Disneyland, California Adventure Reportedly Mulling Changes To Special Needs Passes
ANAHEIM (CBSLA.com) — A program that allowed Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park guests with special needs to skip past long lines at park attractions may be discontinued next month, according to reports.
The Guest Assistance Card (GAC) program, which was reportedly exploited by guests who would hire a disabled “guide” to pose as a family member and allow their party to skip ahead in line, has been rumored to be replaced with a new system on Oct. 9, according to reports.
According to MiceAge.com, under the new Disabled Assistance System (DAS), guests would instead be allowed to return to rides at a certain time, a privilege that is similar to the parks’ Fastpass system. Unlike the Fastpass, however, the DAS would be issued only at Guest Relations offices in both parks and would only allow guests to reserve one ride during any particular time slot.
Another reported new feature would require a disabled guest using the program to have their photo taken and printed on the front of the DAS card to prevent current abuse tactics.
Some parents have expressed concerns that any new changes will discourage guests with special needs children from visiting the parks during peak hours.
“I cannot fathom Andrew having to wait longer than what’s already necessary with the Guest Assistance Card at either of the Disney parks,” wrote Special Needs Orange County blogger Jo Ashline. “And the sensory overload while he’s in these lines or going from kiosk to kiosk.”
Disney personnel at both Disneyland and California Adventure are scheduled for training for the DAS program starting in late September, according to MiceAge.
There was no immediate response to a request for comment from Disney officials on Thursday.