By Plane

Most international visitors arrive at Cancun International Airport ([tel] 998/848-7200;, lying across Highway 307 from the southern tip of Cancun’s Hotel Zone. The airport is 20 km (12.5 miles) from the heart of the Hotel Zone, about a 25-minute drive, and 19 km (12 miles) from Ciudad Cancun, about 20 minutes away.


RENTAL CARS: Most major car-rental firms have outlets at the airport, so if you’re renting a car, consider picking it up and dropping it off at the there to save on airport-transportation costs. Booking the rental online before you leave home will also save money compared with renting after you arrive. Major agencies include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Hertz, National, and Thrifty; In my experience, National generally has the best cars at the lowest prices. The Zona Hotelera (Hotel Zone) lies 10km (6[bf]1/4 miles)—a 20-minute drive—from the airport along wide, well-paved roads. Be prepared: Online quotes usually do not include taxes and insurance, which can bring the daily price to double what’s initially quoted. (See p.### for more details.)

TAXIS: The rate for a private taxi from the airport is $40 one way or $70 round trip  to Ciudad Cancún (downtown) or the Hotel Zone. The airport shuttle service to the Hotel Zone is $12 per person one way or $20 round trip; up to four people can book the “Economical Service” for $30 one way or $55 round trip for the entire group.  SuperShuttle (www. began service in Cancun in 2014; rates range from $11 per person to Cancun (downtown or Hotel Zone) to $38 to Tulum There is no shuttle service returning to the airport from Ciudad Cancún or the Hotel Zone, so you’ll have to take a taxi, but the rate will be much less than for the trip from the airport. (Only federally chartered taxis may take fares from the airport, but any taxi may bring passengers to the airport.) Ask at your hotel what the fare should be.

LOCAL BUSES: ADO runs a bus from the airport to its station in Ciudad Cancún for 64 pesos. From there, you can take another bus for less than a dollar to Puerto Juárez, where passenger ferries run to Isla Mujeres regularly. It also has a bus from the airport to Playa del Carmen for 156 pesos.

By Car

From Mérida or Campeche, take Hwy. 180 east to Cancún. This is mostly a winding, two-lane road that branches off into the express toll road 180D at Izamal, The toll road ends at the libre (free) Hwy. 180  in the outskirts of Cancun. At that point you can either continue on Hwy 180 east into Cancun, or take the local road to the southeast to the airport and Hwy. 307, which will take you to Riviera Maya and points south. Mérida is about 320km (200 miles) from Cancun, about four hours’ drive.

By Bus

Cancún's ADO bus terminal (tel. 01-800/702-8000; sits in downtown Ciudad Cancún at the intersection of avenidas Tulum and Uxmal. All out-of-town buses arrive here. Buses run to Playa del Carmen, Tulum, Chichén Itzá, other nearby beach and archaeological zones, and other points within Mexico. ADO buses operate between the airport and downtown,as well as from the airport directly to Playa del Carmen (from where ferries depart for Cozumel). Schedules and fares are subject to change, so ask your hotel for current details or stop by the station before you plan your departure.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.