PHOTOS - New bag check areas greatly enhance Magic Kingdom arrival experience

Apr 03, 2017 in "Magic Kingdom"

New Magic Kingdom area bag check areas
Posted: Monday April 3, 2017 8:11am EDT by WDWMAGIC Staff

Disney has just made a visit to the Magic Kingdom much more enjoyable by greatly improving the security screening process.

Bag check is no longer located at the entrance to the park, and has instead been moved to the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC) and other dedicated areas.

Arriving from the Transportation and Ticket Center

Guests arriving to the Magic Kingdom and parking at the TTC will now be security screened at the TTC itself. 

Whether arriving by car or via off-site charter bus, screening takes place in the former tram boarding areas.

A new tram boarding area has been built, freeing up the previous loading areas for several large security screening areas.

Arriving by Disney Resort Bus

Guests arriving by Disney Resort hotel busses are now screened in a new area built just beyond the Ferry boat dock.

Arriving by Resort Boat Launch

Guests arriving from the Polynesian Resort and Grand Floridian via water craft are now bag checked at the arrival dock.

A similar process is in place for guests arriving from Wilderness Lodge, and Contemporary.

Arriving via Resort Monorail

Guests heading to the Magic Kingdom from a monorail resort are now security checked before boarding the monorail.

By distributing the security screening to multiple areas, it is now significantly quicker to move through security. Not only will guests find the process more efficient, it now frees up all the space at the Magic Kingdom, and restores the park entry to something closer to its original "care-free" feel.

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Texas84May 30, 2017

Animal Kingdom had a special Passholder security line. I'm sure the detectors were there but I didn't even see them. Epcot also had a Passholder security line. To be fair I think part of the confusion is they are still working on this. I made several trips this spring and it changed each time.

dmatt87May 30, 2017

I'm all for the bag check areas but please have consistency on the method!

SorcererMCMay 29, 2017

And I'm suggesting that a bit of momentary confusion on the part of the guest is not necessarily a negative and may be intentional. It's possible that it's a tolerable trade-off given the security challenges. Just my opinion. ETA: To elaborate - security can probably not prevent an attack 100%...but that's the goal. Unpredictable security makes it more difficult for a would-be attacker to be successful in planning an attack. I have no inside knowledge of WDW rationale...just offering one based on my knowledge of counterterrorism. It's also entirely possible that WDW doesn't have their security processes down pat yet.

Kman101May 29, 2017

They need consistency in how they do it in each park. Guests are clearly confused. That's all people want.

SorcererMCMay 29, 2017

I think it's a mistake to assume that, if you breeze past security, it means that it is lax....most of the general public is not an actual threat. Inconsistency (across the parks or on a daily basis) serves as a deterrent to an attacker's ability to adapt their tactics to any perceived vulnerabilities. To a certain extent, bag checks are perfunctory (aka theatre), but again it serves a deterrent function. While it may seem that security is not effective at a tactical level, keep in mind that it may be serving a larger strategic purpose. The changes that WDW has implemented appears to be consistent with risk mitigation according to current counterterrorism threat assessments for soft targets, an ongoing process....certainly they work closely with local government and law enforcement, and this set-up probably gives them more flexibility to change security as needed (as the risk at any given moment is small but fluctuates with intel). Regardless, they always have to strike a balance between effective measures and public accessibility/ willingness to comply, and largely without the public being aware of any given specific threat.

Kman101May 29, 2017

I noticed that Epcot seems to be the only park that makes no bag people go through the scanners. Guests were confused at MK when I was there and were going to go through the scanners and they were told that unless they were picked out to go through it to not go through it. That same rule seems to apply to DHS and AK. But yes, it needs to be consistent.

ObobruMay 29, 2017

As the terrorist attack in my city shows security is pointless. A suicide bomber can walk up to the massive amount of people waiting to get through security and detonate or they can edit for the massive rush as everyone leaves and do it. At my local arena the pig did it just before the security checks where he stood and existed for people to exit the arena, if they can do that to kids here then Disney would be a dream target for someone sick in the head. I wonder if this security show had actually ever stopped anything significant.

Texas84May 15, 2017

I'm always in the no bag line and the problem I have is the inconsistency. No one knows what to do. By default do we get in line for the metal detector or go around? My experience has been when it's busy bypass it and when it's not busy go through. There is no direction unless they specifically pick you for the detectors. My next trip I'm just going around them.

Next Big ThingMay 15, 2017

Yeah security at DL can take 15-20 mins if you get there at a busy time.

Kman101May 15, 2017

I keep seeing pictures from Disneyland's security setup. Why do they only keep a few lines open? Open more of them. I can see the complaints about waiting in THAT line but I think they all move very fast at WDW ... some just have an attitude towards security in general and are bothered by it.

Next Big ThingMay 15, 2017

I'm not trying to say it isn't theater or that there aren't holes even in the theater of it, but I'm saying that it really isn't that big of a deal. It takes a few seconds of your time and you're in. I definitely agree if they are going to go this far with security, at least be consistent with it. The X-ray bag machines Universal uses would really streamline the process and quicken it too as you wouldn't have to wait for someone to look through your crap... just send it on through.

larryzMay 14, 2017

And that is another person's experience(s) I can use in evaluating whether or not I'll be going. But it does cast a shadow of doubt on the thoroughness of Disney security...

Kman101May 14, 2017

That's what I figured. Thanks Steve!

wdwmagicMay 14, 2017

Yep I think with all the APers coming in to DAK it made sense to do that.