When you arrive at Orlando International Airport, you’ve got a few options to get to Walt Disney World. From ride-sharing to taxis and shuttle buses, nothing has more magic associated with it from a fan-perspective than Disney’s Magical Express.
IT’S FREE FOR DISNEY RESORT GUEST
Complimentary services are usually easy to miss because they’re not “revenue” for the parks…so not a lot of press will focus on it.
Disney’s Magical Express is a perk of staying on property and is a way to save some extra cash getting to and from the airport, which can be fairly expensive depending on the mode of transportation you choose.
For folks coming from locations in the USA, you’re able to take advantage of luggage pickup service, in which you can skip waiting for your luggage and just head to your resort. Disney will look after the logistics of getting your bags to your room later in the day.
Although this sounds like a great idea (on paper), there’s nothing better than getting to the resort and doing a full clothing change and shower before hitting the parks. When you don’t get your luggage til later in the day, this may not happen.
Arrival days are so unpredictable as it is, so be flexible and keep the stress to a minimum if you can:)
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10PM LUGGAGE CUT-OFF
Another thing to keep in mind is your flight arrival time at MCO, because that may dictate your options for things like luggage pickup. If you arrive after 10pm, the luggage delivery service isn’t available so you’ll have to pick up your bags before heading to the buses.
DEPARTURES FROM THE RESORT TO THE AIRPORT
This is the most annoying part of the service and has actually turned us into UBER fans at the end of our trip. Disney’s Magical Express will schedule your pickup time at the resort 3 to 4 hours in advance of your flight.
That’s a significant thing to deal with on your last day, and after the number of times that I’ve been out front of a Disney resort before the sun has risen just to save $40 on an UBER ride will shock you!
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SETTING UP YOUR DISNEY’S MAGICAL EXPRESS RESERVATION
Incredibly easy, to be honest! All you have to do is call:
- U.S. and Canada Reservations: (407) 939-1936
- United Kingdom Reservations: 0800 16 90 730
You can also show up at the Disney’s Magical Express podium and speak to a cast member. They’ll look up your reservation and put you on a bus AND make your reservation for the return trip if you’d like. Full service quality!
MYTHS & TRUTHS ABOUT DISNEY’S MAGICAL EXPRESS
This list is for friends only, so welcome to the club:)
- Disney’s Magical Express is operated by Mears Transportation.
- Your bus is going to multiple resorts, usually with 3 or 5 resorts on the route
- The sound system is horrible, so even if you get a bus with working tvs…it won’t do much to help establish the magic.
- The music / video loop in the waiting area is incredibly short. If you arrive during a busy time when they’re not running at full capacity, be forewarned to take advantage of the airport wifi to listen to a podcast:)
- Oh, full capacity is subjective depending on the day and the time. Some days I can walk right onto a bus, where there are times that I’m arriving at the exact same flight # just on a different day and it’ll be a 30-60 minute wait.
I hope that this was helpful in planning your Disney World vacation! With so much on your plate, knowing that there are ways to cut down on the stress and extend your budget with complimentary services are very important.
If you need more info about DME, you can visit the official Disney website here