Walt Disney World Transportation 101

Walt Disney World Skyliner

Walt Disney World is a massive vacation destination covering over 40 square miles. Getting around the resort on your own could easily add considerable cost to your trip. Staying at an on-site Walt Disney World hotel can save time and money by utilizing the numerous complimentary transportation options provided for resort guests.

Jumping Fountains and Monorail at Epcot

Monorail

The Walt Disney World Resort Monorail System offers three separate lines that run through Walt Disney World Resort. Disney’s “Highway in the Sky” travels to Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, and select Disney Deluxe hotels

Resort Monorail Stops (in order)

  • Magic Kingdom park
  • Disney’s Contemporary Resort
  • Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC)
  • Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
  • Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

The Epcot Monorail and Express Monorail begin at the Transportation and Ticket Center and offer express roundtrip transportation to Epcot and Magic Kingdom park. The Monorail System begins operating 30 minutes prior to the earliest park opening and runs until one hour after latest park closing. 

The Professor’s Tip: For guests that park at TTC for access to the Magic Kingdom, you can board the Express Monorail to Magic Kingdom park.

Boathouse at Disney Springs

Water Transportation

Another great transportation option that is available to guests of Walt Disney World resort is to take a water taxi or ferry boat to the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Disney Springs. Routes usually run in 15-30 minute intervals. Important to note: Boats do not run during inclement weather.

Magic Kingdom Park 

Accessible by water launch (also known as water taxi) from:

  • Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
  • Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
  • Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
  • Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

The Professor’s Tip: Ferry boats connect Magic Kingdom park to the Transportation and Ticket Center so this is another option for guests parking at the TTC for the Magic Kingdom.

Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios 

Accessible by boat from:

  • Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
  • Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
  • Disney’s Beach Club Resort
  • Disney’s Beach Club Villas
  • Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
  • Walt Disney World Swan Hotel
  • Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel

Disney Springs

Accessible by ferry boat from:

  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort—French Quarter
  • Disney’s Port Orleans Resort—Riverside
  • Disney’s Old Key West Resort
  • Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Walt Disney World Buses

Bus System

Air-conditioned bus service runs approximately every 20 minutes from all 4 theme parks, 2 water parks, Disney Resort hotels, and the Disney Springs Area. Important to note: Some routes may require you to transfer buses. Buses do NOT run from resort to resort directly.

Bus Service between Disney Resort hotels and Disney Theme Parks:

  • Bus service from Disney Resort hotels begins 45 minutes prior to park opening and ends 1 hour prior to park closing.
  • Return service to Disney Resort hotels ends 2 hours after park closing.

Bus Service between Disney Resort hotels and Disney Water Parks:

  • Bus service from Disney Resort hotels begins 45 minutes prior to park opening and ends 1 hour prior to park closing.
  • Return service to Disney Resort hotels ends 75 minutes after park closing.

Bus Service to Disney Springs:

  • Bus service from Disney Resort hotels operates from 45 minutes before opening until 1:00 AM.
  • Return service to Disney Resort hotels ends at 2:00 AM.
  • One-way bus service from the 4 Disney theme parks operates daily from 4:00 PM until 11:00 PM or 2 hours after theme parks close, whichever is earlier.
Disney Skyliner

Disney Skyliner

Guests have a new way to get around certain areas of the resort with the recent opening of the Disney Skyliner system. These state-of-the-art gondolas are like ones you would find at a ski resort and will connect guests between Pop Century, Art of Animation, Caribbean Beach Resort and the upcoming Riviera Resort to Hollywood Studios and Epcot. Gondolas operate continuously throughout the day. This system is turning out to be a bit quicker than taking a bus, so if you don’t have a fear of heights, this is a great option to get around parts of the resort and see some bird’s eye views of hotels and parks.

Disney's Magical Express

Disney’s Magical Express

Guests staying on-site at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel can utilize the complimentary round-trip motorcoach service from Orlando International Airport (MCO). Disney’s Magical Express will pick you up upon your arrival at MCO from Terminal B and will drop you off at your Walt Disney World Resort hotel. For guests arriving before 10:00 PM or after 5:00 AM, Magical Express will also deliver your luggage for you allowing you to bypass baggage claim altogether! Guests will also enjoy a complimentary ride back to the airport on their departure day.

Minnie Vans at Walt Disney World

Minnie Vans

For guests looking for a more direct transportation option or who are maybe wanting to skip the line, Walt Disney World resort now offers a safe, quick, and comfortable alternative transportation option – Minnie Van Service. Minnie Van service is a point to point, ride-sharing transportation service through Lyft but with a touch of Disney whimsy.

If you need help planning your perfect vacation, contact our friends at Key to the World Travel® for a free, no-obligation quote for your next trip. Click here.

Written by Adjunct Professor Sara Parr, edited by Jess Evans

Some Photos Courtesy Disney