Disney Leaves Guests Stranded While Begging for Help, Dog Hospitalized

in Disney Parks, Walt Disney World

An aerial view of Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort during the 50th Anniversary Celebration.

Credit: @bioreconstruct

When guests visit Walt Disney World Resort, they expect to enjoy a magical vacation, but things may not always go as planned.

It’s no secret that traveling to Walt Disney World is costly. That is because when it comes to spending money at Disney, it is the easiest thing any Guest can do. Take Walt Disney World Resort, for example. Do you want to purchase tickets when you visit? Will you be going to Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and EPCOT? Will you be eating at Disney Springs? Will you be getting a snack at Magic Kingdom, like a churro? Will you enter the World of Disney or the Emporium on Main Street, U.S.A., U.S.A.? It is honestly so easy to spend money at Disney — it’s impossible not to.

Magic Kingdom turnstiles, parking entry closed
Credit: CNN

Many guests will plan what they will be doing at Walt Disney World Resort months in advance, as they save up for the costly vacation.

As of late, we have seen attendance drop at Walt Disney World, and with this drop has come financial incentives to get more Guests to visit and spend more after prices have dramatically increased. Disney World Annual Passholders of all tiers (Disney Pixie Dust Pass, Disney Pirate Pass, Disney Sorcerer Pass, Disney Incredi-Pass) recently underwent a price increase, along with Disney Genie+, which can now cost Guests up to $35 per person per day, and theme park ticket prices, which have skyrocketed to over $180 per day on select days for Magic Kingdom.

The Mickey and Walt statue in front of Cinderella's Castle inside Disney's Magic Kingdom
Credit: Walt Disney World Resort

That being said, personal emergencies do occur, and when that happens, your Disney trip that you planned for months comes to a screeching halt. 

Disney does typically do their absolute best to help guests when they have to alter their vacation, but recently, one guest was wildly unhappy with their care.

Related: Disney Transport Cut From Park, Guests Stranded

Phonecols took to Reddit and said, “We had to leave early because our pet is having an emergency, and no one seems to be able to actually help us”.

The Disney guest continued, “Our dog sitter was negligent and let our dog eat several protein bars that have her currently at the emergency vet after vomiting, accidents in the house, and now not eating.”

Magic Kingdom crowds aerial view at Disney World
Credit: bioreconstruct

At this point, the family had to plan to go home.

The story progressed, “We purchased travel protection but no one is able to tell us who to call or what to do. I paid 1k to change our flights and I know that money is gone, I just want to be able to not pay for a bunch of resort nights and park tickets we can’t use.

For all I’ve heard about Disney customer service, I’m having a miserable time when I actually need them to step up and help us out. Front desk told us to call. Calling yields a bunch of “well I’m xyz department and I can’t help you” or “the front desk should be able to help you out” when they were the ones to tell us to call and we are already at the airport.

Pluto with girl and her dog
Credit: Disney

Just posting this if anyone has any advice. Feeling helpless while we wait for our plane and updates about our baby.”

In instances when this happens, it is always best to visit the customer service desk at your Disney resort, there are certainly many instances that Disney will allow for cancelations even without insurance. One reader even replied, “This was a year ago but I had to leave a trip to WDW halfway through and I was able to call them and they refunded the hotel nights we missed and converted leftover day tickets to “anytime” tickets. I did not have insurance. Maybe try calling them and do not mention the travel insurance? Just say you had an emergency and you had to leave early, and you would like to see what your options are for tickets and refunds.”

pirates of the caribbean dog and key jail scene
Credit: Disney

Personally, I have also had a similar experience where a last-minute cancelation had to occur due to an emergency.

That being said, this guest did purchase travel insurance, so even if Disney was unable to refund their vacation, the insurance would likely be able to take care of the cost. Disney also offers travel insurance, which you can read more on here. 

In the case of leaving pets behind, if guests are ever uncomfortable leaving their furry buddy behind, Best Friends Pet Hotel is owned and operated by Disney and offers boarding for your pet!

best friends pet care
Credit: Best Friends Pet Care

Best Friends Pet Hotel offers peace of mind to Walt Disney World Resort Guests traveling with pets. Only service animals are permitted in theme parks, Disney Springs, water parks or on Disney Transportation.

Best Friends Pet Hotel includes:

  • 17,000 square feet of air-conditioned indoor space
  • 10,000 square feet of covered outdoor runs and play areas
  • A 25,000 square-foot dog park
  • The staff is comprised of highly trained pet care providers, who are all animal lovers, first and foremost.

Read more here. 

Overall, just like any trip, traveling to Disney World can always be unpredictable based on what is going on in your personal life, from getting sick to having a family member feel ill to having to rush home like these guests. Although Disney does do their best to help, it is the guest’s job to protect their vacation with travel insurance for moments just like this.

Have you ever had a Disney vacation end abruptly?

If you are looking to visit Walt Disney World Resort for a magical vacation, the Walt Disney World Website can be a great tool to begin planning your trip! You can begin exploring their theme parks: Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, and EPCOT. You can also take a look at their water parks where you can splash around in the chill of Disney’s Blizzard Beach (alongside new Frozen characters, Anna, Elsa, Sven, and Kristoff), or hit the waves at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon. When you get hungry or want to go shopping, Disney Springs is the place to be, especially with World of Disney there ready to help you pick up some souvenirs! You can also begin looking for your Disney World Resort! If you are looking to stay at a Deluxe monorail Resort like Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa or a Value Resort where you can hop on the Skyliner like Disney’s Pop Century Resort, it is always fun to begin looking for a room that would best suit you and your party. Plus, it has all the information you need to know on Disney Genie+ so that you will be ready to go on your My Disney Experience app once you download it! Click here to check it out today.

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