PDA

View Full Version : Magical Express was AWFUL!


roxannex
05-14-2005, 11:36 AM
I've always been a lurker here before, but I had to post about Magical Express. My husband and I just got back from our trip yesterday. We arrived on the 9th. We only had two bags, but we used ME because supposedly it was supposed to be faster and easier. We could have kicked ourselves later, because it would have been so much easier to get our own bags.

The bus ride to the resort was fine. But our plane arrived at 2:20 PM and we still didn't have our luggage by 7:00 PM when we complained our butts off! We wanted to go to the parks, but since we were coming from a colder weather climate, it was too hot to go in jeans and long sleeves. We kept complaining to different people and totally got the brush off, until finally we tried to lodge a complaint with the front desk and the manager allowed us to go to the gift shop and buy short sleeve t-shirts and shorts on Disney. That was nice, but it was shame that we had to complain for over two hours and be shuffled around and around first.

Last, the ME ride back to the airport took over an hour by the time we stopped at all of the different resorts to pick up people (we took our luggage with us on the way back since they wanted us to leave it outside an hour before our scheduled departure (6:00AM)). That was okay for us, but if we'd had kids it probably would have been annoying.

I understand the service was new, but someone should have told us that they were having problems. We happily would have taken our own luggage. All in all...NOT a very magical experience.

BTW...the problems we had were at the Beach Club. We eventually realized through wandering around that the Yacht Club was much quieter and the staff was nicer. We switched, and we had a lovely time at the Yacht Club. It seems much more geared to people who would like a quieter experience.

band_man
05-14-2005, 12:01 PM
Just curious, when did you finally get your luggage?

beattyfamily
05-14-2005, 12:01 PM
Doesn't surprise me. I knew we'd get all these negative reviews in the beginning. I don't understand why anyone would be surprised.

It's brand new and it's free. It will take them time to work out all the problems and issues.

They bought you clothes so count yourself lucky.

BeckWhy
05-14-2005, 12:03 PM
I don't know what the time limit is, but I know somewhere it says it can take X amount of hours before you get your luggage. Now, I don't know all the details, but I'll try to say what I remember. This is because the luggage travels on a different shuttle than the one you take from the airport.

band_man
05-14-2005, 12:06 PM
Well, actually if you think about her review it doesn't sound all that bad to me. She said the ride from MCO was fine. That her plane landed at 2:20 and they hadn't recived their luggage as of 7:00pm - about 4 1/2 hours after landing(not unreasonable to me) and admits they started complaining after 2 hours(unreasonable to me).

She complains that she had to put her luggage out 1 hour before departure. Seems perfectly reasonable to me.

So all in all(unless her luggage was much later) it doesn't seem that bad. Getting better.

dzneelvr
05-14-2005, 12:40 PM
Band man: you may be ok with getting luggage 4-5 hours after you need it, but with a family, that would be our worst nightmare.
I've been reading the ME posts, and luggage handling certainly IS a consistent negative. Sounds to me like the transportation is alot like the dreaded MEARS--you have no preferential order to your pick up and drop off--it happens as it happens.
That's why we've settled on a nice stretch limo (Happy Limo) with prompt luggage handling (20 minutes last summer through Sanford) and pick up/drop off right at the door with no waiting. Honestly, the luggage delays will be a big detractor from using this service if they don't get if fixed fast.
:earsgirl: :earsboy: :earsboy: :earsgirl:

Horace Horsecollar
05-14-2005, 12:44 PM
The bus ride to the resort was fine. But our plane arrived at 2:20 PM and we still didn't have our luggage by 7:00 PM when we complained our butts off! We wanted to go to the parks, but since we were coming from a colder weather climate, it was too hot to go in jeans and long sleeves.
This is where Disney's hype that your luggage will "magically appear" in your room upon check-in sends the wrong message.

During the startup of ME, it's often been taking way too long for luggage to arrive in the room. But even after the luggage tag problems and other computer problems are fixed, there will be times when the ME coach beats the luggage truck to the resort and/or bell services is busy and running behind.

If the OP had brought a few Florida-appropriate clothing items in a carry-on bag, the title of this thread coluld have been "Magical Express was FINE!" The OP and her husband would have changed, headed to a park, and found the luggage waiting in the room when they returned.

Lesson: Bring a carry-on with a swim suit, park attire, and anything else you're likely to need immediately upon check-in.

C.Ann
05-14-2005, 12:48 PM
Am I the only one who follows the unwritten "rule" of packing a change of clothes in my carry-on in case my luggage is lost by the airline?? :confused3
I thought everyone who traveled did that..

If they did, there would be no need to stress about what time their luggage arrived at the hotel..

All in all - for a start-up situation - ME sounds pretty good to me.. :flower: If I were traveling alone, I would definitely use it, but if we go down in Nov/Dec. my son-in-law will want to rent a car so we can do Universal and Sea World as well as WDW..

DisneyFans4
05-14-2005, 12:53 PM
[QUOTE=dzneelvr] Sounds to me like the transportation is alot like the dreaded MEARS--you have no preferential order to your pick up and drop off--it happens as it happens.


EXACTLY!!! I knew I would not prefer to use this service because I want to pick up my own luggage just to make sure they all made it off the plane and because I just want to have them as soon as I check in. I don't like MEARS because they make you wait until they have a fully loaded bus before they leave the airport which at times can take over 1/2 an hour, and then they have to make all the stops. For a few $$$$ more we now have a car waiting for US and as soon as we get our luggage we are headed for the hotel.

C.Ann
05-14-2005, 12:59 PM
[QUOTE=dzneelvr] Sounds to me like the transportation is alot like the dreaded MEARS--you have no preferential order to your pick up and drop off--it happens as it happens.


EXACTLY!!! I knew I would not prefer to use this service because I want to pick up my own luggage just to make sure they all made it off the plane and because I just want to have them as soon as I check in. I don't like MEARS because they make you wait until they have a fully loaded bus before they leave the airport which at times can take over 1/2 an hour, and then they have to make all the stops. For a few $$$$ more we now have a car waiting for US and as soon as we get our luggage we are headed for the hotel.
----------------------

I used the Mears Shuttle in April.. It was great! Didn't have to wait for a "full" bus either.. May have been a fluke, but I was perfectly satisfied - and very happy that I only had to pay $17 (only went one way) as opposed to the cost of a limo.. :flower:

DisneyFans4
05-14-2005, 01:03 PM
We always go in August and everytime it was like that for us with Mears. I haven't used them since our trip in 2001. We are a family of 4 and they charge per person so for us the extra $$$$ spent on a limo service was well worth it.

cdrn1
05-14-2005, 01:04 PM
We are just back from 5 days at WL and we had a pretty good experience with ME. We were among the group that did not get the luggage tags prior so I was pretty worried. When we got off the tram there were several CM's that pointed us in the direction of the welcome center. There, they copied our baggage claim numbers and got a description of our bags (they had a laminated board with different kinds of suitcases) and then gave us our vouchers for the bus. We were on the bus and headed for WL within 10 minutes. The trip was pretty quick. We got to the room around 1:15 and didn't get our luggage until 7:30 but I expected that since the service is so new. We had packed a change of clothing and our swimming gear so it wasn't a big problem. The only worry was that DGD's food and diapers were in a checked bag and we were down to our last diaper when the bags finally arrived (but of course no big deal because we could get diapers in the Mercantile). Our departure time yesterday was at 7:05 pm so we took the 4:05 ME bus. There were already people there when we boarded and we went to the Poly. There were some people there who did not get to board as there was no room but busses were running every half hour so I'm pretty sure it wasn't a problem. We were dropped off in terminal A and arrived at the gate about 45 minutes before boarding, which I did not think was excessive. Security screening was very fast; if it had been crowded, the extra time would have been needed. Overall, I thought it was a great service and I'm sure baggage handling will improve with practice. I definitely will use it again.

band_man
05-14-2005, 01:24 PM
That's why we've settled on a nice stretch limo (Happy Limo) with prompt luggage handling (20 minutes last summer through Sanford) and pick up/drop off right at the door with no waiting.

I never expected this service to be as convenient as a limo. It is mass transportation. I know that evidently Disney made claims that in some circumstances your luggage might actually beat you to your resort. Not a smart statement on their behalf. How you are going to walk out of the airport and get on a bus and your luggage be loaded and driven and unloaded at your resort before you get there I never understood or believed.

Bottom line, it's free, I do not have to deal with my luggage in the airport, the wait times are decreasing. A bus of 45 people is Not going to provide limo level service. Not intended to.

Lewisc
05-14-2005, 01:37 PM
Your carryon luggage should include expensive items like cameras, things you can't be without like medicines and clothing you might need immediately after you arrive like bathing suits and shorts.

Occasionally airlines lose luggage. ME can always delay delivering your luggage. Your room might not be be ready when you check in and it's easier not having to go through all your bags to get what you need.

Disney really should re-word ME. Instead of saying your luggage may beat you to your room they should say something while you're enjoying your first day at WDW we'll be magically delivering your luggage to your room.

ColoradoBelle1
05-14-2005, 02:05 PM
I just got back from the World too. I thought about using ME to check it out ...and it was FREE FREE FREE, but then control freak that I am, I just adore having the freedom of a car. Besides, I was staying at the Wyndham and doing Universal on the weekend, so going back to the airport to ride the ME would have been rather redundant .

I heard lots of complaints while I was there from people who had bad experiences. A disboarder I met there had had so much trouble that Disney comped her a town car each way...What I'm saying is that Disney is sure being accountable for when things go wrong with this very new service....Being Disney I am sure that they will get it right eventually.

Yep, not sure why OP didn't take a carryon with 'Disney clothes and swimsuits'. All veteran travelers do, and I bet OP does it next time. I forgot to pack a bathing suit in my carryon only once...and wouldn't you know THAT trip was the only time the airlines ever lost my luggage. And it was a weekend trip too...so not having a bathing suit in Puerta Vallarta for half the trip really stung!!!!!

Most of the Dis-vets also know that chances are really good that you aren't going to get into your room until after 4, so to plan accordingly.

This trip FOR ME ...Disney was magical but my family sucked! :rotfl: Hoping soon I can have both worlds. Glad that OP had a good time otherwise.
For me: I doubt I will ever want to give up my car. I really zipped around in my car this trip and in 1 1/2 days of park hopping (trip was 5 nights, BWV for 3 of those nights, but only 1 1/2 days for the parks) got to see everything I wanted to , and then some , in all 4 parks. Couldn't have done that without some carhopping.

Take care OP and glad you had fun at the Yacht Club and the parks...wasn't the 'no lines' great?????

philaround
05-14-2005, 02:59 PM
Am I the only one who follows the unwritten "rule" of packing a change of clothes in my carry-on

It is no longer unwrtten Ann. The DME peolple have been telling people for at least 2 weeks now to be sure to have at least a change of clothes in their carryon as well as anything else that they would need immediately as the baggage transfers were taking up to 5 hours early on in this service.

roxannex
05-14-2005, 03:55 PM
Just to clarify...

We would have had no problem waiting if we knew it was going to take a long time. We just wished that someone would have told us. It would have been really easy when we checked in just to say...hey...the service is being slow right now so if you would like to take your own luggage that's an option.

5 hours later for luggage is just unacceptable TO ME. Maybe it wouldn't be for others, but the information makes it seem like your luggage is going to come soon after you. The luggage might actually have come later than that...we finally did go to the parks...and they were finally there when we got back around 10PM. So I was being generous with the 7PM estimate.

Disney also knew that 5 hours was a long time because they admitted the service was being really slow and we saw lots of other people complaining too.

And no...we didn't bring a change of clothes. Just didn't. I guess it would have been a good idea, but with the airlines the way they are...we just try to avoid taking anything unecessary.

I hope they do work out the kinks. Seems like I offended people by being honest. I just didn't want other people to have to go through it. When you count on that half a day to be able to go to the parks, and instead you just have to stay in the hotel...it sucks.

lsteadman
05-14-2005, 04:06 PM
I just use the service and it was fine...but I took care of my own luggage.

I am seriously considering another trip in December because I have these AP passes and want to get the most use out of them.

I am going to use ME for my transportation; however, I am going to take care of my own luggage. We I get off the plane I am going to get my own luggage from baggage claim. Then I am going to check in and have the driver put my luggage on the bottom of the bus. Then (just like I did on May 3 - take my luggage to my room at check-in) or if room not ready - check my luggage with the Luggage Assistance Department out front then get it when my room is ready.

On the return, (just like May 10) I am going to have the driver place my luggage under the bus. Ride to the Airport. Get my own luggage and take it to NWA check-in.

This way I know where my luggage is at all times.

For my family and budget its about the free transporation.....not the luggage service. If things get really bad...I will use just the plain Mears service not Magical Express Mears. I used the plain Mears service on May 3 to get to the hotel and I have nothing but positives to say about the plain Mears service.

I am so sorry you had these bad experiences with ME I hope the rest of your trip was Magical! Sending Pixie dust your way.

debden
05-14-2005, 04:14 PM
I agree with the OP. Luggage being 5 hours late is NOT ACCEPTABLE!! If it was any transportation service (other than a Disney related service) people would be complaining up a storm about the service!
Give me a break...not everyone wants to have a carry on. I take up to 4 trips a year and I would be literally screaming if my luggage did not reach my room within a 1/2 hour after I checked in. It doesn't matter if the service is 'Free' or not..nobody should have to wait that long!
I would write a letter to Disney and let them know how unhappy I was with their service.
Debbie

*Fantasia*
05-14-2005, 04:21 PM
I agree with the OP. Luggage being 5 hours late is NOT ACCEPTABLE!! If it was any transportation service (other than a Disney related service) people would be complaining up a storm about the service!
Give me a break...not everyone wants to have a carry on. I take up to 4 trips a year and I would be literally screaming if my luggage did not reach my room within a 1/2 hour after I checked in. It doesn't matter if the service is 'Free' or not..nobody should have to wait that long!
I would write a letter to Disney and let them know how unhappy I was with their service.
Debbie
WOW!! You took the words right out of my mouth!
Yes, the service is FREE but no excuse why it should take FIVE HOURS for the bags to get to your resort. FIVE HOURS is a looong time to wait. Disney was just not prepared for this service. They are disorganized right now.

debden
05-14-2005, 04:25 PM
'Bad Service' is 'Bad Service' wether it's 'Free' or not!!!

bicker
05-14-2005, 04:29 PM
A lot of this comes down to what expectations were set and how those expectations were arrived at. For folks who have gotten the materials from Disney: What guarantees and other promises does Disney make in terms of how timely and accurate this service will be?

tjmw2727
05-14-2005, 04:54 PM
A lot of this comes down to what expectations were set and how those expectations were arrived at. For folks who have gotten the materials from Disney: What guarantees and other promises does Disney make in terms of how timely and accurate this service will be?

I was thinking the same thing myself when considering ME or a Towncar for our October trip. Since I am the solo adult with two kids ME could be a great thing - but the experiences so far have been less than what I have read was promised.

Here is one "blurb" - right from the disney website:

"Disney's Magical Express
Enjoy this complimentary ground transportation and go directly from airport to check-in at your Disney Resort where you¿ll find your luggage waiting in your room. Service begins May 5, 2005."

I think I can grab the link so you can verify:

I think they are creating expectations they can not (or not yet) meet! Luggage waiting in your room is a far cry from 5 hours + and I have read worse than the OP's story.

It will be hard to give up that towncar ride and grocery stop - Disney will have to make it work to hooke me. As it is I think we may save enough in breakfast, occasional sandwiches, snacks and soda/water to make up for towncar price.

TJ

fanofdisney
05-14-2005, 04:58 PM
We never received our luggage tags, were told to proceed to a Disney rep with our baggage claim tickets. Everything went well at first, we got on the bus right away, and were dropped off at our hotel on the first stop. Our flight landed at 11:45 a.m., though, and we received half of our luggage at 7:15 p.m., and the rest around 8 p.m. We made the mistake of packing our swimwear into the luggage, so no swimming until night time. Each time we called about our luggage, they kept telling us it might be on the next truck, and they come in every half hour. We just wish we would've claimed our own luggage and put it on the bus with us. 7.5-8 hour wait for luggage is too long!

mar915
05-14-2005, 04:58 PM
I agree 5 hours is a long time to wait. Of course for me it is not unusual with baggage service since on a cruise it can sometimes not come till 5 hours or more which 5 hour wait is normal. I do hope they fix the problem for our trip by mid-June. I will just make sure I have my family's carry on pack like I do when we go on a cruise.

Mary

Lewisc
05-14-2005, 05:06 PM
A lot of this comes down to what expectations were set and how those expectations were arrived at. For folks who have gotten the materials from Disney: What guarantees and other promises does Disney make in terms of how timely and accurate this service will be?

The original press release and marketing material were properly silent as to the exact timing of your luggage delivery. Guests checking in early have no assurance their room will even be ready before the normal check in time.

Some of the more recent emails and Regis description of ME imply your luggage may actually beat you to your room. I certainly interpret this statement as hyperbole but guests who take it literally are being set up for disappointment. Disney won't delivery your luggage until you check in, even pre-blocked rooms are subject to change at check in. It would be difficult for the bellhop to get to your room first.

Horace Horsecollar
05-14-2005, 05:19 PM
I hope they do work out the kinks. Seems like I offended people by being honest. I just didn't want other people to have to go through it.
roxannex,

I don't think you offended anyone.

I agree that Disney is setting an expectation that ME guests won't have to wait for their luggage -- when, during the startup at least, the reality is that ME guests' luggage tends to be arriving in their rooms many hours later. That's why I started by post with: "This is where Disney's hype that your luggage will 'magically appear' in your room upon check-in sends the wrong message."

We've had our luggage delayed by airlines on several occasions (though never in Orlando). We now pack a few basics in a carry-on, so that we can go 24 hours without luggage if we have to. I think that's worth doing regardless of whether you're using ME, a towncar, or a rental car.

I hope I didn't come across as being critical of you because you didn't pack Florida clothes in a carry-on.

Amberle3
05-14-2005, 05:19 PM
I think the best way to regard ME's luggage delivery - despite what Disney might say - is the same way one regards luggage delivery on a cruise ship. They take your luggage, you take a carryon and at some point your luggage is delivered to your room. Anything that's important for you to have within the first few hours, be sure to pack in your carryon.

One should ALWAYS travel with a carryon, even a small one. Airlines lose luggage all the time, and there's no guarantee at all that your luggage is going to make it. Your carryon should have any good jewelry, any electronic/expensive items like cameras, any medications you're taking that you can't be without for a few days, and a change of clothes (even just socks/underwear/shirt). That way if the airline loses your luggage or your luggage is delayed, you're covered.

seashoreCM
05-14-2005, 05:24 PM
I second the notion -- bring what you need in a carry-on.

Only thing I rate as awful in this thread so far:

'There were already people there when we boarded and we went to the Poly. There were some people there who did not get to board as there was no room but busses were running every half hour so I'm pretty sure it wasn't a problem.
That is a big problem. Guests are supposed to be assigned to buses since airport return is timed to flights.

Otherwise guests should be able to count on Disney comped airport trans from another of Mears' services, called Yellow Cab.

Disney hints:
http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/magicx.htm

Typed from Disney Quest

Lewisc
05-14-2005, 05:25 PM
You didn't offend me either. DISNEY IS AT FAULT for not suggesting people bring enough items in their carryon for a few hours. Guests arriving in the morning might not even see their luggage until they get a room in the late afternoon.

The problem isn't that your luggage was late so much as you weren't prepared for it.







I hope they do work out the kinks. Seems like I offended people by being honest. I just didn't want other people to have to go through it. When you count on that half a day to be able to go to the parks, and instead you just have to stay in the hotel...it sucks.

C.Ann
05-14-2005, 05:28 PM
One should ALWAYS travel with a carryon, even a small one. Airlines lose luggage all the time, and there's no guarantee at all that your luggage is going to make it. Your carryon should have any good jewelry, any electronic/expensive items like cameras, any medications you're taking that you can't be without for a few days, and a change of clothes (even just socks/underwear/shirt). That way if the airline loses your luggage or your luggage is delayed, you're covered.
-----------

That's exactly the point I was trying to make.. Regardless if I was using ME, Mears Shuttle, a taxi, a rental car or whatever, if I'm coming in by air you can bet I'm going to have the appropriately packed carry-on with me.. I'm far more concerned with the airlines losing my luggage than I am with it arriving late to my room..

Blame my mother.. She always told me that "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"..... LOL :teeth:

VickiVM
05-14-2005, 06:42 PM
I do think that Disney is getting the message that guest are ticked about their claims as I called DME today and got a very long spiel. The CM went over everything point by point about what to do when we arrive, where to go, who to look for, what they will be doing, etc. They also stressed to bring a carryone bag with change of clothes, swimsuit, etc as it may be a while before bags arrive. Then she walked me throught the whole process of our return ride and all of those details. Truthfully, I really wasn't paying too much attention to every detail (and she gave me every detail) because I already knew how the process would work.

Oh, BTW I called because we got our packet today FedEx (we leave on the 25th) and it only had tags for my youngest daughter and myself. Only one return voucher for my daughter. But the CM said that those booklets are for 4 passengers at a time and since there are 5 of us the rest are probably in another package. Hey, but they had our flight info correct.

nickandalexmom
05-14-2005, 08:01 PM
Just curious to know if I can do the ME service but still grab my own bags from baggage pickup and have them put it on the bus. We are leaving on 5/21 and still have no tags. I called and they said they were fedexing 100's of tags out daily and that I might get them or I might not. I don't mind waiting some time for our bags but anything between 4 - 7.5 hours is a long time. Yes, we can pack some things in a carryon, but when traveling with small kids to begin with you already start off with a large carryon excluding swimsuits, sunscreen, etc that you'd rather pack in a suitcase. If anyone has tried the ME service and bringing your bags with you, we may just do that instead. Thanks.

localdriver
05-14-2005, 08:08 PM
Just curious to know if I can do the ME service but still grab my own bags from baggage pickup and have them put it on the bus. We are leaving on 5/21 and still have no tags. I called and they said they were fedexing 100's of tags out daily and that I might get them or I might not. I don't mind waiting some time for our bags but anything between 4 - 7.5 hours is a long time. Yes, we can pack some things in a carryon, but when traveling with small kids to begin with you already start off with a large carryon excluding swimsuits, sunscreen, etc that you'd rather pack in a suitcase. If anyone has tried the ME service and bringing your bags with you, we may just do that instead. Thanks.


Yes you can! Just go to claims first.(don't put DME tags on if this is what you want to do). Many are doing just that.

The Mears driver will load your bags under the coach.

nickandalexmom
05-14-2005, 08:15 PM
Thanks localdriver. I think that's what we'll do. Like I said I don't mind waiting a few hours, but I'm a little nervous about waiting 5+ with the kids in tow. I'll post about it when we get back. Good luck to everyone else too!

CrazyBoutDisney
05-14-2005, 08:36 PM
I have to admit, I was not happy when I used ME last week. I knew it was going to be rough the first few days and I used it on day 3. But 4 phone calls over the last 2 weeks before my trip and constant reassurances that my luggage tags had indeed been Fed Ex'd to me (which I STILL have not received, 3 weeks after they were supposedly sent!) and I was not looking forward to arriving in Orlando. I chose to check my bag at the gate and then turned the baggage claim over to ME upon arrival at MCO. I waited in line a good 1/2 hour before finally receiving my bus voucher. Then I was mis-directed twice to the bus line. Now, I realize I arrived at "rush hour", 10:45AM on a Saturday morning and there was a cruise leaving at the same time, but signage was poor, verbal directions were inaccurate and then the wait in line for the bus to the resort (AFTER receiving my bus voucher)as over an hour! Yes, my bag turned up in my room later that afternoon. Very nice to be able to check in, pocket my room key and head straight to the parks. And very nice to check my bag at guest services at checkout and then not worry about it again until I arrived home. NOT fun to be forced to arrive at the airport more than 2 hours before my flight when I already have my boarding pass and luggage is already checked. In a word, ME is adequate for transportation. Baggage handling/checking was GREAT!! But, I'm still going back to TTC.

OzFan
05-14-2005, 08:46 PM
When we arrived on Sunday (via Tiffany's Town car) there was a family who had gotten in on Thursday and still had not gotten their luggage. There was also a German lady who had her luggage delivered to the wrong hotel, she was very vocal (all in German) to the poor bell service guy. When our limmo driver picked us up on Friday he told us they had been bumbarded with people calling for return trips only. He also told us that alot of bus drivers and bellmen were quitting because of the changes that were made. When your luggage arrives before you do, it can't tip the poor guy that lugs it into the room. Most of those guys count on tips for a living. We were told that a Disney Express bus driver waited at the airport for his bus to fill (2 hours) then took everyone on board to downtown Orlando, then got off the bus got into his car and drove away leaving them stranded.
After we checked out we were waiting to hit one more park when the "Magic Express" pulled up, a family with a grandma and a small child in a wheel chair was told they were not equiped to load them. They left them there! Old Key West arranged for them to get the airport. There was ALOT of complaining and ALOT of unhappy people while we were there this past week, I hope Disney works out the kinks quickly! It puts a damper on everyone's vacation when you witness all kinds of swear words in German!

bavaria
05-14-2005, 09:01 PM
There was also a German lady who had her luggage delivered to the wrong hotel, she was very vocal (all in German) to the poor bell service guy. It puts a damper on everyone's vacation when you witness all kinds of swear words in German!

Just want to clarify that it wasn't me!!! :goodvibes But I could understand being upset - 5 hours, 7 hours, 2 days, all too long.

disneyfan67
05-14-2005, 10:02 PM
I have been reading the threads on the ME experience and I've come up with some observations. (Donning flame proof suit)

1. Why are some people expecting perfection right out of the starting gate when it comes to ME? This is a major undertaking by Disney and has to be complicated, Think about it. It's going to take many months to work out all of the kinks and bugs out of the system. If people would read up on the history of Disneyland they will find that the opening day in July 17th 1955 was considered a disaster. Critics said it would never work but Walt and company worked out all of the kinks and look who's going to have a 50th birthday party comming up! Remember everyone is newbie at one time in their life and there is a first time for everything.

2. Why is everyone saying that the service is free? Nothing is truly free in life and Disney built the cost into the package you buy. They may advertise it's free but you're paying for it some how. The Walt Disney Company didn't get to be the giant it is by giving a way things for free. Keep this in mind when comparing the cost of a town car or limo. I might use ME on my next trip but I do love a private town car to pick me up and take my family directly to the resort we're staying at. You have to weigh all of the factors for your next trip.

3. On my recent trip I used curbside check in at ORD for the first time and it was great. I was amazed at how quick it was and I will be sure to use it again. I flew American Airlines and I liked how hastle free it was. I don't know if I'm comfortable leaving my luggage at a drop off point and not seeing it til it gets to my hotel hours later. I also use a carry on bag with one change of clothes for my family incase my luggage gets lost. You can buy t shirts at a Disney resort and in the parks but it's harder to buy pants and under garments when you don't have a car to drive to a mall near by. I always thought everone used a carry on for a emergency change of clothes. I know a lot of people who have had their luggage lost when flying and this has saved them.

4. Last point. Why are some people getting upset over the bad reviews? It's not like we own the company or the original OP is insulting our familes or something. I'm sure Disney is working on this as we speak and will fix somethings but I don't think it will ever be a 100% perfect, it just too big to have everything go smooth. This is a huge undertaking and problems are bound to happen. I just can't see myself giving up curbside check in and a private and direct limo ride to my resort I'm staying at. FL Tours took good care of me and I was impressed how nice the driver and car was. Food for thought and I look forward to your replies. :)

LeftCoaster
05-14-2005, 10:16 PM
Am I the only one who follows the unwritten "rule" of packing a change of clothes in my carry-on in case my luggage is lost by the airline?? :confused3
I thought everyone who traveled did that..

If they did, there would be no need to stress about what time their luggage arrived at the hotel..

All in all - for a start-up situation - ME sounds pretty good to me.. :flower: If I were traveling alone, I would definitely use it, but if we go down in Nov/Dec. my son-in-law will want to rent a car so we can do Universal and Sea World as well as WDW..

I've been wondering the same exact thing. I always pack so I can have a change of clothes (plus pj's) in case the airline should lose my luggage. All it takes is that one time to put a major inconvenience into your vacation.

I'll be testing out ME at the beginning of June. If it works, I'll use it again, if not, then back to the old rental cars.

bytheblood
05-14-2005, 10:33 PM
I have been reading the threads on the ME experience and I've come up with some observations. (Donning flame proof suit)

1. Why are some people expecting perfection right out of the starting gate when it comes to ME? This is a major undertaking by Disney and has to be complicated, Think about it. It's going to take many months to work out all of the kinks and bugs out of the system. If people would read up on the history of Disneyland they will find that the opening day in July 15th 1955 was considered a disaster. Critics said it would never work but Walt and company worked out all of the kinks and look who's going to have a 50th birthday party comming up! Remember everyone is newbie at one time in their life and there is a first time for everything.

:)

No flaming here, just respectful disagreeing. :goodvibes

I do not think that people are expecting perfection, I think many are just disappointed. Disney is advertising the crud out of this on TV, their website as well as pop-ups on other sites.

Disney is using this (in addition to MYW) to lure people to book vacations and the system works like a set of broken cogs. Disney is setting high expectations and people are being let down.

The first time I went to Disney, I did a land/sea package. I only called to book my trip, ask questions, pay it off and provide my flight schedule. I knew nothing about discount codes, booking things separately to save money, how my luggage could have (but did not) get lost with Disney picking it up, etc. I just trusted a huge company like Disney to get the job done and do it right. I think many people go into this trusting Disney and believing them on their word. I know I did.

Also, many people do not read these (or other) boards and many who do look at certain threads only. Up until I created a user name, I used ALLEars and nothing else. Then I learned about MouseSavers, The Dis and other helpful sites. Millions of people visit Disney a year, the Dis only has a small portion of those people reading.

2. Why is everyone saying that the service is free? Nothing is truly free in life and Disney built the cost into the package you buy. They may advertise it's free but you're paying for it some how. The Walt Disney Company didn't get to be the giant it is by giving a way things for free. Keep this in mind when comparing the cost of a town car or limo. I might use ME on my next trip but I do love a private town car to pick me up and take my family directly to the resort we're staying at. You have to weigh all of the factors for your next trip.

I would be interested in you explaining to me how the costs are figured in. Let's see, I booked my room-only stay early 2004 and was originally booked for PC @ $99 a night, which consequently, is the same price it had been the previous year. When 2005 room rates were released in May of 2004, my room for PC was still $99 a night. After DME was released, I called to add it to my room-only reservation and guess what??? My room was still $99. I received a discount code in February and changed to POFQ and my room was $79 a night. I started a brand new reservation, added on DME and it was still $79 a night.

Disney is not losing any money doing this, but it is not being paid by the cost of our room or packages. It is only by keeping people on property longer that Disney gains. We may be indirectly paying for it, but it is by choice. I do not have to purchase 5 Mickey heads (Mickey Bars) while I am in WDW and I do not have to go shop in DTD while in WDW, but I choose to. You choose the amount of money you spend on food, souvenirs, etc. I have friends who can go to WDW for cheap. My in-laws are cheap and spend way less money than we do. However, I feel like I am on vacation...so I spend more. :teeth: You make your choice.

BettyCv
05-14-2005, 10:33 PM
I called because we got our packet today FedEx (we leave on the 25th) and it only had tags for my youngest daughter and myself. Only one return voucher for my daughter. But the CM said that those booklets are for 4 passengers at a time and since there are 5 of us the rest are probably in another package. Hey, but they had our flight info correct.

Same thing just happened to us. My youngest daughter's package arrived the first day, then the rest of our family's info. came the very next day. The good news is, you'll have TWO vouchers for lanyards and pins. The bad news is, you probably have three kids... (not that it's bad to have three kids, just bad to have 2 vouchers with 3 kids!) LOL!

Betty

Pedler
05-14-2005, 10:34 PM
I have been reading the threads on the ME experience and I've come up with some observations. (Donning flame proof suit)

2. Why is everyone saying that the service is free? Nothing is truly free in life and Disney built the cost into the package you buy. They may advertise it's free but you're paying for it some how. The Walt Disney Company didn't get to be the giant it is by giving a way things for free. Keep this in mind when comparing the cost of a town car or limo. I might use ME on my next trip but I do love a private town car to pick me up and take my family directly to the resort we're staying at. You have to weigh all of the factors for your next trip.

Hmmm.. Can you give me the name and address of your flame proof suit tailor? (Ha, ha).

Seriously it is "free" in that Disney does not charge a fee for the service and they did not raise prices on packages to get the service. Where Disney benefits from this service is that by having people use this they are essentially captive on site at WDW. We are a case in point. Our initial plan was to stay off site, then on site and get a car. Now we are going to use ME, get the dinning plan and stay for extra nights because of the new ticket pricing. The mouse is litterally getting every dollar that we are going to spend in Florida just for the cost of a round trip bus ride. It is almost laughable but I can point out to an extra $1,000 we will be spending just because of the new programs. (Extra nights with dinning) They are in essence altering the behavior of some guests that would have otherwise had options to spend money off site. It is in essence a loss leader to gain additional sales. My guess is that it will work out well for Disney for the vast majority of people that use ME. Admittedly the seasoned DIS vet with multiple visits under thier belt may be stunned that these programs could have such an effect but I do believe they will increase spending at the WDW.


4. Last point. Why are some people getting upset over the bad reviews? It's not like we own the company or the original OP is insulting our familes or something. I'm sure Disney is working on this as we speak and will fix somethings but I don't think it will ever be a 100% perfect, it just too big to have everything go smooth. This is a huge undertaking and problems are bound to happen. I just can't see myself giving up curbside check in and a private and direct limo ride to my resort I'm staying at. FL Tours took good care of me and I was impressed how nice the driver and car was. Food for thought and I look forward to your replies. :)

I have to admit that this is something I don't get either. I think Disney did over market the whole baggage thing and the could have done a better job on the roll out of the service. (For example why not do a rolling start and start one cluster of hotels first, then the next and so on? It would have worked better than the "big bang" approach.)

From what I see even when ME is working well it will not be for everyone. I don't think they will ever get the luggage down below 2-3 hours on average. If that doesn't work for some people I am OK with that. For us it is OK. We land at 11:45 AM and plan to go right to the parks (Its that darn new ticket pricing.) I will have carry ons for a days worth of clothes, valuables and stuff. If I don't see the luggage for 7 hours I am OK with that. I am also OK with people that want to get thier luggage to the room right away, unpack and unwind at the hotel. For them ME may not work out so well. What I don't understand is why some people on DIS have a problem with people expressing an opinion that a certain type of service isn't for them. I think it is totally fine to want to have a personal greeting you at the airport and getting your luggage faster. Its not for me but I also don't think there is anything wrong with wanting to do the whole town car thing either.

fanofdisney
05-14-2005, 10:40 PM
Even if I had packed a change of clothes for the day just in case, I think 8 hours is a bit TOO long for luggage to arrive. And it only came that quick b/c after so much calling and inquiring, they expedited it for us. :rolleyes:

sk!mom
05-14-2005, 10:42 PM
Just to clarify...
I hope they do work out the kinks. Seems like I offended people by being honest. I just didn't want other people to have to go through it. When you count on that half a day to be able to go to the parks, and instead you just have to stay in the hotel...it sucks.

I'm very sorry that some seem to take offense at your honest posting of your experience. I'm posting just to let you know that I appreciate your honesty. You did nothing wrong by not bringing a change of clothes - you simply took Disney at their word that your luggage would arrive in a reasonable length of time. Now if use this service again and aren't prepared for the delays then the comments would be fair.

I have been very interested to hear how this service would work and think that unless reviews improve drastically I wouldn't use it for the same reasons that I have never used Mears- I want to get to the resort with the least amount of delays possible.

bytheblood
05-14-2005, 10:48 PM
I'm very sorry that some seem to take offense at your honest posting of your experience. I'm posting just to let you know that I appreciate your honesty. You did nothing wrong by not bringing a change of clothes - you simply took Disney at their word that your luggage would arrive in a reasonable length of time. Now if use this service again and aren't prepared for the delays then the comments would be fair.


I agree. Thank you for sharing your experience.

Horace Horsecollar
05-14-2005, 10:59 PM
Even if I had packed a change of clothes for the day just in case, I think 8 hours is a bit TOO long for luggage to arrive. And it only came that quick b/c after so much calling and inquiring, they expedited it for us. :rolleyes:
I don't think anyone on this board thinks that 8 hours is reasonable. I don't even think that 4 hours is reasonable.

It is interesting, however, that the DIS participants who gave ME good reviews and those who gave ME bad reviews often had similar, long delivery times for their luggage. The difference is that the former went went off to the parks and were happy to have the luggage in their rooms when they returned. The latter waited for their luggage or were stressed and disappointed by the time it took to get their luggage.

When the system works that way it's supposed to, the wait times are likely to be much shorter. But, even then, there will be some guests who will be livid if their luggage doesn't get to their room until 30 minutes after they check in, while other guests just go off and have fun, knowing that their luggage will be there when they return.

In any case, Disney needs to set better expectations. Guests should not expect immediate luggage delivery at check-in. And Disney should recommend that guests bring a carry-on bag with items that they want before the luggage is delivered.

bavaria
05-14-2005, 11:15 PM
Keep in mind that the difference for some is also travel time. After a 2 hour flight, heading straight to the parks is do-able. For someone coming from the west coast and changing planes, or someone coming from the UK, etc the travel time can be 8 hours or more.

At that point, I am ready for a shower etc before heading out.

fanofdisney
05-14-2005, 11:25 PM
Keep in mind that the difference for some is also travel time. After a 2 hour flight, heading straight to the parks is do-able. For someone coming from the west coast and changing planes, or someone coming from the UK, etc the travel time can be 8 hours or more.

At that point, I am ready for a shower etc before heading out.

Good point. We were exhausted when we arrived, and just wanted to relax that first day.

disneyfan67
05-14-2005, 11:46 PM
Originally posted - bytheblood

I would be interested in you explaining to me how the costs are figured in. Let's see, I booked my room-only stay early 2004 and was originally booked for PC @ $99 a night, which consequently, is the same price it had been the previous year. When 2005 room rates were released in May of 2004, my room for PC was still $99 a night. After DME was released, I called to add it to my room-only reservation and guess what??? My room was still $99. I received a discount code in February and changed to POFQ and my room was $79 a night. I started a brand new reservation, added on DME and it was still $79 a night

I was more or less refering to people who don't know Disney and just book a standard package that usally has the rooms at rack rate. I should have been more specific, sorry. We really don't know how much profit Disney has built into the room rates. I be willing to bet that even a value room discounted at $45.00 a night, makes them money. There has got to be such a mark up on everything we buy at Disney that the profit comes in at all angles! LOL!

Horace Horsecollar
05-15-2005, 12:57 AM
Keep in mind that the difference for some is also travel time. After a 2 hour flight, heading straight to the parks is do-able. For someone coming from the west coast and changing planes, or someone coming from the UK, etc the travel time can be 8 hours or more.

At that point, I am ready for a shower etc before heading out.
I did not mean to imply that every arriving guest must dash off to a theme park immediately after checking in. (I'm tired too after 9 hour flights from Chicago to Europe or Hawaii.)

However, based on the lessons learned from early ME guests, it would be a good idea for arriving guests not to depend on the immediate delivery of luggage. By bringing the necessary items in a carry-on bag, it should be possible to shower and change into shorts, or to go for a swim, or to take a walk, or to relax around the resort, or to sit on the balcony and read a book -- or to go to a theme park -- without requiring the immediate delivery of checked ME luggage.

The luggage will get there when it gets there. (And I assume in the future that will mean 5 to 90 minutes after check-in, not many hours after check-in.)

This is not a criticism of those who have posted their disappointment at the excessive delivery times that many early ME guests have experienced. We can all learn from their experiences.

ZacinIndy
05-15-2005, 02:51 AM
Now according to a statement to Mousesavers.com by Disney suits the delay was lack of tagging on the bags, now that it's about 60 to 80 percent tagged now, wait time should be reduced in all things... right?

Meezers
05-15-2005, 04:37 AM
Is everyone here actually telling me that Regis was WRONG this week when he raved about ME and how your luggage is waiting in the room when you get there! (I admit....I NEVER watch this show...but Tivo'd cause thought I would catch some of WDW this week)

I am so glad that we are within driving distance....even though it is 7 hours...it would take us that long to get to the Atlanta airport...through security....blah...blah...blah. So we just drive....and boy am I glad!

debden
05-15-2005, 06:49 AM
Until Disney can work the kinks out of their luggage service I would not use them. It's your vacation for goodness sakes! It's not worth the stress and worry everybody seem's to be going thru with ME.....
Hire a car,rent a car and have a happy stress free vacation!
At least you'll have your luggage when you get to your hotel...
Debbie

kpk89
05-15-2005, 10:44 AM
during one of the MANY calls I made inquiring about the tags, to pack a carryon. It seems that unfortunately, they weren't consistent with this message to all guests. I also didn't consider the fact that official checkin is at 4 pm. We were able to check in early (1 pm) and our bags were there at about 5:30 (I think?? getting fuzzy on time details already!) Again, it wasn't a problem because we were advised that it could take a while.

Now our return trip was a fiasco. Long story, which I've put on a thread called "mixed feelings on DME".

CarolA
05-15-2005, 05:41 PM
I was at Disney yesterday and I quizzed some folks on ME. Overall it was positive, but the luggage is slow. One family I spoke with had read on the internet that luggage was slow and packed PJs in thier carryon. They arrived late and just crashed. Called bell services first thing in the morning (Dad said "It was before 6" when kiddos awoke) and luggage was there in under 10 minutes.

However, they did say they got to the resort fairly fast and did not seemed to concerned about leaving.

bytheblood
05-15-2005, 05:49 PM
There has got to be such a mark up on everything we buy at Disney that the profit comes in at all angles! LOL!


Isn't that the truth. :)

BuckNaked
05-15-2005, 07:52 PM
I'm in the group that doesn't understand why people don't have a carry-on with essentials with them on the plane. For me, it has nothing to do with the amount of time it might take ME to get my luggage to the room, but rather whether or not my luggage will even be on the plane when we land.

dkrause716
05-15-2005, 10:36 PM
I agree with the previous poster. We never travel without a change of clothes and essentials in a carry on bag! I certainly don't trust the airlines--remember the US Air mess over the holidays? Disney is the least of our problems! :flower: Going to give DME a shot in July. If we don't like it we won't use it again.

MakiraMarlena
05-16-2005, 12:56 AM
I bet they packed Regis' bags for him and flew them down in a separate jet or something.

VickiVM
05-16-2005, 08:43 AM
Same thing just happened to us. My youngest daughter's package arrived the first day, then the rest of our family's info. came the very next day. The good news is, you'll have TWO vouchers for lanyards and pins. The bad news is, you probably have three kids... (not that it's bad to have three kids, just bad to have 2 vouchers with 3 kids!) LOL!

Betty
I don't know....this past weekend it was very bad having 3 kids. I almost told them I was going to cancel trip if they don't get their attitudes straight. Too afraid that they wouldn't get it straight and I would have to 'put up or shut up'.

Seriously, last trip we got two 3 lanyards - 2 for the girls and one for my husband - so an extra 2 will give us all one each!!

snow_flake_ball
05-16-2005, 10:05 AM
Sorry to hear of all these problems. I'm sure Disney will work things out with time.

RickinNYC
05-16-2005, 10:18 AM
I agree with the OP. Luggage being 5 hours late is NOT ACCEPTABLE!! If it was any transportation service (other than a Disney related service) people would be complaining up a storm about the service!
Give me a break...not everyone wants to have a carry on. I take up to 4 trips a year and I would be literally screaming if my luggage did not reach my room within a 1/2 hour after I checked in. It doesn't matter if the service is 'Free' or not..nobody should have to wait that long!
I would write a letter to Disney and let them know how unhappy I was with their service.
Debbie

Here's what I suggest that I think might help avoid any screaming on your part... don't use the service. That's what we're doing for our upcoming trip so we can avoid any hassle. I suggest the same to everyone else.

The wrinkles will be ironed out soon enough.

ztbz
05-16-2005, 12:39 PM
I wonder how many people think that Regis rode the ME Bus? My bet is that Disney provided a Limo for him and his Bags with no wait to his room.

One other thing about "ME", and that's Disney seems to be having a problem with their system during what is normally a slow period for Disney, whats going to happen with "ME" once Disney gets into its PEAK season during the Summer like around July 4th when the Parks are Pack and Closed often every day.

Tiggers&Springs
05-16-2005, 09:12 PM
Hey everyone, just wanted to share my ME experience -- departed May 8 and returned May 14. We were in the "no tags" crowd. Line was not too bad at check-in; fortunately we had marked our suitcases and were able to give this description. Otherwise they were showing people a card with different types of suitcases (not sure I could pick mine out of a line-up, don't know about you!). Bus out worked fine -- drop-offs didn't take too long. We had packed what we needed for a day (plus) in our carryon's having read the board here, so we changed into swimsuits and hit the pool. By the time we got back to change for dinner, both bags were in our room. About 4 hours from time we landed for us. So the trip in was ok from our perspective. If we'd needed our bags, though, I can definitely see how others might have a problem. It wasn't the total disaster I had feared, though.

The return trip was definitely weird, and a bit nerve-wracking. First of all, it was a Mears bus, not the ME-type bus we had taken on the way out. The driver didn't exactly announce it was ME very loudly, so if I hadn't known they were working under contract and had been just waiting by the curb, yeah I could have easily missed it. Potentially confusing. The other thing was that we were scheduled to leave AKL less than 3 hours before our flight. We made two stops --one at CS, the other at ASMo. At CS, there was nobody there. We'd been late leaving AKL -- think lots of people loading suitcases, small kids, etc. -- but this seemed strange. Then we got to ASMo, big crowd to load up. At this point it was 2 hours from flight time and we hadn't even started off to the airport. More bag loading. Then a 30-minute drive, with some people saying they would probably miss their flights. The driver let us all out at one end of the terminal -- the nearest end -- and Southwest was ALLL the way at the far end. There goes more time. And then the Southwest line was nightmarishly long, but kudos to them they kept it moving. We got to our gate with just a few minutes to spare. For someone like me, who likes being early to airports rather than possibly missing a flight, it was not exactly in my comfort zone, but it turned out ok.

Would I use it again? Probably, but I also won't be going again for at least a year and by then they should have worked out the kinks.

dawgsgirl
05-16-2005, 10:17 PM
Stayed at POFQ last week and was in building 3 where I could see and passed by frequently where Bell Services was doing the ME luggage. They were outside and seemed to be using a different system each time I noticed. The last system seemed to be small traffic cones with a number on each. It rained one afternoon and they were not out with the luggage. I wondered if they were able to do it at all. It definitely seemed to be a work in progress. It appeared that the CM's were standing around a lot scratching their heads!