When the Magical Express was discontinued just last month, many tourists traveling to Orlando specifically to visit Walt Disney World were concerned they'd be at a loss. The complimentary shuttle service provided by Disney had been used to shuttle visitors to and from Orlando International Airport for many years. Luckily for everyone, the void has been filled with the help of Transportation Management Services' new shuttle service, The Sunshine Flyer.
Introducing the Sunshine Flyer
Transportation Management Services has decades' worth of experience in the transportation industry and has proven to be a reliable method of transit for years. The Sunshine Flyer aims to start the vacation for guests as soon as they hop on board with retro passenger vehicles that have been outfitted to resemble old-fashioned locomotives. Shuttle staff will carry on the themed voyage in 1920's costumes fitting of the time and profession. The shuttles will also have onboard entertainment to keep families engaged.
Prices for The Sunshine Flyer are $17 per adult and $12.50 per child for one way. Roundtrip journeys cost $34 per adult and $25 per child, and tickets can be booked here.
We talked with Tony Glibkowski, Vice President of The Sunshine Flyer, about the exciting new service and what visitors can expect from The Sunshine Flyer.
Exploring the New Sunshine Flyer
WT: Aside from seeing a need from tourists, were there any other factors that prompted the creation of The Sunshine Flyer?
Glibkowski: We want guests to be able to begin their vacation the second they step off the plane. Our excellent team and immersive experience will make transport to Walt Disney World® Resorts a stress-free process that is fun for all ages.
WT: What inspired the theme for the Sunshine Flyer?
Glibkowski: As avid Disney travelers ourselves, the inspiration behind The Sunshine Flyer actually came from my family. On one of our trips, every time my wife and I would wait for the monorail with our kids, they would always stare down the tracks anticipating which color monorail would be ours. We wanted to recreate that exciting buildup with The Sunshine Flyer, anticipating which unique train motorcoach will start off your magical vacation.
Experts in Transportation
WT: Are there any other unique aspects that genuinely set The Sunshine Flyer apart from the Magical Express service?
Glibkowski: Knowing that no one does a themed experience better than Disney, we are trying to bring that level of fun to the resort transportation. With The Sunshine Flyer, we are delighted to offer a motorcoach experience that incorporates our themed train motorcoaches and kickstarts the magical vacation for our riders of all ages from the moment they exit their plane at MCO. Our train motorcoaches offer an extraordinary experience built on the 1920s rail travel experience. Each motorcoach has the appearance of an old-fashioned passenger car and train engine where our staff is dressed head to toe as 1920's train conductors and engineers.
WT: With over 25 years of transportation experience, there's clearly a high level of expertise here. How will that make the new service an improvement over past transportation options?
Glibkowski: We know guests are eager to start their vacations, so efficiency is key to The Sunshine Flyer experience. Through our routing platform, we can set transport parameters based around the customer needs of each day. While the number of stops and ride time may vary, all stops for each motorcoach will be close in proximity, and no ride will exceed more than 65 minutes. Additionally, once guests enter the staging area, they will wait no longer than 20 minutes to board their motorcoach. With our current fleet of 15 fully wrapped motorcoaches and an additional 20 that will be added for the spring break rush, wait time will not be an issue as guests begin their Disney adventures.
Partnership With Make-A-Wish Central & Northern Florida
To make the service even sweeter, for the first 50 days of service, 50% of ticket sales on The Sunshine Flyer will be donated to Make-A-Wish Central & Northern Florida. Those in the Make-A-Wish program will also receive service on The Sunshine Flyer for the foreseeable future.
WT: Can you tell me a little bit more about the partnership with Make-A-Wish?
Glibkowski: The Sunshine Flyer has made a commitment to support the admirable mission of Make-A-Wish® Central & Northern Florida that is bringing to life the wishes of children with critical illnesses. Because it is the 50th Anniversary of Walt Disney World®, we wanted to continue the celebration by donating 50% of all ticket sales to the foundation during the first 50 days of service. Additionally, we will provide free rides to all children and families visiting the park through the Make-A-Wish® Foundation Grant.