Questions about flying through Mexico City airport
  • I am traveling to Cancun from San Francisco with an hour and 25 minute layover in Mexico City. This is my first trip to Mexico, I'm traveling alone, and the more reviews and comments I read the more terrified I am of making this trip! I hope someone can answer these questions with straight answers and maybe some advice, so here goes:

    1. Since my Aeromexico flight from SF to Cancun is an international flight, do I have to go through customs in Mexico City or in Cancun? And do I have to pick-up my bags in Mexico City and then re-check them for the flight to Cancun? (This may seem obvious, but I'd rather look like a fool with the question than look like a fool at the airport because I missed my connection)
    2. In Mexico City, is it difficult to get from the terminals for arriving international flights to the terminals for departing domestic flights? Is an hour and 25 minute layover enough time or should I run?
    3. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips about how to navigate from my arriving flight to my departing flight? For example, how will I know what gate to go to? Are there particular signs that I should look for?

    Thanks so much for anyone who's willing to offer some help!
  • Hi,

    Firstly, if you are that concerned about traveling to Mexico, then why are you going?!

    1. You go through customs in Mexico city. Your bags will go straight through to Cancun, but regardless of which flight you take, you should always double-check by asking at the check-in desk when you depart, in this case in SF.
    2. Aeromexico arrive and depart from the same terminal regardless of whether they are international or dmoestic. Aeromexico use Terminal 2. But it should tell you this on your ticket.
    3. Due to security reasons you are not notified of your gate until about half an hour before boarding time. Check the big TV screens to see which gate your flight is departing from.

    Have fun in Mexico, it really is a great country.
  • Hi Lee -

    Thanks so much for your response.

    Yes, that is a good question and the answer is that I'm meeting three other girlfriends in Cancun to celebrate one of their 40th birthdays. We've been friends since grade school so I'd travel to the ends of the earth to be there! Unfortunately, we're all coming from different cities and it wasn't possible to coordinate the flights.

    As for your answers to my questions, that really helps to put my mind at ease. And despite my minor anxieties above, I can't wait to get there and spend five wonderful, albeit possibly rainy according to the forecase, days with my dearest friends.

    Thanks again!
  • You are welcome. Mexico is getting some bad press at the moment, but to be honest, where isn't??!! Millions of tourists visit Mexico every year, if it was that bad, then no-one would go.

    If you can, try to spend a day on the island of Isla Mujeres. It is just off the coast of Cancun. You can catch the fast ferry from Cancun. Makes for a great day out, and North Beach is gorgeous especially around by the lagoon. The island is much less touristy than Cancun.

  • I have a question similar to CBs. I will be flying from the states into D.F. for a business trip, but I am thinking of flying in a few days early to take a side trip to Oaxaca. If I get a USAir ticket to D.F. (which my company will pay for) and a Mexicana ticket from D.F. to Oaxaca (which I will be paying for), I don't think I will be able to have my bags to go straight through to Oaxaca. That being the case, realistically, how long will it take me to get through customs, pick up my luggage, re-check my luggage, and find my Mexicana gate? One of the flight options I'm looking at would have me arriving a 12:40 and leaving at 2:35, but I have a feeling that that would not be enough time to make my connection.

    I appreciate any thoughts anyone may have on this.


  • Hi TR,

    2 hours is plenty of time. But is all depends on whether your USAir flight is on time or not. You are better off buying a ticket from wherever you are to Oaxaca, which will inevitably go via Mexico City, but then at least the airline company is responsible if you miss your 2nd flight due to delays on the 1st flight.

  • Hi Lee,

    I can't get a flight from here (Charlotte) to Oaxaca because the D.F.-Oaxaca leg is personal, while the Charlotte-D.F. leg is business, and also becasue the D.F. trip is for a week and the Oaxaca trip will just be for two nights (is that enough time in Oaxaca to make it worth it?).

    Would you know how good Mexicana is about putting people on later flights if they miss their flight?


  • Hi,

    Can't you explain the situation to your business that you need one ticket, but you will pay the DF to Oaxaca section? Two nights, does that mean you will have one full day in Oaxaca, or one and a half days, or almost two days? One day will give you a taster, but Oaxaca is a great place, so the more time the better.

  • Right now it looks like the most I can manage is one full day in Oaxaca. Thanks Lee!

  • Hi,

    It's not much, but its something. You will want to spend the morning at Monte Alban Ruins and then spend the afternoon walking around town soaking up the atmosphere.

  • Lee,

    Is it safe to walk around Oaxaca at night? Whenever I'm in Mexico City I usually do my walking around during the day. Thanks,

  • Within the town centre it is fine to walk at night.

  • Lee,

    I'm thinking I may fly into Mexico City and then head to Oaxaca for a day later in the week. Would you know how much in advance I need to be at the DF airport for a domestic flight, and how much in advance I'd need to be at the Oaxaca airport for the flight back to DF? (I'm assumng the Oaxaca airport is pretty small). Also, would hotels in DF hold my luggage if I check out for a day to take an overnight trip?

    Thanks again,

  • Hi,

    Sorry, I don't know how long you need to be at the airport beforehand. I think it's 1 hour minimum. Check the airline's website.

    Yes, the hotel would store your luggage.

  • Thanks, Lee, I appreciate it.
  • Hi, I wonder if anyone could help?
    I am arriving in Mexico City from San Jose at 11.00, and plan to catch the 13.40 flight back to London. Does anyone know if 2 hours 40 minutes would be enough time for me to check out and check in my bags again and catch the flight??
  • If there are no delays then that should be plenty of time.
  • I'm holding Vietnam passport and US green card + us driver license, do I need to have visa for my Cancun trip? Please help
  • Hi all,

    Not sure if this post is still active, but my partner and I are off on honeymoon to San Carlos not far away from Hermosillo airport. 

    As its our first time to Mexico has anyone got any hints, tips or advice for us?

    Many Thanks

    Nicci (England)
  • Hermosillo airport is about 80 miles from San Carlos approximately a 2 hour journey. So not that close.
  • Oh on Google maps it said only 30 min journey, guess we're a bit stuffed then :-/

    Do you know what San Carlos is like?
  • My bad I've looked at the wrong airport ha, but anyway, I how the area is nice!
  • Its definitely not a 30 min journey l have been to Mexico but not San Carlos but it is said to be very safe and very nice. Have a great honeymoon :x
  • Thank you, I'm sure we will :-)

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