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  • Writer's picturePractically Perfect Pixie Dust

WDW Resort On-site Transportation FAQ

Busses, Monorails, Skyliners, Boats, and Minnie Vans. Let's look at the ends and outs of how to travel around the Walt Disney World Resort.

Does the transportation between a WDW resort hotel and the parks, water parks, or Disney Springs cost extra?

If you are staying at a Disney Resort there is free transportation to and from the parks, the water parks and Disney Springs. Minnie Vans, however, have an extra charge.

How do you get from your Disney Resort to the parks?

Disney offers free transportation from each of its on-site properties to the parks. What exactly that transportation looks like depends on what resort you are staying at. Each resort will have buses available for some, or all, park transportation, but there is also the monorail, skyliner, and boats from specific resorts. In a few cases you can even walk to a nearby park.


Where do I find the buses at my resort? Each resort has a main bus stop that is not far from the main lobby. There will be signage pointing you in the right direction, or you can check in your MDE app. Go to the interactive map, hit the down arrow and select Transportation to see what types are near you. If you select Show List in the upper right hand corner, you can select Walt Disney World Bus Service to see exactly where the bus stop is. In the cases of most Deluxe and Value resorts there is only the main bus stop. For Moderate resorts, which tend to be very spread out, there are multiple bus stops available. For resorts with multiple bus stops, bear in mind that if you are waiting at one of the alternative stops around the resort it is possible that the bus may fill up at stops before yours and have to bypass you. In addition there are multiple bus stops available at Old Key West, and Saratoga Springs. How often does a bus come? You can generally expect a bus every 20 or so minutes. They do have more buses in circulation in the morning and evening, when most people are traveling to and from the parks, so it’s likely the time between buses will be less then. How early do the buses start running? Disney will tell you that buses start running to a specific park 45 minutes prior to that park opening. So if Magic Kingdom opens at 9am, with 30 minutes early for resort guests so 8:30am, the buses will start running at 7:45am. It has been our experience that buses are often available before the 45 minute mark though. If you want a better feel for when you can expect the first bus you can ask the front desk at your resort, they often can tell you what they have seen recently. How late do the buses run? Buses typically run until 1 hour after theme park closing. However, if you have a late in park dining reservation and end up staying in the park beyond the 1 hour time frame you can usually still get a bus back to your resort. If you are concerned, you can find a Cast Member to help you. Is there a way to know when the next bus is going to arrive? If you are catching a bus from one of the parks then no, but they do offer estimates for buses arriving at the resorts. There are monitors at each of the bus stops at the resorts with the time the next bus is expected to arrive. You can also look up this information on your MDE app. Navigate over to your plans - the three horizontal bars on the bottom right, then select Resort Hotel. Here you can select Bus Schedule to see when the next bus is estimated to arrive for each park. Remember that this is an estimate, so it is possible it may arrive sooner - though they will often wait a little if that is the case, or a little later than the projected time. What if I do not want to take the bus? There are different types of transportation available at different resorts; however, each resort will have a bus to one or more of the parks. If you want to avoid taking the bus, there are alternative options, both through Disney and third party, but they will cost you money. Disney resorts offer a Minnie Van service. You can book a Minnie Van using the Lyft app: open the Lyft app while at the Walt Disney World Resort, confirm your pickup location and select Minnie Van - if it is not the default option, you will need to scroll through the options to find Minnie Van, you will then pay through the app, and the app will provide tracking so you can see where your Minnie Van is on its way to you. Alternately, you can use a third-party ride share such as Uber or Lyft - without the Minnie Van selection. This will cost less, but you give up the service of having a Disney Cast Member driving you. Also, note if you are taking a third-party service to the Magic Kingdom, you will be dropped off at the Ticket and Transportation Center, and then have to take the monorail or ferry to the park entrance. Minnie Vans can drop off at the bus stop location, eliminating the extra step. You can also drive yourself. Currently, if you are staying at a Disney resort and have a car you can park at any of the parks for free. For resorts with multiple stops, where do the buses stop first? Below is typically the order the buses will stop in; however, this may change from time to time. At Port Orleans, buses are often shared between the French Quarter and Riverside. The bus will first stop at French Quarter, which only has one stop, and then proceed to Riverside South Depot - which is the main bus stop, followed by West Depot, North Depot, and East Depot At the Caribbean Beach the buses first stop at Martinique, followed by Old Port Royal - which is the main bus stop, then to Barbados, Trinidad North, Trinidad South, Jamaica, and finally Aruba. For Coronado Springs, the first stop is at Casitas, followed by Ranchos, Cabanas, and then Gran Destino Tower. The closest bus stop to the main lobby is the Gran Destino Tower stop. For Old Key West the buses heading to and from the parks will stop at Peninsular Road, then Old Turtle Pond Road, South Point, Miller’s Road, and finally Hospitality House - which is closest to the main lobby. At Saratoga Springs the first stop is at The Grandstand, followed by The Carousel, The Paddock, Congress Park, and lastly The Springs - which is closest to the main lobby.





Minnie Van

How do you get from your Disney Resort to the parks?

Disney offers free transportation from each of its on-site properties to the parks. What exactly that transportation looks like depends on what resort you are staying at. Each resort will have buses available for some, or all, park transportation, but there is also the monorail, skyliner, and boats from specific resorts. In a few cases you can even walk to a nearby park.

What if I want to travel between the parks?

There is transportation available at each of the parks to the other parks. From Magic Kingdom you can take the monorail to Epcot, or catch a bus to either Hollywood Studios or Animal Kingdom. From Epcot, you can hop on the Skyliner over to Hollywood Studios, the monorail to the Magic Kingdom, or bus to the Animal Kingdom. At Hollywood Studios the Skyliner will take you to Epcot, and you can bus to both Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. Finally, from Animal Kingdom there are buses to each of the other parks.

There is no direct bus from the parks to Disney Springs. You can, however, travel to one of the many resorts and hop on a bus from there to Disney Springs. From Magic Kingdom we recommend walking to the Contemporary to catch the bus, from Epcot either walk to the Beach Club or Skyliner to the Riviera, from either Hollywood Studios we recommend taking a bus to either Port Orleans, Old Key West or Saratoga Springs and then grabbing a boat to Disney Springs. You can also walk from Saratoga Springs to Disney Springs.

What if I want to travel between the resorts?

This sort of depends on where you are staying and where you want to go. There are no buses available between the resorts; however, if you are hopping between resorts on the monorail loop, you just take the monorail. The same is true for resorts on the Skyliner or that you can walk between. However, if you were trying to get from Art of Animation - which is on the Skyliner, to Grand Floridian - which is on the monorail, there is no direct path. You could take a bus to the Magic Kingdom, and then hop on the monorail to the Grand Floridian. Taking transportation to a park and then hopping to a resort is going to be the only free way to make that sort of resort transfer. Generally, we will recommend just paying to use either Minnie Van or a third-party rideshare because it is considerably quicker and more straightforward.

If you have an early morning dining reservation at a different resort, early enough that park transportation may not be running, you can ask at the concierge and they can schedule a bus to take you to the resort. We have found that the timing is never one we are comfortable with and end up taking a third-party ride share instead, but it is an option.

Who can ride on-site transportation?

Anyone is welcome to use the on-site transportation. The on-site transportation is geared toward guests staying at a Disney resort; however, guests staying off-site are welcome to use the transportation. You should note that you cannot park at a resort without a reservation. This does include a reservation to a restaurant; however, parking is time limited so we do not suggest using that as a way to circumvent the system and hopping on transportation to a park as you will likely get towed. If you have parked at a park and want to go to a resort or another park you are welcome to use Disney’s transportation.

Is Disney transportation accessible to wheelchairs and ECVs?

Yes, read all about what to expect when using Disney transportation with a wheelchair or ECV in our post here.


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