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  1. #1

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    Handicap Pass Question

    On our family vacation to Disneyland this past Christmas, my mom has Plantar Fascitis. We were given a handicap pass because her doctor recommended she not stand for long periods of time. They didn't care about her doctor's note even though we had it, and gave us a pass. We were having a good time, until we went to ride the Matterhorn. You see, our family has a mom, a dad, and five children. Which makes seven. Handicap passes are only good for letting 6 members of your party onto the ride, the Matterhorn cast member explained, and one of us would have to go to the back of the line.

    We thought this was a bit ridiculous, since we were clearly a family and not some scammers trying to get their friends on a ride. But we all went to the back of the line because we didn't want to argue, rules are rules. But they let my family on other rides and didn't care that we had a large family.

    Anybody else have a similar experience? I'm not sure how they could handle this in the future properly, because I do see that the rule exists because people would try and mess with the system and find loopholes. But I don't think larger families should be discriminated against, at the same time.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by greeeneyes17 View Post
    But I don't think larger families should be discriminated against, at the same time.
    I feel disriminated against when big groups get to cut in front of me.

  3. #3

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    There's got to be a cut off. What if you were having your family reunion at Disneyland and a group of 20? That's not fair to those standing in line. At some point they have to choose a cut off point and apparently they chose 6 as the optimum number. I figure probably those groups larger than 6 statistically have an adult that can take part of the group to the regular line.

    Sucks, but they can't just let it be a carte blanche pass no matter how big the family.

    And they can't really use the "we were clearly a family and not some scammers trying to get their friends on a ride" because that opens up a can of worms. Not every family looks the same, and not every person needed a handicap pass is attending with family.



  4. #4

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    I agree, there has to be a cutoff. Technically they could do what other places do, which is allow the guest and one companion access to the GAP line. They are more lenient than that, but there does have to be a limit. I don't think it's discrimination against large families; it's setting a reasonable limit on the extent to which a GAP could be used.

  5. #5

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by swampymarsh View Post
    I feel disriminated against when big groups get to cut in front of me.
    This.
    Favorite Ride: Tower of Terror

  6. #6

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    As a former Cast Member, I'm actually a little disturbed by this. You were just one person over. The Hollywood attractions mentality was to allow people with GAC cards to go through if they had one or two extra people in the party. However, I understand that they are cracking down on GAC cards now. A lot of people have been abusing the system, unfortunately, and it causes the rest of us (my husband is disabled and uses a GAC card) to become alienated.

    The last time we were at the resort, a cast member in city hall gave my husband a really hard time because he had rented an ECV (because it's hard for him to walk around the park all day with a walker) and the Guest Relations CM threw his old card on the ground after he stamped it with the void stamp about 20 times and handwrote the word void across it three times. The way that they are starting to treat disabled guests is getting a little ridiculous, but you would be within your rights to write an e-mail to the resort and complain about the way things are handled. Also, if you have a hard time with an attractions cast member, don't be afraid to visit City Hall or the Guest Relations Lobby and let them know what happened.

    Also, if you encounter a cast member that treats you well, you should visit Guest Relations and leave a compliment. This lets management know which practices are appreciated and which are not, and the good cast member gets recognition for his or her efforts.

    And you can always ask to speak to the CM's lead if you feel it is a situation that is not terribly inappropriate, and don't want to get the cast member in trouble for doing his or her job they way they were trained or told to do it by their lead.

  7. #7

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by SoarinMatt View Post
    the Guest Relations CM threw his old card on the ground after he stamped it with the void stamp about 20 times and handwrote the word void across it three times.
    Seriously??? That sounds incredibly unlikely. I mean I don't want to doubt your word, but I can't in my wildness imagination visualize a Guest Relations CM acting in such an unprofessional and callous manner. Unless the dude was having a complete mental breakdown and stormed out and quit right afterwards.

    I especially can't believe he threw it on the ground considering how fastidious they are about park cleanliness.

  8. #8

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    My first thought is Rules Is Rules. But then because there are rules, there needs to be exceptions to rules, and your case is an excellent example. The CM at Matterhorn didn't get the memo on this very important Customer Service concept. Disneyland is Family oriented and keeping a family together on a ride ought to be goal for him/her.

    My two cents.

  9. #9

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    This is another example where Disney needs to learn to be very clear about what their expectations and limits are with these, for lack of a better word, benefits. We've all seen at the park using these passes and in their chairs and been highly suspicious if they are needed or are just trying to bypass lines. So for the sake of families who truly need this, like that of the OP, they need rules and standards, they need to communicate them, and they need to consistently enforce them.

    If they don't, then Disney finds themselves in a situation that you can read about in the odious Club 33 thread(s) where the story goes that the guest pass situation was abused and now the result is Disney is changing its policy in an effort to curb the use of that benefit.

    So I think if handicap passes are allowed to get out of control (no comment if it already has or not) then we may see the day where the announcement is that it becomes limited to the handicap pass and one other guest, forget the group. Disney is facing an ever growing crowding problem. I'm not saying this is something they should or shouldn't do. Just that I can see it going there if standards are not enforced.

  10. #10

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    I avoid the GAC all together and just use my ECV. I know it still feels to most guests like I am cutting, but believe me I would rather be able to get my ECV through the regular que than sit at the exit (in most cases) for extended periods of time waiting to be able to ride. I understand this is because the park was built before there were new laws, and that is why I prefer the ques at DCA, no dirty looks, no nasty comments, and not possibly embarassing experiences with CMs.

  11. #11

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Never underestimate the rudeness of an individual. At best a person such as this acts as if you are invisible, at worst they publically reticule you which ranges from the teenage pointing and laughing to using their position of authority to belittle you as in a CM deciding who gets or does not get a GAC. Either situation just makes you just want to crawl under the floor. It is unfortunate that I speak from experience here. Althought, I must say I have been treated very well by every CM I have come into contact with at Disneyland. Disneyland is for me a happy place.

    Cynthia



    Quote Originally Posted by Juni View Post
    Seriously??? That sounds incredibly unlikely. I mean I don't want to doubt your word, but I can't in my wildness imagination visualize a Guest Relations CM acting in such an unprofessional and callous manner. Unless the dude was having a complete mental breakdown and stormed out and quit right afterwards.

    I especially can't believe he threw it on the ground considering how fastidious they are about park cleanliness.
    Last edited by Cynthia B; 06-06-2012 at 01:54 PM. Reason: spelling

  12. #12

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Juni View Post
    Seriously??? That sounds incredibly unlikely. I mean I don't want to doubt your word, but I can't in my wildness imagination visualize a Guest Relations CM acting in such an unprofessional and callous manner. Unless the dude was having a complete mental breakdown and stormed out and quit right afterwards.

    I especially can't believe he threw it on the ground considering how fastidious they are about park cleanliness.
    It happened. It was shocking, because I've never had a Guest Relations CM treat me like that either, but there's a first time for everything. When we told the CM at the Guest Relations Lobby at DCA about this situation, we told her the name of the CM and there was a little recognition and a knowing half-smile that told us that she was familiar with this CM and his behavior. I heard from a CM who used to work with him say that this guy actually does this a lot. Apparently, he has a vendetta with people who get the GAC cards. I'm sorry, it is not his place to question the disability of a guest. It is against the ADA.

  13. #13

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by greeeneyes17 View Post
    On our family vacation to Disneyland this past Christmas, my mom has Plantar Fascitis. We were given a handicap pass because her doctor recommended she not stand for long periods of time. They didn't care about her doctor's note even though we had it, and gave us a pass. We were having a good time, until we went to ride the Matterhorn. You see, our family has a mom, a dad, and five children. Which makes seven. Handicap passes are only good for letting 6 members of your party onto the ride, the Matterhorn cast member explained, and one of us would have to go to the back of the line.

    We thought this was a bit ridiculous, since we were clearly a family and not some scammers trying to get their friends on a ride. But we all went to the back of the line because we didn't want to argue, rules are rules. But they let my family on other rides and didn't care that we had a large family.

    Anybody else have a similar experience? I'm not sure how they could handle this in the future properly, because I do see that the rule exists because people would try and mess with the system and find loopholes. But I don't think larger families should be discriminated against, at the same time.

    Thoughts?
    Did they explain that even with the pass, at Matterhorn, you were to wait in the line til you got to the chalet? If your mom can't wait, there is the option that the rest of you wait in the line, with her at the benches until you approach, then she joins.

    Yes, I use the HA entrances also. They are not designed to have you bypass the line, they are designed so that the person can access the line at all. I'm sorry if you think this is unfair, but it really is fair to everyone.
    If you see a cute yellow lab puppy with a yellow cape, WAVE! It might be us! (Or it may be someone else that lurks here!) Thank you for asking before you pet! Next trip, Dec 22-Jan 3rd.

  14. #14

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by swampymarsh View Post
    I feel disriminated against when big groups get to cut in front of me.
    Discriminated against? It's not like they're letting people in front of you simply because they have more people than you are or that they are more deserving to go first...
    it's just that one of the members of the party can't stand in line for a long period of time because of a foot problem. It would be kind of sad to make my mom or my siblings who are all under the age of 10 go to the back of the line and ride by themselves, but if that's what you would prefer then so be it.

    I, too, don't like big groups "cutting" in front of me, but again I'm referring to actually "cutting", where a big group of people just blatantly skip the line for no good reason.
    But if I saw a little girl with cancer who got in front of me with her handicap pass and her family with her?
    Don't tell me you wouldn't let her go first...

  15. #15

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    Re: Handicap Pass Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Cynthia B View Post
    My first thought is Rules Is Rules. But then because there are rules, there needs to be exceptions to rules, and your case is an excellent example. The CM at Matterhorn didn't get the memo on this very important Customer Service concept. Disneyland is Family oriented and keeping a family together on a ride ought to be goal for him/her.

    My two cents.
    Perhaps the OP also didn't read the Guest with Disabilities guide, because it does specifically say on Matterhorn, to use the regular line (which is fully accessible) to approach the attraction, then once you reach the chalet, you show the card to the CM, and they will divert you to the HA line. A GAC does NOT bypass an accessible line. But, when people try to bypass the line completely, generally the CM will try to redirect them. Seen it happen MANY times at the Matterhorn. (And remember, the Matterhorn has been down for quite some time.)
    If you see a cute yellow lab puppy with a yellow cape, WAVE! It might be us! (Or it may be someone else that lurks here!) Thank you for asking before you pet! Next trip, Dec 22-Jan 3rd.

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