C. Transportation options
If you fly in to Orlando, then you will need to decide how to get around while you are there.
i. Car rental
If you are not staying at a Disney resort, then you may consider renting a vehicle. Getting to and from the parks is very easy with your own vehicle. It is also convenient because then you can come and go as you please without having to conform to the schedule of a shuttle. The only thing to keep in mind is that you will need to factor in the cost of your rental, plus the parking cost at Disney. Parking at Disney Parks is currently $22 per day. That fee is good for a full day and if you hop to another park, you will not have to pay again, it is good at all 4 parks for the day. If you are staying at a Disney hotel, then you will also need to factor in their overnight parking fee for guests.
I have always had good luck renting through Hotwire and it seems like the cost of renting directly from the airport is always the cheapest. The prices vary a lot, so you really do need to keep checking for fluctuations and when a price comes up that you are happy with, grab it! Sometimes you may even need to wait until just a week or two before your arrival.
**Quick tip – when driving from the airport, make sure to have some American dollars and change on hand as you will come across some tolls on your way to Disney property. Also, pay close attention that you are heading for the cash lane because if you do not have an EZ Pass, you will be fined if you pass through those lanes. We have fallen victim to this before, oops!
ii. Disney Transportation
If you are staying at a Disney hotel, then they provide wonderful transportation services. They have the Magical Express bus that picks you up from the airport and brings you back. They will even take care of collecting your luggage for you and bringing it directly to your room. You just get off the plane and head straight for the bus to begin your vacation! Make sure to sign up for the Magical Express service when booking your package, there is no extra cost for this service.
Once you have arrived at your resort, there are buses that will take you to every park and Disney Springs. The bus transportation is very reliable and you will usually find a bus coming along about every 20 minutes. It makes getting around very easy and convenient. If you are staying at a deluxe resort, you may even have access to either monorail or water taxi services, it depends on which hotel you are staying at. Make sure to check out All You Need to Know About Disney Transportation for details on every kind of transport you will find at each resort.
If you do prefer to drive yourself around, you can certainly still rent or bring your own car to a Disney resort. You can park at the hotel for a fee and if you do decide to drive to the parks, you do not have to pay for parking at the parks if you are staying at a Disney hotel.
Part 3: The Dining Plan