Current Magical Express operator to begin its own Mears Connect service January 2022

2 days ago in "Disney Magical Express"

Mears Transportation, the third party operator of the existing Disney Magical Express, will offer its own service when Magical Express ends this year.

Mears Connect will launch in January 2022 and will serve Orlando International Airport and the Disney resort area. Reservations can be made starting May 2021, although not pricing information is yet available.

Disney has previously announced its plans to end Magical Express airport transportation at the end of 2021. In a statement, Disney said: "Vacationers have more options to choose from than ever for transportation, including ride-share services that save time and offer more flexibility to go where they want, when they want. In light of this shift, when Disney Resort hotel bookings open for stays in 2022, we will no longer offer Disney’s Magical Express service for airport transportation, starting with arrivals Jan. 1, 2022. We will continue to operate the service for new and existing reservations made at Disney Resort hotels for arrivals throughout 2021. Additionally, complimentary transportation options – such as buses, monorails and Disney Skyliner – will continue to be available within Walt Disney World Resort for Disney Resort hotel guests, including to and from all four theme parks."

Disney’s Magical Express service did reopen from the COVID-19 shutdown in mid-July, but has not been providing luggage delivery service for those arriving to and departing from the airport.

Magical Express was launched back in 2005, and quickly became a popular option for guests staying at Walt Disney World Resort hotels, often saving guests hundreds of dollars on transportation costs. 

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Article Posted: Apr 08, 2021 / 1:10pm ET
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Kevin_W5 hours ago

Right, when you are schlepping luggage for 3 or 4 with all the stuff a small child needs plus a stroller, being able to check a bag or two and have it show up in your hotel room is amazing. As my daughter got older and outgrew needing a stroller/could pull her own luggage, we pretty much have just gone with carry-ons, but those early years it was a "magical" service.

Lkendlekatie6 hours ago

I’ve heard it’s now later ?

Dan Deesnee6 hours ago

The removal of this service, if they don't get your luggage to your room or at least the hotel and if it's expensive, will most definitely tip people over to NOT going. I am in my 30s and we are the Disney nuts in our large group of friends. Many of them went on their trips in large part because of MEexpress. I don't think people without kids or who haven't had young ones in a long time realize how amazing it is to not only NOT have to go to the carousel and drag your luggage all the way to Disney, but also NOT have to worry about car seats. It made trips VERY easy on families. Time will tell if it will still be easy but getting people to fork out huge sums of cash for the overall trip and make them figure out how to get to Disney once they land is going to make a lot of people just say "forget it". They may go once "just because" but far fewer people will fall in love with the experience and become die hards. The removal of MExpress will have far reaching ramifications decades into the future. Less die hards, less DVC members, less annual passholders, less visitors.

Incomudro8 hours ago

100%. We used Magic Express for all of our past six trips. All the trips my son's from ages six to fourteen. Magic Express was part of the bubble. That feeling that Mickey was carrying you in his gloved hand to and from the airports. It was nice to be a part of the themeing that entire time, and I will miss it.

voodoo32110 hours ago

I reached that tipping point awhile ago yet, in a form of denial, I kept going. Not anymore for me but I made that decision before hearing of DME going away. The cost/value ratio has skewed in the wrong direction and more importantly the magic of the place has long gone.

GCTales10 hours ago

Mears never handled the luggage for DME. It was performed by a company called Bags Inc, who contracted the service with Disney. They no longer have a contract with Disney, which is why the service went away. Of all the services, the baggage handling and airport check in at the resort are the two I will miss the most.

Mr. Moderate12 hours ago

I agree with what you said, but I still think from a business stand point and public relations, it was a dumb move on Disney's part to end Magical Express. They still were able to keep most of their guests trapped on property inside their bubble, especially the first timers who didn't want to rent a car in a city they never been to or deal with the hassle of it or the uncertainty of ride share. I think most families, with the exception of the wait times, enjoyed M.E for its theming and the exciting first moments of the start of their vacation. A plain Mears shuttle van packed full of other guests like a cattle car, just didn't convey that same message. That's just my opinion.

Movielover12 hours ago

Thank You, Due to circumstances I never used the service pre DME and only used DME accouple times. The biggest attraction to me was the baggage aspect which was nice. I'm totally fine getting a Lyft or other means now.

Mr. Moderate12 hours ago

No, you retrieved your luggage and went to the location of where your shuttle/bus was. My first family trip was in 2002 and that was how Mears did it back then. I remember the bus was similar to what M.E uses now size wise, but was bright yellow. Nothing fancy, service was slow, and I decided to use a limo service ever since.

Movielover13 hours ago

Pardon for me having to ask but did Mears offer the luggage pickup pre DME as well? Or was it "you get your luggage from the baggage claim then go to the bus stop"?

Weather_Lady14 hours ago

Yes. Mears offers service from MCO to (and between) Disney, Universal, and a number of other Orlando-area points of interest.

runnsally14 hours ago

Well said. And it is not as if everyone will rent a car come January 2021. A certain percentage will move to rentals (and pay for parking), but the majority will still do Mears or rideshare (or whatever new up charge WDW roles out), so close to the status quo for Disney and they don’t have to pay for it.

uncle jimmy14 hours ago

Did or Does Mears offer service to Universal?

peter1143515 hours ago

Exactly. Mears offered this service before DME. Guests paid for the service. In the early 2000’s Disney decided it was financially beneficial for them to avoid guests having access to rental cars. So essentially Disney started paying mears for the service instead of having the guests do so. This came along with Disney branding but the operation was always run by Mears with Disney simply footing the bill. But it was never about providing a guest benefit or making a Disney vacation easier. It was always about what was best for Disney. Now the dynamics in the market have shifted and it is no longer beneficial. So now Mears will continue to offer the service but Disney will no longer foot the bill. The Disney branding disappears and the guests will once again pay for the service.