Walt Disney World is huge – so big, in fact, that people regular run marathons right on property. Getting around a resort this large requires several different transportation options, and it can be a little confusing for families to figure out how to get where they are going. I’ve been to Walt Disney World dozens of times and have never rented a car – the transportation really can get you wherever you are going. If you are planning a trip to Walt Disney World, here’s a guide to Walt Disney World transportation, so you can be completely prepared.
Note that I’ve experienced some of these through various press trips and complimentary trips (as well as trips that were completely paid by me). All opinions are my own.
A Guide to Walt Disney World Transportation
Disney’s Magical Express
If you fly into Orlando International Airport, Disney’s Magical Express will be your very first interaction with Disney transportation. This complimentary service is for guests who are staying at a Disney resort hotel. Buses leave on a regular basis – simply head to the Magical Express desk, show your MagicBands, and then line up in the row you are directed to. The bus will likely make several resort stops, and you’ll be at your room soon! See our full Disney’s Magical Express post for all the information you’ll need.
Disney Bus Transportation
You’ll see Disney buses everywhere throughout the resort. All of the resorts offer bus transportation to at least one or more parks. If you are staying at a Disney value or moderate resort, you’ll take buses to all of the parks. If you are staying at a deluxe resort, you’ll need to take buses to Animal Kingdom, and to some of the other parks (depending on the location of your resort).
When traveling on a bus, you’ll have to fold up strollers and carry them on. There’s no storage under the bus, so everything has to be brought on board with you. Buses don’t follow a posted schedule, but generally come every 20 minutes or so. Some of the stops have monitors that you can glance at and see when the bus is coming next. Depending on where you are staying and what your destination is, the bus is likely to make multiple stops. If you have dining reservations or FastPass+ reservations that you need to make, it’s best to plan for about 90 minute transportation time from resort to the restaurant/attraction.
Walt Disney World also offers several different modes of water transportation. If you are staying at Disney’s Port Orleans, Old Key West or Saratoga Springs, you can take a water taxi to Disney Springs. Guests at the Beach Club, Yacht Club, Boardwalk Inn, Disney Swan, and Disney Dolphin can take bus transportation to Epcot and Hollywood Studios, while guests at the Grand Floridian, Contemporary, Polynesian, Fort Wilderness, and the Wilderness Lodge can take boats to the Magic Kingdom. There’s also a large ferry boat that travels from the Ticket and Transportation Center to the front entrance of the Magic Kingdom.
I always love taking the boat wherever possible. It’s usually a pretty short trip, and it’s always enjoyable.
The iconic monorails are available to guests visiting Magic Kingdom and Epcot. There are several loops – one from Epcot to the Ticket and Transportation Center (TTC), one looping around the Magic Kingdom, Contemporary, the TTC, the Polynesian, and the Grand Floridian. There’s also an express monorail that goes from the TTC to the Magic Kingdom. My kids have always loved riding the monorail, so even if we aren’t at a monorail resort, we always try to ride it at least once during our trips.
The latest transportation option at Walt Disney World is also the cutest! Minnie Vans have arrived at Walt Disney World, and they are absolutely adorable. Unlike the other types of Disney transportation, Minnie Vans come with an additional fee (currently $25). They are available for guests staying at select deluxe resorts, and only travel within Disney property. Booking and payment is done through the Lyft app, but you need to talk to a resort cast member to set it up. Click here to learn more.