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Visiting Disney Using the Disability Access Service


A photo of Space Ship Earth.  There is a title that says Autism Friendly Travel Visiting Disney Using the Disability Access Service.  As a parent of an autistic child, I know you are always searching for resources that will allow your entire family to enjoy every experience you have together.

As a parent of an autistic child, I know you are always searching for resources that will allow your entire family to enjoy every experience you have together. Therefore, when you decide to head out on vacation, you are going to do everything you can to ensure the places you visit have plans in place to assist your autistic family. While many places are becoming more accommodating, the one place that seems to understand their guests’ needs is Disney. In my opinion, Disney seems to understand that they have guests visiting their parks with so many different levels of accessibility. This is why Disney created their Disability Access Service pass. Using this pass, or their other options, ensures a guest can enjoy the parks just like anyone else. 


However, Disney has had to recently make some changes to its Disability Access Service, or DAS. These changes were made because a few guests were unfortunately taking advantage of the original service. All the fraudulent misuse of this service was creating issues for the people who needed it the most. 


Visiting Disney Using the Disability Access Service


Today, I want to share information about Visiting Disney Using the Disability Access Service, or DAS, at Disney. This program was designed to ensure everyone in your party has a day that is full of the magic Disney is known for. 


If you are considering a vacation at Disney, please let me know about any special needs or disabilities in advance. This will allow me to address it with Disney and even book you an accessible room if necessary. Plus, it will allow me to give you plenty of in-depth guidance of what you should do while at Disney to ensure every minute is full of magic. 


What is DAS? 


DAS is intended for guests whose disability prevents them from waiting in line. To use DAS, guests must have a valid Disney parks ticket. 


This service allows guests to request a return time for rides. This is similar to the FastPass, but the DAS return times are valid until closing time at the park. You can easily combine a DAS pass with the FastPass at Disney. 


DAS also assists guests who are unable to use stairs or some of the other regular entrances at the rides. In these scenarios, guests with the DAS pass will be directed to an alternative entrance. 


How to Register for the Disability Access Service


There are now two ways to register for DAS. You can register online at least 2 days before your visit, but not any more than 30 days in advance. Or you can register once you have reached a Disney park. 


Before deciding how you will register for DAS, keep in mind that Disney will not ask for proof of your autistic family’s disability. However, it is best to share as much information as possible during this process, so Disney can accommodate you in the best way possible. After all, Disney is willing to work with each guest to ensure their day at the park is as magical as it can be! 


Registering in Person


If you decide to register for DAS when you reach the Disney Parks, you will need to head over to Guest Relations. If the line is long, like it usually is, you can also try the Info Booth Kiosk. The cast members there may be able to assist you as well. 


Registering Online


Since you can now register online, this is the option I recommend for everyone. You can do it at a time that is convenient for you in the comfort of your own home. This is helpful because you won’t need to waste time during your trip standing in line at the park. 


Before registering online, you will need to add your travel party to your Family and Friends list. This will ensure they are included in your DAS plans. You will also need to link valid theme park tickets to everyone on your list. 


When it is time for you to start talking to a cast member via video online, you will need to make sure the person who needs the DAS pass is there with you. The cast member will need to speak with them during this process. 


Once you have your autistic child with you, use a device that has a microphone and camera to request a live video chat. These chats are currently available from 7 am until 10 pm Eastern Time. So, you should have an excellent chance of finding a little wiggle room in your schedule to check this task off your list. 


How to Use DAS


If you register for DAS online, you can take advantage of the DAS Advance planning option. This option allows you to book up to 2 one-hour return windows for select rides. You can then use those return windows when you reach the park and then start booking your next return times when they are used. 


You can easily use the My Disney Experience app when booking future return times. This will save you time because you won’t need to walk to the specific ride and speak to a cast member. However, you can still do that if you don’t have access to a smartphone. 


To book return times in the app, simply tap, “more” at the bottom of the welcome screen. Then tap on the DAS button to begin your self-selections. 


Use your phone to keep track of your return times. This will ensure you stay organized and don’t forget the time you should arrive at your next ride. 


Remember, the return times are comparable to the amount of time you would have had to wait in line. Use this time to grab a bite to eat, watch a parade, or meet a character. 


It is important to note that the DAS guest must go on the ride when you arrive during your return time window. If they do not want to go on the ride, the rest of your party will need to stand in the regular ride or utilize their FastPass if they purchased one. There are no exceptions to this rule, so do not expect any special treatment. 


How Long is DAS Valid? 


DAS is valid for up to 60 days. After those 60 days, you would need to re-register for this program. 


It is important to note that if your autistic child has a valid DAS at Walt Disney World, that same pass will not be valid at Disneyland or any of the other Disney Resorts. You would need to register for a DAS at each of the Disney Resorts you plan on visiting. 


Now that you know what Disability Access Service is, how to register for it, and how to use it, you should have more magical moments at Disney. However, it is important to understand that DAS is not a one-size-fits-all solution. This is why I always encourage my clients to be as open as possible with what their autistic child will need for accommodations while visiting Disney. While this is the best pass for avoiding standing in long lines, your child may require a little extra help that Disney may be able to provide. 


As you are planning your Disney vacation, you may want to consider working with an expert like myself. I have the resources and Disney connections you need to ensure this trip is as autism friendly as possible. Contact me today to learn how I can ensure you don’t miss out on any of the magic your family deserves during a visit to the Disney theme parks.



A photo of Space Mountain.  There is a title that reads Autism-Friendly Visiting Disney using the Disability Access Service.

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