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Transportation: bus vs car

by Holly

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“Hello. We will be visiting starting January 9, 2018; and will have our own car. We are staying at Caribbean Beach and get a bit frustrated with having to stop 5 times before even leaving the resort. To get to MK, do you recommend Disney buses or driving car to the parking lot of park (and then having to get on a tram to the TTC)?

I also wonder about driving to the Polynesian and parking in lot closest to the TTC, which would be a very short walk to the monorail, which takes you directly to the front of the Magic Kingdom. Seems like that might be the fastest way to go? Thank you so much for your expertise.”

Dad and his pickup at a Walt Disney World parking lot

We rented a pickup truck and drove it all around Walt Disney World!

Holly, I have gone back and forth with this question through the years. I love driving a car. I’m all about driving a car at Walt Disney World.

Dad’s Car at Disney World page

If you’re in a Value Resort, if you’re in the Deluxe Resorts around the Magic Kingdom, absolutely you use Disney transportation. Value Resort, 50/50, Disney versus your own car, whether you’ll be there first. Moderate Resorts are a whole different animal. With all of the bus stops, with the waiting for the buses, I do not think that the best idea is to use Disney transportation, if you have a choice.

Now if you don’t want to spend the money to rent a car, if you don’t have your own car, then yes, use Disney transportation. But if you have the option to use your car, yes, go to the Magic Kingdom. Go to the parking lot. Park, grab a tram. Yes, it’s lots of steps, tram to the monorail, or to the ferry, and get to the Magic Kingdom. It seems like it might take a little longer, but with the waiting for the bus, with the extra stops that you make either way, one way or the other, I believe you will find it just as fast or faster, to drive your own car.

Now, about parking at the Polynesian, this is one of the things that Disney is cracking down on. You can’t do it. You cannot go as a guest, even if you have that little parking sticker that says, I’m staying at a Disney resort. You can’t go to one of the Magic Kingdom area hotels, and park, and go to the Magic Kingdom. If you’re staying in a Disney hotel, you are to park at the Disney parking lot for the Magic Kingdom. If you have a reservation for a meal, yes, you can go. But not to go and park.

Disney is trying to figure out a way to monitor this and to stop it, because it’s really a problem at those hotels. It’s not acceptable for you to do that. Do go to the parking lot. Park in the parking lot. Grab the tram. Hit the monorail.

Destinations to Travel

Dad’s Bottom Line

I think that yes, the bottom line is driving your own car, especially from the Moderates, absolutely. That’s the best way to get to the Magic Kingdom. Don’t go to the hotels. Park in the Magic Kingdom parking lot.


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Comments for

Dec 03, 2017 Riding the Bus
by: Richard J

I talk to the drivers of Disney transportation buses and they told me that staying at Port Orleans Riverside resort after they pick up the people at the resort it is a straight drive to Magic kingdom and all the other parks. No other stops. So Dad why is staying at a Moderate resort not good to ride the buses?

Dad Answers

Richard, it’s not what happens after you leave the resort, it’s the 5 bus stops at the resort. You’re always making stops either one way or the other.

Plus like when we were at the Port Orleans French Quarter last month, the buses don’t run that often. It was a 30 minute wait for an EPCOT bus.

Dec 01, 2017 Restaurant parking
by: Anonymous

Where do you park for Contemporary or Polynesian restaurant reservations? At the hotel or Magic Kingdom parking?

Dad Answers

At the hotel.

Dec 01, 2017 Transportation
by: Anonymous

We have found Uber to be a useful option for the Magic Kingdom since their parking is the least convenient. The cost of Uber is worth the price of convenience for us.

Return to Ask Dad.

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