Disney's Magical Express service to be discontinued next year

Jan 11, 2021 in "Disney Magical Express"

Disney plans to end its Magical Express airport transportation service in 2022.

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. The service is operated by a third party vendor Mears Transportation.

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Article Posted: Jan 11, 2021 / 12:01pm ET
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Fable McCloud5 days ago

I hope that Disney includes some sort of transportation in the future. Magical Express was a cute way to start the trip, and always made me feel excited. While I'm sure there will be some sort of bus/train transport by 2022/2023, I'm sad it won't be an included perk. I'll gladly by a ticket on whatever they offer, because I will NOT rent a car just to get to and from the airport. I don't want to drive on my vacation. I get way too stressed out driving in unfamiliar/crowded areas.

Rich Brownn6 days ago

It's astounding to believe but back in ancient days when I worked at the Holiday Inn Maingate (west) in the 70s, the Contemporary was the exact same price as our rooms!!! (And the work "resort" hadn't been tacked on yet!)

dav236 days ago

We usually start our trips with a few days staying at Universal so DME was never a big component of the 'immersion' but was definitely a convenient perk to getting back to the airport. Honestly the luggage service and airline checkin at the resorts is what I would miss most. I do think the effect DME has on the "value" of staying on site is overstated. The biggest perk to staying on site is proximity and ease of getting to/from resorts while always staying in the bubble. Just my opinion but I don't think the first and last hour of a trip really take away from the experience that much.

TrainChasers6 days ago

Agreed.

wutisgood6 days ago

There was absolutely a time not even too long ago where staying on site at a value resort was a good financial decision.

bcoachable6 days ago

Just seems like a 180% from a major part of their business model for the last decade or so... crazy, I tell ya! That being said- they know their customer base better than anyone- either they have something up their sleeve to pull us back on site (magic pass??) or it’s some kind of negotiation ploy - IMO

doctornick6 days ago

I get that, but it seems to simple ignore the significant impact on DME on encouraging people to stay onsite. While keeping people in "the Disney bubble" and spending all their vacation money on property was certainly an important aspect, getting people to book at Disney resorts is really where the main money is at. They have a crapload of rooms on property and the profit margin for resort stays is big chunk of the revenue stream for WDW. I can only assume that they are expecting some sort of inertia for folks to continue to stay on site out of habit without considering all the costs but I think they are going to be in for a rude surprise once 2022 comes around and a lot of guests shift to off site accommodations that would have otherwise stayed on property. Unless they come up with some significant new benefit for onsite stays (which if they intended to have, they should have already announced).

SteveBrickNJ6 days ago

Thanks!

UNCgolf6 days ago

Extra Magic Hours.

SteveBrickNJ6 days ago

There are plenty of Disney fanatics who will stay loyal to them no matter what the company does. That's them...not me. Yet there are a significant # of people who will not. Taking away DME AND also charging to park your car at their on site resort hotels is a negative double whammy! I currently have a lot of negative feelings toward Disney and that is a turn around for me compared to my mindset 5 years ago,

nickys6 days ago

I think it’s more that DME doesn’t really keep people onsite, because it’s so cheap to get an Uber or Lyft. Therefore the primary reason for DME being free is no longer valid.

JERiv6 days ago

I'm late to this party, but wholeheartedly agree. We love staying on-site. If we're honest, it's always been a bad financial decision. But not having to worry about anything made it worth it in our minds. Magical Express made sure that you're immersed in the "Disney bubble" from the moment you stepped off the plane. Taking away Magical Express pops that bubble. It will likely take us in the direction of renting a car. And if we have to rent a car, we'll very likely stay off-site because it's ridiculously less expensive ($$$$ less), even with the car rental included. And it's so easy to just drive to the parks when you have a car. I was just researching a trip for 2022 and was pretty sure we'd stay at Kidani. But the minute I read this news, I changed my mind about an on-site stay. "Car rental" is just the escape valve I needed to consider an off-site resort. I mean, am I missing something? Is the Disney demographic changing so much that keeping folks on property is no longer a priority?

DomVF0711 days ago

If you choose their sister company National (free to signup) you don’t even have to wait in line. You go right across the street, pick the car you want, and you’re off. Literally the quickest most efficient rental experience we’ve ever had.

MickeyLuv'r11 days ago

Minus the baggage claim, picking up a rental car was much faster than ME. With baggage claim, it depends. But really I just chimed in to say Enterprise gave free water to their customers. I can't say if they are currently doing it, but they always did so before the pandemic. At some airports, the staff handed out bottles of water, others, had a water cooler in their office (they'd just hand customers a filled cup.) Sometimes customers had to ask for it, often they offered it freely to every customer. But there's no shortage of places to get drinks in MCO or TPA.