Airport transport is always stressful. Taxi? Rental car? After a flight it’s the last thing you want to worry about. That’s where Disney’s Magical Express comes in. So what’s the deal? Let’s go through everything you need to know!
updated August 2019
What is it?
Disney’s Magical Express is transportation to and from Orlando International Airport and the Disney Resort hotels.
Who can use it?
Disney’s Magical Express is available to guests staying at any of the Disney Resort Hotels.
How does it work?
When booking your vacation either online or over the phone you will be prompted to add the service or not. You will be mailed luggage tags with the resort area you are staying in a few weeks before your trip, and a booklet with all of the information you need. When you attach the luggage tags to your suitcase before your trip, you will not have to worry about your bags once you land. Simply bypass baggage claim and head straight to the Disney’s Magical Express area of the airport and head to Walt Disney World. At some point during the day your bags will be delivered to your hotel room. Like magic! If you would like to hang on to your luggage, just don’t attach the tags to your luggage. They will be waiting for your at baggage claim.
If you live in the United States, you will be shipped your MagicBands before your trip. You will use your MagicBand when you get to the Disney’s Magical Express counter as it has the reservation information on it. So make sure to keep your MagicBands in your carry ons! If you live outside of the United States (like me) your MagicBands will be waiting for you when you check in to your hotel. The booklet that comes with the luggage tags has all of your reservation information in it, so you will need that to board the Disney’s Magical Express. When you arrive in Orlando, you’ll head to the lower level on the B side of the airport. You’ll find the Disney’s Magical Express area and be greeted by Cast Members who will scan your MagicBand or the barcode from the documents you received in the mail. You’ll then be guided to a numbered lane where you will wait to board the bus. Buses usually stop at 3 different resorts, and you’ll have Disney entertainment on the way!
How much is it?
Absolutely FREE! It’s one of the reasons I strongly suggest taking advantage of it. Because most families dedicate their vacation to Walt Disney World, it makes sense to not have to worry about transportation.
How does it work on the way home?
The day before your departure from Walt Disney World you will receive information from Disney’s Magical Express about your bus time. If you are flying on select airlines, you can check your luggage at your resort, and you won’t have to worry about it until you arrive at your home airport. The airlines are listed on the Walt Disney World Website, and are all domestic airlines. Again, keep either your MagicBand or reservation booklet with you in your carry on, otherwise you will not be able to get on the bus! (but I wouldn’t blame you, you’d get to stay in WDW!) Simply show up a bit before (20 minutes before) your scheduled bus time where you were dropped off at arrival. Once you arrive at the airport, you will not have to worry about your luggage if you have already checked it, or you will have it with you if you did not. Head to your airline check in and have a safe trip home!
Tips and Tricks!
Over the years I have learned some tricks to taking the Magical Express. Hopefully you will remember these for your next trip!
Think about how many days you want to go to the parks when booking. On arrival day, I usually want to visit the parks, so once we are check in to the hotel, we will be at the parks!
Bring extra clothes in your carry-on. This tip ties in with the one above! I live just outside of Toronto, so for my trip in February, I experienced quite a difference in temperature once arriving at Orlando. I always bring a change of clothes in my carry on, and change at the Orlando Airport. This way I am all ready to go to the parks as soon as I can! Keep in mind the items you will want with you in the parks if you are visiting on arrival day! You can see what I usually have in my backpack here.
Don’t forget about departure day! I want to squeeze every moment out of a Disney Vacation. This means I am usually very strategic when selecting flights. My flight arriving in Orlando is usually in the morning, and my flight leaving is usually later in the day. So, on departure day, I check out the hotel, check my bags at the hotel (if I can’t check them in for the flight, depending on where I am flying from), and head to the parks.
I love taking the Disney’s Magical Express, and it has become part of the routine of heading to Walt Disney World. Before the end of the post, I wanted to share some quick stories of the Magic Express I have had over the years.
In 2012, my sister was feeling a little under the weather, so my family got a bus to ourselves. (It’s not a good story because she wasn’t feeling well, but it was funny to have an entire motorcoach for 5 people).
And in February 2015, when Ethan and I checked in to the Magical Express, the Caribbean Beach line was moving, and we walked straight onto the bus. Take into account how much I love Disney, and how upon arrival at the Orlando Airport I’m practically running to get to WDW. Let’s just say I was really happy.
I hope this has given you all the information you need to know about Disney’s Magical Express, and I hope you will take advantage of this service on your next trip!
If you’d like to hear more about Disney’s Magical Express, check out the video below:
Have you ever taken Disney’s Magical Express? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!
As always, thanks for reading!