Six Flags eliminates front-of-line for disabled visitors
In an effort to eliminate abuses by visitors faking injuries and disabilities to cut to the front of ride lines, Six Flags theme parks are now offering disabled visitors reservation return times instead of a free pass to the front of the queue. (Think FastPass/FlashPass/Universal Express, etc....)
The upside is that guests with disabilities still don't have to wait in a queue, which might not be wheelchair accessible. The downside, for them, is that they lose immediate access to rides. What is unclear is whether the return time will be equal to the current wait time for the ride, or for a later time during the day. Readers, what have you heard?
An article in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram quotes a mother of two autistic kids about the policy:
She said they went to a ride, booked a time to return and then left.
But that didn't make sense to her daughter, [the mother] said. The girl threw herself on the ground and bit her therapist, [the mother] said.
"My children don't understand time," she said. "The things that are reasonable to us make no sense to them. Anything more than five or 10 minutes can be a screaming meltdown for my kids."
"I knew we couldn't go through this on every ride. The stress could bring on a seizure for my daughter," [the mother] said.
The policy went into place earlier this month at all Six Flags theme parks.
I think this is great!!!!!
HURRAY! It's about time. I've seen so much abuse of this practice it's enough to make your head spin. For the mother with autistic children, have a family member go to the ride without the child and get the fast entrance pass. This way the child will not see the ride to become so upset. Another practice that really grinds me are pregnant women....I wasn't aware that pregnancy was a disability...I also thought that it was a matter of choice. I've seen women who are not even showing yet acting like they are on their last legs.. maybe they should wait until after the baby if they can't tolerate the event or just take it a little slower. Then there are the older folks (of which I am one) and the people that should walk to get exercise to help get rid of a "few extra pounds"....well I could go on for hours here.. Again HIP HIP HURRAY... lets hope some of the other parks pick up the ball!! Hey wouldn't we all like to get to the front of the line...except for the Make a wish or Give kids the World I don't see why they should have special permission to jump in front of anyone else. I know there are a few exceptions but like I stated...a few...not every case.
I'm guessing they won't let another family member go in to get the pass because then they can't see the actual person with the disability.
my daughter, son-in-law,grandsons and myself were at SFGA in NJ the weekend after Labor Day. i went to guest relations and was given a paper listing the rides that i could use special enter. to board. the paper was to be siged as i boarded and could only be used once for each ride. as we did the poplar rides early we did not have to wait. i have a bad knee that steps kill, wish all rides had the sloping ramps. i was never given a return time and was given a seat along with one guest with in a couple trains on the coasters we did. i liked the way the program worked for me.
Yay! Finally! Make them wait like the rest of us.
I feel that in most cases handicapped guests should be allowed ACCESS to rides whenever possible, in a safe and appropriate manner. But I do NOT feel that disabilities should allow guests the privilege of bypassing every queue in the park. I think the idea of a pass allowing the guest to return after a designated period of time equal to the approximate wait time, therefore avoiding the physical (or mental) demands of waiting in the queue, is very reasonable.
I'll play devils advocate here. Sure you have a few people abusing the system, but I think that Six Flags is really going to lose business by doing this. People with disabled children will simply not wait. Should they? Thats irrelevant, their disability prevents them from doing so. On the same token, Six Flags wants their dollar just as much as someone who is not disabled.
Well, they could just say wait in line!
It isnt a few people abusing the system, it is numerous people intentionally abusing a system. If people have a disability that is "so severe" that they cant wait a resonable amount of time to get on a ride, then a theme park visit may not be right for them and they should return when they can handke it.
Well folks, here's a little education, some here are more ignorant than others.(You know who you are).
I am NOT ignorant - I believe in being inclusive, but if someone is so disabled as to require a wheelchair, then perhaps they shouldn't be riding the attraction. READ THE WARNING SIGNS! Suppose the car hangs at the top of the lift? Who's going to risk their lives to get them out of that situation? I'm not denigrating the ride workers - they have a hard enough job for darn few dollars as it is...but they shouldn't have to play Super(wo)man to rescue someone with not enough sense to avoid potentially dangerous situations. Ask the ride operators at SheiKra about the evacuation lift...
Oh wow! Relax everybody!
When I was an attractions host at Walt Disney World (1988-91), Disney's policy, as explained to me, was that "wheelchair parties" (as they were called) had no inherent right to skip the line. When possible, they were to go through the regular queue. Where not possible for a wheelchair to navigate the queue, the person in the wheelchair, plus an attendant, were to wait at load for the rest of the party to come through the queue.
I must say that I have been on the receiving end of a group with disabilities. I did feel as if I was taking advantage of the situation, but you have to realize that everyone wants to keep their party together. I don't think there is a magical solution to this since no one will be happy with any of the scenarios.
at magic mountain, i would see many guest abuse this system that were not disabled. on the card, they would try to get a come back time on every ride right away. i would always point to where it stated on the card that only 2 active reservations could be made at one time. i would tell them they could ge a time for this ride after one of the other ones was completed, or i could cross one of them off and give them a time for this ride.
I have to admit that I was at one point guilty of abusing the system. I have a cousin with a severe vision disability accompanied by a learning disability. We often took advantage of this to jump the line at theme parks. The problem lies in the fact that it wasn't just myself escorting him onto the rides, but everyone who was with us that day...ALSO...in reality none of his disabilites inhibited his ability to wait in line just like everyone else. Why am I telling you this?? For one, I was young (in my teens) ignorant and arrogant. In retrospect we have probably made problems for other guests by adding to their overall wait, we probably slowed the overall capacity of the rides for the day and we have probably broken up groups who planned on and put the work into riding together on certain coasters.
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