring my GAC from last year and say, ?This worked really well during our visit; may we do the same thing this time??
Another suggestion? use the Fast Pass system when you can (google it if you?re not sure what it is). Most days when I?ve visited the parks, the Fast Passes have been sufficient and we?ve only used the GAC on rare occasion. During our conferences, Disney is very aware that there are plenty of families with type 1 visiting their parks, and they do their best to be accommodating. If you are in EPCOT at indoor attractions, it?s already air conditioned. No reason to use the GAC for the heat. Get a Fast Pass. Similarly, in the evening if it?s cooler (and sometimes it?s not), there?s not really a reason to use the GAC."
We never bother with a gac at Disney as the majority of time spent outside is not in lines. It is simply walking outside in the parks, and a gac does not handle that. Also the majority of lines are covered and out of the sun or in the a/c. When we visit In the summer we rarely wait in lines longer than 20 min (far less time than my child spends outside on a normal day ) by using a good touring plan and good use of fast passes, however, occasionally we will take a long line as a way to force a rest period and as a way to kill time during a low.
We just came back from a vacation to Universal/Sea World 2 weeks ago. Sea World did not have anything to assist with the diabetes other then allowing you to use a fridge to hold her insulin if needed. They allow you to bring in snacks, but no straws. So if you use juice boxes, they will take the straws and tell you where you can find a paper straw if you need it. They do have misting fans throughout the park though including many in the small kiddie area. If you see the Shamu show, or any show that has a splash zone, there is a chance to get wet, so protect anything that may need to remain dry.
Universal was AWESOME!!!!! I went to Guest Services on Day 1 to ask if they had anything to help her avoid long wait times in the heat. They gave me a GAC and explained the rules. The GAC card was for the whole family and was valid for all of the days that I was there. If it was ruined, they requested that I bring back the remaining parts for a replacement. If the wait time is 30 minutes or less, then you can go through the express pass lane. If it is longer then 30, then they will give you a time to come back. If the wait is an hour, then they will ask you to come back in an hour to go through the express lane. They allow you to bring snacks in the park (with straws), but expect to have your bags searched at every entrance to both parks. They also have misting fans throughout the park.
I hope that this helps a bit. Many answers have been given in this thread, and probably are the same as mine. However I just came back, so I was hoping that this would help you out as well Have fun and bring a camera and LOTS of snacks!
Always save your GAC pass. It is much easier to get a pass the next time you go. Doesn't make a difference if it was from Disneyworld or Disneyland
We have gone in July as well and we went to the parks in the morning (around 10:00am for our crew lol). We stayed until around 2:30 which was around the hottest time of day and then went back to the hotel and relaxed. We went back around 5:00 when it was a little cooler and crowds started to decrease. Parks also have late summer hours we took advantage of. My kids are older so this worked for us
Just curious, aside from standing in line, there is a lot of walking around at parks like that, what do you do to stop the insulin from "degrading" while you are walking around?
Snack on all the delicious treats
We have a letter we got from Sea World a couple years ago, that allows us to carry anything we want (including straws) on us through the park, and since we're also Celiac, we were allowed to bring in any food we wanted as well. They told me to hold onto the letter, and bring it with us anytime we come back.
We stored anything that might get wet (PDM, strips, etc) in Ziplock baggies in our backpack, no problems.
I'm not sure about the heat, it's always hot here, and we don't think a ton about it, other than staying hydrated, so I can't help much there.
We went once when she was 9ish - in a diabetes mindset following FFL. Ask for and got the GAC because I figured she earned a little perk for all those years of all the D rubbish that she had to do that the vast majority of the kids at Disney that day didn't ever have to do, or think about. Was it "necessary"? Is she such a little snowflake that she would have not survived the lines? No. But did it make her really, really happy? $hit ya.
(wish there was a thumbs up smilie)
Not Disney, but my daughter is extremely pleased what she calls her "Disabled Pancreas Pass" to the National Parks. It's good for life and gets the family in either free or at a discount. We just had to take a letter from our endo saying it was a lifelong disease.
The ride up the Gateway Arch sent her BGs soaring from an adrenaline spike. I didn't know better then and was up until 2 a.m. fighting lows after correcting her. Oops.
May be repeating what others have said but Disney is extremely accommodating for kids with medical issues. I came armed with a letter from my endo, he glanced at it for a split second and asked "what do you need?". After explaining that long lines will be an issue if my daughter needs to be tested or has to use the bathroom etc he didn't hesitate a second to give me the golden ticket as I called it. Fast pass for every ride. This pass has seemed to cause some controversy with some people saying that's it's using your disease to break rules but HELL she goes through enough every day and if we are able to not stand in lines because of the hardships I say DO IT!
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