Home » 5 BIG Changes Coming to Walt Disney World in 2022

    5 BIG Changes Coming to Walt Disney World in 2022

    magical express

    The past year has brought many big changes to the Walt Disney World Resort, and the beginning of a new year is just around the corner. With the new year comes exciting new attractions and experiences. However, we also say goodbye to a beloved service. Here are the biggest changes coming to Walt Disney World in 2022.

     Goodbye to Disney’s Magical Express

    magical express
    Image: Disney

    Beginning January 1st, Walt Disney World’s transportation service to and from the Orlando International Airport, also known as Disney’s Magical Express, will be discontinued. The service was first introduced in 2005 and has been a major perk of staying on Walt Disney World property. Disney’s Magical Express would transport guests from the airport to any of the Walt Disney World resort hotels free of charge, and many considered it to be the first taste of the “Disney Bubble” during their Disney vacations.

    There are several transportation options still available to guests, however, they will all come with a cost. Guests can choose to rent a car but will incur rental fees as well as parking fees at their resort. Rideshare services like Lyft and Uber are also available, or guests can choose a private car service or taxi. The final choice of transportation would be using Mears Connect. Mears (the company that has been running Disney’s Magical Express) offers both express and standard transportation to Walt Disney World Resort hotels from Orlando International Airport and back. The rates for standard, non-express shuttle service run about $30 per person round trip. If guests prefer express transportation with Mears Connect, that will run about $100 per person round trip.

    Parades are Returning to Magic Kingdom

    festival of fantasy
    Image: Amanda Dwyer

    It was announced that the Festival of Fantasy parade would be returning to the Magic Kingdom in 2022. While we have seen parades return at Very Merriest After Hours, this is the first parade to return during regular park hours. In the past, the parade has featured more than a dozen Disney stories represented and a fantastic soundtrack. Guests can spot Mickey and Minnie, many princesses, and even a dragon Maleficent float standing 26 feet tall.

    Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind Arrives

    guardians of the galaxy cosmic rewind
    Image: Disney

    Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind is a new roller coaster opening at Epcot in the Summer of 2022. It is being called a family-friendly story coaster with innovative vehicles that rotate 360 degrees. It will feature the first reverse launch and will be one of the longest indoor roller coasters in the world. Though details are scarce, I cannot help but wonder if this coaster will be similar to Escape from Gringotts at Universal Studios as there has been mention of a story and rotating vehicles allowing guests to see all the action.  The coaster will be housed within the first “other world” pavilion in the World Discovery neighborhood. Within this Wonders of Xandar pavilion (located where the former Universe of Energy pavilion was housed), guests can learn more about the Xandarian people including their culture and history. 

    Fantasmic! returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios

    Image: Theme Park Tourist

    One of the most beloved nighttime spectaculars, Fantasmic! has been announced to return in 2022. Join Mickey and his friends on a journey into Mickey’s imagination. The show features breathtaking water effects, lasers, pyrotechnics, and a memorable soundtrack. This is a magnificent show that you do not want to miss once it returns.

    The Star Wars Galactic Starcruiser takes off

    Image: Disney

    In March of 2022, the Galactic Starcruiser will make its first launch. This is a 2-night fully immersive and interactive Star Wars experience that puts guests in the center of their own Star Wars story. Guests will interact with a myriad of characters, try exotic galactic cuisine, and choose many activities ranging from lightsaber training to droid racing. Guests can even choose to accept special missions. Pricing for this experience is dependent on how many people are in a room. Prices range from about $750-$1200 per person, per night and include resort stay on the Halcyon starcruiser, meals, activities, and a trip to Batuu (Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios). While it can be pricy for the average guest, this is an incredible experience for avid Star Wars fans. 

    What attractions or experiences are you most excited about?