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disney0928
02-16-2005, 09:46 AM
Can't wait for this service to start!

I had read that WDW had several airline partners help to develop this system. JetBlue was NOT one listed. Does this mean that if we fly JetBlue, we will not be able to use the Magical Express Service? Any TA"s out there know the answer on this? Can you fly any airline, or only certain ones, and use the service? :confused3

TIA!

Horace Horsecollar
02-16-2005, 10:44 AM
Can't wait for this service to start!

I had read that WDW had several airline partners help to develop this system. JetBlue was NOT one listed. Does this mean that if we fly JetBlue, we will not be able to use the Magical Express Service? Any TA"s out there know the answer on this? Can you fly any airline, or only certain ones, and use the service?
You can fly any airline, but you don't get the full benefit unless you're on one of the particiating airlines.

Going to WDW, it makes no difference. You'll get luggage handling from your home airport to your resort at WDW, regardless of which airline you're flying.

But when it's time to go home, you can only check your bags directly from your resort if you're flying American, United (including Ted), Delta (including Song), and Continental. The list of airlines may grow by May 5. You can still ride on the coach going back to the airport, but you'll have to check in and check your bags at the airport.

If you search this site for "Magical Express" you'll find lots of other threads about Magical Express.

Lewisc
02-16-2005, 10:53 AM
SW also isn't listed. I wonder if the airlines have to pay something toward the cost of this service. It would be certainly worth paying $1-$2 /bag, same tip as a skycap, if that would be enough to check the luggage for all airlines.

Horace Horsecollar
02-16-2005, 12:38 PM
SW also isn't listed. I wonder if the airlines have to pay something toward the cost of this service. It would be certainly worth paying $1-$2 /bag, same tip as a skycap, if that would be enough to check the luggage for all airlines.
My guess is that Disney is paying the cost, and that it's far more than $1 or $2 per bag. There's processing at both ends (tagging, loading, unloading, sorting, tracking), as well as the cost of the trucks, gasoline, insurance, etc.

Except for their recent codeshare agreement with ATA, Southwest has a 30-year history of not particiapting in interline agreements, including interline baggage handling, with other airlines. So they're the last airline that I'd expect to see joining Magical Express.

I'm surprised that Northwest is not particiapting. Also, US Airways' absence from the list is a surprise, but US Airways is in such financial trouble that they're likely to avoid anything that has even a tiny pricetag associated with it.

Perhaps the airlines are facing a per bag cost, but my guess is it's just a liabilty issue. In interline baggage handling, the last airline that handles a bag is responsible for loss, damage, or forwarding in case of a delay. I assume that Magical Express would work the same way. Some airlines may be willing to acccept the risk, while others may not be.

Lewisc
02-16-2005, 12:54 PM
I agree the total cost is more than $1-$2/ bag. I'm wondering if the airlines are paying some of the cost. I can see Disney telling the airlines that should pay some of the cost since the airline may need fewer counter employees. Some Vegas hotels used to let you check your luggage at the hotel. The service ended after 9-11 and I don't remember if SW was one of the participating airlines.

Other than systems issues, printing the baggage tickets, I wouldn't think SW would care if the baggage came via a skycap or Magical Express UNLESS DISNEY EXPECTED THEM TO SHARE in the costs. It would certainly be worth paying a reasonable per bag charge if that's what it takes to include some of the discount carriers.


My guess is that Disney is paying the cost, and that it's far more than $1 or $2 per bag. There's processing at both ends (tagging, loading, unloading, sorting, tracking), as well as the cost of the trucks, gasoline, insurance, etc...

Horace Horsecollar
02-16-2005, 03:26 PM
Other than systems issues, printing the baggage tickets, I wouldn't think SW would care if the baggage came via a skycap or Magical Express UNLESS DISNEY EXPECTED THEM TO SHARE in the costs. It would certainly be worth paying a reasonable per bag charge if that's what it takes to include some of the discount carriers.
It's not as simple as just printing a luggage tag. The luggage has to tied to a specific passenger on a specific flight. When you check your bags at your resort, you'll also get your airline boarding pass. That means the airline has to be using industry-standard software and processes, and that the check-in station has to be tied into Southwest's system. But Southwest has always done things their own way.

The return flight check-in and baggage transfer service will be handled by Baggage Airline Guest Services Inc., or "BAGS, Inc." That company operates remote check-in at various hotels and at the Orange County (Orlando) Convention Center. Their usual charge is $10 per bag. They've worked out the logistics issues with participating airlines and the security issues with the TSA. The don't handle Southwest as part of their usual service either. If it were just a matter of charging $12 instead of $10, they would probably do so.

What I think is strange is the United Airlines is on the list, but US Airways is not. United and US Airways have extensive codesharing into Orlando. That means that some people on the same airplane are flying with United tickets and other people are flying with US Airways tickets. Presumably, those with United tickets can check-in for their return flight and check their baggage at their WDW resort, but those with US Airways tickets (who will be on the same aircraft) can not. Perhaps that will change by May 5.

But I wouldn't hold my breath for Southwest to join the list. I hope I'm wrong because I've used Southwest to Orlando in the past and I may want to do so again in the future.

Lewisc
02-16-2005, 03:49 PM
Agreed but SW allows you to get BP online. I have no idea what would be involved in setting up a system that would require that a guest get his own BP, with the help of Disney, prior to getting in line to check in luggage. Could be as simple as having a computer and printer available for guest use.

Actually SW is in the same computer system as other airlines, at least in Las Vegas.

http://www.arinc.com/news/2003/10-16-03.html

Same software company being used by Disney/BAGS.

When I go the airport I can go to a skycap and they can print a baggage tag for any airline including SW. I don't know enough but I had assumed BAGS were using the same system and could handle SW. I thought the issue was money I guess it's also systems. I suspect Disney is getting a discount over the normal $10 fee.

I agree with your last paragraph, I can't see SW spending any time, money or resources making this happen. I think SW may change if Jet Blue joins the list. I don't think SW will want to be the only airline that doesn't participate.

Your United USA Air observation gives credence to my belief that the airlines are paying part of the cost.





It's not as simple as just printing a luggage tag. The luggage has to tied to a specific passenger on a specific flight. When you check your bags at your resort, you'll also get your airline boarding pass. That means the airline has to be using industry-standard software and processes, and that the check-in station has to be tied into Southwest's system. But Southwest has always done things their own way.

The return flight check-in and baggage transfer service will be handled by Baggage Airline Guest Services Inc., or "BAGS, Inc." That company operates remote check-in at various hotels and at the Orange County (Orlando) Convention Center. Their usual charge is $10 per bag. They've worked out the logistics issues with participating airlines and the security issues with the TSA. The don't handle Southwest as part of their usual service either. If it were just a matter of charging $12 instead of $10, they would probably do so.
.......
But I wouldn't hold my breath for Southwest to join the list. I hope I'm wrong because I've used Southwest to Orlando in the past and I may want to do so again in the future.

Lewisc
02-16-2005, 03:55 PM
duplicate post please delete

pumpkinboy
02-16-2005, 04:04 PM
Well, the prospect of Magical Express tipped the balance in favor of Song for our October trip. DW and I estimated that we'd pay $20-$30 more per ticket to fly Song bcs of their participation in Magical Express. Our other favorite, JetBlue had prices a bit higher for our dates anyway, and the times weren't as good for us, so the choice was easier.

Yes, I know that it is only gonna make a difference on the return flight, but convenience is a big plus; being able to check my luggage aboard the airline at my Disney resort, and not worry about it until I get back to Boston sounds awefully good to me.

BTW, I was also surprised that NorthWest was not participating yet. But perhaps that's the result of their "customer service" ethic they have when dealing with our Minnesotan friends. ;)

Lewisc
02-16-2005, 04:55 PM
Many airlines have lowered the weight limits for luggage. Frequently a well tipped skycap will forget to weight a bag.

I wonder if the resort check in will be very strict, loose or random.

CarolA
02-16-2005, 05:07 PM
Until you hear otherwise I would assume they will be strict on the luggage weight!

JoeD
02-16-2005, 05:14 PM
Well, the prospect of Magical Express tipped the balance in favor of Song for our October trip.

We moved up our departure date to use Magical Express. We were going to leave on May 4, but moved it to May 5 so we wouldn't have to pay for Mears.

I just hope they have the kinks worked out since we will be using it on the first day....

simzac
02-16-2005, 06:02 PM
I sent a letter to SW customer relations this week concerning their lack of participation in Magical Express. It may take a while for a response, but I'm hoping to find out the real reason from SW why they are not in the program. :earsboy:

vossjemi
02-17-2005, 10:18 AM
So, are you saying if you are booked with SW, you cannot use this service?

Horace Horsecollar
02-17-2005, 10:21 AM
So, are you saying if you are booked with SW, you cannot use this service?
Please read this thread. The answer is in post #2.

vossjemi
02-17-2005, 10:28 AM
I did read it. I've been reading all of these threads. Someone posted on another thread that anyone staying at a WDW resort could use it. They even posted the specific language of the press release which didn't say anything about limitations by airline. So, that is why I questioned it.

Horace Horsecollar
02-17-2005, 11:00 AM
I did read it. I've been reading all of these threads. Someone posted on another thread that anyone staying at a WDW resort could use it. They even posted the specific language of the press release which didn't say anything about limitations by airline. So, that is why I questioned it.
Yes, anyone staying at a Disney-operated resort at WDW can ride a Magical Express coach in both directions Magical Express. Earlier in this thread, I wrote:

You can fly any airline, but you don't get the full benefit unless you're on one of the particiating airlines.

Going to WDW, it makes no difference. You'll get luggage handling from your home airport to your resort at WDW, regardless of which airline you're flying.

But when it's time to go home, you can only check your bags directly from your resort if you're flying American, United (including Ted), Delta (including Song), and Continental. The list of airlines may grow by May 5. You can still ride on the coach going back to the airport, but you'll have to check in and check your bags at the airport.

If you search this site for "Magical Express" you'll find lots of other threads about Magical Express.

In other words, any Orlando International Airport passengers, regardless of airline, can ride a Magical Express coach in both directions -- but on the return trip, passengers of non-particiapting airlines (such as Southwest) will need to check in and check their bags at the airport.

vossjemi
02-17-2005, 11:06 AM
Thank you Horace. :earsgirl: :earsboy: