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Hi Ashley! I'm hoping you can help a fellow military wife. Family is going to Disney World from 12/26-1/1. My husband suffers from PTSD and crowds and fireworks make him nervous. Any suggestion in avoiding both but the family still enjoying all?
- Asked by Tara on 12/2/2012
I'm so glad you came to see me with your question today. There are a few things you can do to ensure your husband is as comfortable as possible while your family makes magical vacation memories.
Try to arrive at the parks as early as possible. If there are morning Extra Magic Hours available, use those. The parks will often fill to capacity during this time period and arriving prior to park opening will ensure you are in the parks during the least crowded time of day. If you arrive extra early, you can see and do a ton, then end the day early to relax at the resort and have some down time.
As soon as you enter the park, visit a Guest Relations office and request a Guest Assistance Card (GAC). The GAC may allow your husband a quieter, less crowded area to wait in line. I suggest checking them out ahead of time on sites like YouTube. Undercover Tourist is one of my favorite resources for attraction videos on YouTube. There are several attractions that feature loud sounds and/or gun shot noises such as The Jungle Cruise and The Great Movie Ride.
The fireworks shows at Magic Kingdom Park and Epcot can be heard around most of Walt Disney World Resort. If you'd like to avoid the fireworks completely, I suggest making dining reservations outside of those parks during the shows to minimize the noise from the fireworks or returning to your resort room. There are other locations to view the Magic Kingdom fireworks outside of the park, such as the Ticket and Transportation Center or from Disney's Contemporary and Polynesian Resorts. These locations offer great views of the shows with less crowds, however, the sounds can still be quite loud.
I hope these suggestions help, Tara. I know you're going to have a magical vacation. If there's anything else I can do to help, please let me know.