Walt Disney World with multiple kids and multiple special needs: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Social Anxiety, and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
Kathy chats with Jeanette, a fellow Jersey Girl (and R.N.) who is probably still unpacking from her family’s late summer vacation at Walt Disney World! She and her husband are the proud parents of: Brandon (13), Madison (9) who has Social Anxiety and OCD, Kate (8), Bree (7) and Brian (5) who has Autism Spectrum Disorder.
In this episode, Jeanette gives a trip report from the family’s WDW vacation in August, 2014.
(Intro music to the segment is “Go With the Flow” from Finding Nemo: The Musical, which can be seen at Disney’s Animal Kingdom park.)
The family had a short Universal-based vacation this past December, 2013, and had the opportunity to attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party (MVMCP) at the Magic Kingdom. At that time, Jeanette feels that the crowds and the inability to utilize FP+ had a negative effect on their experience at the Magic Kingdom, resulting in multiple meltdowns for her two special-needs children. This made her quite apprehensive about their upcoming Walt Disney World vacation. We discussed planning for the August vacation, particularly the use of the new FastPass Plus reservation system and the DAS, Disability Access Service Card, system.
Jeanette was pleasantly surprised at the ease with which she was able to obtain the Disability Access Service Card for her two children. A DAS card for each child gives the family of seven the ability to split up and continue to provide accommodation to their special-needs kids (or, to allow Jeanette the ability to return to the resort with one or more children if they have become overwhelmed and need a break.) She had made a point of contacting Disney’s Disabilities Relations Department and listening to the Special Mouse podcast in advance of her trip in order to familiarize herself with the Disability Access Service Card program.
We discussed Jeanette’s impression of their resort, Disney’s Old Key West, including the spaciousness of the accommodations and the quality of the resort and internal bus system.
The recurring theme of the trip report is that, despite the most attentive of planning, the family had a positive and enjoyable experience primarily because the parents adopted the attitude of flexibility and “going with the flow.”
Thanks, Jeanette, for sharing your trip and your lovely family with us!
This episode is sponsored by Amy at Up and Up Travel, specializing in helping families with Special Needs and Disabilities plan and create lasting magical memories , and by Scooter Vacations, the only Orlando scooter rental company to provide concise weight ratings to ensure a 12-15 hour theme park ride time at Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando or Sea World.
You can connect with Jeanette on Facebook HERE.
Join our awesome PRIVATE Facebook group by posting a request HERE. This is a friendly, safe place for listeners of the podcast to connect and share their thoughts on Disney travel with special needs and disabilities.
Thanks for listening!