Magical Express: One of the best Disney deals around!

I live just far enough away from Disney World to make driving a chore.  We like to save up our credit card points and cash them in for airline tickets as often as we can.  For others like me, who like to arrive via the friendly skies, Disney has a great option for their resort guests  - The Magical Express.  Essentially, the Magical Express is a shuttle service from the main Orlando airport (MCO) to your resort hotel at Disney World. 

So what makes the Magical Express magical?  Well for starters, you do not need to go to baggage claim upon arrival.  You simply deplane and follow the Magical Express signs.  Once you are checked in you hop on a bus to your resort - and leave the baggage claim to Disney!  They will collect your baggage for you and deliver it to your hotel a few hours later.  Genius!

So what else makes the Magical Express magical?  If baggage handling and delivery is not enough of a perk for you, how about the cost - it is FREE!  There is no charge for Disney to collect you (and your luggage) from the airport and take you to your Disney resort.  They will also take you (and your luggage) back to the airport at the end of your stay at no charge.  In fact, for certain airlines, you can check in from your resort and have your boarding passes printed and ready to go!

When you pack your luggage at home, be sure to pack a small carry on bag of items that you will need upon arrival as well as any medication and other important stuff.  If you are arriving from the frozen tundra and are hoping to start your Disney day poolside, be sure to stick a bathing suit and sunscreen in your bag!  Also, if you are arriving later in the evening, you may want to make sure you have your toothbrush, sleep wear and fresh clothes available for the next morning...just in case.

A few other need to know items:
  • You must make a reservation for this service.  I like to collect this from my clients at final payment time to make sure that there is plenty of time to get luggage tags ordered.
  • The time it takes to get from the airport to Disney can vary greatly based on the number of bodies being moved!  You can expect to arrive at your resort anywhere from 75 minutes to 3 hours from the time your plane lands, with the average commute time being 2 hours.  You can expedite the process by making sure your tags are properly attached to your bag and that you bring the voucher included in your booklet with you.
  • If you arrive after 10 pm or before 5 am, you will need to collect your own bags.
  • You luggage may not arrive to your room for 3 hours, so plan accordingly!
  • You will be notified of the time that the Magical Express will be returning to drag you away pick you up from your resort.  The pick up time is usually about 3 hours prior to your departure, 4 hours for international flights.
  • If you are scheduled to depart prior to 8am, you will need to check in a the airport.
  • Sorry, but unless Fido and Fluffy are service animals, they cannot board the Magical Express.
  • Although it is rare, mistakes happen!  Be sure to confirm you flight information and resort against your pre-printed baggage tags.  If one of your bags does not arrive, contact bell services and let them know of the problem.
  • Planners beware!  Don't make the mistake of over-scheduling your arrival day.  Scheduling a coveted reservation or pre-purchasing tickets for an event is inviting trouble.  Instead head straight to your favorite counter service spot, lounge by the pool, check out your resort, or knock of some of the less popular attractions on your to do list.
  • Finally, the Magical Express drivers are usually friendly and helpful.  If you are pleased with their service or if they help you with your carry on bags it would be nice to acknowledge their efforts with a few dollars.  At departure, it is also customary to tip bell services if they collect your bags from your room.
  • For anything else you wanted to know about Magical Express, check out this great post from Everything Walt Disney World
So sit back, relax, and enjoy the teaser video...you are almost home!

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