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Disney To Change Policy For Guests With Special Needs

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Guests take a spin on "Dumbo, the Flying Elephant" at Magic Kingdom Park. (Source: David Roark, Photographer- Walt Disney World)

Guests take a spin on “Dumbo, the Flying Elephant” at Magic Kingdom Park. (Source: David Roark, Photographer- Walt Disney World)

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A program that allowed guests with special needs skip the long lines at attractions in Walt Disney parks in Florida and California is about to be retired.

On October 9th, Disney’s Guest Assistance Card program will be replaced with the Disabled Assistance System (DAS).

The Guest Assistance Card (GAC) program 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.  Under the new DAS guests with special needs be allowed to return to rides at a certain time, similar to the parks’ Fastpass system.

“Return times will be set to the current stand-by wait time for the ride or show, so that there’s no time advantage to using DAS over waiting in line. Also, visitors with disabilities must be present and ride in order for others in their party to be admitted through the DAS return line,” according to Themeparkinsider.com.

Unlike the Fastpass, however, the DAS would be issued only at Guest Relations offices and would only allow guests to reserve one ride during any particular time slot.

Another reported new feature will require a disabled guest using the program to have their photo taken and printed on the front of the DAS card to prevent abuse.

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