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Possible Changes coming to the Guest Assistance Cards (GAC)

Discussion in 'WDW Parks News, Rumors and Current Events' started by RSoxNo1, Sep 18, 2012.

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  1. Violet

    Violet Well-Known Member

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    I predict that once Fastpass Plus or whatever it is called is fully rolled out, the giving-out of GACs is going to get a lot tighter. They can easily say for many conditions..."Use FPP"
  2. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    that's just it - they can't really control it. What they can do tho is make them so they arne't so desirable people will use their kids as tokens to get them. The answer is realistic accommodations instead of simply giving front of the line passes.
  3. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    Unless they can have similar access to FPP that they have to standby.. that will cause problems.
  4. Stevek

    Stevek Well-Known Member

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    Quick question for the experts. My daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes just after our last trip to WDW in 2010. We have a friend that gets a GAC out here at disneyland for her T1 daughter but have heard conflicting stories as to if diabetics are eligible. Wasn't anything we really ever considered in multiple trips to DL over the past 2 years but figured I'd ask.
  5. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    I can not understand how T1 would impact your ability to wait in line.

    If you need food.. eat
    If you need insulin.. use your insulin
    Furiated and ratherbeinwdw like this.
  6. Lord_Vader

    Lord_Vader You are beaten. It is useless to resist. Premium Member

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    I think the reasoning for abusing the GAC cards could easily be elimindated once the new systems are fully implemented, if they are implemented as they could be.

    I don't expect it would take a great deal more for TDO to send a return-time text to your phone when it is your turn to ride, much like a fast pass but you check-in with your Magic Band, then go about your business shopping. Then you have 15 minutes to return to the entrance to take your place in line, this eliminates anyones excuse that they can't wait in long lines, sit still, etc.

    I am an advocate that GAC are needed in the parks, they are a valuable tool for guests that need them and I do beelive the majority of guests that need them and use them are valid for the most part.
  7. awoogala

    awoogala Well-Known Member

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    Meanwhile, in NJ, parents of kids with Type 1 diabetes are fighting Six Flags for the right for a disability card. Their claim is as a private property, they do not have to allow it. They don't want special treatment, just the ability to get on a ride with a kid that might have a dangerous low or high and need to be dealt with without standing in line twice.
  8. FabulousFigment

    FabulousFigment Active Member

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    This is exactly what I was trying to get at. Thanks for the info.
  9. Violet

    Violet Well-Known Member

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    Interesting. So there is no "right" per se to these cards, it's something that WDW chooses to do. I think that's important piece that gets lost in the conversation.

    As to diabetes, I have to say, I don't understand why you would need a GAC for that. If a child/adult is in a dangerous high or low, you shouldn't be getting on any rides.

    I think FPP is going to help a lot. If people can plan their days better and make sure they can get on the one or two rides that they really want, they won't feel the need to get a GAC, whether fraudulently or not. As I mentioned above, I have an "invisible condition" myself, and I've never gotten a GAC. I just adapt around WDW and it means I do a lot less than many people can do. But the FPP will help me immensely, so I am looking forward to it (if it is what I think it is anyway!)
  10. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    It wouldn't take but a simple pen to do the very same today... I think that says the problem isn't the lack of technology..

    The greater could issue a return pass with a time written on it today.. almost as easy as issuing a child swap pass. But they don't... that should tell you what Disney thinks about return times for GAC users.
  11. awoogala

    awoogala Well-Known Member

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    I can see adapting. But everything at 6 flags seems to have an hour + wait. Even if the kid waited (up to 2 hours on the big rides), then had a drop, needed to go take care of it.. maybe a pass letting them in the fast lane wouldn't be amiss? It can take an hour or so for a dangerous high or low to be fully dealt with, and the kids might be too shaky to ride for quite awhile. If they have already left a line they were waiting in, this couldn't be accomodated? (not that I am any expert on their disability cards- I hate the place, and only go when it's free!)
  12. RSoxNo1

    RSoxNo1 Well-Known Member

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    If it's a perceived advantage, and something that can be exploited, people will take advantage.
    Furiated likes this.
  13. RSoxNo1

    RSoxNo1 Well-Known Member

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    I agree, without knowing the severity of the illness it's pretty hard to justify diabetes as a use for a GAC.
  14. Violet

    Violet Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, this is where I kind of get confused. As I mentioned above, I have a invisible medical condition (panic disorder). So I can get a panic attack wherever and have to leave wherever I am. It's mostly well-controlled with meds, but some things can trigger one, like a very crowded space or lines....which is part of WDW.

    So, I adapt. We go on the off-season, we get there for RD, or pre-rope-drop with ADRs. I go on the rides that don't have waits even if they aren't my absolute favorites. I have left lines to go find a quiet spot if I feel stressed or anxious. Sometimes my husband takes the kids on a commando tour while I chill at the resort. I try to seek out easy, enjoyable things at the resort too, which ends up being a big part of the vacation for me.

    I don't get to have the exact vacation I want. In a perfect world, I wouldn't have this disorder. And of course, I could choose other vacation spots that don't have lines. I guess I'm not sure what WDW could do for me other than give me a FOTL pass for everything I want, but would that be fair?
    Goofyernmost and ratherbeinwdw like this.
  15. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    uhh.. that's what I said. Take that away and the problem goes away.

    You can get all the free salt you want at Disney... yet people don't abuse it. Why? Because there is no attractive value to doing so. Disney is handing out golden tickets... and that's the problem.. stop giving out Golden Tickets and start actually giving REAL accommodations for people's needs.
    Tom Morrow likes this.
  16. ratherbeinwdw

    ratherbeinwdw Well-Known Member

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    I've never really had a problem with GAC card users until my trip this past week. It was so frustrating to stand in line with my legs killing me because of atrophied muscles and see people, small groups of people, perfectly healthy get to walk in front of the ones of us who had been waiting for 50+ minutes, with one person who had some kind of unseen problem. I stood in line, so can they. If your child can't stand in line, then have the others wait in the line until it's your turn, then go to the front of the line without a wait. If you can't walk or stand, rent an ECV and wait in line like I did with a ruptured disk a few years ago. It's just plain wrong. If someone must have the card, then only allow one person to go with the person with the problem. I could not believe how many people had them and used them last week, and without fell, there was always at least four people in each group. We were also waiting for 45 minutes for a bus to DTD. The line was very long. Someone had to go to another bus driver and ask him to call for a bus. Then, when one finally got there, a little old lady and four people came up and all five of them were allowed on the bus first, after we had been waiting so long. The lady could walk, she just couldn't do long distance. If they want to be first on the bus, then come and get in line like everyone else.
    Then when the wheelchair is loaded, you would already have your just place in line.
    I guess if I hadn't been in so much pain myself, it may not have bothered me so much. Rant over.
    We never wait in long lines. We always do early and late hours and finesse the fastpass system, but there was actually six long lines for fastpasses to Toy Story at 8:05. Nemo had a three line queue on the outside of the building. Stitch, yes Stitch,had a 50 minute wait. IASW had a 100 minute wait. On and on. It was the craziest thing I've seen in many, many, years. The only time we didn't wait was after 12 midnight, and that was only because it was cold and raining. Also during the fireworks and parade, we had about an hour block of time to get on Little Mermaid with no wait.
    Violet likes this.
  17. RSoxNo1

    RSoxNo1 Well-Known Member

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    My father takes crushed red pepper packets from Disney as well as napkins (prior to the generic brown ones). The reason for the abuse is because the GAC is helpful to people that genuinely need it, and it's great for people that don't. If the GAC card allowed any advantage over being a "normal" park guest, there would still be an incentive to abuse it. Changing the advantage would hurt the legit users as well. They shouldn't be penalized because the morals of others are suspect.
  18. Violet

    Violet Well-Known Member

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    Just curious, what is your opinion of the new Fastpass? I think it's going to be very helpful to those with legitimate medical needs, like myself. In fact, it should eliminate the need for FOTL access for everyone, IMHO.
  19. flynnibus

    flynnibus Well-Known Member

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    The fact your father takes pepper does not make the problem widespread abuse. You need to separate the idea that 'someone will still do it' and 'abuse' where 'abuse' means it becomes a problem for Disney or other guests.

    and it's not penalizing legit GAC users when you simply give them what they need.

    The issue is the gain is too high, and the barrier too low. Combine those things and the horrible society that we are will abuse it. The barrier being low is FIXED and Disney can't change it. So the only thing they can change is the gain.

    Oh you can't take the heat? Ok, you can wait over there on those benches we set aside...
    Oh you can't stand? There are some chairs over there.. or we'll offer you a wheelchair
    Oh you can't climb steps? That's fine, most of our attractions don't have them, and those that do, you can get a return pass to enter the handicap'd entrance
    Oh you can't walk? That's fine, we offer wheelchair and ecv rentals right over there...
    Oh you can't take crowds? We'll you can get this return pass to come back later.. and no you can't have more than one at a time (an area the new RFID system COULD help with)

    When the GAC user 'advantage' is low.. the majority will stop abusing it because there is so little gain (the salt analogy). Sure you can still abuse it.. but that means waiting in line at GR... and you only get benefits that really don't interest you (being stuck in the waiting pen.. or being stuck holding onto a single pass that doesn't allow getting more).

    Limiting people to have to wait the same amount of time as others is not penalizing GAC users - it's equalizing them. The problem is Disney is too risk adverse and too CHEAP to do any of the above. They'd rather turn a blind eye to the problem under the guise of customer service rather than actually have to provide legitimate accommodations for so many of these disabilities.
    muteki, Violet, fosse76 and 2 others like this.
  20. Goofyernmost

    Goofyernmost Well-Known Member

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    All I can say is thanks for understanding that it isn't other peoples problem, it is yours. I'm sorry that you have to deal with that, but it is not much different then myself. I have COPD connected with Chronic Bronchitis. I occasionally find myself in a coughing fit and have to remove myself from whatever activity I am engaged. I don't consider it a disability, I consider it a condition that is mine and mine alone. I deal with it as I need to and I don't expect others to fall in line and adjust to my condition. I will deal with it. If it gets to the point where I cannot go to WDW anymore, I will be saddened, but, I won't be going..GAC or no GAC.
    The word GAC kind of reminds me of the sounds I make when I have a coughing spell. :D
    Snowflake82, Violet and flynnibus like this.
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