Everything You Need to Know about Renting a Wheelchair or ECV for Your Walt Disney World Trip

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TouringPlans is pleased to welcome guest author Amy Schinner.

A day at a Walt Disney World theme park can involve traveling miles. If walking is a challenge for you or a member of your family there are options that make it easier. Disney Parks offer rentals for wheelchairs and ECVs (Electric Conveyance Vehicles, frequently referred to as scooters). There are also outside vendors that can deliver them to your resort. We’ll break it all down so you can see what works best for you.

Renting From the Theme Parks

If you only need a rental for a day, you’re only visiting one park, and you typically arrive early, this might be the simplest option for you.

Note: The Disney rentals do not leave the parks. They are not available for the resorts or the parking lot. If you need assistance getting from a bus or the parking lot, there are courtesy wheelchairs available to borrow. If you don’t see them ask a parking or transportation attendant.

Courtesy wheelchairs from the bus area
  • Rentals for ECVs are priced by the day. Wheelchair rentals have a multiday option.
  • You may park hop, BUT you can’t take the rental to the next park. You must return it in the park where you picked it up. When you arrive at the next park, show your receipt. Unfortunately quantities are limited and there is no guarantee there will be one available for you.
  • If you leave and come back to the same park on the same day Disney’s ECV/wheelchair rental location will save your rental for you.
  • This rental will not apply for Disney Springs. If you visit Disney Springs and need a wheelchair or ECV, it will be an additional rental charge.
  • The weight limit for Disney-owned ECVs is 450 lbs and 350 lbs for wheelchairs.
  • Disney does not have a reservation system. All rentals are first come/first serve and there are limited quantities.
  • You must be 18 and have a valid photo ID to rent wheelchairs or ECVs and you must be 18 to operate an ECV.

Pricing

  • ECV rentals are $50 dollars a day, plus a $20 refundable deposit.
  • Wheelchair rentals are $12 a day.
  • There is a Length-of-Stay option for wheelchairs at $10 a day.

Renting at Water Parks and Disney Springs

  • EVC rental is $50 with a refundable deposit of $100.
  • Wheelchairs are $12 a day. There is a refundable $100 deposit.

 

 

Renting from an Outside Company

If you will need to rent a device for more than a day, an outside vendor will probably be a more convenient and cost-effective option for you. Here’s some other benefits to renting from an outside company.

  • There are a few types of rentals available including transportable scooters that will fit in the trunk of your car and wheelchairs and ECVs that have an increased weight limit.
  • If your ECV breaks down the vendor will come to you to fix it, usually pretty quickly.
  • There are attachments available that can help make you more comfortable–everything from walker stands to cup holders.
  • The rental can be delivered directly to your resort or rental home.
  • You will need to reserve the rental before your vacation. Call or order directly on the vendor’s website.
  • Wheelchairs at outside vendors can offer padding, pediatric sizing, and more structure for added weight limits.
  • Some of the vendors offer a special needs stroller that can be used for larger children. (Visit guest services for a stroller to wheelchair tag.)

Pricing

  • ECV rental prices range from $27-$32 dollars a day, depending on the device you need and your length of stay.
  • Wheelchairs range from $12.50 a day (Scooterbug) to $20 for first day $10 a day for rest of stay (several other vendors). Wheelchairs from Orlando Medical Rentals are competitively priced and also have an inventory that includes items for more specific needs. Contact them for customized pricing.

What Do I Need To Do?

After you have decided which one works for you, make sure the logistics are taken care of.

If you choose the daily rental from the parks you do not need to do anything in advance.

ECVs for rent at Magic Kingdom
  • After you have entered the park look for the stroller and ECV and wheelchair rental area. Magic Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios have their rental desk on the right just after you enter the park, EPCOT’s is a little further in, past the first planters on the left. Disney Springs is by the Disney resort bus stop.
  • Have your ID and payment method ready.
  • A cast member will charge your rental fee and deposit and go over any safety measures that need to be discussed.
  • Enjoy your day, and return your rental before you leave the park. Either accept your refund on the deposit or ask them to save your rental for you if you will be returning. If you are headed to a different park, let them know and keep your receipt to show at your next rental. You will get your deposit refunded at the end of your day.

If you choose an outside vendor you have some planning to do.

  • Decide which model you will need.
  • Decide the best way for you to receive the rental:
    • Have it ready for you to pick it up and drop it off at bell services at your convenience.
    • Meet the company at the resort.
    • Pick it up from the company.
  • Either call the company or reserve it online.

How Do I Choose an Outside Vendor?

Most of the outside vendors offer the similar products and have competitive base prices. The differences are in the details.

A variety of ECVs from different vendors can be seen around the parks.
  • ScooterBug (scooterbug.com) is the only Disney Preferred rental company. If you need the option of picking up and dropping off your rental at bell services on your time schedule then this is your only option.
  • If your arrival time and departure times are flexible, Kingdom Strollers (kingdomstrollers.com) has a transportable scooter that has a weight limit of 275 lbs. They need to meet you at your resort to drop it off and pick it up at a pre-scheduled time. The rental price includes a free cup holder, saddle bag, cooler bag, and rain cover. (This is the best value we found.)
  • If your assistance needs are more complex than the standard scooters or wheelchairs, Orlando Medical Rentals (orlandomedicalrentals.com) has a more complete inventory. Some of their services allow them to drop off and pick up at bell services. If they aren’t able to do that they will meet you according to your travel time. Call them for customizable service.

It’s not often that the option with the most cost savings is also the most comfortable and convenient, but in this case it really is. An outside vendor is a better option for most guests. Having the rental for the entire vacation allows you to get to and from the parks, go to Disney Springs, and most importantly help with the long hike back to the resort room at the end of the day. As for comfort, the Disney models are not built with attachments and choices of sizing for a better fit. If you need a rental for more than one day at the park, you can’t go wrong with an outside vendor.

Tip: If you didn’t rent a scooter with rain covers, pack some plastic for rain protection. If you can count on anything in Florida, it’s a summer storm.

Bonus tip! Many people need a scooter at Disney that don’t typically use one for day-to-day life. Sometimes an unexpected surgery happened and this trip has been scheduled for a year, or for some people a day at Disney is simply too much walking. If you have never driven a scooter before, go to a supermarket and drive around on theirs. Practicing will help make you more comfortable as you navigate the crowds and transportation at Walt Disney World.

Have any questions about wheelchair and ECV rentals? Let us know in the comments.

Amy Schinner is a lifelong fan of Disney, a mom and an advocate for people with special needs. She loves spinning in teacups, screaming down Mt. Everest and exploring all of it with her family. Her joy is helping families vacation and create memories together because everyone deserves some pixie dust!  Visit her at www.mouseearsforeveryone.com  on Twitter @amy_schinner or on Facebook.

 

 

 

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9 thoughts on “Everything You Need to Know about Renting a Wheelchair or ECV for Your Walt Disney World Trip

  • April 6, 2021 at 12:19 pm
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    Great article! I always wondered about this topic.

    Reply
  • April 6, 2021 at 12:57 pm
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    Thanks for the article. How busy do the buses get in the mornings at the WDW resorts? More specifically, I will be staying at the Caribbean Beach Resort at the end of July. For Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom, I worry about the difficulty of getting on a bus with an ECV first thing in the morning to do rope drop.

    I want to rent from ScooterBug so that I don’t have to line up every morning at each park. But, I don’t want to miss the early morning hours and wonder if I am likely to be late because the buses will be full in the morning. Do you have any advice?

    Reply
    • April 6, 2021 at 2:14 pm
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      In my experience, those with ECVs and scooters are loaded onto buses first regardless of how many other people are waiting or how long they’ve been there. This was annoying for the rest of us, but would provide you with an advantage to getting into the parks early.
      Just pay attention to the inner bus loop at your resort and what direction the buses go, and aim to get on a bus at the first inner loop bus stop that you can reasonably reach.

      Reply
  • April 6, 2021 at 5:46 pm
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    During Covid the ECV loading has looked a little different. Only one group with an ECV per bus.
    I recommend if you can, getting in line at least 30 minutes before the bus starts to pick up.
    Typically the busses start an hour before park opening.

    Reply
  • April 6, 2021 at 6:44 pm
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    Important information for people considering renting an ECV at a Disney park: park ECV’s are very slow (much slower than they used to be) and are far from “nimble.” Meaning – they have a larger turning radius than ECV’s you rent from non-Disney vendors. Even though an attraction may say you can take an ECV through the queue, you may find it cumbersome when trying to maneuver around turns.

    Reply
  • June 2, 2021 at 2:15 pm
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    We will be flying into Orlando, staying for two nights at Disney’s Beach Club and then taking the Disney Shuttle to Port Canaveral for a 7 night Disney cruise. Do you know if the rental companies will allow us to take a rental chair on a cruise? Also, are there any companies that do drop off/pick ups right at the airport? I can’t seem to see any. We are hoping to leave my daughter’s wheelchair at home so that it doesn’t get damaged in transport, but she will need a chair once we get to the Orlando Airport.
    Thanks in advance. 🙂

    Reply
  • September 1, 2021 at 10:59 am
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    Are there places to park your scooter rental for a longer period of time in the parks, like an hour or two, if the person doesn’t want to use it ALL the time? My 72-year-old mother wants to have one on hand because she can’t handle a full day of walking with her bad knees, but doesn’t necessarily want to use it constantly. She would like to use it and park it for a bit and do some walking, then use it again, etc.

    Reply
    • September 1, 2021 at 5:15 pm
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      You can leave your scooter in any designated scooter/stroller parking area (typically near attractions). There’s no time limit to parking in these areas, but you may find your scooter moved a bit when you come back. Cast members periodically “neaten up” the parking areas to make more space for new scooters/strollers.

      If you have a concern you can always double-check with a cast member.

      Reply
  • September 18, 2021 at 6:01 am
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    I am thinking about buying my own scooter and I want to be able to drive through all of the ride waiting lines.

    What is the turning radius of the Disney ECV?

    I am most interested in the Pride scooters. If you have used a Pride scooter and were able to negotiate all of the Disney waiting lines, what model did you use?

    Thank you for providing the above information.

    Frank

    Reply

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