Thanks Thanks:  2
Likes Likes:  3
Page 1 of 8 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 77

Topic: Blue Disabled Parking Badge

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Orlando!
    Posts
    16,581
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Exclamation Blue Disabled Parking Badge

    There has been a lot of discussion recently about the use of the blue disabled driver's parking badge in Florida, and we have had some reader feedback about it which serves as a warning to those who think the old rule about taking your blue badge still holds.

    Sadly, the Florida Dept of Transportation changed the rules last year, only they forgot to tell anyone, and no-one in the tourist business seems to know anything about it, to the extent that the Visit Florida website still says it is OK to use your blue badge. THIS IS NOT THE CASE!

    The simple, horrible fact for disabled drivers is that they now have to visit a local tax office in Florida and pay a $15 fee for a temporary disabled parking badge that you can use in all locations. The details are as follows:

    To find out the nearest Orange County tax office where you can visit to pay the fee and pick up your temporary badge, visit their website here: "http://www.octaxcol.com/OfficeLocations.htm#South%20Semoran%20Tag%20Agency "

    There are eight Orlando offices where you can pick up the necessary badge (listed under Motor Vehicle Registrations), and it must be stressed this is the new official policy, hence you DO risk a parking fine if you don't comply with these regulations. In Osceola County, there are four tax offices, listed on this website: "http://www.osceolataxcollector.com/locations-hours.html"

    The extra bad news is that NONE of these offices are open at the weekend, so if you arrive on a Friday or Saturday you are completely stuck for any way to get the necessary badge.

    We are not happy with this situation and have brought it up with the Visit Florida organisation in the hope they might be able to do something about it (and stop discriminating against some of their visitors, who already tend to be discriminated against in the first place). We have yet to get any official response, more than a week after raising the issue.

    The one piece of good news is that all the main theme parks ARE happy to continue to honour the British disabled badge, although Disney say you won't necessarily get into the official disabled spaces but the nearest ones they can find ( ). This means you should be OK when you visit the parks but you cannot count on this leniency when parking in public places like the shopping malls. We have already heard of people getting parking tickets when using their blue disabled badge, so please beware and don't fall foul of this highly discriminatory law

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Suffolk
    Posts
    12,674
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)

    Post

    Thanks for the info on this Simon, we have always used our blue badge for my Mum each time and Orlando has always in general been very helpful towards disabled travellers. Please continue to put pressure on authorities about this and if there is an e-mail address we can send a petition to let us know. My friend is going to Orlando in September and taking her Dad who has a blue badge so I will let her know the new situation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Orlando!
    Posts
    16,581
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    Another quick update: Visit Florida have finally changed their website to give the right information (although it was only when we brought this to the attention of their UK PR agency on Wednesday that they changed it).

    Here's what they now say:

    Handicapped parking permits: UK-issued Blue Badge permits are no longer recognized as valid handicapped parking tags in Florida. To obtain a temporary, 90-day handicapped parking permit, bring your Blue Badge permit and at least one form of identification to a local tax collector's office upon entering the state. Temporary permit applications for international travelers are not available online. For a list of tax collector locations and more information, visit www.hsmv.state.fl.us.

    However, when you click on the web link, you need to click on the Office Locations link and then work out which county you are going to be visiting and where you will find their tax offices (they do, at least, provide a map link to find them).

    How many people would even know which county they are going to be in, let alone know where to find the offices (which are all strictly 8.30-5, Mon-Fri)? And you are supposed to arrive off a 9-hour flight, get into a strange vehicle, on strange roads, and go straight to the nearest tax office? Because, if you don't, you can't use any of the (many) disabled parking areas that are provided for your use. It just doesn't make sense.

    I can't help thinking that, at best, this is just thoughtless, at worst, it is discriminatory.

    Oh, and for those who need to work out the nearest tax offices from the airport, for Orlando International (Orange County) it is: 4576 S. Semoran Blvd. Fl 32822 (just north of the airport); for those arriving at Orlando Sanford (Seminole County), it is: 1101 E. 1st Street in Sanford (again, just north of the airport), Fl 32771. If you fly into Miami (Miami-Dade County), it is: 5400 NW 22nd Avenue, Fl 33142 (just off the Airport Expressway); and in Tampa (Hillsborough County), it is: 1515 North Westshore Boulevard, Fl 33607 (right next to the airport).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Orlando!
    Posts
    16,581
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    Here's another quick up-date. A user on another forum has revealed that they have been told they can apply in advance by post, and the details seem to check out well. We are still awaiting confirmation of this, but the instructions are as follows:

    "You will need to apply for a US parking permit. You can process the temporary parking permit through the mail. You will need to make a copy of the Blue Badge from the UK and send it in with U.S. Funds in the amount of $15.00. We will also need a copy of the Passport of the disabled person involved. You will need to mail to:

    Patsy Heffner, Tax Collector
    PO Box 422105
    Kissimmee, FL 34742-2105
    USA"

    There is no indication of HOW you send them $15, as obviously you don't want to put cash in an envelope (even if you have $15 to hand!). The official info doesn't help, either, on this link: http://www.hsmv.state.fl.us/dmv/disabled_pkg.html

    Hopefully we'll get an answer soon!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Suffolk
    Posts
    12,674
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)

    Post

    One way to send $15 is by International money order, I used to deal with these when I worked in a bank. However the downside is they cost 7 (or they used to 4 years ago- they might be dearer now)Or perhaps there is away of quoting your credit card number?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Blackpool
    Posts
    29
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    I'm following this thread with interest, as my Husband is disabled, and NEEDS disabled parking. I don't want to go into personal information, but it's impossible for him to get in and out of a vehicle with another parked next to it.

    As we have kids in our party, I was wondering whether in the USA they have at supermarkets etc, "Parent and Child" parking? I guess we can park there and they can't fine us for that!

    We land on the 8th (Fri) and yep, we're caught by the short and curlies 'til the Monday. It's a real pain, and immensely discriminating. I'm not saying I'd like a ticket, but oh to get one and argue out the logic below would be interesting ;)

    So we'll waste some of the Monday getting our badge sorted - unless of course the posting to/from the US becomes a definate in the next week or so. I find it hard to believe any goverment office would post a badge to the UK for free - I know if it was in the UK they'd charge extra for posting - and would suspect the USA offices would be the same?

    Thank you for looking into it for us though, it's great some people are on the ball.

    Rant over........ :o

    Sarah

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Orlando, FL
    Posts
    19,766
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    Sarah, some of us think mother (parent) and child parking is an excellent idea, but there is no such thing over here. The car parks tend to be so huge at supermarkets, etc, that even the non-disabled parking is still fairly close.

    Simon got another update re: disabled parking so I'll step aside and let him fill in the details.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Orlando!
    Posts
    16,581
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    We've had some more communication with Visit Florida and they are currently working on an idea to provide the temporary badge through one of the car hire companies on arrival, which would obviously be the best solution. It could take a while to work out the feasibility, though. VF also insist the Orlando/Orange County tax office does have a facility to pay online, but we certainly can't find this and we have asked for clarification.

    Hope to know more soon!

    Don't know how practical a petition would be, but we'll look into it

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Orlando!
    Posts
    16,581
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)

    Default

    The advance application by post HAS been confirmed, but you need to allow 30 days to send it in and get the temporary permit by return mail.

    If you are travelling anytime soon, you might like to check by phone with the Osceola County Office on 001 407 742 4000.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Suffolk
    Posts
    12,674
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)

    Post

    Just a message for Sarah of the Hereford family, one good thing in America is that the ordinary parking spaces are bigger than ours so that may help if you can't get your badge sorted straight away.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •