Aside from the Tram at the Orlando International Airport, Disney’s Magical Express is how I look forward to starting my trips. It sets the tone for the adventure I’m about to have. Between the Cast Member, the video that plays, and feeding off the excitement of everyone around you, I just get a kick out of riding the shuttle from the airport to my Resort.
And while it’s not the first “ride” of the trip, it is the first “Disney ride.” My family gives the “first ride” title to the Tram at the airport. I dare anyone to challenge us on that one.
So, I am heartbroken that this service is discontinued starting January 1, 2022.
Will the discontinuation of Disney’s Magical Express change the way you vacation at Walt Disney World?
Our Top Reason For Staying On Property
Admittedly, Disney’s Magical Express is one of the top reasons my family always chooses to stay at a Disney Resort.
Thanks to the free shuttle ride, along with free Disney transportation around property, there was never a need to rent a car. This means our travel costs in Orlando have always been ZERO. Not rental car costs. No overnight Parking at the Resort. And no Uber or Lyft fees getting to and from the airport.
For this family of 4, this combination of transportation has always been the perfect solution.
Use A Rideshare or Rent A Car?
Unfortunately, choosing between rideshares or rental cars will be a decision I will need to make starting in 2022. And both of these options come at a cost.
Luckily, both Uber and Lyft have Cost Estimators on their sites. This is helpful for those of us who like to have every penny accounted for before leaving for vacation.
My family of 4 would need to get an XL car to hold us and our luggage. According to the Cost Estimators, I will need to budget about $50 (or $100 round trip) to use rideshare to and from the airport and Pop Century.
While it’s more expensive overall to rent a car for your trip, there are definite advantages to having a car.
There are definite advantages to using Disney transportation. But, Disney transportation takes more time than you’d think. So, if you’re in a rush, driving yourself to the Theme Parks would likely be quicker. And by staying at a Disney Resort, there’s no cost to Park at the Theme Parks.
There are plenty of sites to book rental cars. But, personally, I’ve found the best deals on Hotwire. The last time we flew home, I rented a minivan for 7 full days, with unlimited miles, for just about $300. So, it pays to do your homework.
My family could rent a sedan through Hotwire for a week in June for $197. Pop Century has a $15 per day overnight Parking fee. So, I know to budget another $90 to stay on Disney property. All parking fees include tax.
For this trip, I know that I would have to budget just about $300 to rent a car for the week.
Choose To Stay Off-Site?
Unfortunately, an already expensive vacation is about to get a little bit more expensive. And as a result, Guests may simply not be able to afford to stay on Disney property.
Standard Parking at the Disney Parks is currently $25 per day for Guests not staying at a Disney Resort. It’s a steep price to pay to park your car. Fortunately, you pay per day and not per Park. So, you can Park Hop all you want without parking fees adding up.
Fortunately, Orlando has plenty of accommodations to choose from. Depending on your budget, this may be a motel, hotel, or even a private vacation home with its own private pool.
It may be harder to justify spending hundreds per night for a Disney Resort when you can rent a 2 Bedroom Condo for less than $200 per night during Peak season.
Choose My Vacation Home has dozens of rental homes from 2 to 15 Bedroom Homes within a short Drive to Walt Disney World and the rest of Orlando’s Parks and Attractions.
We can help you choose a rental home that fits your family’s needs. And since many of the homes have their own private pools, they’re the perfect getaway on those non-Park days.