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Saw Magical Express Bus today.. no photos.. anyone have?

Discussion in 'WDW Parks News, Rumors and Current Events' started by TimeTrip, Apr 3, 2005.

  1. TimeTrip

    TimeTrip Well-Known Member

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    So I was heading north on I-4 when a bus pulled in behind me. In the rear view i saw a mickey and "disney's magical express" written on it. It got off at the next exit, so i couldn't get my camera out. interesting color scheme.. almost smurf blue + cream. Anyone have pictures?
     
  2. Pongo

    Pongo New Member

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    I saw one on Good Friday while driving to Downtown Disney. I think they look awesome. Very retro meets modern, if that made any sense.

    They are much better than the Disney Cruise Lines buses.
     
  3. speck76

    speck76 Well-Known Member

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    They have been driving around for about a month or so now.....I like the look...
     
  4. se8472

    se8472 New Member

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    yeah I have seem them too, very nice.

    I tried to get a pic but being the driver. So needless to say with trying to drive and take a pic at the same time it didn't work out to well...got about half the bus.
     
  5. Captain Hank

    Captain Hank Well-Known Member

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  6. claning

    claning New Member

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    I rode one today. Mears was using it for a normal run. The interior has that gold Disney pixie dust on a dark blue material. There are two video screens mounted in the front. On our bus it was displaying a graphic with information with the track number and time elapsed of the Disney CD they were playing (Radio Disney type music). Very comfortable bus. I guess Mears is road testing the busses. In fact, the driver swore she heard some banging somewhere and kept asking us if we heard it too. Guess they are trying to find any little problem they might.
    We passed one or two other Magic Express busses on the way to the airport as well.
     
  7. djronnieb

    djronnieb New Member

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    ummm.... couldn't you just take a pic when the bus was parked? get out for 2 secs snap a pic and that's it
     
  8. Invero

    Invero Well-Known Member

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    There's actually more than two video screens... since they're LCD, they were probably folded up since they weren't being used. The coach I saw was playing The Incredibles (widescreen)... my guess is that they're equipped with DVD players, since it was showing track info for the CD.

    From what I hear from Mears drivers, they're running the coaches for regular Mears Shuttle service now, to get them broken in, and drivers used to them for the DME service. From what a driver was telling me, the coaches are equipped with a ZF AS-Tronic transmission, which is basically an automatic shifting manual transmission. A great transmission, but takes some getting used to.
     
  9. Victoria

    Victoria It's all about moi! Premium Member

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    We got to ride one yesterday for a normal Mears run from the Poly to MCO... really nice inside. The seats are a deep red with yellow stars (pixie dust i suppose) on them. The new bus smell was a bit overwhleming though. Our driver was also having some trouble driving it. He kept fidlling around with the buttons whenever we got a red light and when we were driving fast (about 45mph+) there was a funny noise that sounded like it was comming from the wheel wells. Weird. Hope those were just new bus breaking in sounds and not a sign of things to come. It seemed that every Mears bus yesterday was a new one actually...all the ones we saw at MCO were Magical Express and had temporary license plates. The LCD screens are a great touch. We got to watch The Three Musketeers on the way there...too bad we missed the end though...I hadnt seen it before. Anywho, was kind of suprised to see the buses out so soon but was happy to have been able to get the preview.
     
  10. disneygirl_wdw

    disneygirl_wdw New Member

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    I rode in one about 2 months ago. I was really suprised when it pulled up to pick me up at All-Star Music. It was operated by a MEARS driver, but it was very nice. The seats were comfy.
     
  11. DisneyJill

    DisneyJill Active Member

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    Have they been testing the luggage service as well or just the busses? I'm still convinced they're going to lose my bag. :lookaroun
     
  12. TURKEY

    TURKEY New Member

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    Someone the other day just left their bags at the airport. The didn't even claim them off the carosel. They already thought that the service had started. :lol: :rolleyes:







    Ok, it was 2 teenage females, no word if they were blonde.
     
  13. speck76

    speck76 Well-Known Member

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    Some of the large convention resorts have been doing this for 2 years.......they have larger in's and out's than any single WDW hotel does....
     
  14. mkt

    mkt Awesome Premium Member

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    Like BMW's SMG... or Audi's freaky thing with the paddles
     
  15. mkt

    mkt Awesome Premium Member

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    doesn't that giant Marriott do that? :hammer:
     
  16. speck76

    speck76 Well-Known Member

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    not to my knowledge....The Rosen convention hotels do , and the Peabody does....
     
  17. mkt

    mkt Awesome Premium Member

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    yeah.. I knew they did.. not sure about the World Center. What about the Gaylord or the Grande Lakes hotels?
     
  18. speck76

    speck76 Well-Known Member

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    not sure....

    Secure airline baggage service adds convention center connection

    July 26, 2004

    An Orlando-headquartered firm has added a second location to its airline baggage-handling system.

    The county's 2.1 million-square-foot Orange County Convention Center is now offering Baggage Airline Guest Services Inc.'s full-service, multi-airline, remote check-in system for air travelers' luggage.

    Company President Craig Mateer held an inaugural press conference unveiling the new service at its first location last August at the Rosen Centre hotel. At the time, he promised an aggressive growth strategy, targeting the center as the firm's next location.

    Mateer says his company, known as Bags, has partnered with Rosen Hotels & Resorts and ARINC Inc., a Maryland-based major provider of intra-airline communications systems, to develop the service.

    The firm offers a remote baggage check-in service in a secure location for American, Continental, Delta or United flights departing from Orlando's airport. For $10 a bag, the service transfers the baggage in a locked-down system approved by the Transportation Security Administration.

    Travelers can now check their bags directly at the convention center from two to 12 hours prior to their scheduled departure.

    That's good business for the convention center, says the center's Executive Director Tom Ackert. He says the service allows more time on the exhibition floor for making deals.
     
  19. speck76

    speck76 Well-Known Member

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    BAGS rollin' door to door
    Orlando entrepreneur readies express baggage service for Disney, cruise lines.
    Bob Mervine
    Staff Writer

    ORLANDO -- Twenty months ago, Orlando entrepreneur Craig Mateer announced "an aggressive growth strategy" for his fledgling baggage-handling business.

    Today, Mateer says his privately held Baggage Airline Guest Services Inc. -- using the acronym BAGS -- is doing "thousands" of transactions a year. He's used the time to fine-tune a system that provides airlines and hotel clients with a hassle-free, door-to-door leisure and business travel baggage handling system that meets federal government security requirements.

    Mateer, who founded the 500-employee company less than two years ago, expects the addition of Walt Disney World's hotel package business and several cruise lines later this year will grow the number of transactions to 3 million to 5 million within a year. While Disney is building in the system's costs, cruise lines, hotels and convention centers will charge a fee -- typically $10 to $20 -- for a boarding pass and the luggage.

    "Craig is doing what a lot of people have talked about doing," says John A. Dungan, director of global product management for privately held Arinc Inc., a 75-year-old Annapolis, Md., firm that specializes in transportation communications and systems engineering. "His principal value is to work with all the partners involved."

    Arinc, whose board of directors includes representatives from major airlines, provides Mateer with customized software and hardware that allows him to view major airline schedules, print boarding cards and bag tags, and access the entire system through a secure Internet connection.

    Nick Hafner, vice president of air and sea services for Miami-based Royal Caribbean Ltd., says Arinc's involvement carries some weight.

    "That means travel industry companies pay a lot of attention when they hear Arinc is involved. They take their business seriously," Hafner says.

    The Disney service, which kicks in May 5, "is a big deal," says Mateer. "They are the icon of service, and they set the industry standards."

    Disney announced its complementary "Magical Express" program in December and is already testing it. The service, which also includes free bus transportation to and from Orlando International Airport, is provided to every traveler who books a room in a Disney-operated hotel at least through the end of 2006.

    Peter Yesawich of Maitland-based Yesawich, Pepperdine, Brown & Robinson, an agency that specializes in the travel industry, agrees: "The Disney affiliation lends credibility and more consumer confidence."

    "Magical Express will provide a hassle-free experience for our guests from the airport to our hotel room door and back again," Al Weiss, president of Walt Disney World Resort, said in a recent statement. "It sets new standards for convenience, value and comfort, and we believe (it) will ... drive additional visitation to Central Florida."

    Disney officials won't estimate the number of transactions it expects to provide. But with nearly 25,000 rooms operating seven nights a week, the impact for BAGS could be significant.

    In addition, Mateer says, "We already have commitments from several major cruise lines." The first, he says, will be Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises.

    The Jewel of the Seas, a Royal Caribbean vessel, will be the first to offer the service, on an outbound basis only, starting next week in Fort Lauderdale.

    "We'll add one ship a week until we've made it ubiquitous on all but one of our 29 ships," says Hafner.

    He says the lines also will add the ports in Tampa, San Juan, Puerto Rico and Port Canaveral during the process.

    Servicing the cruise lines, Mateer says, requires another layer of infrastructure with different software and the capacity for satellite transmission of information while at sea.

    "The hardware is on the ships," Mateer says, "so wherever the ships go, the service goes."

    Travel-industry experts say Mateer's business should resonate with an industry desperate to reduce operating costs.

    "This service can reduce their direct payroll costs," says Yesawich, who sees the family traveler embracing the concept, although not in a hurry. "It's a novel idea that makes a great deal of sense. But it's not been widely market-tested yet."

    Hafner says a similar, but smaller service that Royal Caribbean tested in Vancouver "found very a very high acceptance rate with our customers there."

    Yesawich believes the service may have some limitations.

    "I don't think, generally, the business traveler is going to use it," he says. "Business travelers have an unrelenting anxiety about being separated from the tools of their business."

    However, the management at McCormick Place in Chicago, the nation's largest convention center complex, is betting business travelers will embrace the system.

    Matt Donaher, marketing director for the Chicago Airport System, which manages both the center and the airports, says the city will begin a soft rollout of the BAGS system in May.

    The city then plans to officially launch the system in June for the National Mayors Conference. The goal, he says, is to integrate it into both O'Hare and Midway airports and hopefully partner with as many as 10 major hotels in downtown Chicago.
     
  20. it398

    it398 New Member

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    just sitting in disney quest in the air conditioning on the internet killing the last 2 hours before flying home later, my sister kicked up a right fuss that we hadn't visited quest jet, anyway, i digress, i have a few photos which i will try to load but it won't be for a day or so.
     

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