- Disney World announced Monday that it will no longer offer its Magical Express bus service to airport travelers starting in 2022.
- The theme park also won’t be reintroducing Extra Magic Hours after they were suspended at the start of the pandemic.
- Instead, Disney World visitors will have to use rented vehicles or ride-share services to reach their resorts, and those wishing to spend extra time at the parks can take advantage of a new 30-minute early entry service.
- Many Disney World fans have expressed disappointment in the changes, with many noting that the value of Disney World Resort stays seems to be decreasing.
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Some Disney World vacations are going to look a lot different starting in 2022.
On Monday, Disney World announced via the Disney Parks Blog that it’ll be retiring its Magical Express bus service next year. Starting on January 1, 2022, airport travelers will have to use rental cars, ride-share vehicles, or other travel services to reach Disney World resorts.
Disney World also announced in the blog post that it will not be bringing back its Extra Magic Hours, which have historically extended the opening and closing times of Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios.
A post shared by Disney Parks Blog (@disneyparksblog)
Disney World announced the upcoming changes in a blog post
The Disney Parks Blog published a post on Monday titled “A look ahead at Walt Disney World Resort,” which outlined the changes for 2021 and beyond.
“For nearly 50 years, Walt Disney World Resort has continued to evolve the guest experience to best suit the changing times,” read the blog post. “As we plan for the future, we are looking at how needs and preferences are changing across the travel industry, particularly in the way people want to get places faster, at their convenience.”
The note went on to say that the Magical Express will no longer be offered to travelers starting with arrivals on January 1, 2022. The complimentary service was first introduced in 2005 and has transported travelers from the Orlando International Airport to their Disney World resorts ever since.
Those who visit the parks in 2021 through Orlando International Airport will be able to use the service. Disney World’s resort buses, monorails, and Disney Skyliner, on the other hand, will not be affected.
Disney World also announced on Monday that it will not bring back Extra Magic Hours after suspending them at the start of the pandemic. Instead, Disney World will offer guests a 30-minute early entry service to the theme park of their choice each day of their vacation.
“As a reminder, the Extra Magic Hours benefit was suspended when Walt Disney World Resort reopened last summer, and as we continue to manage attendance with health and safety top of mind, Extra Magic Hours will not return,” the blog post said.
“The new early theme park entry benefit helps us better spread visitation across all four theme parks, while providing added flexibility by giving guests extra early park time on each day of their vacation and in the park of their choosing,” the post continued. “Please note that guests need valid admission and a park reservation made via the Disney Park Pass system to enter a theme park.”
When reached for comment, a Disney World spokesperson reiterated statements included in its blog post: “As consumer needs and preferences change, we will no longer offer Disney’s Magical Express service starting with arrivals in 2022. At the same time, we’re also introducing new ways for guests to enjoy their visits, including early theme park entry for Disney Resort hotel guests.”
Fans of the theme parks seem skeptical about the changes
Disney World noted at the end of its blog post that the company “will help guests navigate through these next steps and will continue to deliver on what’s expected from a Disney experience.”
On Twitter, numerous Disney World fans expressed their disappointment in the announcements. Some questioned how the changes will affect their future vacations, and others pointed out that the changes could seemingly decrease the value of Disney World Resort stays.
—Jennifer Harvey (@Flyersgirl17) January 11, 2021
—ChloeEverAfter 🏰❤️ (@ChloeEverAfterr) January 11, 2021
—Robin L (@RobinLuvsDisney) January 11, 2021
—Jacob of Avalon (@JacobofAvalon) January 11, 2021
Others seemed more hopeful and are welcoming the resort’s changes.
—Adam Hattan (@adamhattan) January 11, 2021
—Katelynn (@shutupKatelynn) January 11, 2021