Adios, Guest Assistance Cards

24 Sep

As of October 9, WDW and Disney parks will no longer offer Guest Assistance Cards to Guests with disabilities.

In a statement from a Disney spokesperson to Yahoo! Shine: “We have an unwavering commitment to making our parks accessible to all guests. Given the increasing volume of requests we receive for special access to our attractions, we are changing our process to create a more consistent experience for all our guests while providing accommodations for guests with disabilities. We engaged disability groups, such as Autism Speaks, to develop this new process, which is in line with the rest of our industry.”

(What that really means: “Quit abusing the system.”)

The change comes after countless reports of tour groups “hiring out” disabled “tour guides” to use the perks of the Guest Assistance Cards.

Currently, GAC cards provide alternate entrances, front-of-the-line service, and immediate services to card holders and their entire party.

Disney is collaborating with disability groups to better service their needs while the GACs are being replaced with the new system. This new system will be similar to the FastPass system currently used, where guests recieve a ticket and return to an attraction for a shorter wait time.

I have a training session this week on the phasing out of GAC cards and transitioning to the new system. Personally, I’m glad to see the cards go. I understand its use for a number of Guests, but it frustrates me when Guests come up to me and say “Here, we have a FastPass for this,” and wave a GAC in my face. It gives everyone in line the assumption that GACs are equivalent to FastPasses but are applicable on all attractions. I have no doubt groups abuse the cards to avoid a 10-minute wait time.

More details to come as Cast Members get trained in the upcoming week.

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