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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Tip Tuesday: When things go wrong - what do you do?

Magic Kingdom First Aid CenterSometimes things can go wrong, even at Walt Disney World.  People get sick, get injured or get lost.  Things get lost, tickets get misplaced.  When this happens, it's best to know what to do so that a problem doesn't ruin your trip.

Medical emergencies:
Sometimes there are problems that arise while you’re in a park and you’ll need some help. If the medical emergency is major, please call 911 right away.  If you’re having a minor medical emergency, you’ll want to head straight to the nearest First Aid Center.  Here you can get treatment for various minor medical issues and information about what to do for more serious medical issues. Each location is listed on park maps:
  • Magic Kingdom: Located in between Casey’s Corner and Crystal Palace
  • Epcot: Located on the Mexico side of the Odyssey building
  • Hollywood Studios: Located right next to Guest Relations near Sid Cahunenga’s
  • Animal Kingdom: Located on Discovery Island just before the bridge to Africa
  • Blizzard Beach: Located behind the Beach Haus near the main entrance
  • Typhoon Lagoon: Located inside Leaning Palms just past the main entrance
  • ESPN Wide World of Sports: Located inside the Milk House

Non-medical problems:
Not all guest problems require a doctor or nurse. Sometimes guests have other issues they need to resolve or they’re just looking for a special button (birthday, anniversary, celebration, etc.). In these cases, guests can go to the Guest Relations center located near the entrance to each park to speak with a cast member to try to solve their issue. For instance, if you’ve lost your park ticket or annual pass, a Guest Relations cast member can issue a new ticket/pass, provided you have the correct information and ID for each guest.

Help! My child is lost!! 
It may sound like a cliche, but it really is a parent's worst nightmare when their child is lost, especially in a large, unfamiliar place like Walt Disney World.  Hopefully you will never have to face this situation, but if something does happen and your child goes missing, you should find the nearest Cast Member and immediately tell them what has happened. Disney takes these situations very seriously and has a well-established procedure to handle lost children. Also, it's a very good idea before you arrive at the parks to make sure your children know how to find a Cast Member if they get lost or are separated and make sure they know your cell phone number. For younger children, I suggest taking them up to a Cast Member on the first day of your visit and introducing them to a Cast Member and make sure the child knows what a cast member badge looks like and that if something should go wrong and they get lost, to find someone wearing one of these badges right away.  Often during the morning there are lots of cast members at the entrance welcoming guests so you can find one pretty easily.  Usually children who have lost their parents will be taken to Guest Relations while Cast Members attempt to find those parents.

Now where did my cell phone go?
Every day guests lose items in the parks. From hats to cell phones (my family has lost two at WDW) to stuffed animals and jewelry, Cast Members always are finding things that have been left behind. If you lose something, you should find a Cast Member and explain what’s happened. Lost items are taken periodically to each park’s Guest Relations Center. At the end of the day, any items not claimed are taken to the central Lost and Found center located near the Ticket and Transportation Center. If you’ve discovered you’ve lost something and it’s been missing for a few days, it may have been taken to the central Lost and Found. You can call Lost and Found at (407) 824-4245. Be sure to give as accurate a description as you can, this will help Cast Members try to find your specific item.

As I said, hopefully you'll never have to deal with these issues, but it's much better to do a little advance planning, just to be safe.

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