Testing Out Disney's Mobile Lobby Experience

You may have recently heard about a new service at the Walt Disney World Resort Hotels called 'Mobile Lobby Experience.' It's been reported by various online outlets that the system equips friendly Cast Members with iPads and allows guests to be checked-in from locations other than the front desk to quickly check-in guests from curbside or in the lobby area of the hotel. That sounds great! But don't get too excited, the iPad based check-in system is still very much a work in progress.

Anna Greets Guest for Check-In at the Grand FloridianAnna Greets Guest for Check-In at the Grand Floridian

Over the past two weeks we've sent seasoned travelers searching for details. During this time period our guests checked into three different WDW Resorts (Boardwalk, Animal Kingdom Lodge, and the Grand Floridian) and experienced the new system. In each case the check in process was similar and the information collected reflected very limited capabilities to the 'Mobile Lobby Experience.'

At each of the three resorts a friendly cast member armed with and iPad greeted our guests curbside or in the lobby. After taking the guests name those Cast Members were able to able to look up reservation and check to see if a guest's room is ready. The Cast Member then escorts the guest to the desk for check-in to be completed. Once safely in the hands of a front desk clerk, guests have their credit cards processed and Key to The World cards printed. The process is similar to one that's been used for concierge guests checking in for several years now, only with enhanced technology applied on a larger scale.

Boardwalk Curbside GreetersBoardwalk Curbside Greeters

The iPad toting Cast Members that our travelers spoke with shared that the 'Mobile Lobby Experience' software is still experiencing a few glitches and won't allow for the completion of check-in from the iPad. They were unaware if the future versions of the program would evolve to allow for keys to be printed curbside when the program is in full swing.

The new system opens up possibilities of checking-in guests very quickly on arrival at the hotel, without the need to join a queue. However, the current version seems to be more of a stepping-stone in the process to a fully mobile lobby experience. It's lovely to be personally greeted upon your arrival at the resort, and creates a feeling of personal welcome and well-being. However for the moment, you'll still need to stop by the front desk to take care of business.

Keep your eyes open though, because as the roll out of MyMagic+ technology continues throughout the coming months systems will begin to integrate for a seamless, custom resort experience from the moment you arrive. Have you enjoyed this new 'Mobile Lobby Experience' recently? If so, leave a comment and let us know what you thought about it!

Rockster wrote on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 06:01:

Rockster's picture

We stayed at the Boardwalk resort March 7-14 in order to take in the 2013 Epcot Flower and Garden Show. The Boardwalk is one of our favorite DVC resorts. This time around, we were greeted in the lobby by a nice lady castmember with an I-Pad in tow. She greeted us and asked for our names. From there she pre-checked us in and told us our room was all ready for us to go to. Yes, she took us over to the regular check-in counter where we got our room key and gave our credit card to the castmember behind the counter. We got our key and took a quick walk to our room to check it out.

Since we had used the Disney Magical Express, our luggage had not arrived yet. But we were able to freshen up and head over to Epcot to start our fun stay. We did not experience any problems or glitches using this interesting check-in method. The lobby was not busy, but there was a short line. So, it was kind of nice not having to stand in line, but get down to business quickly. When the preliminaries with the I-Pad were taken care of, there was a castmember behind the counter that was able to take over immediately and finish our check in.

I give the system an A. It worked great and we got off to Epcot quickly without any hassle.

LOLITA K wrote on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 13:22:

LOLITA K's picture

My husband and I stayed at The Boardwalk in Oct 2010, they were already doing it then. It was amazing fast and easy!! We loved it!!

Kevin C. wrote on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 13:44:

Kevin C. 's picture

This last weekend at Boardwalk we did the mobile check in, cast member was very helpful but this time she served as an escort to the front desk. When they implement the My Magic wrist bands they will be able to sync your room keys curbside. They will also be able to act as a curbside concierge (verifying reservations /tickets etc.) The wristbands are very exciting and something to look forward to at the end of the year!

Andre wrote on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 14:56:

Andre's picture

I'm just happy to see Disney utilizing iPads. I filled out an entry gate survey at Universal Studios Orlando last week and they were using this ghastly touch screen windows based tablet that used a stylus and it was a frustrating experience. I mentioned to the cast member that an iPad would have made it a much better process.

Chad S wrote on Tue, 04/30/2013 - 18:28:

Chad S's picture

Take the article and Rockster's comment and put them together. For those going the full Disney route, why not give the guest cards when they check-in for Magical Express. Get off the bus, give a card to the Curbside greeter where they could scan the card tell you if room is ready, direct you to park transportation or whatever else you need (attach CC, confirm reservations, fast pass, etc).

V No Privacy wrote on Wed, 05/01/2013 - 14:24:

V No Privacy's picture

The ipads (eventually) should be themed to each resort - like a themed ipad cover or something. It looks a little out of place for someone in tropical or 1920s wear to be holding one as is. A cool concept over all though once they work out the kinks.

Kristen K. wrote on Wed, 05/01/2013 - 17:25:

Kristen K.'s picture

Thanks so much everyone! Keep the experiences coming!

I love hearing how this system is coming on line and working for Guests checking in. I'm really looking forward to the possibilities that will come when the full MyMagic+ system is in place. It's an exciting time at Disney!

Keith wrote on Thu, 05/02/2013 - 01:10:

Keith's picture

We had this at the Beach Club In October 2012 for Check Out. It was great.

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