You’ve booked your flights and your hotel reservations and now you’re wondering how to get from the airport to your hotel. Disney has that covered! Disney Magical Express (DME) is a service operated by Mears Transportation that offers ground transportation and luggage delivery for Walt Disney World Resort. The service is complimentary and is only available to guests with reservations at one of the Walt Disney World Resort hotels. At the end of your stay, you may check in for your flight and check your bags at your Disney resort using Resort Airline Check-In. You will then be transported back to Orlando International Airport for your departing flight.
Read this article to find out how to book, where to board and all additional details about Disney Magic Express and Resort Airline Check-In.
Disney Magical Express (DME)
Disney Magical Express is complimentary motorcoach and luggage service between Orlando International Airport and certain Disney resorts. This service, operated by Mears Transportation, allows you to sit back and relax while someone else handles your luggage and does all the driving so you don’t have to. It’s a great way to start off your Disney vacation!
Who can use Disney Magical Express?
Magical Express Service is only available to registered guests of certain Walt Disney World resorts.
These Disney-owned resorts are:
- Art of Animation
- All-Star Movies, Music, & Sports
- Animal Kingdom Lodge & Villas, Jambo & Kidani
- Beach Club & Villas
- BoardWalk & Villas
- Fort Wilderness Cabins & Campgrounds
- Caribbean Beach
- Contemporary & Bay Lake Tower Villas
- Coronado Springs
- Grand Floridian
- Old Key West
- Polynesian Village
- Pop Century
- Port Orleans French Quarter & Riverside
- Riviera Resort
- Saratoga Springs
- Wilderness Lodge & Villas
- Yacht Club
Guests of the following non-Disney-owned hotels do not have access to Magical Express service:
- Shades of Green
- Disney Springs area hotels on Hotel Plaza Boulevard
How to book Magical Express service
When making your Disney resort reservations indicate that you’d like to use the service and we’ll walk you through the booking process. If you previously booked your resort reservation through us and would like to add the service, just let us know and we will add it to your reservation.
You will need to have your flight information before booking. If you do not have your flights booked when you make your hotel reservations, just call us back after you’ve booked your flights. DME can be booked anytime before your date of travel. However, if you would like to receive the free luggage tags by mail before you depart you must make your reservation at least 2 weeks in advance.
If you booked your MDE reservation at least 2 weeks in advance you will receive an envelope in the mail that contains yellow Magical Express luggage tags. Your Magic Bands will come in a separate mailing.
The luggage tags are the way Disney tracks and sends your luggage directly from Orlando International Airport to your Walt Disney World hotel.
If you choose to put the yellow tags on your bags, you will do this at your home airport. When the bags arrive in Orlando, they will be loaded onto a truck headed to WDW instead of going to the baggage claim carousel. When using the yellow luggage tags, you can head directly from your plane to the Magical Express pick-up point without stopping at baggage claim.
TIP: Baggage delivery service only operates until 10:00p. If your flight arrives after that, you must collect your luggage from baggage claim and bring it to the Magical Express counter and have it loaded on the bus.
You are not required to use the luggage tags. If you don’t attach the luggage tags you will be responsible for picking up your bags from baggage claim. Using the luggage tags will save you the waiting time it takes for your baggage to arrive. It will also save you from having to get your luggage from baggage claim to the bus. If you’re traveling with children in strollers or if you have medical issues or mobility problems, not having to worry about your bags can be a real lifesaver.
HINT: If you didn’t receive your luggage tags, left them at home or didn’t have enough tags you may give the Cast Member at the Disney Express counter your luggage tag information and they will retrieve your bags for you. They do not advertise that they will do this and it is more work for them so we advise that you only do this if you absolutely need to.
Generally you will have your luggage within 3-4 hours after you check in to your hotel. Make sure to have anything you’ll need or want to keep with you while you wait for your luggage in a carry on bag.
Navigating Orlando International Airport
Disney Magical Express is located in the MAIN TERMINAL, B SIDE, LEVEL 1
ARRIVAL AT GATE AREA
- As you depart the airplane you will arrive in the gate area in an Airside Terminal.
- To reach the Main Terminal, follow the overhead signs to the shuttle station which is located in the center of the Airside Terminal.
- You will also be able to follow the well marked signs to Disney Magical Express Welcome Center
BOARD THE AUTOMATED PEOPLE MOVER (APM)
- The doors will automatically open when it is time to board.
- The ride to the Main Terminal takes just about 1 minute.
- Pay attention to signs and announcements direction you to either Baggage Claim A or B.
- The Shuttle will arrive on Level 3 of the Main Terminal.
- Upon arrival at the Main Terminal look for the large illuminated letter indicating the “B” side of the terminal.
- If you have Disney luggage tags on your bags Disney’s Magical Express will collect your bags for you.
- If you did not use the luggage tags, you will need to stop by baggage claim and collect your own bags.
DISNEY’S MAGICAL EXPRESS
- Navigate to Level 1 of Terminal B to get on Disney’s Magical Express.
- You will need your Magic Bands or vouchers to check in. If you do not have your Magic Bands or vouchers with you for some reason, don’t panic! The cast member at the Welcome Center will be able to assist you. They can look up your resort reservation and print paper vouchers for your trip to your hotel.
- Once you arrive at the Welcome Center, step up to any of the Magical Express podiums and scan your Magic Band. Every member of your party over the age of 2 will need to scan their Magic Band.
- A cast member will then direct you to the appropriate line for your resort and you may board the bus when instructed.
- If you used the Magical Express luggage tags your bags will be delivered directly to your resort room. This process could take several hours so make sure you have whatever items you need with you until your bags arrive.
- If your are carrying your bags with you, just give them to the driver and he will load them in the luggage compartment of the bus.
Don’t forget to tip your driver especially if they helped with your bags ($1 per bag is standard).
International Arrivals: If Orlando is your first point of entry into the United States, please follow the US Customs and Border Protection process and collect your luggage upon disembarking the plane. Once the process has been completed return your luggage to the officials and proceed to the Disney Magical Express Welcome Center in the MAIN TERMINAL,LEVEL 1, SIDE B. Disney will collect your bags and deliver them to your room as long as you have the yellow luggage tags attached. Or you may collect your luggage from baggage claim and bring it with you to the Welcome Center to have it accompany you on the motorcoach. If you have already completed the U.S. Customs & Border Protection process in another U.S. city, proceed directly to the Disney’s Magical Express Welcome Center.
The Ride to the Resort
You will be transported to the resort in a luxury motorcoach. There are bathrooms in the back of the bus and the seats are large and comfortable. There are television screens located above the seats that communicate important information and play short Disney cartoons for entertainment.
The length of the ride depends on your resort but it averages about 45 minutes. The bus stops at various resort so your ride time will vary based on where your resort is in the drop off sequence.
Once you arrive at your resort, the Magical Express driver will unload any luggage that was brought along by guests, including carry on luggage. The drivers do accept tips and rely on guests to show their appreciation with a few dollars.
HINT: If you have a young child with you, you will not need to bring along a carseat. Florida law does not require child carseats on buses nor is there any mechanism available to attach it to the bus seat. Your child may sit next to you or on your lap. If you brought along a carseat you may stow it in the luggage compartment of the motorcoach.
Return to the Airport
The day prior to your departure you’ll receive a notice from Magical Express to your hotel room with your pick up time. Usually for domestic flights it’s 3 hours prior to flight departure, for international flights it’s usually 4 hours prior to departure.
The pickup spot will be outside the hotel main entrance. The note you will receive includes a bar code that will serve as your bus ticket.
RESORT AIRLINE CHECK-IN
If you are flying on one of the following airlines then you will receive your boarding passes and you will be able to check and pay for your bags at your hotel.
- Alaska Airlines
- American Airlines
- Delta Air Lines (U.S. Domestic Flights Only)
- JetBlue Airways
- Southwest Airlines
- United Airlines
If your airline isn’t on the list above you will simply give your bags to the bus driver and collect them at the airport. You will then have to follow the normal check in procedure at the airport.
TIP: If you aren’t leaving until later in the day your hotel will hold your luggage for you after you check-out from your room. If you call Bell Services from your room they will assist in transporting your luggage from your room to their desk. They will check your luggage securely for the day and give you a ticket which you can use to retrieve your luggage when you are ready to depart.
Guests with Special Needs
If you’ll be bringing a wheelchair, medical stroller or an ECV along, you’ll want to advise us when you request Magical Express service. Not all DME buses have lifts. If Disney has advance notice of your needs, they can have a bus with a lift available for you at arrival.
GETTING FROM THE AIRPLANE TO THE MAGICAL EXPRESS WELCOME CENTER:
Disney will not provide wheelchairs or ECVs between your airplane and the Welcome Center. If you need a wheelchair to meet you at the airplane you will need to arrange that with the airline. For more information, please see our page on Airport Assistance for Travelers with Special Needs.
BOARDING THE BUS FOR GUESTS WHO CANNOT TRANSFER:
When you arrive at the Welcome Center remind the Cast Member that you cannot transfer and will need to remain in your mobility device during the ride to your resort. The Cast Member will then direct you toward the correct line to await the arrival of your bus. You will board the bus first via the lift. Once on the bus they will strap your chair down.
BOARDING THE BUS FOR GUESTS WHO CAN TRANSFER:
When you arrive at the Welcome Center advise the Cast Member that you can transfer to a seat during the ride to your resort. You may stay in your mobility device until you reach the steps of the bus. From there you will be required to walk up the steps of the bus. If you need assistance up the stairs you must have someone from your party assist you. Cast Members and Magical Express employees are not allowed to provide you with assistance up the stairs. The driver will then load your mobility device into the luggage area on the bus.