How to Use Disneyland's DAS Pass for Kids on the Autism Spectrum
It's time to visit the Happiest Place on Earth!
Disneyland Tips and Tricks for Children on the Autism Spectrum
From the crowds to loud noises, there are a million things that could spark a tantrum. However, the road to a magical experience at Disney is in reach with some planning and preparation.
The best part? Disneyland Park has services for guests with autism and cognitive disabilities in order to give you and your tiny trailblazer the perfect day at the park.
So if you want to know how to get the most out of Disneyland's services for your child with autism, then continue reading. We've got all the tips and tricks you need.
General Services for Disneyland Services for Guests with Autism & Cognitive Disabilities
We love Disney for creating services and being more inclusive at their parks. If you were curious about the general services for guests with autism and cognitive disabilities, the services are as follows:
Advanced Ticket Purchase: To avoid waiting in long lines outside of the entrances.
Stroller and Wheelchair Rental: This can be done at a designated shop near the main entrance of the Disneyland Park and Disney Resort hotels.
Strollers as Wheelchairs: Go to the Guest Relations Lobby for ID tags.
Rider Switch: For guests with two or more people in their party. Enables you to ride an attraction while another member waits with a guest who doesn't want to ride. Then swap with the member so that they get to ride without having to wait in line again. Perfect if you're visiting with a friend or your significant other.
Accessing Attractions: To avoid waiting in long lines, you can take advantage of Disney FASTPASS as well as Disability Access Service, which we cover down below.
Break Areas: If a meltdown does happen, then you can ask a Cast Member for help and they will show you to the nearest place to take a break.
Companion Restrooms: These are larger restrooms throughout the park. If you need assistance, you can ask a Cast Member for help.
Attraction Guides: To help you with rides and attractions that are best for your child's needs, please go to the park's attraction details page.
Dietary Accommodations: If your child has specific dietary needs, then you can make advanced requests when you book a dining reservation. You can also bring your own food into the park. But, if you plan on eating in the park, you can tell a Cast Member and they will assist you from here.
Everything You Need to Know About Disneyland Disability Access Service
Now, for the important stuff. The DAS is essentially a service that allows guests to schedule a return time that's similar to the standard queue time. The return time is issued by the Cast Member at the front of the ride and can be redeemed at any time after the wait time given. This way, you and your party can avoid the stress of waiting in line and enjoy other things instead and head to the FASTPASS lane when you return.
Where to Pick Up DAS
If you are going to Disneyland, go to a Guest Relations Main Entrance location such as Disneyland's City Hall or California Adventure's Chamber of Commerce.
How to Get DAS
A Guest Relations Member will then ask about what your accommodation needs will be. So, be sure to know your child's limitations, such as if they are unable to stay in a standard queue.
If DAS is provided, then you need to provide a valid ticket and a photo of your child. Or, if you prefer, a photo of you, as their guardian.
Make sure to tell the Guest Relations Members how many people should be linked in your party. Typically, the pass is good for up to 6 people.
How to Use DAS in the Park
As we mentioned before, DAS can be used as an alternative form of waiting in line. Here's how to use it in the park.
Walk to a ride entrance lane with a Cast Member. Your ticket will be scanned to check you in and you will be assigned a return time to your party.
You can enjoy the rest of the park while you wait.
Return to the attraction entrance after the appropriate time has passed.
Only one active return time can occur at a time. So, once you finish one ride or attraction, you can get another return time for a different attraction.
Your child with the DAS must be part of your party when you ride.
You can use DAS in conjunction with FASTPASS.
The return times are valid until park closing.
Disneyland Tips and Tricks
Avoid high traffic times at Disney. This includes Halloween, Thanksgiving, Spring Break, and Christmas. Also, check to make sure no big events such as school grad nights are happening. If you can, go sometime off-season during the weekday. Tuesday is typically the best day for fewer crowds.
Go to California Adventure if Disneyland is too crowded. There are typically fewer people and Pixar Pier is a blast.
Be prepared. Talk to your child about your plans and try your best to stick to your routine.
To help you plan, you can use the Disneyland app
Bring your child's favorite toy with you in case of any unexpected queues. Remember, you're allowed to bring a backpack with you without having to check it in.
Bring a photo of your child with you. Things happen and it's always good to prepare.
When in doubt, ask a Cast Member. If you ever feel like you need something, even if that means a shorter wait time, then ask a Cast Member politely. Chances are, they will say yes.
Now that we have filled you to the brim with knowledge, it's time to get prepared. We understand it can be a daunting task, but it is worth it in the end, to see your child happy.
So, get out there and have fun! And if you have any more questions, head over to Disneyland's website for more resources.