When the Walt Disney World Resort Monorail system opened back in 1971, it was considered one of the most advanced (and futuristic) methods of transportation available in the United States. Now fast-forward to 2014. Would you still describe this transportation system to be "futuristic?" Do you think the current conditions of the vehicles (or trains) themselves is just as good as when the entire system debuted? Sadly, many will answer "no" to both questions.
While the Walt Disney World Resort Monorail has proven to be quite reliable for the past 43 years (there has been one fatal accident, unfortunately, but it still is one of the safest transportation systems in the world), time and the elements have seemingly taken a big toll on the monorail cars, and Disney doesn't seem to be keeping up with maintenance on said vehicles.
True, the system is currently undergoing a major upgrade (which involves the automation of the train; no longer will there be the need for a Cast Member to drive it, therefore reducing the possibility for human error), but that involves the technical aspect, which many Guests may not notice. What they will notice, though, is the sad look of the interior (and, sometimes, even the exterior) of the trains.
We have personally been noticing these issues for a while, but we were reminded about them while boarding monorail yellow a few days ago. If you don't find the following issues to be major, consider that monorail yellow is actually one of the trains that seems to be in better shape than most of the other trains. Imagine that.
First of all, the condensation that creates inside the cabins due to the extreme level of (necessary) A/C is becoming a major problem. water constantly drips down on Guests, the floor, and the seats. We are sure you will agree with us that this should not be considered normal. A minor amount of water is expected, of course, but not like this:
This particular seat was especially wet. Would you want to seat on that? Probably not:
The fabric on the sides of the seats is also very dated and looks dirty. The Walt Disney World Monorail system has thousands of Guests using it multiple times a day, so some level of wear and tear is expected, but we would also expect to see things taken care of periodically. This is not acceptable:
Even the doors themselves look dirty. If trains ever get completely replaced, we would suggest not using any type of fabric. It may look good at first, but it is incredibly difficult to take care of it:
As far as the floor goes, there is not much to say. For the amount of foot traffic it receives, it doesn't look too bad. Of course, there are some areas that look dirtier than others, but that is about it:
We would like to specify that we are not trying to have you, our Readers, concentrate too much on the faults that can be found while visiting the parks, but we do think that the Walt Disney World Resort - the LEADER in the theme park and entertainment business - should have higher standards that these. The monorail trains have not been changed in decades, and have just received minor changes in the past years. We are sure most of you will agree with us that something needs to be done.
Now, it is your turn to tell us how you feel about this. If you had the chance to use the monorail system during one of your most recent Walt Disney World Resort visits, did you notice some of these issues? Of course, we know that Guests are excited when visiting the parks, so we don't expect them to focus on the monorail trains. Some, though, notice the small things. Feel free to share your opinion.