WDW Blog

The Recent Florida Resident Passholder Problem

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This “magical enhancement” wasn’t so magical

There are plenty of reasons to live in Florida. One of them is that we get discounts on all kinds of cool stuff. This includes at Walt Disney World. Florida Residents are eligible for several different passes that are not available to those who live out of state. We can also pay on a payment plan. When you first sign up for a Florida Resident Annual Pass, you can pay a deposit that is equal to a one-day pass. Then you can pay the rest monthly. After the first year, you can renew without paying another deposit. This makes it easier for many of us to visit Walt Disney World. There is no interest charged with the payment plan.

When Walt Disney World shut down because of Coronavirus, payments for those of us on the payment plan were also suspended. With the parks reopening, payments are about to start up again. Yesterday (July 3) there was a glitch in the system. My guess is that the IT department tried to turn the payments back on. Whatever happened, it was a mess. People who are on the payment plan were suddenly charged for all of the payments that were missed. Needless to say, this messed up a lot of people and their bank accounts.

Disney immediately got to work to try to fix their “glitch” as they called it. People who called were told that Disney had been working on “magical enhancements”. Calling something “magical” that caused so many problems was a mistake in my opinion, but I digress. Promises were made that they were working to return the money that was taken by mistake. Depending on the bank, the money should be back by early next week.

My family and I have three passes, and they are on two different cards. We have already had the money returned to one of the accounts. The payment on that account never went all the way through, it was just listed as pending. It was reversed almost immediately on July 3. The other one was fixed today (July 4). Rest assured that Disney is returning the money. The speed could depend in part on your bank. I know that it’s frustrating, but Disney is trying to make things right.

I have no idea how something like this happens. I have never been a fan of the Disney IT department. The system crashes all the time. How many times have you tried to find something on the website, only to see Stitch instead? Special days such as Passholder VIP events are often met with the site crashing. This has been going on for years, much longer than I’ve been a Passholder.

In a way, I can also sympathize. Sometimes it’s hard to plan for the unexpected. A while back I worked for a major company on their phone lines. There was a recall issued, and I had been trained to take the calls once the recall was officially announced. Once the system went live, it just did not work. The information would not show up correctly, transferred calls would be disconnected, and the system would crash at will. This was a major company, and the IT department was not ready for the unexpected. It wasn’t Disney, but my point is that things can and will go wrong, even when you think that you’re prepared.

If you were impacted by the glitch, there is no need to report it to Disney. That said, this “Magical Enhancement” has caused financial problems for a lot of people. If you do need to talk to someone, the number is 888-701-4100, and then select option 3. That’s the Passholder line. The phone lines are open Mondays through Fridays, 8:00-8:00 Eastern.

If you call, please remember that it is not the fault of the person on the other end. The reason why I quit that phone job was because I was tired of being sworn at and being called stupid. People can be cruel when they can’t see the human face on the other end of the line. Don’t be mean to someone who is trying to clean up a mess that he or she didn’t make.