Rider Switch for Older Kids

We will be traveling to WDW this July for the first time since 2011…that was before FP+ and the “new” Fantasyland, not to mention Pandora! Our last trip ds was 5yo, he is now 12yo!

Ds has never been a “ride kid.” We knew that during his three trips as a toddler. Splash Mountain is on the upper edge of his discomfort zone (he doesn’t love it, but will occasionally ride), but he is much happier on the less adventurous attractions so we have heavily relied on Rider Switch

After our 2011 trip, ds was diagnosed w/ autism along with some pretty major sensory issues which makes riding roller coasters feel like he’s going to die. He does really well in amusement parks overalland we don’t need a DAS pass…but we do need to use Rider Switch.

I wasn’t worried until older kids using Rider Switch came up as a topic on another message board and I was informed that in spite of the written policy it is at the CM’s discretion to give a pass for someone who is tall enough for the ride.

Has anyone had this experience? We went to Disneyland last year and had no issue using Rider Swap there.

I haven’t ever used RS where you get a FP return but last April (2017) my DS10 caught us off guard by not wanting to ride Test Track or Soarin’. (He had ridden them on multiple past trips.) We were actually in line for the ride when he started saying he didn’t want to ride. There were 4 of us - me, DH, DS13 and DS10. So on the fly we asked for rider swap as we were reaching the boarding areas at each ride. DH and I each had a turn riding with DS13 while the other waited with DS10. It was not a problem at all doing it this way, and DS13 got to ride twice. DS10 didn’t mind waiting at all. He was just relieved not having to ride. Hope that helps.

Lots of liners have reported difficulties with kids who are tall enough, with some being told the child (in some cases aged 6 or 7) should wait alone in the gift shop. I’d have the policy screen shotted on my phone just in case, and be prepared to stand my ground.

@missoverexcited I hope that I do not come across any CM that suggest my 7 yo wait alone in an unfamiliar place for a unspecified period of time while her dad and I ride together. It won’t be pretty. Fortunately DH is charming.

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I quite agree.

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Thanks for the idea of saving a screen shot of the policy.

Yeah, I’m not comfortable w/ my 12yo hanging by himself in the gift shop for us to make our way through a line and ride an attraction. Not gonna happen.

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