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Thursday, July 14, 2011

WDW Monorail Shutting Down 1 Hour After Regular Park Hours.

Walt Disney World has decided to cut back on after-hours monorail service during Extra Magic Hours. Starting today, the Epcot monorail ceases operations one hour after regular park closing. The Magic Kingdom monorails cease operations one hour after regular park closing in a few weeks, beginning on Monday, August 1.

It's likely that this change is designed to allow for more downtime for the monorails and their drivers. It was at the end of a late Extra Magic Hours evening at the Magic Kingdom the night of July 3-4, 2009, that a fatal monorail crash occurred, taking the life of monorail pilot Austin Wuennenberg. It's possible that the late hour was a contributing factor in the crash, both in the fatigue of those involved, and in the fact that the monorail supervisor was taking a dinner break away from the monorail station at the time of the accident. It's also possible that this in an attempt to make the monorail resorts a little less attractive, and to shift the demand for resorts to other locations around property.

In addition, with the "Tronorail" being converted back to Monorail Coral, the system is down to 10 trains again until August.

Since Extra Magic Hours are for resort guests only, monorails between the parks and the Transportation and Ticket Center are less necessary because most guests get to the parks via bus. However, for those guests staying at monorail resorts, losing the ability to take the monorail back to their resort and having to take a boat or a bus is much more of a hardship.

What do you think?

Will cutting monorail service during Extra Magic Hours make it less likely that you'll stay at a monorail resort?

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