Walt Disney World is a wonderful place, but vacationers must have a plan before going or risk wasting time and money. This is the same for Guests with or without mobility issues. I was surprised by the lack of articles on accessibility to Walt Disney World, so I present this information in hopes of making someone's vacation easier.
NOTE! Since originally writing this article, Walt Disney World has added a link at the lower right-hand side of their website, directing people to PDFs of guides AND individual listings of ridings and accessibility. HOORAY!! So feel free to read this, but CHECK OUT the WDW website for something (FINALLY!) comprehensive...
As with all things Disney, things are subject to change, but here's the way things are at the time of this writing.
Rides/Shows Available to Guests without Having to Transfer from Wheelchair/ECV
(While using an Electric Conveninece Vehicle (ECV) may be helpful in getting around the parks, they are not so convenient riding rides. Any * denotes a ride where a Guest will have to transfer from their ECV into a wheelchair to ride.)
Magic Kingdom - Walt Disney World Railroad*, Magic Carpets of Aladdin, Enchanted Tiki Room, Jungle Cruise, Country Bear Jamboree, Hall of Presidents, Liberty Square Riverboat, It's a Small World*, Mickey's PhilharMagic, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh*, Carousel of Progress, Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin*, Stitch's Great Escape*, Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor.
Epcot - Ellens Energy Adventure*, The Seas with Nemo & Friends*, Turtle Talk with Crush, Living with the Land*, Circle of Life, Journey Into Imagination with Figment, Captain EO, Grand Fiesta Tour*, Reflections of China, The American Adventure, Impressions de France, O Canada!
Hollywood Studios - American Idol Experience, Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, Muppetvision 3D, Lights Motors Action Extreme Stunt Show, Studio Backlot Tour, Toy Story Midway Mania*, Walt Disney: One Man's Dream, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Magic of Disney Animation, Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage, Fantasmic.
Animal Kingdom - It's Tough to be a Bug, Discovery Island Trails, Festival of the Lion King, Kilimanjaro Safaris*, Pangani Forest Exploration Trail, Wildlife Express Train, Conservation Station, Affection Section, Flights of Wonder, Maharajah Jungle Trek, the Boneyard, Finding Nemo: The Musical, TriceraTop Spin*.
Rides/Shows Where Guests would Need to Transfer from Wheelchair onto Ride Vehicle
(Again, any * denotes a ride where a Guest will have to transfer from their ECV into a wheelchair, then transfer from the wheelchair onto the ride vehicle.)
Magic Kingdom - Pirates of the Caribbean (boat is at floor level)*, Splash Mountain (boat is at floor level), Haunted Mansion (a Transfer Access Vehicle is available; contact a host for details), Prince Charming Regal Carrousel, Dumbo the Flying Elephant, Mad Tea Party, The Barnstormer*, Tomorrowland Speedway, Space Mountain (cars are at floor level)*, Astro Orbiter.
Epcot - Spaceship Earth*, Mission: SPACE, Test Track (cars are near floor level), Soarin', Maelstrom (boat is at floor level).
Hollywood Studios - Star Tours II (Transfer Access SSeat is available), Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith (Access Vehicle and Transfer Practice Vehicle are available).
Animal Kingdom - Kali River Rapids, Expedition Everst (Transfer Access Vehicle and Transfer Practice Vehicle are available), Primeval Whirl (Transfer Access Vehicle is available), Dinosaur.
Monorails and most busses in Walt Disney World are accessible to Guests in wheelchairs. In addition, many watercraft are also accessible, but may not be available in certain weather/water conditions. Parade routes and some shows have designated viewing areas for Guests in wheelchairs; these are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Most dining locations are wheelchair accessible, though some counter services have narrow queues formed by railings (contact a host for assistance if needed).
If arriving to a park via a vehicle, there are designated parking areas for Guests with a valid disability-parking permit. There is no tram service from the parking area, if you are traveling with a personal wheelchair. Complimentary wheelchairs are avaialble for Guests with limited mobility to travel to and from the accessible parking lot and the nearest wheelchair rental location. These wheelcharis can be easily identified by their blue seats, backrests and flags; such wheelchairs are not permitted for use inside the Theme Parks. If you need a rental wheelchair, they are avaiable in each park; a limited number of ECVs are also available for rental.
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