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Disney Magical Express to be Discontinued

UNIrd

Premium Member
Jul 18, 2008
6,410
So funny to see the outrage on this since i'm from South Florida and always drive so never used the service and didn't know that much better. Sounds like a fantastic service for guests who were flying in. It's so funny that no other Disney resort worldwide offered a service like this. So it just sounds like WDW is going the same route of um.. wishing you luck on your journey and they'll see ya real soon.

I did do a Disneyland Resort Express shuttle that was about $75pp RT. Wonder how much people would have been willing to pay if it they added a cost instead of discontinuing altogether.
 

Bort

Rookie
Sep 7, 2015
110
So funny to see the outrage on this since i'm from South Florida and always drive so never used the service and didn't know that much better. Sounds like a fantastic service for guests who were flying in. It's so funny that no other Disney resort worldwide offered a service like this. So it just sounds like WDW is going the same route of um.. wishing you luck on your journey and they'll see ya real soon.

I did do a Disneyland Resort Express shuttle that was about $75pp RT. Wonder how much people would have been willing to pay if it they added a cost instead of discontinuing altogether.
I've done all variations of transportation on previous Orlando trips; DME to and from WDW, strictly rental car, rental there with DME back, and so on. In my opinion DME was mostly used because it was free (or at least built into the price). On trips to Universal, I never used their Superstar Shuttle or whatever it's called, because there's no true cost benefit.

If I'm going to pay for a ride from MCO to a resort, there's two things I will look for in the service:

1. Am I the only party in the vehicle? When I get off my plane, I want to get the trip started. I don't want to wait for a handful of other families to drag their children through the terminal and arrive at a mini-bus.

2. Can I stop somewhere to pick up supplies? With Mears, I've almost always used their one stop option. It costs about $5, and it allows me to stop at a Walmart/Publix/etc. where I can load up the car with water, snacks, beer, or whatever other essentials I want in my room. Haven't tried that with Uber, but I'm sure I could always slip them some extra money to make a quick stop, or just book two trips, MCO -> Walmart --> Hotel.

A pay-for version of DME or a train to Disney Springs will offer neither of those perks, and for that reason, I'll probably never use the service.

Between this and the restructuring of EMH, the only true perk I see in staying on-property is the early FP+ booking window. Upsetting to see..
 
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GAcoaster

V.I.P.
Nov 30, 2012
4,595
Orlando
There’s a difference between figuring something out and wanting to do something. DME = expense, not leases or asset acquisitions (buses). Also keeps the driver headcount off your payroll and out of your benefit pool.
And, Disney has a hard enough time getting and keeping the bus drivers for the resort buses, let alone having to staff DME/DCL which Mears runs for them. Also, Disney's current bus fleet never leaves property, so running off property would add many more challenges they don't want to deal with.
 

SkiBum

Veteran Member
Dec 14, 2012
1,611
Cincinnati, OH
I've done all variations of transportation on previous Orlando trips; DME to and from WDW, strictly rental car, rental there with DME back, and so on. In my opinion DME was mostly used because it was free (or at least built into the price). On trips to Universal, I never used their Superstar Shuttle or whatever it's called, because there's no true cost benefit.

If I'm going to pay for a ride from MCO to a resort, there's two things I will look for in the service:

1. Am I the only party in the vehicle? When I get off my plane, I want to get the trip started. I don't want to wait for a handful of other families to drag their children through the terminal and arrive at a mini-bus.

2. Can I stop somewhere to pick up supplies? With Mears, I've almost always used their one stop option. It costs about $5, and it allows me to stop at a Walmart/Publix/etc. where I can load up the car with water, snacks, beer, or whatever other essentials I want in my room. Haven't tried that with Uber, but I'm sure I could always slip them some extra money to make a quick stop, or just book two trips, MCO -> Walmart --> Hotel.

A pay-for version of DME or a train to Disney Springs will offer neither of those perks, and for that reason, I'll probably never use the service.

Between this and the restructuring of EMH, the only true perk I see in staying on-property is the early FP+ booking window. Upsetting to see..
We used it because it was free and because it was nice to just sit back and relax on the trips to/from the airport. I will admit that I always grew impatient waiting for the bus to finish loading. I always seemed to be one of the first on the bus and the wait seemed so long. I think that my only real gripe with DME was that the bus stopped at multiple resorts before leaving. One trip, we left Port Orleans FQ to Riverside and then to Fort Wilderness and then to the airport. For some reason, that was a really long trip. We will still stay onsite since we love the Wilderness Lodge and Contemporary but I can see us also using some offsite hotels to save on hotel costs.

While Disney probably had to do this to also secure the train stop, it just feels like the company is contracting on all the perks that onsite guests enjoyed. No DME, no EMH, upcharge for parking at a non-DVC hotel, etc.
 

Happytycho

Member
Mar 1, 2017
670
What perplexes me is that they've completely cancelled the service. If it was only about money, they could have easily made it an upcharge for $20pp and people would have gotten over it after a little bit of griping. Instead it's completely gone.

Was it just not effective at keeping people in the bubble any more? Or could they really not compete with rideshares?
 

fryoj

Premium Member
May 19, 2013
3,100
What perplexes me is that they've completely cancelled the service. If it was only about money, they could have easily made it an upcharge for $20pp and people would have gotten over it after a little bit of griping. Instead it's completely gone.

Was it just not effective at keeping people in the bubble any more? Or could they really not compete with rideshares?
I'm betting it was a tradeoff to get the train line built to Disney.