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Old 06-04-2014, 01:35 PM   #1
O2H O2H
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Is there anything I can do to make it easier?

We will be there for 7 days/6 nights dec 14-20. These are the things I have thought of to do to make the ECV rental/use less of an issue:

-Go during a slowish week. On Dec 20 (a Saturday), going to a park other than MK
-staying on-site so we can use disney busses which I understand can handle the ecv's pretty well
-Renting outside of the parks so I can use it at the resort and when going to dinner at other resorts, etc
-Renting from a preferred vendor so we can pick up/drop off to the check in at the resort
-Using the crowd calendars to look at expected lower attendance parks each day
-Planning to leave slightly before close on most days to beat the CRUSH at exit. On the day we stay in MK for wishes, I plan on doing some shopping/ambling around a bit to avoid the worst of the crush.

I'm going to try to build up some more endurance before I go, as well, but the ability to do that is going to be super variable.


Anything else I can do? I don't use one at home, just a cane when I need it. I try not to make a big deal of my issues (don't park in the handicapped spot unless I need it that day, etc) but I know from travelling for a short trip in March that even the airport was miserable, so the idea of 7 days of parks is just going to be out of the question. I can get up and transfer ok from the ecv to a ride, etc. or even stand or walk for very short periods. I know that is probably going to make it look like I don't need it and am just trying to get out of lines or sympathy or whatever, but that is not true at all.

Thanks for any input or support. I am feeling nervous about doing this.
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Old 06-04-2014, 08:24 PM   #2
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Practical advice here from a full-time ECV user. Your plans are good! When you get there, you probably won't notice if people are judging. I think it's just pre-trip worry. You'll catch on to loading onto a bus, boat and the monorail. Probably feel pretty good after 1-2 tries. Turn your speed down when loading, but not too low or you won't get up the ramp!

One thing I'd suggest is a cheap poncho to cover ECV from rain. The ones I like best aren't the $1 ones at Walmart, but in their sporting goods dept there are colored ponchos for about $4-5 that are sturdier. You want to keep your controls dry, and it'd be nice to have a dry seat, too. Or, you could just put a plastic shopping bag over your controls instead. I'd bring a small supply with you.

In the Walmart office supply dept, there are the plastic curly phone-cord-type wristlets that have a key-ring. Put your ECV key on the key-ring, put the cord thru the handlebar. Then when you park, take the key with you. Wear the key on your wrist. If your ECV has to be moved while you're on a ride, the Disney CM can put your ECV in neutral and roll it (control lever is in the back near the wheels). If you get back to your ECV and it seems there's no power, check the neutral control. If a CM put the ECV in neutral, they might have forgetten to put it back in gear and your ECV will act as if there's no power.

In your resort room, sometimes it's hard to reach an outlet for ECV charging. You must charge every night, overnight. Get a power strip, and it will give you extra room to reach your ECV charger to the outlet.

Get a bright bandanna or scarf to tie to your seat or handlebar. There's tons of ECVs at WDW that look alike. Make yours stand out!

Everything will be fine. You'll see!
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Old 06-04-2014, 09:06 PM   #3
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Practice! Go to stores that have the carts for customer use. Granted they'll be a little different and likely different than what you'll get at Disney, but it'll still give you some experience in how they handle, seeing things from that perspective (literally, from a sitting perspective).
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Old 06-04-2014, 10:26 PM   #4
Betty Rohrer
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I second going to stores and practicing esp backing up.
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Old 06-05-2014, 08:40 AM   #5
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Great idea about the poncho. Does it rain a lot in the winter? I thought it was more likely in summer. I know that the website for the scooter place said that they put them on the coily band things, but I should probably bring one jic, bc trying to keep track of a key on and off all day would be a PAIN. I had rented an ECV for the afternoon a couple of times in CA in DL, so I do remember trying to maneuver between people, etc. I have never had one to try to get on transportation with, or into hotels, etc. with, though. Have you ever had one die in the park? Could you charge it anywhere? If you throw a poncho over the controls on the handle part, can you still ride it in the rain?

Thanks for the input so far!
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Old 06-05-2014, 09:40 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O2H O2H View Post
Great idea about the poncho. Does it rain a lot in the winter? I thought it was more likely in summer. I know that the website for the scooter place said that they put them on the coily band things, but I should probably bring one jic, bc trying to keep track of a key on and off all day would be a PAIN. I had rented an ECV for the afternoon a couple of times in CA in DL, so I do remember trying to maneuver between people, etc. I have never had one to try to get on transportation with, or into hotels, etc. with, though. Have you ever had one die in the park? Could you charge it anywhere? If you throw a poncho over the controls on the handle part, can you still ride it in the rain?

Thanks for the input so far!
It doesn't rain a lot in winter, but you are outdoors for 7 days. If your scooter place has the coily bands, good. I have my own ECV, and I get fresh batteries for it before my trip. I used to have an early version Go-Go and its battery would not last thru a long day at Epcot. The Go-Go scooters nowadays have improved their battery power and WDW goers rave about them, no power troubles. Charging at the parks is iffy. There's not as many outlets within sight as you might hope for. One I found was inside the entrance to a restroom, so not a good place to be for an extended time. I charged once at the Land just inside the entrance doors. Also, once at Cosmic Rays, where I saw an outlet in a dining area on a wall. Now with so many using smartphones, they've increased charging areas (mainly for phones, but 110 is there, too). If you charge your ECV overnight in your room, it should be good to go. It's rare that you'd get a scooter with diminishing battery power. Especially from a Preferred Vendor. But it could happen. Call them and they'll bring a new scooter to you. If you try to fully charge at a park, it could take hours.

If you're traveling with someone, it helps your ECV on really bad ramps if your friend could place their hand on the back of your seat and "assist" the scooter up the ramp. They won't be doing all the work, but you'll see on the meter that their assistance means your battery power isn't straining almost to the max. The ramps I'm thinking of are the entrance ramp to The Land in Epcot, and the ramps at the TTC to get to the monorails. They are steep and long. Battery killers for small ECVs.

Yes, you can ride and use controls with a poncho or plastic bag over the controls. Check that the poncho isn't dragging on the ground where it could get caught in ECV wheels. I suggest a few ponchos - one for scooter, one for you!
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Old 06-07-2014, 02:13 AM   #7
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Great thread! This will be the BF's first grown up trip and we're in the same situation, trying to make things go as easy as possible. I'll have him do some practice driving for sure!
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Old 06-07-2014, 05:36 AM   #8
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Quote:
It's rare that you'd get a scooter with diminishing battery power. Especially from a Preferred Vendor.
Preferred Vendors are simply companies that chose to pay a fee to be able to leave the rented equipment at Bell Services instead of having to meet the client face to face. They're no more reputable than the companies not "chose", and the Transportation quality and upkeep of their merchandise isn't any different.
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