by: guide4wdw – Collin

An Interesting Disney Bus Transit Experience – A Surprising Cast Member Role 

Transportation at Walt Disney World tends to be a big factor in your vacation experience overall. From the Monorail transportation, to watercraft, to the upcoming gondola system, and certainly the classic bus transport, Disney truly provides for guests in basically every way. 

On our very early stays on property, many years ago over at Caribbean Beach, we relied on Disney bus transportation each and every day of our journey. It was a way not only to easily get to the parks, but also an opportunity to talk with friends or family we were traveling with, park the car for a bit, and really and truly just enjoy that “Disney bubble” so many of us have grown to love over the years. 

There really is something special about being able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride, as the trained cast member carries you on your way to your desired destination. Of course, the bus system isn’t without flaw and at times can be a bit crowded or hectic. With that being said, it leads right into our topic of discussion for today. 
On a recent trip to the parks, we boarded our bus from Disney’s Boardwalk Resort early in the morning in hopes of arriving at Animal Kingdom right before park opening. While we didn’t quite make it in time, we had the opportunity to interact with a unique cast member in an even more surprising role. As we stepped onto the bus, we noticed something a touch out of the ordinary (at least compared to our past experiences) in that there were two bus drivers on the actual bus. While this isn’t all that unusual in and of itself as driver changeovers do occur from time to time to give breaks, or even just switch shifts, this was a bit different. Rather that leaving the bus, this second driver stayed and talked to guests. 

I know that seems ridiculously simple, but upon inquiry he shared with us that this was his actual roll with the company and that he was hired to simply improve the guest experience. I must say, he did an incredible job. Throughout the whole journey, he told jokes, shared stories, and got to know just about everyone on the bus. Obviously it wasn’t a grand production, but it was certainly one of those unique moments that made me think, “only Disney would do this.” To other organizations, this would be an absurd concept. In essence, they hired an older gentleman with an excellent personality to ride around with the sole purpose of making guests days a little bit brighter and just a touch more memorable. 

For the life of me I can’t remember the cast members name, but it was a prime example of someone going above and beyond in a cast member role. As we reached our destination, everyone on the bus had a big smile on their face and were ready to enjoy the day. None of us ever anticipated that extra touch of magic in our day, but I’d have to openly and honestly admit it put everyone in my group in an even better mood. 

Sure, buses aren’t the ideal solution to the transportation situation at Disney and while I would be willing to bet we’ll see more that just the Skyliner system unveiled in the coming years, it’s interesting to see attention being brought to the bus system. 

At the end of the short trip, as I stepped off that bus, I had one overwhelming thought enter my mind. I had just experienced a small part of the “old Disney” mentality. For those of you who remember Disney 10 or so years ago, this was the quality of service you expected every minute of your trip and often times that expectation was met or exceeded day after day of your trip. Disney has slowly trickled away from that earlier mentality but still manages to create magic for guests day in and day out. At the same time it was neat to see an experience like this resurfacing in even a small way.     

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