Discussion in 'Theme Parks Attractions and Strategies' started by chyam, Dec 28, 2004.
Sounds like a great idea....hope it works.
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This isn't new, it's just new for Disney. Las Vegas has had various forms of this for years; 9/11 put a crimp in the "check your bags at the hotel - we'll put them on the plane" program (CAPPS?).
Also, when DW and I were newbie travellers, we went to Las Vegas on a package deal: flight, hotel, shuttle, luggage service - and we rarely had everything work out correctly. We've had the luggage picked up at our hotel and put on the wrong departing flight. We've had to wait hours for our luggage to arrive in our hotel from the airport. We've had shuttles take hours to drop us off at the hotel; sometimes one bus will handle 4 or 5 hotels - if you're last on the list, better bring a book. We've had shuttles pick us up for the airport late; and once it never showed up, necessitating a taxi ride and a rush to the plane.
I've given up my commando days, and I can actually sleep nights not knowing whether the MK is open until 7 or 8 on the third day of my trip, but I refuse to leave key issues like transportation and luggage handling in anyone's control but my own.
Here's a thought - anyone game to depend on this on the May 5, the first day it's available?
I don't think this service will be much different from the service offered by DCL. I haven't heard any stories of lost luggage. I don't recall anyone complaining about it taking hours to get from the airport to any of the WDW resorts.
I plan to use the service during our July 2006 trip. I was planning to use Tiffany Town Car since there will 9 of us, but FREE is much better than the $130.00 we'd have to pay for a van.
There was a thread on the budget board about a month ago about a company that will deliver groceries to your resort. You send them your grocery list and they will shop at the store of your choice. They charge a small delivery free.
The free shuttle (I wonder how long it'll be free) and the grocery delivery will work great for us.
I agree with Disneyjunkie that DCL has been doing this very efficiently for some time, so it isn't like Disney is new at this and has to start from scratch. When we did DCL land/sea cruises, after we got off the plane at MCO, we were directed by Disney personnel who were at the airport to the Disney bus counter (my term, not theirs), and buses were filled by WDW destination. Since I presume the shuttles are smaller than the full sized buses we used, I imagine they would fill up a lot faster. We took our carry-on bags on the bus with us. The buses did stop at more than one resort, but the stops were grouped. When we stayed at the Poly for the land part of our land/sea, the bus stopped at each of the four MK resorts. I presume they would do the same with Epcot resorts, etc. So it isn't a long meandering ride around WDW property. And when we disembarked from the cruise boat, there were counters outside staffed with airline personnel who took care of the bags (including tagging and weighing) and loaded them onto trucks for each airline, while the passengers got on a bus for the airport, carry-ons in hand. I suspect that WDW may have airline personnel to do this at the WDW resorts under the new Magical Express program as well, although that is just speculation on my part. We've done the land/sea three times and Disney has handled the bags from start to finish each time, very efficiently with no problems. I would imagine they could just apply that same procedure to resort only stays. And whoever said this is right: they don't ask the questions any more about who packed your bags and if they've been under your control.
That must depend on the airline. I travel alot (work related and pleasure) locally, transborder and internationally (all this year, different airlines) and I've been asked this question on every trip.
Sallyincanada, perhaps it does depend on the airline. All I can say is that we weren't asked that question at any point during our travels 12/5-12/11. We flew on United. I had heard that they have stopped requiring airlines to ask the question (maybe it's just optional now) because it wasn't eliciting any useful information.
I agree. I just flew last week and was asked when I checked my bags if they were in my control at all times.
I also agree with other posters who said this could be a disaster waiting to happen. Granted, baggage is checked before going on the plane, it isn't while it is sitting in a crowded terminal.
As a frequent traveler, I can tell you this makes me very nervous!
They haven't asked those questions in US airports for some time now -- or, at least, they're not supposed to any more. They did away with them when the baggage screening got more involved. The reasoning was that everyone knew how to answer the questions, and they weren't any sort of a deterrent.
After this past w/e w/all the hassles of USAir and Philly airport - I'll keep my hands on my own luggage for as long as possible, thanks though.
How awesome... of course, we live here, but I can't wait to tell friends who may be coming to WDW who may like to take advantage of it!
Grocery delivery service: www.wegoshop.com
Shuttle service is complimentary for 18 months
This is from their Travel Agent's Site FAQ. Hope this helps.
True, keep you in Disney longer. I knew about this a while back as my husband works for OIA and Delta. It is MCO due to the fact that at one point it was McCoy Air Force Base. There is still a PX on the grounds by the baseball fields.
Disney's Magical Express Frequently Asked Questions
What is Disneys Magical Express service?
Disneys Magical Express is a complimentary new airport transportation and luggage delivery service available to all Disney Resort* Guests that offers hassle free transportation between Orlando International Airport and the Walt Disney World Resort. The magical part of this service is that Guests do not have to claim their luggage when they arrive at the airport
Disneys Magical Express claims the luggage on their behalf and delivers it to their Resort room.
The inbound portion of the service (into Orlando International Airport) is available for all Disney resort guests, regardless of the airline theyve selected domestic and international flights.
The outbound portion of Disneys Magical Express (from a Disney Resort to Orlando International Airport) offers Resort Guests complimentary return transportation from their hotel to Orlando International Airport. For those flying domestically on the following airlines -- American, Delta (including Song), Continental, and United (including Ted), Disneys Magical Express also offers resort airline check-in that allows these Guests to check their luggage and receive their airline boarding passes at their Walt Disney World Resort. With this service, Guests with late flight departures no longer have to worry about their luggage after they check-out of their Resort; they can simply check their luggage at the Resort Airline Check-in Desk and then enjoy the last day of their stay.
This service is complimentary to Disney Resort guests throughout the Happiest Celebration on Earth, beginning May 5, 2005 and extending throughout the year 2006.
An Airport Transportation Booklet containing general information and luggage tags - to be attached prior to leaving home - will be mailed to the guest or travel agent/wholesaler approximately 21 days prior to arrival.
Guests are met by a costumed Disney representative upon arrival at the airport and directed to our Disney Welcome Center located on Level One A side of the airport.
Guests will board a themed motor coach to their Resort and experience an edutainment video.
The tagged luggage is retrieved behind the scenes and delivered separately to their Resort room.
For the resort departure, Guests will be notified of their motor coach pick up time the day prior to check-out.
The motor coach pick up time is approximately 2 ¾ hours prior to their flight departure.
Guests will experience another video presentation from their Resort to the airport.
Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotels, the seven hotels on or near Hotel Plaza Boulevard, and Shades of Green are not included.
What is the cost for this service?
Disneys Magical Express is a complimentary service to Walt Disney World Resort Guests, which will be offered throughout the Happiest Celebration On Earth event commencing May 5, 2005 and running throughout the year 2006.
What if a guest doesnt want the service? Is there a credit?
If a guest elects not to utilize the service, they will not receive a credit to their reservation.
Will Disneys Magical Express continue on a complimentary basis after the Happiest Celebration On Earth has concluded?
While no determination has been made, our focus right now is the successful launch of Disneys Magical Express as a great new benefit for our guests.
How much does Disneys Magical Express save guests?
With Disneys Magical Express, a family of four can save more than $80 (based on round-trip taxi or shuttle transportation, plus tip, for two adults and two children).
When does the service first become available to Walt Disney World Guests?
Disneys Magical Express service can be booked beginning Jan. 2, 2005 for any arrivals planned for May 5 and beyond.
Which Resorts are included?
All Walt Disney World Resort hotels other than the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotel, the hotels on or near Hotel Plaza Boulevard and Shades of Green. The Disney Vacation Club Resorts at Vero Beach and Hilton Head are also excluded. If a Guest moves to an off-property resort, they are on their own for transportation back to the airport.
Will all Disney select wholesalers offer this service, or only the Walt Disney Travel Co.?
All Disney select wholesalers will be offered the opportunity to incorporate Disneys Magical Express service into their Walt Disney World vacations portfolio.
Will Disney Reservation Center be able to book this service for Guests or will travel agents have to call another number?
Travel agents will be able to book Disneys Magical Express as part of the general booking process both online through disneytravelagents.com and through the Disney Reservation Center.
Can a Guest book a one-way airport transfer (to or from)?
Can a Guest book return transportation to the airport while on property?
Yes; guests can book return transportation to the airport by calling Disneys Magical Express Guest Service. The Resort Front Desks will have a communication card with the phone number to hand to the Guest.
Can a Guest book a luggage only transfer?
How is a reservation made for Disneys Magical Express service?
Travel agents can make arrangements just as they did when making the room reservation. The agent is asked to provide the appropriate flight information:
Arriving From (originating city or connecting city into Orlando)
Destination (for departure)
Airline Carrier (arrival and departure)
Flight Number (arrival and departure)
and, if not a part of the original booking, provide the Disney resort reservation number.
What if a Travel Agent does not have the flight information at the time of booking?
The reservation can still be made; the Agent will be advised to return to disneytravelagents.com or call DRC to add the flight information later.
Can a Guest book transportation upon arrival at the airport?
No. Guests must book Disneys Magical Express service reservation at least 10 days prior to arrival, so that they fully benefit from the service and a seamless luggage delivery to their Resort room.
Who does the Travel Agent contact when they have a change to flight information?
Pre-arrival, the Agent may call the same number used to make their room or package reservation. Inside two days the Agent will be transferred to Disneys Magical Express Guest Service to confirm the change.
While on property, the Resort Front Desks will advise the Guest to contact Disneys Magical Express Guest Service. A communication card will be given to the Guest with the appropriate phone number to call.
What is the cutoff date for booking Disneys Magical Express?
Disneys Magical Express must be booked within 10 days of arrival.
When will a Travel Agency receive their clients Airport Transportation Booklet with luggage tags?
Approximately 21 days prior to a Guests arrival, an Airport Transportation Booklet containing general information and luggage tags to be attached prior to leaving home will be mailed to the travel agency with the Guests name included, which the agency must deliver to their Guest. Special delivery arrangements will be made for those booking between the 10-day cut-off and the 21-day mailing timeframe.
Do international Guests have to claim luggage?
If Orlando is the Guest's first port of entry into the United States then the Guest claims their luggage after debarking the plane (luggage is not transferred to Baggage Claim at this point). The Guest proceeds through the Customs process with their luggage. When complete the luggage is given back to the airport to be transferred to Baggage Claim and Disneys Magical Express service pulls the luggage on behalf of the Guest.
If Orlando is not the Guest's first port of entry into the United States then the Guest has already completed the Customs process and does not have to claim luggage.
Is the luggage pulled prior to Resort check-out?
No. However, the Guest may request Bell Services assistance with their luggage to the motor coach area, but it is not transferred separately as it is on the inbound service.
How many stops will the motor coach make between Orlando International Airport and the guests Disney Resort hotel?
Anywhere from three to four stops to drop off guests at various Disney resort hotels.
Will the motor coaches accommodate wheelchairs?
Yes. However, the travel agent needs to indicate this at the time of booking and note it as a special request.
Will Disneys Magical Express provide wheelchairs at the airport upon arrival?
How does return transportation to the airport work?
Complimentary transportation from the Disney Resort to the Orlando International Airport is available to all Disney Resort Guests.
A secondary benefit of the return trip to the Orlando International Airport Resort Airline Check-In offers remote check-in for select Guests, allowing them to check their luggage and receive their airline boarding passes at their Disney Resort. At this time, this remote check-in service is only available for Guests flying domestically on the following airlines: American, Delta (including Song), Continental, and United (including Ted).
With this service, Guests with late flight departures no longer have to worry about their luggage after they check-out of their Resort; they can simply check their luggage at the Resort Airline Check-in Desk and then enjoy their last day of their stay.
How will Guests know what time the motor coach leaves from their Resort to the airport?
The Guest will receive a departure notice the day prior to check-out advising of the motor coach pick-up time based on the provided flight information. The general rule of thumb is 2¾ hours prior to the flight departure.
Where are the Resort Airline Check-in Desks located?
Each Resort will have a dedicated check-in Desk located in or near the lobby or outside at the entrance to the Resort. The Desks will be located in prominent locations with easy access.
Is there a cost for the return transportation or Resort Airline Check-In service?
At this time, there is no charge for Disney Resort Guests to use either service.
Are gratuities included for the luggage delivery to the Resort room by Bell Services?
Yes, but for the inbound service only. Gratuities are not included if the Guest elects to utilize Bell Services for assistance with their luggage from their room to the motor coach pick-up area upon departure.
Which Resorts will have Resort Airline Check-In locations?
All Walt Disney World Resort hotels other than the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotel, the seven hotels on or near Hotel Plaza Boulevard and Shades of Green will have operational locations by the May 5, 2005 start date for Disneys Magical Express.
Is the Resort Airline Check-in service operated by Walt Disney World?
No. It is operated by a Transportation Safety Administration (TSA)-approved third party company on behalf of the participating airlines.
What are the hours of operation for the Resort Airline Check-in Desk?
Transportation from the Disney Resorts to Orlando International Airport is available around the clock, seven days a week, based on flight schedules. Guests are notified about their departure times the day prior to check-out.
Guests on outbound flights with domestic service provided by American, Delta (including Song), Continental, and United (including Ted), and opting to take advantage of the remote check-in service will be able to check their luggage and print their boarding pass every day between 6 a.m. and 2 p.m. at the Resort Airline Check-In Desk.
When is the earliest a Guest using the remote check-in can check-in for their airline?
12 hours prior to their flight departure time.
When is the latest a Guest using the remote check-in can check-in for their airline?
2¾ hours prior to their flight departure time.
What does the Guest need to provide at the time of the airline check-in?
Government issued i.d. (e.g. drivers license, passport) and their Key to the World card to verify that they are a Walt Disney World Resort Guest.
Does the Guest have to utilize Disneys Magical Express return transportation service back to Orlando International Airport to participate in the Resort Airline Check-in?
No. This service is available to Disney Resort Guests on outbound flights with domestic service provided by American, Delta (including Song), Continental, and United (including Ted). They can take advantage of the motor coach transportation back to Orlando International Airport or arrange their own transportation.
Can off-site hotel Guests use this service?
Can Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin hotel guests use this service?
Can guests staying at one of the seven hotels on or near Hotel Plaza Boulevard use this service?
Where can a Guest get more information while on property?
The Resort Airline Check-in Desks as well as the Resort Front Desks will have information regarding the service.
Can international Guests utilize this return transportation service to the Orlando International Airport?
Yes, the complimentary return transportation service from a Disney Hotel to the Orlando International Airport is available to all guests, regardless of the outbound carrier. However, at this time, the Resort Airline Check-in service checking in luggage and providing a boarding pass is only available to Guests on outbound flights with domestic service provided by American, Delta (including Song), Continental, and United (including Ted). Guests flying internationally can take advantage of the complimentary motor coach transportation, but will need to handle their own luggage and check-in with their airline at the Orlando International Airport.
Is there a limit to the number of bags a guest can check at their resort versus checking in directly at the airport?
The Resort Airline Check-in Desk will follow the same guidelines as the participating airlines.
What if the Guest misses their flight? Where will their luggage go?
If a Guest checks their luggage from their city of origin in time to make their originally scheduled flight, their bags are likely to make it to Orlando International Airport as scheduled, even if they miss their flight. Disney representatives will pull their bags and wait for the Guests arrival before forwarding them to their resort hotel.
Why are the hours of operation only 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Resort Airline Check In Desk?
The remote check-in that lets Guests check bags and obtain boarding passes is operational from 6 a.m. 2 p.m., a timeframe that corresponds with the 11 am check out policy for Disney resort hotels.
Motor coaches offering return transportation to Orlando International Airport will pick up near these locations and will operate around the clock, seven days a week, based on flight schedules. Guests are notified about their departure times the day prior to check-out.
Are there certain hours of operation for the Disney Welcome Center at the airport?
The general hours of operation for the Disney Welcome Center at the Orlando International Airport will be 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., but those hours will be extended to meet all flights of all guests that have booked Disneys Magical Express, even if their flight is scheduled to arrive after 11 p.m. The Welcome Center will also closely follow arrival information to be available for flights that may be delayed.
What should guests who had planned to pre-board using the Resort Airline Check In do if the Desk is closed?
In the event the Resort Airline Check In Desk is closed, Guests should take their luggage with them to the airport for standard airline check-in.
Can Guests rent a car at their resort if they decide they need one?
Yes, Guests opting to take advantage of Disneys Magical Express can still rent a car and can make arrangements with their car rental company to pick up their vehicle.
Will you continue to operate the Auto Car Care Center on Disney property that allows Guests to pick up a rental car?
Is Disneys Magical Express only available to Guests whove purchased air through the Walt Disney Travel Company? Or only to Guests traveling on a package?
No. Disneys Magical Express is a service available to all guests staying at a Disney Resort, irrespective of whether they have purchased a package or booked air through the Walt Disney Travel Company, directly with the airline, or through another channel.
What service will guests on a Disney Cruise Line 7-day land and sea vacation receive?
Disney Cruise Line Guests that purchase a 7-night land and sea package including ground transfers from Orlando International Airport will utilize Disney's Magical Express.
©Disney. All rights reserved.
The folks I know who work for the airlines said that while the question began as a responsibility issue, so many people were just answering automatically, that the airlines didn't feel as though they'd ever be able to use it as back-up in any sort of investigation anyway.
That answers my question! Sounds like we can still rent our car, but check in at the resort, get rid of the bags and get our boarding passes, then just go to the airport and through security when we're ready. Right now, we're bell checking our stuff (or putting it in the trunk all day) and hassling with it at the airport.
Now, the follow-up question: If all you're doing is the resort airline check-in portion, do you have to book that in advance? Or can I just walk up to the desk that morning and do it?
I'll be curious as to how this goes. It sounds good, if everything goes according to plan. For me and my situation, I travel with 5 kids and don't like to rent a car. My last two towncar experiences were not positive, so I'd be willing to give this a try.
I too am anxious to see how this will work. It sounds like a terrific idea! We have always used towncars, but we would be willing to try this.
I think the Magical Express sounds like a great idea. We would glady use it. We have used a similar luggage/transportation service with Disney Cruise Line with excellent results.
What are the chances that this will remain a complimentary service after the eighteen month period?
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