March 29, 2017
My kids are 8 and 10 and want to go to Disney. I don't want to go to Disney for various reasons, but one of them is my RA. Have any of you "done" Disney and how did you manage?
March 30, 2017
Disney is an awesome place to visit and even go to celebrate a special date like an anniversary, birthday or even to just make memories. But it can be a lot of activity and can make for a long day if you are trying to see and do everything. If RA effects your normal day than it could become a dark cloud on what should be a sunny day. I have been to Disney World at least 10 times on vacation and do know that they do the best to make sure the guests are taken good care of. I suggest calling them and they can help you with any questions you may have regarding any special needs or services you may require.
Good luck and I hope you have a magical day.
March 31, 2017
Hi Wendy. What are your concerns about Disney? What are your limitations? I live near the House of Mouse and can tell you the place is crawling with wheelchairs and people to help you enjoy the parks. Are you going to walk the parks or rent a motorized scooter? How many days? Which parks? What month? Will it just be you and your 2 kids? I know... tons of questions, but different situations depending on your answers.
I think their website has info about being a guest with special needs and you can always call their 800 number and they will get you to the right guest services department to help you feel more comfortable with your planning, even if you are staying off property.
It sounds more daunting than it really is.
April 4, 2017
Hi wendy! Eebtool and ktinflorida offered the same suggestions that I was going to! I know that Disney can be very overwhelming, but the company does try to be very accommodating to guests with special needs. You may want to find out their "slow" times (both time of day and time of year). Also, maybe plan ahead so you can do the things that matter most to your boys and not stress out when you can't 'do' everything. Here is a link to some information on Disneyland -- https://disneyland.disney.go.com/guest-services/guests-with-disabilities/. And here is some information on Disneyworld services -- https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest-services/cognitive-disabilities-services/. It's always best to give the park notice about your needs so they can be prepared. Both parks offer multiple services for guests with special needs, including wheelchair rentals, rider switch, and break areas. I hope this helps and have a good time planning your trip! Best, Erin, RheumatoidArthritis.net Team Member.
July 9, 2017
Hi Wendy, I have done Disneyworld both with and without RA. Having a plan that fit in my comfort zone was key to us having a great time. I went with my husband and 2 daughters that are right around your boys' age. To my surprise my girls liked it better at "my pace", it was planned out before we went so everyone was excited about what was "just for them" and they knew what was going to happen each day. I built in a few saftey nets and I can honestly say it was a great vacation. Disney is a pretty overwhelming place to start with, paring it down to my speed made it managable, low pressure & fun. We chose 1 park per day with 3 fast pass rides that we were able to book online almost 2 months before the trip. So no one missed out on their "favorite" ride. Our wait times were almost nothing. I got maps and we planned our route and broke each park down by section to eliminate excess walking for me. I did no stroller either for my youngest who has limitless energy when she has a stroller to rest and be pushed around in. Before going on the trip I used a pedometer to get an idea of how many steps I was walking before my afternoon rest and how many before bed at night. So when at Disney I knew at roughly 6k it was time to head back to the hotel. The fast pass for long wait time rides was great, we could arrive within an hour of the pass to use it, so along the route when there were rides with walk on or low wait times we were able to enjoy them too! We did most parks in the am, came back for lunch to the hotel, I took my rest then we did the pool in afternoon, got cleaned up and went to dinner. Going to bed early let us take advantage of "magic hours" on early days and got us to all our am fast passes on time and well rested. While there I did a bit too much at Animal Kingdom because I was feeling so good (foolish me). I just could not do the bus ride back to our hotel. We chose to use an Uber who was at the park entrance and for $11 - it saved my day. The pool time in the afternoon was a saftey net, just like the Uber. It allowed me extra time to rest on some days. My pedometer helped alot too in gauging how much energy I was expending on walking. I am usually only 8k most days. We also did breakfast & lunch in our room to reduce the amount of people I came in contact with due to immunosuppressant rx's Im on. I also used 2nd skin lotion for my hands as a precaution. I came back home no worse for the wear ☺️. I really hopes this helps if you choose to go.
PS - My other saftey nets were the readily accessible wheelchairs & scooters at every park.