Disney World Magical Express Transportation From Airport to Resorts
Planning a Disney vacation can seem overwhelming But for people staying in Disney resorts, getting from the airport to the hotel is easy; take Disney’s Magical Express.
Disney’s Magical Express bus service from the Orlando airport to the Disney hotels is simple. Disney picks up luggage marked with special tags sent out a few weeks before a trip, takes it to the hotel, and delivers it to the room, all for free. Meanwhile, Disney guests board the painted buses for the hotel designated on their reservation, for free! A great deal, as long as the rules are clearly understood.
Setting Up Magical Express After Booking a Disney Resort
When a Disney trip is booked, a Disney cast member will ask if a guest is using Magical Express (ME). To book ME requires the name of the airline, flight arrival number, and time of arrival. Guests who don’t have this info yet can call back later and book ME.
A few weeks before the trip, an envelope from Disney will arrive with the ME information, plus bright yellow luggage tags, one per guest, which should be wrapped around the handle of the suitcase. The booklet that comes with the tags has all passenger names and airline and hotel reservation information. This must be presented to the ME cast members and bus drivers, so be sure to have it handy at the airport.
Landing at MCO (Orlando International Airport)
Magical Express buses to the Disney World resorts are only available to guests arriving at Orlando International Airport. Guests arriving at another airport, or the train station, won’t be able to take advantage of ME.
Orlando Airport is divided into two buildings. A monorail (just like Disney) travels between the arrival terminal and the main terminal in just over a minute. The main terminal is divided into two sides, A and B. Arriving passengers come in on the third level. To get to the Magical Express, go to the B side. Skip the baggage level, level 2, and go all the way down to level 1,(2 escalator rides down) and follow the signs to ME.
Present the information booklet to the cast member who directs guests to the line that goes to their resort. Each bus normally services several hotels. The bus driver will also check the booklet before boarding guests. If for some reason guests don’t have their booklet or didn’t tag their luggage, cast members still can pull their information up in the computer and find their luggage by using the airline baggage claim tags.
Disney keeps guests entertained with a short video on the 20-minute ride to Walt Disney World. When the bus pulls up to their hotel, guests walk into the check-in lobby and are free to start their Disney vacation. Luggage is delivered normally within three hours and guests don’t have to be there to receive it. Gratuities are covered, so no tip is required.
Guests are free to claim their own baggage and bring it on the bus if they’d rather. Carry-on luggage can also come on the bus; in this case, tipping the driver is the right thing to do.
Returning to the Airport After a Disney Trip
Guests receive paperwork for their return trip the night before departure. The letter states a pickup time, which will be approximately 3 hours before the flight departure time. Guests should plan on being at the bus stop 15 minutes before the stated time, with all luggage that hasn’t been checked at the Disney resort. Only certain airlines participate in the baggage transfer program back to the airport.
Pick up times are strictly scheduled and aren’t negotiable; guests who miss their scheduled pickup may find themselves grabbing a cab to the airport. The bus will stop at several hotels before leaving for the airport; ME luggage tags aren’t required for the trip home.
Magical Express to the Disney Resorts Helps Guests Enjoy Their Disney Trip
ME is a cheap and fun way to get from the airport to the Disney resorts. ME adds a touch of magic from the minute guests arrive until they arrive back at the airport after their trip. Cynics might say that ME is designed to keep guests on Disney property without a car, but those who believe in magic know it’s just another way to sprinkle guests with pixie dust.