Get ready to take a new way from LAX to Disneyland

October 28, 2019, 6:28 PM · If you're planning a trip to Southern California's theme parks and you're going to be flying to the Los Angeles International Airport, you should be aware of some big changes coming to way that you exit LAX, starting Tuesday, October 29.

Starting October 29, LAX no longer will allow Uber, Lyft, or taxis to pick up riders in front of their terminals. Instead, all app and taxi services will pick up arriving passengers from a central rideshare lot located next to Terminal 1. (That's the Southwest airlines terminal.)

In addition, private vehicles will be banned from the "inside" lanes on the arrivals level, meaning that if friends or family are coming to get you at the airport, you will need to step out to the median islands where the shuttle buses have picked up passengers until now. Basically, shuttles buses and private vehicles are swapping places, as the inside lanes on the arrivals level now will be used for airport shuttles and FlyAway buses only.

One of those type of shuttles will be the new "LAX-it" (pronounced LA-exit) shuttle that will take arriving passengers to the new rideshare pickup lot. Or, you can walk from your terminal to the pickup lot. Just follow the signs to walk to Terminal 1, then cross to the pickup lot.

In addition, hotel and private parking shuttles will be moving up to the departures level for their pick-ups, taking the places of the now-banned taxi and rideshare pickups. Rental car shuttles, limos and shared ride vans will pick up in new locations on the median islands downstairs at the arrivals level.

The new rideshare pickup lot will be open for the next four years, until the automated people mover now under construction is finished. In 2023 (assuming it gets done on time), passengers will take the people mover to a new central transportation facility where they can pick up rental cars, hop on LA's Metro light rail system or get their Lyft, Uber or taxi.

Another option for Disneyland-bound visitors is the Gray Line Disneyland Resort Express, which is available for $23 one way per adult ($8 for kids) to or from LAX from or to Anaheim-area resorts. You can pick bus that up from your departure terminal. (There is no free Disney's Magical Express service in California.)

For what it's worth, I've been through or to LAX four times in the past five days, and I'm going again twice in the next week, so if you have any questions about navigating the third-busiest airport in the world, ask away in the comments.

Replies (9)

October 29, 2019 at 2:16 AM

How did they come up with the idea that "LAX-it" is pronounced LA-exit? It looks like it should be pronounced "L.A.X. It" or "Laxit."

October 29, 2019 at 8:57 AM

Airports have become so reactionary and slow to change that even brand new facilities are nearly obsolete shortly after they are complete. Honestly, I don't understand why private vehicles are ever given clearance to drive and park closest to terminal doors as airports should be encouraging mass transit use as much as possible and making it as difficult as possible for private vehicles to drive around the terminals (though what Logan has done by charging tolls just to drive a car onto the property is a bit extreme).

LAX is a bit of an extreme case because the airport has expanded more rapidly and haphazardly than most, but airport authorities need to pay more attention to transportation trends, and instead of bowing to increased passenger throughput, consider designs that may limit overall passenger access in order to make getting in an out of the facilities easier. Most airports have massive parking garages within walking distance of the core facility, but they're unwilling to give up the revenue generated from short/medium term parkers to give space for ride-share vehicles (even if they're only idle for 10-20 minutes). When we flew into LAX in August, it took nearly 45 minutes to get to the rental car facility, which is less than 2 miles away because traffic around the terminals was gridlocked mostly because of passenger cars gumming up lanes that should be solely designated for mass transit.

October 29, 2019 at 11:47 AM

I avoid LAX if at all possible. If you can fly into JW/OC airport instead do it! But I’m glad they are finally making these much needed changes. It should make getting in and out easier, especially when the transit hub and people mover are in place.

October 29, 2019 at 12:03 PM

@MarkSharp - Agreed, but it seems that prices to fly in and out of alternate SoCal airports have increased significantly over the past few years, offsetting any convenience advantage the smaller airports have over LAX. When we priced out our trip to SoCal earlier this year, LAX was by far the cheapest airport to fly to from all three (3) of our local airports (DCA, IAD, and BWI). About 10 years ago we flew into John Wayne through Southwest, and our trips before that, we flew into both Ontario and Long Beach via TWA. Unfortunately, with Southwest expanding their presence at LAX, the fares to fly to other airports have increased exponentially, and we found that direct flights in and out of LAX were over 50% cheaper than any other LA-area airport (or even SD for that matter, though SD always tends to be a very expensive airport to fly to for some reason). Our coast to coast nonstop RT price was less than $700 for 3 people to LAX, which would have been nearly $1,500 to any other LA-Area airport, and would have required transfers. Add to that the increased costs for rental cars and diminished public transportation options for the other SoCal airports, and you could easily find yourself spending over a thousand dollars just to avoid LAX.

I don't know about you, but even the annoyance of fling in and out of LAX is worth saving $1,000, particularly if you're spending a week or more in California.

October 29, 2019 at 12:33 PM

LAX is such a crapshoot right now. If you time it right, you sweep into the central terminal area and out again in minutes. Time it wrong (which is most of the time), and you're in gridlock from the Sepulveda exit from the 105 on in.

For context, I've arrived to that exit from Pasadena and said, "we're halfway there"... and I've been right.

FWIW, I always park in the Park N' Fly lot that is adjacent to the new rideshare pickup lot, so I am wondering how this change will affect access to that lot. I just walk between that parking lot and the terminals, which is always faster than waiting for some shuttle to take me to a remote parking lot.

LAX killed traffic flow in the central terminal area when it closed the Lot C remote parking lot. A lot of people who would have parked in the cheap Lot C instead chose to get dropped off and picked up from the airport instead, either by friends or rideshares.

But that just cause the traffic within the airport area to skyrocket, as now there are two round trips to the airport associated with that flight instead of one, and now each party getting dropped off and picked up has a private vehicle coming into the central terminal area, instead of a bunch of parties sharing a Lot C shuttle on the horseshoe.

October 29, 2019 at 2:08 PM

Ouch. So if I arrive at terminal 3 or 4, I either have to drag my luggage halfway across the airport, or wait for a shuttle to get a taxi to get out of the airport?

October 29, 2019 at 2:21 PM

Would I be right in presuming that the Airport charges an obscene amount of money for "Not-A-Taxi-but-actually-a-Taxi" services and busses to drop off and collect airport users?

I remember when flying into Orkney being absolutely shocked that the airport-town bus wasn't used as an excuse to gouge money - the price was less than I'd normally pay for a bus anywhere else.

October 29, 2019 at 5:52 PM

Traveled to Disneyland by flying to LAX once. It was meh.

Been flying to Tijuana ever since. Better prices and schedules for me.

We use the private border of Tijuana's airport. A friend picks up, drive thru In n Out Burger, and off to Disneyland while we dine in my friend's car.

We do, however, fly back from LAX most of the time.

October 30, 2019 at 1:42 PM

I dropped Brian at LAX this morning and... wow! Traffic patterns have inverted. The 105 exit ramp to Nash is now packed, but Sepulveda flows easily. The left two lanes in the tunnel are now packed, but the right lane is wide open. And lanes are wide open throughout the horseshoe. Dropping people off at LAX is now a breeze, instead of the congested hell it was before.

YMMV if you are waiting for an Uber, of course. But for people dropping off, LAX-it appears to be a major success.

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