child with Mickey
  • On Mar 7, 2022
    Cheryl from VA Asked Please note that experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    We are taking a family trip and my 6yo son who has autism will be going to Disney for his first time. Can you please recommend how we can make reservations for rides and/or meeting characters for when we get there?

    Hiya, Cheryl!

    Welcome to planDisney! I am delighted that you have stopped by with your question. Your son's first trip to Walt Disney World is such a special experience. I am sure you are all counting down the days with excitement!

    I have several recommendations that will be helpful for your upcoming adventure. The first would be to explore the Disability Access Service offered to Guests that difficulty tolerating extended wait times. I have a child that uses this service during our visits, and it has been a real-life saver on many occasions. If your son will benefit from this option you can now pre-register online in advance before you arrive. This is such a great way to plan ahead and spend a little less time waiting in line. The timeframe for this process is 30 days to 2 days before arrival. Before you begin your online registration be sure to have set you your My Disney Experience account and link everyone in your travel party to your Family & Friends list. You should also have valid theme park admission for each member of your group before placing the call. When your plans are ready in My Disney Experience, you will be all set to select the blue Request Live Video Chat link and get started with a friendly Cast Member. Your son will need to be present for the call. The chat is available from 7 AM to 110 PM Eastern Time. Some wait times have been longer than anticipated, so I recommend calling right when the queue opens if possible. 

    After you have completed registration, you will be able to select two one-hour return windows as part of the Disability Access Service advanced planning option. I suggest spending some time going over the must-do attractions and experiences on your son's list. This can be a fun way to get excited about the upcoming visit. And it will save you time as you will already know what selections you would like to make. 

    Walt Disney World is wonderfully accommodating to Guests of all abilities. In addition to the Disability Access Service, they offer a wide variety of options to help make this the best trip ever for your Ohana. Rider Switch, break areas, and amazing dietary accommodations are just a few of the reasons my family has made The Most Magical Place on Earth our go-to vacation spot. 

    Cheryl, I hope that these tips help you continue to plan an amazing vacation for your entire family. I do have one final recommendation. Be sure to pick up a celebration button for your son at a Guest Relations location! This will help everyone celebrate his very first visit! And don't forget to stop by to meet Mickey. This is a great experience for photos and memories that will last a lifetime!

    I hope that your upcoming adventure is memorable and magical!
    We'll see ya real soon!
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Meet the Panelist: Tammy, Illinois

Hey Everyone! I'm Tammy. My Ohana and I live in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. I am a preschool teacher and I also coordinate events for youth and families. I have been visiting Walt Disney World Resort since I was a teenager. I'm always looking for a new adventure to explore or an amazing snack to try. I love to share my tips and experiences because I want to help make all trips as memorable and magic as my travels have been.  Learn More About Tammy

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