Ground Transportation Options

(Also see pages for the Walt Disney World Bus System and the Sassagoula River Ferry)

Minnie Vans

Update: The ‘Minnie Van’ service was discontinued following the COVID pandemic, but resumed operation starting from 29th June 2022.

Minnie Van roll-out at Walt Disney World

Minnie Van roll-out at Walt Disney World

Recently introduced at the resorts, possibly to counter the upsurgence of Uber journeys and to bring some of that revenue back within the company, Walt Disney World now owns and operates its own fleet of mini vans (“Minnie” vans, get it?) which can quickly and easily get you from point to point within Walt Disney World property.

This service is especially useful if you are trying to get from one resort to another for a meal or other reservation, as otherwise the bus, ferry and monorail options for non-park destinations can get rather convoluted. The vans are bright red with white Minnie Mouse polka dots, so are very easy to spot [groan, sorry!] and are driven by Disney-employed Cast Members.

To make hailing a van simpler, Disney has teamed up with the Lyft ridesharing service, so all you need to do is install their app onto your smart phone and open it anywhere within WDW grounds. You can then request a ride from your current location and you will be given an ETA for your van to arrive — ideally within just a few minutes.

The original tariff was a fixed fare of $25, but that has now changed to a $15.00 base fee plus $2.75 per mile traveled. This fare covers up to six passengers travelling anywhere within Walt Disney World property and is paid via the app. No tip is required. External destinations, such as shopping malls or airports, are not available. All of the vans carry two child seats, and Wheelchair Accessible vans are also available but you need to specify that when requesting a pickup. The service is available from 6:30am until 12:30am daily.

For more information, see the Disney Minnie Van web page.

Taxis

Taxis are another alternative, and there are usually cabs waiting just outside the resort, or available very quickly if you get a cast member to call one for you. If you travel somewhere by cab, it might be a good idea to get the driver to provide you with details of how to request your return trip.

For an idea of prices, you can check your journey in advance using a fare calculator. However as a guideline, expect to pay $40-$50 plus tip each way for most of the Orlando area attractions, or $10-$15 plus tip for an internal Disney World trip (for example getting to other Walt Disney World hotels for early breakfasts, or getting back to your resort late at night).

Uber is also a very popular choice, and is generally reported to be much cheaper than getting a regular taxi or a Minnie Van.

Public Bus Service (Lynx)

The LYNX company provides a useful public bus service in and around the Orlando area, including one route which serves Walt Disney World. Check out their website for more details: www.golynx.com. Lynx tickets cost $2 per one-way trip, regardless of distance. If you need to change to another Lynx service for your journey, ask for a transfer ticket.

Two of the most useful services for Disney guests are the Link 50 which runs from Walt Disney World to Sea World, along part of International Drive and then to downtown Orlando, and the Link 111 which serves Sea World, the Florida Mall and Orlando International Airport (but no longer goes as far as Walt Disney World). Both services run every 30 minutes or so and route maps and timetables can be found at Link 50 service and Link 111 service.

The two easiest Disney pickup points for the Link 50 are at the Transportation and Ticket Center (next to the Magic Kingdom’s parking lot monorail and ferry terminals) or more conveniently for Port Orleans guests, at Disney Springs just opposite the Disney bus stops near to the Rainforest Cafe. There is a LYNX request stop just over the road on Buena Vista Drive, right next to the traffic lights for Hotel Plaza Boulevard and less than five minutes walk from the Port Orleans river ferry dock. It will soon be more easily accessible via a new footbridge over the main road.

From outside Sea World you can catch the Link 8 bus (or perhaps the tourist I-Ride Trolley service, although you’ll have to pay extra for that) which runs the length of International Drive, including both of the Orlando Premium Outlets Malls (Vineland Avenue and I-Drive) and Wet ’n Wild.

For a local supermarket visit, you can get a bus to the West Vine Street Walmart in Kissimmee (on SR-192). From Disney’s Transportation and Ticket Center, take the Link 56 service and get off at the stop after Medieval Times and walk across the parking lot.

Mears Shuttle Buses

Another option would be to the use the Mears shuttle bus service, which costs around $18 per person for a return trip to places like Sea World or Universal. You phone them the day before (on 407-423-5566) to book a pickup time slot and they come directly to your hotel to collect you. Then you phone them again two hours before you want to go home and they’ll give you another time slot for collection.

Rental Cars

Even if you use a transfer service to and from the airport, renting a car for a few days within your stay is a great way to get out and about for those essential shopping excursions and visits to the other Orlando-area tourist attractions such as Universal Studios and Sea World. Most of the major car rental companies have offices located within Walt Disney World property, and often they will provide a courtesy transfer service from your hotel if you give them a call.

Disney’s official car rental agencies are currently Alamo and National, both of which are located at the Disney Car Care Center near to the Magic Kingdom parking lot. Disney offers a complimentary shuttle service from the Transportation and Ticket Center to the Car Care Center, and also by request from the theme parks.

Otherwise, Dollar and Avis offer probably the most convenient locations for guests staying at the Port Orleans resorts, with sites located at the end of Hotel Plaza Boulevard, both a very short walk from the Disney Springs Marketplace bus stop and the Sassagoula Ferry dock.

Major car rental companies located within Walt Disney World (easiest for access from Port Orleans first):

If you plan to hire a car for more than 4 days, it might be worth checking out what weekly rates the companies offer, as that can often work out a better deal.

Car rental companies may try to charge you an additional fee for their electronic toll charge payment scheme. I strongly advise against this as it is almost always more expensive than paying in cash as you go. An even better solution for tourists renting from Orlando Intentional Airport is the Florida Visitor Toll Pass which allows you to drive straight through E-PASS/etc toll lanes, paying a reduced rate compared to cash, and with no setup or service fees. You can pre-register via their app or online at visitortollpass.com, and then pick up your in-car pass at the airport when you arrive (Orlando International only).

Airport Transfers — Orlando International Airport

If you are arriving at Orlando International Airport you will no doubt be disappointed to learn that the popular and free “Disney’s Magical Express” return shuttle service to and from all of the Walt Disney World hotels is no longer operating. If you don’t want to hire a private car or a taxi, your best options are now Mears Connect, which is run by the same company that originally operated the Magical Express service, or Sunshine Flyer. Note: You will need to take your bags with you, there is no longer any separate luggage-to-room transfer service.

The Mears Connect service costs $32 for a round trip for adults, $27 for children (3-9), and can be pre-booked via www.mearsconnect.com.

The Sunshine Flyer service was recently announced by Transportation Management Service, and their buses are whimsically themed around old-fashioned stream trains, with the staff adorned appropriately as old-time engineers and conductors. The service costs $16 per jouney ($32 round-trip) for adults, and $10 for children aged 3-12 years ($20 round trip). Trips must be pre-booked at least 4 days in advance at sunshineflyer.com. Note: Prices were reduced, and the child age range increased from 3-8, in September 2022.

If you are hiring a car straight from the airport, you may want to take a look at our Airport Driving Directions page for suggested routes from the two local international airports — Orlando International and Sanford — to the Port Orleans area.