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  1. #1
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    Default Eliminating Magical Express

    Quote Originally Posted by Walt Disney World

    Disney’s Magical Express service will no longer be offered starting with arrivals January 1, 2022. The service will continue to operate for new and existing reservations made at Disney Resort hotels for arrivals throughout 2021.

    Luggage delivery for those arriving to and departing from the airport and Resort Airline Check-In Service are no longer available.
    Disney is eliminating the complimentary Magical Express bus transportation to/from the airport beginning in 2022.

    For me this is the last straw. Disney keeps raising pricing at over twice the rate of inflation and keeps reducing what is offered to the guests.

    I have been an avid "Disneyphile" for fifty years, but enough is enough. I think Walt must be turning over in his grave at the greed that has encompassed his "World."

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  4. #2
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    I just read that as well: https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/en...gical-express/

    We often drive, but when family members have flown it, it was so easy and convenient. I wonder what will replace it, I'd be surprised if Disney just left it up to people to find their own way ... likely a new paid service I suspect.
    Heather aka ibelieveindisneymagic
    INTERCOT Staff: Vacation Planning, Nightlife, Shopping & Waterparks, Collectibles


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  5. #3
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    They're keeping it until 2022. In 2022, a lightrail system with connection from MCO to Walt Disney World will be coming online. Honestly, this makes sense to me. I know it's not exactly a 1=1 change, as you'll have to handle your own luggage and also get from the Walt Disney World hub to your Walt Disney World hotel, but still. With the financial losses of COVID impacting the Disney Parks, maybe getting rid of the ME Bus System allows them to keep other things alive and well in the parks themselves. Plus, Minnie Vans are supposed to be coming back, I hear.
    2002 - 2017: 20+ visits (POR, BW, All Stars, VWL, CSR, BLT, BC, SSR, CB, Dolphin, OKW, offsite x4)
    DL - 1996, 2019
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  6. #4
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    This whole situation is sad and based on money. Mears transportation runs ME so that has a lot to do with the change. I'm not a fan of Uber or Lyft coz now they have your personal info. I'd rather take a taxi coz then you pay cash or better yet rent a car...then you're not a hostage to Disney and can easily go off property to eat or visit other parks. You watch.... Disney will do something to prevent that! Overall, I'm not thrilled but can't wait to go back in September, if all goes well. But that may be my last trip for a while and I'm really sad about that.

  7. #5
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    I loved just dropping off my suitcase at the airport and not having to rush to baggage claim at MCO. This was a small perk at staying on site. This stinks!
    First visit 1976
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  9. #6
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    We almost always rent a car, but now they are charging for overnight parking at the resorts as well. Its now become a money grab all around in every direction, from transportation to admissions, special events and even mousekeeping. I choose to cruise now instead, having been turned off the oarks in recent years.
    I'm also a stock holder and have become quite displeased with many of the recent decisions

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  11. #7
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    Arrow

    Quote Originally Posted by azcavalier
    They're keeping it until 2022. In 2022, a lightrail system with connection from MCO to Walt Disney World will be coming online.


    The timing is a bit too coincidental for me to think that wasn't a big (if not the driving) factor.

    If it was purely based on reducing operating cost, I would expect they would have found a way to terminate the contract earlier than that date.

    I do wonder though what the plan is for when Guests get to Disney Springs? Like how do they expect you to get from there to your hotel *with your luggage*. I could not imagine current Disney Springs to hotel bus connections carrying Guests plus luggage especially in the evening when flights (well at least they used to) come in.
    Figment! aka Jason o
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  13. #8
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    I'll be happy to use the light rail if its available. Although it should be interesting to see if the trains run as frequent as the buses and have competitive transport times between MCO and WDW. I'll also be interested to see if Mears keeps their bus transport service. I'm assuming they will. Again, depended on which one gets you to WDW may be the deciding factor.

    The interesting part is that I don't recall an upcharge for DME when instituted. However, I realize that there's "no free lunch" and that the cost of DME was built into WDW's other fees (lodging) thus subsidizing the service. However you can surely bet that there will be no drop in rates as a result of Disney decoupling with Mears.
    Beth & David

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  15. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by baldburke View Post
    I'll also be interested to see if Mears keeps their bus transport service. I'm assuming they will. Again, depended on which one gets you to WDW may be the deciding factor.
    I read an article where a Mears spokesperson stated that they will still be offering bus service to the various Walt Disney World resorts after DME ends its service. Of course, what he didn't say was that there would be a charge for it. But if they sell some kind of roundtrip package to get you back to the airport, and it's around $10/person, that's not terrible at all.
    2002 - 2017: 20+ visits (POR, BW, All Stars, VWL, CSR, BLT, BC, SSR, CB, Dolphin, OKW, offsite x4)
    DL - 1996, 2019
    Next up - May 2021 offsite

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  17. #10
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    I'm totally guessing here, but we DO KNOW that Disney was contracting the Magical Express operation out to Mears Transportation, and it can't be a surprise that ridership on the buses was down due to COVID - both from lower park attendance in general, and distancing measures on the buses themselves. My guess is that the Magical Express had become cost prohibitive, with neither Disney nor Mears willing to take on the brunt of the cost. If Mears was being paid by the guest, it wasn't paying them enough to run the buses 1/4 to 1/2 full or less - and if Disney was paying by the busload, there weren't enough people on each bus to justify the cost.

    As for the 2022 date for ending the service, the new train won't be ready for at least several months after Jan 1, so my 2nd guess is the current Disney/Mears contract expires at the end of 2021, and the 2 sides haven't been able to agree on the terms for renewing it, especially with a new hi-speed rail system looming in the future. I'm hopeful that as we near the end of the year, Disney will announce they've either reached a new agreement with Mears or have contracted with another service provider, even if it's for a stop-gap service until the train service is actually available.
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  19. #11
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    Yeah, to all of the above, and what remains to be seen, is how much is the fare going to be for the light rail service????
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  20. #12
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    This is VERY disappointing! We used Magical Express on our last 2 trips as renting a car to take luggage plus DH's wheelchair and medical stuff was cost prohibitive as needed something like a full-size SUV AND then pay to park at hotel! ( which I disagree with when visitors don't pay ).
    Guess if we go again, we'll have to budget for that or look at towncar service that can take all of our stuff
    POFQ Sept 2012
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    Wilderness Lodge Nov 2018 My 47th Birthday!

  21. #13
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    This is VERY disappointing! We used Magical Express on our last 2 trips as renting a car to take luggage plus DH's wheelchair and medical stuff was cost prohibitive as needed something like a full-size SUV AND then pay to park at hotel! ( which I disagree with when visitors don't pay ).
    Guess if we go again, we'll have to budget for that or look at towncar service that can take all of our stuff
    POFQ Sept 2012
    POFQ Oct 2014 Hubby's 50th Birthday!
    Wilderness Lodge Nov 2018 My 47th Birthday!

  22. #14
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    Hmmm, posted twice. Not sure why, sorry.
    POFQ Sept 2012
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  23. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by azcavalier View Post
    I read an article where a Mears spokesperson stated that they will still be offering bus service to the various Walt Disney World resorts after DME ends its service. Of course, what he didn't say was that there would be a charge for it. But if they sell some kind of roundtrip package to get you back to the airport, and it's around $10/person, that's not terrible at all.
    If I remember correctly, the Mears transportation, prior to the implementation of DME, was around $80 round trip. I'll have to go back through my old reservations to be sure.....
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  24. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by azcavalier View Post
    I read an article where a Mears spokesperson stated that they will still be offering bus service to the various Walt Disney World resorts after DME ends its service. Of course, what he didn't say was that there would be a charge for it. But if they sell some kind of roundtrip package to get you back to the airport, and it's around $10/person, that's not terrible at all.
    $10 per person isn't bad. Even if its only one way. The down side to the rail service is that it drops you at DS vs. your resort which will likely add time to getting your vacation started. The may give Mears a leg up on the train.
    Beth & David

    09/82 Treehouse Villas, 06/86 BVP, 10/95 CBR, 10/99 DI, 08/03 PORS, 10/05 POP, 11/06 AKL, 09/09 POLY, 10/10 Wonder, 05/11 Dream/PORS, 08/13 POLY, 11/13 GF, 04/15 POLY, 11/15 BLT, 11/16 Aulani, 03/17 BLT, 08/18 BLT, 07/19 AKL, 06/21 BLT

  25. #17
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    I can't see them charging only $10 a head...
    John - aka. The Master Control Program
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  27. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by PopPhan View Post
    If I remember correctly, the Mears transportation, prior to the implementation of DME, was around $80 round trip. I'll have to go back through my old reservations to be sure.....
    Yeah, I just made up the $10/person number off the top of my head. Even $20/person wouldn't be terrible. $80/person? Seems like price gouging. Holy cow.
    2002 - 2017: 20+ visits (POR, BW, All Stars, VWL, CSR, BLT, BC, SSR, CB, Dolphin, OKW, offsite x4)
    DL - 1996, 2019
    Next up - May 2021 offsite

  28. #19
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    I would be okay with paying for it if it was a reasonable amount. When you take a Mears bus, do they play the Disney stuff on a TV like Magical Express?
    The train sounds like fun, but I'm not going to be dragging my luggage from the airport to a train to a bus and into a hotel.
    I'll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge.

  29. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by azcavalier View Post
    They're keeping it until 2022. In 2022, a lightrail system with connection from MCO to Walt Disney World will be coming online. Honestly, this makes sense to me. I know it's not exactly a 1=1 change, as you'll have to handle your own luggage and also get from the Walt Disney World hub to your Walt Disney World hotel, but still. With the financial losses of COVID impacting the Disney Parks, maybe getting rid of the ME Bus System allows them to keep other things alive and well in the parks themselves. Plus, Minnie Vans are supposed to be coming back, I hear.
    So why didn't Disney mention the light rail system (maybe) replacing Magical Express? Are they TRYING to upset everybody?

    Quote Originally Posted by nicholsbears View Post
    For me this is the last straw. Disney keeps raising pricing at over twice the rate of inflation and keeps reducing what is offered to the guests.
    I agree.

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