Mother, Son, Giraffe, Kilimanjaro Safaris, Animal Kingdom, Savannah
  • On Feb 11, 2010
    Elaine Asked Note: This answer was provided prior to the change to planDisney and may still contain references to Disney Parks Moms Panel.

    Experiences, policies, pricing and other offerings are subject to change and may have changed since the date of this answer.

    we have three (3) special needs kids we are going to take for their first visit, any info on how to avoid the long lines, we would also like to get a schedule of who and when the princess will be available, ie tinkerbell, can we also bring special snacks,

    Hi Elaine,

    Congratulations on your upcoming trip.  Many families with children with special needs report that Disney is a very user-friendly destination for their kids.  If your children's disabilities prevent them from waiting in lines (such as Autism), you can visit Guest Relations at whichever park you visit first, explain your children's needs and receive a Guest Assistance Card (GAC) for your family.  The GAC will enable your family to use an alternate entrance for most attractions.  This won't eliminate your wait entirely, but generally makes it much shorter. 

    You can absolutely bring in food into the parks in a small, portable (soft) cooler for your kids and family.  This is a great idea to save on concessions in the parks.  If your kids have food allergies or are on special diets, you can also speak with the Cast Members at the Disney Dining Line (407-WDW-DINE) to make special requests.  When you arrive at any table service restaurant that you have reservations at, the chef (or designee) will come out to speak with you regarding your concerns/special requests.  While not every request can be accommodated, guests with special dining needs are generally very pleased at the (delicious) accommodations that Disney chefs prepare for them.

    Finally, I recommend picking up a Times Guide when you enter the parks to find out when the various character meet-and-greets are open throughout the day you visit.  Tinkerbell can often be found at the Toontown Hall of Fame Tent at the Magic Kingdom.

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Meet the Panelist: Tanya, New Jersey

I am Tanya from FL, full-time mom to two fun-loving boys. I have an array of planning tips and believe I offer a unique perspective on how to make Disney an amazing adventure for individuals with a variety of needs and abilities. Learn More About Tanya

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