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How to Get from Orlando Airport to Disney World

Now that Disney’s Magical Express is gone, you are probably wondering: “How do I get from the airport to Disney World?” Should you take a bus? A shuttle? Uber? Is it worth it to get a rental car?

Orlando Airport to Walt Disney World

In this post, we will explain the easiest and cheapest ways to get from the Orlando airports to Walt Disney World to make your trip as smooth as possible.

Your Walt Disney World vacation does not begin until you actually arrive at your destination and for more than 15 years, Disney provided a free bus service to and from the airport called Disney’s Magical Express.

All you had to do was get off the airplane, walk downstairs and get on the bus that brought you to your resort hotel. You didn’t even have to get your own bags, Disney picked them up and sent them automatically to your room.

Now, that service is long gone and each guest arriving at the Orlando International Airport is responsible to arrange their own transportation to Walt Disney World and back. Sure it would be nice to get a little magic pixie dust sprinkled on you and then wake up on Main Street U.S.A., but that’s not how it works.

luggage outside car going from airport to Disney World

Don’t worry. We’ll show you all the ways to get from the airport to Disney World, compare prices, and help you decide the best solution for your family so you can get to the theme parks and start having fun right away!

If you are looking for general transportation info, check out our Disney World Transportation Guide where we have the latest updates on the monorail, buses, and Disney Skyliner.

Before we start, don’t forget to sign up for our FREE Weekly E-Mail Newsletter. There we bring you the latest updates on Disney transportation as well as a ton of other Disney vacation planning tips. You can sign up here: Join our E-Mail Newsletter!

Orlando Airports Basics

Orlando International Airport

If you’re flying into Orlando and you just can’t wait to begin your Disney World Vacation, you’re almost there! Just one more step. And that’s getting from the airport to your actual hotel! 

Sure, things are a little more complicated without Disney’s Magical Express Bus service, but with some help and planning (which we plan on giving you in this article), you’ll be on your way to finding the perfect replacement for your family’s needs.

There are two airports in the greater Orlando metro area that visitors to Walt Disney World can arrive at, Orlando International Airport (MCO), and Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB).

Keep in mind that going from the Orlando Airport to Disney World can be different depending on which of the two Orlando Airports you’re flying into.

MCO Airport to Disney World

Orlando International Airport (MCO) is by far the most common, due to its closer proximity and abundance of flight options. Transportation from MCO to Disney World is slightly easier and in most instances, more affordable. 

Orlando Sanford Airport (SFB) is smaller and a bit further from the park entrance. But there are some reasonable options to get into Disney World from SFB as well, and it could be especially worth it if you’re saving significant amounts of money on your flights.

How Far is Orlando Airport from Disney World?

Walt Disney World Sign on highway

How far is the Orlando Airport from Walt Disney World?  That depends on which one you are coming from, what time you are arriving, and where you are going in Disney World.

  • Under normal circumstances, the Orlando International Airport (MCO) is about 25 miles or a 35-minute drive to the entrance to Walt Disney World.  
  • Sanford Airport (SFB) is about 50 miles or a 1-hour drive to the entrance to Walt Disney World.

If you are driving from either Orlando airport, the quickest and most efficient way is to take the highway, where you can expect tolls along the way.

On most trips from MCO, it takes us at least 30 minutes, maybe more with traffic.

Interestingly, when you put in the directions from MCO to Walt Disney World in Google Maps, it says that it is only 16.8 miles and takes much less time.  This is likely to the very edge of Walt Disney World, and not to the location of your hotel. 

Is there Free Transportation to Disney World?

Unfortunately, following the removal of Disney’s Complimentary Bus Service, the Magical Express, Disney no longer offers any kind of free transportation to Disney World.

There is free transportation to the theme parks once you get on property, but each guest is now responsible to plan how they will arrive at Walt Disney World and unless you have a friend pick you up, that requires paying money.

What Happened to the Magical Express?

Disney's Magical Express

From 2005 until January 2022, Disney used and contracted Mears Transportation to run its popular Magical Express Bus Service. This was a complimentary service that was one of the perks of staying at a Disney Resort Hotel, giving guests free transportation and luggage services back and forth to Orlando International Airport (MCO). 

Despite many complaints from guests, Disney decided to end the contract with Mears, no longer giving Disney Resort guests free transportation to and from the airport. This has been a sore subject among fans and for many, it has become another reason why you may consider staying off-site. 

We think this was a poor decision on Disney’s part to get rid of the Magical Express service.  Having your transportation included in the price of your vacation was an incredible incentive, especially the luggage delivery option, and now this has just made things more complicated for visitors.

Airport to Disney World Transportation Options

inside Mears Connect shuttle

There are many ways to get from the Orlando Airport to Walt Disney World and we are going to briefly list each of them here before going into more detail later on.  We will be covering all your transportation options from Orlando International Airport (MCO) since that is where the majority of visitors will be arriving.

Here are the 6 main transportation methods from MCO to Disney World:

  • Shuttle/Bus Services – The company that ran Disney’s Magical Express Mears offers two different shuttle services to/from the airport. There’s also a new option, the Sunshine Flyer Shuttle that runs straight from Orlando International (MCO) to your hotel. 
  • Rental Cars – Renting a car at both Orlando International and Sanford Orlando airports is easy and convenient upon grabbing your luggage. It gives the most flexibility but it can be costly. 
  • Ride-Sharing Services (Uber and Lyft) – If you’ve never used ride-sharing before, it’s as simple as downloading an app and inputting your pick-up and drop-off locations. It’s especially easy and convenient if you don’t want to plan something in advance. 
  • Town Car or Limo Service – Paying for a private service that will be waiting for you upon arrival can be invaluable for families that require car seats, extra room or need to make stops. 
  • Taxi – Similar to ride-sharing, taxis have major advantages due to their convenience and ‘no planning necessary’ approach to your trip. They will cost more than Uber and Lyft but require slightly less “work.” 
  • Train – With the new Brightline train connecting the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to a stop just off Disney’s property, this could be a quick and exciting future option to get to ‘The World.’ As of now, trains are rumored to begin running in early 2023.

Where Can You Take Transportation to?

sitting in lounge at Disney's Beach Club Resort

Once you decide which form of transportation you are going to take to get to Disney World, you have a few options for a final destination.

Resorts

For those staying within the “Disney Bubble,” you’re staying inside one of the Disney World Resort Hotels. Transportation to Disney Resorts is simple and easy for all the available transportation options. 

Disney Springs

If you’re arriving a little bit earlier in the day, and it’s possible your hotel might not be ready for check-in, some travelers choose to take transportation to Disney Springs to spend some time shopping in the meantime.

This can be a nice way to start your trip, especially if you are going to eat at one of the many amazing Disney Springs restaurants, but it can be a little bit challenging if you have extensive luggage.

Off-Site Hotels 

If you’re staying outside of Disney, in one of the surrounding off-site hotels, any of the above-listed transportation methods will bring you to your destination.

How Much Does it Cost to Get from Orlando Airport to Disney World?

luggage outside bus shuttle from airport to Disney World

Let’s face it, going to Walt Disney World is super expensive, probably one of the most expensive trips your family will take in the near future. So figuring out any way to save money is always welcome, even in transportation costs.

Here is a list of the common transportation costs to get from MCO to Walt Disney World:

  • Shuttle/Bus Services – $16-$17 per adult and $12.50-$13.50 per child each way
  • Rental Cars – At least $35 per day, not including gas and tolls, but can run up to $80 per day for a larger or more luxurious vehicle. 
  • Ride Sharing Services (Uber and Lyft) – A simple UberX for 2-4 people will cost about $38 to get from Orlando International Airport (MCO). Lyft tends to be $5-$10 more. XL vehicles that can fit 6 passengers will be between $55-$65 depending on the time of day. More luxurious vehicle options, such as Uber and Lyft’s black car services can cost upwards of $100. 
  • Town Car or Limo Service – Depending on the time of day, stops made, and size of the vehicle, private car services will typically cost at least $70 each way for a smaller vehicle. It can be upwards of $150 each way for a larger or more luxurious limousine option. 
  • Taxi – During off-peak travel times, you might be fortunate to only spend only around $40 each way. But if arriving during a busier travel time, it can be up to $80 each way. 
  • Minnie Van Service – Only available for Disney’s Resort guests, using Disney’s Minnie Van Service it’ll cost a set cost of $150 each way. Minnie Vans fit up to 6 passengers. (Currently not running)

Keep in mind that these prices do not include tipping. Prices will also vary depending on how many people you have in your party.

Also, if traveling from Sanford Airport (SFB), expect to pay 30% -40% more on average for each vehicle option.

Now, let’s go over each of the 6 ways to get from MCO to Walt Disney World and look at them in detail one by one.

Shuttle/Bus Services

Mears Coach bus service from Orlando Airport

Shuttle Bus Services from Orlando Airport (MCO) to Disney World have long been the standard for families traveling to Disney World and staying at a Disney Resort.

Despite the fact that Disney’s Magical Express Service became extinct in 2022, there are still (3) nice and reasonable options for families desiring familiarity, safety, and ease. Here are a few of our favorites.

Mears Connect Standard

Mears Connect bus coach from MCO Airport to Disney World
  • Price: $16 one-way/$32 round trip per adult. $13.50 one-way and $27 round trip per child (3-9). 
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag
  • Travel Time: Typically 2-3 hours from the time of landing till you get to your resort hotel.
  • Car Seats: Typically not needed. Although some transfers may occur in a van and car seats are not provided. If you want a guarantee, bring your own.
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Not available
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Disney Resorts and Other Off-Site Disney resorts

Pros

If you’re looking for the exact replacement of Disney’s old Magical Express service, Mears Connect is it. The only difference of course is now it is not complimentary.

Mears Connect Standard provides a nice blend of reliability and safety that our family has grown to love over the years with the Magical Express. It is one of the most cost-effective ways of traveling to your resort, depending on the size of your family. 

There’s a safety factor that is nice if you are a solo traveler as well, as my sister was able to use this service when traveling by herself and she felt much safer using this option as opposed to some of the other alternatives.

Cons

The main negative isn’t necessarily Mears’s fault, but it’s the fact that the same service that was once complimentary now costs money. When using Disney’s Magical Express in the past, dealing with slow times and waiting around was a necessary evil of dealing with a complimentary service, but now when it’s a paid service, it can be frustrating. 

If you are the type of person or family that just “wants to get there,” Mears Connect Standard can be a little frustrating as it can sometimes take more time than you want.

In our experiences, our hotel resort was NEVER the first stop, so be prepared to stop at multiple hotels before you get to your own. Dampening expectations will much more likely prepare you for a better-than-expected experience.

Mears Connect Express

Mears Express Service from Airport to Disney World
  • Price: $250 round trip (up to 4 passengers) and $55 per additional passenger
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag 
  • Travel Time: Between 45 and 90 minutes
  • Car Seats: Typically not needed. Although some transfers may occur in a van and car seats are not provided. If you want a guarantee, bring your own. 
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Not available
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Disney Resorts and Other Off-Site Disney resorts

Pros

The same reliability, 24-hour service, and safety that Mears has grown to provide their customers over the years but with speedier service. The only difference between Connect Standard and Connect Express is that the latter guarantees a direct (guaranteed 1st stop) trip to your resort to and from the airport which should make for a quicker arrival.

Cons

Unlike Mears Connect Standard, Connect Express requires all travelers to book a round-trip ride. The cost of Connect Express has already increased from $200 to $250 since its inception. 

Connect Express is NOT a private transfer and is still likely to still include riding with other people in the vehicle. For the price point, you’ll likely have much better options with some of the other alternatives.

Read our Full Guide to Mears Connects Shuttles for prices and more details on how the service works.

Sunshine Flyer

The Sunshine Flyer shuttle Service
  • Price: $17 one-way/$34 round trip per adult. $12.50 one-way and $25 round trip per child (3-9). 
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag
  • Travel Time: Typically 2-3 hours from the time of landing until you arrive at your resort hotel.
  • Car Seats: Not needed
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Not available
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Disney Resorts and Other Off-Site Disney resorts

Pros

Sunshine Flyer is a newer option that just launched in February 2022, and another nice alternative to Disney’s Magical Express. Similar in nature, Sunshine Flyer ONLY offers shared bus services and does not have an express service. 

At a very similar price point to Mears Connect Standard, Sunshine Flyer offers fun and themed 1920s service on their buses! In our experience and in speaking to others, Sunshine Flyer has been slightly faster in delivery times to Mears Connect Standard and is definitely more fun! 

Cons

Unlike Mears, Sunshine Flyer is not a 24-hour service. They don’t begin operations until 7:00 AM and they cease operations at 10:00 PM.

They only offer shared services right now and would not be recommended to people that want express service to their hotel or final destination upon arrival at Orlando International Airport.

Public Bus

public bus from Orlando Airport to Disney World
  • Price: About $4 each way per person
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: Optional tip for the driver
  • Travel Time: Between 2 to 3 hours on average
  • Car Seats: None provided and NOT recommended with small kids
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Not available
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Multiple stops on each of the (2) buses

Pros

If counting the cost is the absolute #1 priority on your Disney trip, utilizing the public bus will certainly be your cheapest option at only $4 for each way to and from Orlando International Airport to Walt Disney World. 

Cons

If getting to Disney World efficiently and quickly is AT ALL a priority, don’t take the Orlando Public Bus system. Using it will require you to take (2) different buses to get within about a 10-minute walk to the Walt Disney World Ticket and Transportation Center. 

Having children and/or luggage will be a major hassle as you have to switch buses and walk a sizable distance. Not to mention once you get to the Ticket and Transportation Center, you’ll have to get additional transportation to your destination.

Ride Sharing Service

Using Ride Sharing service to get to Disney World Uber

Our family has been using ride-sharing services for years on our vacations and our visits to Disney World have been no different. Ride Sharing Services like Uber and Lyft allow travelers to get around easily, cheaply, and incredibly efficiently. 

Simply download the Uber and Lyft apps on your smartphone and input your credit card information and you’re ready to go! Let’s look at the two most popular options for ride-sharing from Orlando Airport to your resort or destination.

Let’s take a look at these two most popular ride-sharing services.

Uber

getting in a car at the Orlando Airport ride sharing pickup point
  • Price: Depending on the size of the vehicle, Uber will cost typically between $35 (smaller vehicle) and $55. (XL vehicle) If you want to travel in style and use the Black service, your cost will likely exceed $100. 
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag
  • Travel Time: Less than an hour
  • Car Seats: Available upon request (if available). Car seats should be requested upon ride booking.
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Yes, but you will pay additional money as your driver waits. 
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Anywhere you want

Pros

It’s almost impossible to beat Uber’s level of convenience, efficiency, and cost. I’ve found that generally speaking Uber’s costs are a little bit better than Lyft’s in the Orlando area. I’ve never had a bad experience in our family’s hundreds of rides in an Uber. 

For the most cost-effective way of requesting an Uber, get an UberX if you have 3 or fewer people and an UberXL if you have 4-6.

Using Uber app to get to Disney World from Orlando International Airport

Cons

It’s hard to find any cons for ride-sharing other than making sure you have the app downloaded on your phone and your credit card linked prior to requesting your first ride. Always keep an eye on your pickup location to make sure you don’t confuse your driver and that you are standing in the right location. 

At MCO airport, keep in mind there are multiple pickup locations for drivers and it’ll ask you which one you are located at for your driver to find you. Also, pay attention to which baggage claim area you are in prior to requesting a vehicle (A or B) so that you choose the right pick-up location.

Another slight con is I can understand the hesitancy of some solo travelers that would prefer not to spend more money when cheaper options are available. I’ve also heard some safety concerns about traveling in an Uber by themselves and these are understandable, although our family has never had the slightest of issues.

One thing we’ve noticed for both ride-sharing services is that prices can surge during peak time when there are many people looking for a ride at the same time. If you notice the price jumping higher, we suggest waiting 5 minutes and trying again, and often the price drops.

For travelers that don’t have a smartphone or are not tech-savvy at all, figuring out how to use the apps can be frustrating and in that case, something like Mears Connect could be a better choice.

Lyft

Using Lyft app at Disney World
  • Price: Depending on the size of the vehicle, Lyft will cost typically between $40 (smaller vehicle) and $60. (XL vehicle) If you want to travel in style and use the Black service, your cost will likely exceed $100. 
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag
  • Travel Time: Less than an hour
  • Car Seats: Available upon request (if available) 
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Yes, but you will pay additional money as your driver waits. 
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Anywhere you want

Pros

Lyft is almost identical to Uber’s pros and cons. The nice thing about having the Lyft app is you can compare and contrast Uber’s costs and Lyft’s costs prior to booking a ride. Go with whichever one gives you a better price at the moment.

Having the Lyft app also allows you to request Minnie Vans as well, both to/from the airport and on your Disney vacation, assuming you are staying at a Disney Resort. 

Cons

I have found Lyft’s prices slightly higher on average than Uber’s in most instances in the Orlando area. It’s always good to compare and contrast.

Town Car or Limo Service

car limo service Orlando Airport

For many years, our family has used private transfers, such as Town Cars or Limo services for our trips. When counting the cost, for our family the price difference is negligible considering the amount of time and frustration saved on our trip. 

We’ve always found private transportation has allowed our trip to immediately get off to a great start, rather than sitting around waiting when we get to the Orlando airport. Let’s look at some of the most popular options.

  • Price: Anywhere between $70 to $150 each way depending on stops made, size of the vehicle, and time of day
  • Extra Fees: Some companies do charge hidden fees for extra people or after hours
  • Tipping: 20% usually is recommended if the service is good
  • Travel Time: Under an hour unless a stop is requested
  • Car Seats: Some companies include them for free, others will charge additional money 
  • Luggage Handling: Included
  • Grocery Stops: Can be included but will cost extra typically 
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Anywhere you want

Pros

Our family has continually found utilizing a town car or limo service to be the most stress-free way to arrive and depart our trip. There’s something nice about arriving at Orlando Airport and having your name and your driver waiting for you upon arrival.

Unless you requested a stop on the way to your resort or destination, you’ll arrive nice and promptly and can start your trip immediately! Speaking of stopping, most car services allow you to stop by the supermarket or liquor store along the way if you need to get groceries.

If you’re a person that has mobility limitations, the drivers will almost always certainly assist with luggage and make your walk a very short walk out of the airport. Or if you’re a family that has small kids in need of car seats, the private vehicles will have you covered, just inform them ahead of time. 

Cons

The biggest con is of course the financial aspects of utilizing a private service. Obviously count the costs because in many instances, depending on the size of your family and the size of the vehicle reserved, it might not be all that much more expensive than you’d think. 

Be careful to look for hidden fees, because some companies will charge extra money for things that you thought were included.

Below are a few of our favorite limo services for transportation from MCO to Disney World.

Quicksilver Tours

Quicksilver Tours car service from Orlando Airport

Quicksilver Tours is an all-in-one private transport that will take care of you completely once your luggage arrives at the baggage claim. The fact that they include a 20-minute grocery stop in the cost of their service is highly attractive if you’re the type of family, like ours, that loves to grab a few things for our hotel room prior to arriving.

This is actually one of the best ways to save money at Disney World and lets you get what you need for snacks or meals.

If traveling with a family, Quicksilver Tours makes it incredibly easy while being reasonably priced, providing you with free car seats and boosters at your request. Expect to pay around $70 each way for a family of four and a little bit more money for a larger family.

Ultimate Town Cars

Ultimate Town Cars service from Orlando Airport

Ultimate Town Cars is a common and reliable private transfer company that can suit your family’s needs. We’ve found them to be reliable and unlike many of the other private car services, they don’t include any hidden fees. 

Just keep in mind they will charge your credit card 48 hours prior to your trip and automatically add a 20% gratuity onto your final cost. In our calculations, we’ve found them to be significantly faster and more affordable than Mears Connect Express.

Happy Limo

Happy Limo service Orlando Airport

Happy Limo is one of the most reputable and longest-thriving luxury vehicle companies in Orlando. While they aren’t a “budget option” they provide first-class service and are certainly reputable while maintaining a great reputation in the Orlando area for many, many years.

Tiffany Towncar

Tiffany Towncar service Orlando Airport

Our family has used Tiffany Towncar for many trips over the last few years and has typically found them to be very reliable, extremely punctual, and mostly affordable. It’s a nice feeling to be greeted upon arrival at the baggage claim area and then has zero worries from the minute you arrive. 

While their prices have gone up significantly over the last few years, they’ve always been accommodating while meeting the needs of our family and affording us additional time at the grocery and liquor stores prior to dropping us off at our resort.

Orlando Transportation by Mike

Orlando Transportation by Mike Orlando Airport

A favorite amongst Disney travelers, Orlando Transportation by Mike carries a tremendous reputation and continually gets excellent reviews throughout the Disney community. Mike is known for setting high standards for customer service and cleanliness and has many positive reviews.

Rent a Car

renting a car at Disney World

Renting a car is unmatched when it comes to flexibility and saving time on your trip as a whole. When we go for longer stays and leave the ‘Disney Bubble’ we often rent a car. This is definitely the best option if you will be visiting other places like Universal Orlando.

Renting a car allows you to get to Disney World incredibly efficiently, whether you are flying into Orlando International Airport (MCO) or Sanford Orlando.

Here is a realistic view of the costs involved in renting a vehicle: 

  • Price: $35 – $80 a day depending on the size of the vehicle 
  • Extra Fees: Parking costs in all the parks of up to $30 per day, gas and tolls
  • Tipping: None
  • Travel Time: Less than an hour, although rental car lines can be very very long if traveling during peak time
  • Car Seats: Available for rent, can be $15 per day 
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Anywhere you want
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Anywhere you want

Pros

In terms of freedom and flexibility, renting a vehicle allows you the most options. You don’t feel rushed at any stage of the airport, leaving or going, and you can take your time which is highly valuable if you have a family with small children. 

Having a vehicle on your trip is very nice, making the need for Disney Transportation or ride-sharing services null-in-void. If you are staying outside of Disney, having your own rental car makes even more sense. 

Cons

In almost every instance, renting a car is going to be your most costly option. Also, while it will save time and frustration on your trip, the truth is, when staying inside Disney the need for a private vehicle is usually unnecessary. 

The costs of having a car will add up quickly, between parking costs, gas, and tolls. This is also the most stressful of all the transportation options as you have to do all the driving and you are responsible to make sure your family gets to its destination in a safe and timely manner.

Rental Car Extra Costs

garage car rental sign at Orlando Airport

Rental car companies will significantly adjust prices, both up and down, in the months leading up to your vacation. I highly recommend booking early, if you choose to go this route, while also making sure that the company you use has free cancellation. 

On our last trip, surprisingly, we were able to save $700 on our car rental by canceling the first one we booked nearly a year prior to our trip and re-booking another one only about 3 months prior to our trip. 

Make sure you count the costs of renting a car and really compare whether it’s completely worth it. Extra costs include:

  • Disney hotels and off-property hotels charge for parking (Anywhere between $15-40 a night).
  • Disney theme parks cost up to $30 a day for parking.
  • Car seats for kids can be up to $15 per day.
  • If you want to add insurance coverage to your rental agreement.
  • Additional driver fees are sometimes charged by car rental companies.
  • Tolls and gas money, and whether to gas up or not to gas up prior to returning to the airport.
  • Going over mileage restrictions imposed by car rental companies (check the fine print).

Can I Rent a Car Directly from Disney?

Disney World Car Care Center

Yes! Disney has a Car Care Center just outside of Magic Kingdom which we’ve used many times in the past. It is incredibly useful, as they use preferred partners: Enterprise, Alamo, and National.

This is a convenient location and allows you to drop off your car inside Disney if you just want a 1-way car rental or to pick up a car rental if you’re leaving Disney and heading back to the airport or another destination.

If I Rent a Car Do I Need a Car Seat for My Child?

The State of Florida requires children 5 and under to use car seats and it is a primary enforcement law, meaning they can pull you over if they see a child unrestrained. You can either bring a car seat with you or pay the additional cost of renting a car seat with your rental car company.

Many airlines will allow you to check a car seat for free, making it much easier and more affordable to bring your own.

Best Travel Car Seats

Finding a travel-friendly car seat that maximizes safety standards, comfort, and easy installation is important for travelers with children 5 and under. Buying one will ultimately save families money as opposed to having to rent one for each trip.

Here are a few of our favorite budget-conscious car seats:

Cosco Mighty Fit DX Convertible Car SeatThe best combination of affordability and weight, this car seat will allow up to five different positions and three buckle locations. It has built-in side impact protection to keep your little one extra secure. The cover is removable and washable. Just keep in mind this car seat will only hold up a child up to 65 pounds.

Shop for Cosco Mighty Fit 65 prices here.

Safety 1st Guide 65 Convertible Car SeatA little sturdier than the Cosco Scenera, this seat is extremely compact and will fit even smaller European rental cars. It will support children up to 65 pounds and last for years!

Shop for Safety First Guide 65 prices here.

Baby Trend Trooper 3-in-1 Convertible Car SeatFeatures three different modes allowing you to purchase just one travel car seat and use it for many years. It can be used for a baby as small as 4 pounds and children as big as 65 pounds. It’s also incredibly easy to install, which can be invaluable for traveling.

Shop for Cosco Mighty Fit 65 prices here.

Taxi Service

Taxi stand Orlando International Airport
  • Price: $40-$80 each way depending on the time of day
  • Extra Fees: None
  • Tipping: $1-$2 per bag
  • Travel Time: Less than an hour
  • Car Seats: Available by request
  • Luggage Handling: None
  • Grocery Stops: Yes, but you will pay additional money as your driver waits. 
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: Anywhere you want

Pros

Even better than ride-sharing services, taxis afford unmatched efficiency and delivery times if speed is something you covet, assuming there are available taxis waiting at the airport. The nice thing about taxis is they don’t require any requesting a ride on an app or a tech-savvy person to order one. 

Cons

While taxis will likely get you from Point A to Point B faster than any of the other available options, there is a price to pay for that. Similar to Uber and Lyft, for families with small children, you will have to request car seats or booster seats.

This is certainly a no-frills way to get somewhere and is ideal while in a rush, but in our estimation, there are better options for most people.

Minnie Vans

Disney World Minnie Vans

(As of this writing, Disney has not resumed its Minnie Van airport shuttle service, and we are unsure when it will resume.)

  • Price: a set cost of $150 each way. Minnie Vans fit up to 6 passengers. 
  • Extra Fees: An additional $10 for arrivals after 11 p.m., $10 for international passenger pickups, and $3 for fuel surcharges. 
  • Tipping: 20% tipping is suggested
  • Travel Time: As fast as possible. Typically well under an hour. 
  • Car Seats: Included
  • Luggage Handling: Included
  • Grocery Stops: Not provided
  • Pickup/Dropoff Locations: All of Walt Disney World’s official resorts and some additional resorts as well. Check their site first to find out

Pros

One of the perks of using Disney Minnie Vans is ‘The Disney Difference.’ The drivers are incredibly knowledgeable and friendly. You’ll feel fully engrossed in the Disney Experience immediately upon entering the vehicle.

They do an excellent job of catering to the entire family and making the experience as seamless as possible. This is the most “Disney way” to start your vacation at this point in time.

Disney's Minnie Van Review Walt Disney World after

Cons

The Minnie Van service from the airport is only available for Disney World Resort guests and does not include rides to many of the other ‘unofficial Disney resorts’ that are located on Disney property. The main negative without question is of course the cost. 

Also, it’s really expensive. Paying over $300 for round-trip transportation for a family is a hard pill to swallow, even for individuals with deep pockets.

For us personally, it’s hard to justify this service and while we are fans of the Minnie Van Service for certain trips around Disney property, utilizing it to/from Orlando International Airport is just not worth it to us.

Train

Brightline to Disney World high speed train

The newest transportation option from MCO to Walt Disney World is the Brightline train service. As mentioned above, Brightline is planning on having its train ready in 2023, though we don’t have an exact date at this time.

As of right now, the previously-planned Disney World station is not getting built, but there will likely be a station nearby. Whether that is convenient enough for guests arriving at the Orlando Airport remains to be seen.

Obviously, this is an incredibly fluid situation and the timeline has changed multiple times already. This is an exciting opportunity for travelers, as this will likely present one of the most affordable and fastest options to get inside the Disney bubble.

You can check out our article on the planned Brightline Orlando Train and we’ll keep you updated as soon as we have more info.

Best Way to Get from Orlando Airport to Disney World

inside Mears Connect coach service

So after comparing all the transportation options, what is the best way to get from MCO airport to Walt Disney World?

For our family, we try to find the sweet spot between value, efficiency, and getting our trip off to a great start immediately upon arrival at Orlando International Airport without having to wait a long time for our transportation.

Since we usually have 6 people on our family trips, it makes the most sense for us to use a private transfer service such as Quicksilver Tours or Tiffany Town Car

For us, while it’s not the cheapest option, it is a seamless experience that allows us to get groceries, and stop at the liquor store all while getting excellent customer care.

If I’m traveling solo or with my wife or even up to 4 people total, I’ll typically get an Uber. I’ve had nothing but great experiences with Uber in Orlando. Plus, the price difference for 2 people to get an Uber or for 2 people to use one of the bus shuttle services is just not worth the time saved by choosing the former.

The cheapest and best overall way if you are traveling with 3 people or fewer is taking the Mears Connect bus service. It will cost you just under $50, you might just have to wait a little longer than an Uber.

Cheapest Way to Get to Disney World

loading car at Orlando Airport

The cheapest method of getting into Disney World is utilizing Orlando’s Public Buses. While you will save some money, I would NOT recommend this method to most travelers. It takes a long time and you can easily get lost if you aren’t familiar with the system.

The next cheapest option for families is utilizing Mears Connect Standard service or Sunshine Flyer. While these are not the promptest services, they are trustworthy and doable alternatives to the former Magical Express and we highly recommend them.

How to Get to Disney World – Step-by-Step

getting to Disney World from Orlando Airport Uber app

Step 1

The first part of your trip is of course booking your airfare! Once you have your travel dates set, you’ll also want to book that hotel reservation. Keep in mind Orlando has (2) airports and pay attention to whether you’re flying into MCO or SFB.

Step 2

Once you have your airfare and hotel reservation worked out, this is where you should plan and make reservations for your transportation to/from the airport.

If you’re going to rent a car, use a private car service, or book a shuttle bus service (such as Mears), you’re going to want to plan and book that in advance. If your going to simply get a taxi or use ridesharing, advanced planning here would be unnecessary.

Step 3

Get on your flight! When arriving at the Orlando airport, immediately follow the signs to the baggage claim area. Find out if your luggage is going to baggage claim ‘A’ or ‘B’ and then follow the appropriate signs to lead you there. 

Once going down the escalator or elevator, if you hired a private transfer service, here is where you will likely see your driver holding up the sign of your family to pick you up! Once you get your bags, follow the signs to the appropriate pick-up location. 

  • Rental cars, shuttle vans, resort transportation, and buses are all on the Ground Transportation Level (Level 1).
  • Both Mears and The Sunshine Flyer are located on Level 1 in Terminal (Baggage Claim) B.

Step 4

Now it’s time to board the transportation to your destination! This is where it gets exciting. Make sure you have the appropriate information and documentation needed to board while making the process as seamless as possible.

Step 5

Your home! You’ve arrived at your destination and now it’s time to begin your trip! And remember, Hakuna Matata!

FAQs

inside Orlando Airport main concourse

Is there a Free Shuttle from MCO to Disney World?

No, there is not. Right now, there is no free shuttle from MCO airport to Disney World.

Prior to 2022, Disney had an agreement with Mears Transportation to provide a service called Disney’s Magical Express which brought all Disney resort guests to/from their resort to the Orlando International Airport (MCO).

This service is now discontinued and travelers need to find a different alternative.

How Long is the Ride from Orlando Airport to Disney World?

The ride from Orlando Airport to Disney World is about 25 miles away. Depending on traffic, it usually takes between 30-40 minutes.

Do International Flights Arrive at MCO Airport?

Yes. MCO or Orlando International Airport has a number of international options and is frequently home to foreign travelers.

Do We Have to Carry Our Own Bags?

bags outside Mears Connect coach service Orlando Airport

Yes, at this time guests must carry their own bags for all but the most luxurious transportation options.

The former Disney Magical Express had a service that took care of travelers’ luggage from the moment it arrived at MCO, which we absolutely LOVED! This is no longer the case and travelers will now need to bring their luggage from the baggage claim area directly to their driver.

Is there a Shuttle from MCO to Disney World?

There is no direct shuttle from the Orlando airport to Disney World. Once the Brightline train is ready, this will be the closest thing to a direct shuttle from MCO to Disney World.

While it’s likely not going directly through Disney World and or there, it will get very close to Disney Springs so there should be some options from there to the resorts.

Have Someone Plan Transportation For You

inside Mears Connect Coach

We know all the planning you need to do for a Disney World vacation can be very frustrating and a real pain. That’s why we always recommend an Authorized Disney Travel Planner to do the hard work for you!

They’ll help you navigate all the transportation options to and from Disney World and also find you the very best deals on tickets and hotel rooms so you can save money! Surprisingly, it’s also 100% FREE to use and you’ll never get higher prices than those directly from Disney.

Our favorite Disney Travel Agent is René Cittadino and her fantastic team from Show You the World Travel. We use them for our personal trips to Disney and are always satisfied with the A+ service we get.

Click here for a Free Quote. Trust me, it makes everything A LOT easier!

That wraps up our look at getting from the Orlando airport to Walt Disney World. I hope that it gave you some good options for transportation now that you have to organize it yourself.

If you are thinking about going to Walt Disney World in the coming future, here are some other popular articles where you will find all the info and tips you need to plan your trip.

Your Thoughts

I want to know what you think about our guide of getting from Orlando airport to Disney World…

  • Which is your favorite mode of transportation?
  • What other options would you like to see?

Let us know in the comments section below!

If you enjoyed this article, as always I appreciate it if you’d share it with others via social media.  I work hard at making this website into a useful resource for you and your family to plan your visit to the Disney Parks and I hope it can help you! Thanks 🙂

Meet the Author of Ziggy Knows Disney!

George Mells

Tuesday 22nd of November 2022

Maybe one of the first things Robert Iger will do after re-assuming the CEO position will be to reinstate the Disney World Express Transportation, at least for the high priced Disney World hotels. While many cost cutting things were needed during the Covid period I think the elimination of this service was short sighted.