Article last updated: November 1, 2017
One of the best parts of staying at a Disney World resort is the ability to get your boarding pass and check your bags at the resort for the return flight home, saving you lots of time and luggage transfer hassle.
Anybody can use it - you do not have to be using Magical Express.
Here's how Resort Airline Check-In at Disney World works...
How resort airline check-in works
The resort airline desks are usually located in the lobby or entrance area of Disney World resorts and are open from 5 a.m. to noon only. If your flight is before 8 a.m., you will not be able to check your bags but can take your luggage with you to check at the airport. You must check in at least 3 hours before your flight departure, but can't check in for your flight more than 12 hours in advance.
It is appropriate to tip the people handling your luggage here because it is similar to curbside check in at the airport.
Some warnings about some issues people have had:
- Boarding passes printed at the front desk of the resort and not the resort airline check-in are often/usually rejected at the airport
- People flying on airlines that have some tickets without assigned seats (like Delta) will not be able to use Resort Airline Check-In (people flying Southwest should be fine)
- People with names that are hyphenated or contain something extra like "Jr." will often not be able to use Resort Airline Check-In
- If your flight is delayed, Resort Airline Check-In may not be an option
All resort guests flying on one of the following airlines (including international guests) can get boarding passes for their flight at their resort and check their bags as well. This is not limited to only people using Magical Express.
- Alaska Airlines
- American Airlines
- Delta Air Lines (domestic flights only)
- JetBlue Airways
- Southwest Airlines
- United Airlines
If you're flying an airline that requires you to pay for checked bags, you will need to do that at the Resort Airline Check-In desk. Oversized bags (usually anything over 50 pounds) are not allowed here and will have to be checked at the airport.
People who are flying on airlines that are not listed above cannot take advantage of this service, but can still use Magical Express. You would just need to bring your own luggage when you get on the bus, and then get your boarding pass and check bags at the airport.
Departure day tips
Planning to go to a park or have a meal before heading to the airport? Here's a suggestion for how to plan your departure day.
- Pack your bags and head to the airline check-in desk at your resort
- Take any carry-on bags that you don't want to lug around to bell services
- Enjoy your time in the parks or wherever else you're headed
- Return to resort to pick up bags from bell services
- Head to the airport. With your bags already checked, your airport time will be much easier.
Have any questions or comments about Resort Airline Check-In? Please share in the comments.