During my last trip to Walt Disney World we had the experience of using Uber and the Minnie Van for transportation so that I could compare these services. These services do come at an additional charge and the free transportation options at WDW still exist, but Uber and the Minnie Van allow you to, in most cases, get around the World quicker.
The Minnie Van is the car service provided by Walt Disney World to compete with Uber/Lyft. They are operated by Disney employees (cast members) and are driving Disney transportation. (Disney provided vehicles known as the Minnie Van. (Which aren’t really a van but are instead an SUV, but are ADORABLE!))
Uber, as you know, is a company competing with taxi services, where the drivers are independent operators driving their own vehicles at schedules they themselves create. For the most part, I’ve found them to be very clean. Much cleaner than any taxi I’ve been in. Out of maybe 20-30 rides, 3 cars were not not as clean as I would have liked. But one of them had phone charging cables and a bottle of water for me!
Both services are used via apps on your phone. The Minnie Van operates under the Lyft app. If you are staying at a deluxe property, upon signing in the Walt Disney World app on your phone, it will automatically give you instructions on how to access the Minnie Van as a transportation option. If you are not staying at a deluxe property, you need to go to Bell Services at a deluxe property and they will give you a code to activate the service.
For more information on how to work the apps, check out this previous article that we wrote about using Uber at WDW.
Comparing both modes of transportation:
When comparing Uber plus Car Seat versus the Minnie Van, the price for a car with a car seat was roughly the same. It was $19.55 ish for an Uber with a car seat (Uber Family) versus the Minnie Van at $25 which always has two car seats available. As of now, I’m not aware of an option to use Lyft with car seats. (Edited in March 2018 to add the increased Minnie Van rate.)
The Minnie Van wins on the cuteness factor! It’s ADORABLE! They also can play music from the different Walt Disney World Resort deluxe hotels! It was so fun to pick and choose what we wanted to listen to. Plus the cast members give fun Disney tidbits. As a drawback, it took a little time getting the car seat installed, and it was tight getting the stroller in the back with the unused car seat. Each Minnie Van carries 2 car seats. But a fun extra, Minnie Vans will apparently make a stop at a nearby gas station for water, etc.
When we use Uber/Lyft on Disney property we often have Disney cast members that are off duty driving us around. So that’s fun, but not always guaranteed.
Minnie Vans will always be $25. Regular Uber and Lyft rides without car seats will almost always be cheaper. You can save even more by using referral codes for your first ride. Click for Uber or Lyft.
The bottom line- if I want to get somewhere quickly on Disney property, I will likely take a Minnie Van if my preschooler is with me, or take Uber/Lyft if it’s an adult only trip. Will you use it? Or have you already?? Comment below with your experience.