Cancun's International Airport is the principal gateway to Cancun and the Riviera Maya. The airport receives about 20 million passengers each year, making it the second busiest airport in the country after the Benito Juarez International Airport in Mexico City.
In 2012, the Cancun Airpot was awarded the best airport in the Latin America/Caribbean region by ACI (Airports Council International) in their Airports Service Quality Awards.
Cancun Code, Location, and Contact Information
Know Before You Go
The airport is located just 6 miles from the Cancun hotel zone and receives flights from major international airlines as well as charters.
Cancun airport has three terminals. Terminal 1 is used for charter flights. All scheduled domestic flights and some scheduled international flights come through Terminal 2, and Terminal 3 handles international airlines from North America and Europe. Terminals 1 and 2 are side-by-side and you can easily walk from one to the other. A shuttle runs from Terminals 1 and 2 to Terminal 3.
After deboarding, if you have checked luggage, make your way to the luggage conveyor belt for your flight (flight information is displayed above), and collect your luggage. You will then need to pass through customs. During your flight you will have received a customs form (FMM) which you should have filled out before you land. You will present this form to the immigration officer and they will determine how long you can stay in the country (maximum time for tourists is 180 days, but you may be granted less time).
After customs and before you exit the airport, you will pass through a hallway with desks and people offering tourist information and services. Many of these are timeshare salespeople, and they can be very pushy. They may call out to you and try to get your attention. It's best to just ignore them and continue on to the exit. It's best to have a transportation plan in place before your arrival.
Cancun Airport Parking
All terminals at the airport offer parking options for short and long term. If you are parking for less than six hours, than you will pay per hour, and for over six hours there is a day rate. Be sure to take your ticket with you and pay at the kiosk inside the terminal as exiting the parking lot is automated via machine.
Offsite parking is also an option via the nearby iPark lot. These rates are lower and the company offers a free shuttle service to the terminal.
The Cancun airport is located on the northeast of the Yucatan Peninsula right at the Cancun-Chetumal highway on Km 22 Benito Juarez, Quintana Roo. The airport is directly off a well-paved major highway with many signs indicating the exit ramp to the airport.
Public Transportation and Taxis
Cancun Airport is about a twenty-minute drive from the hotel zone, 45 minutes from Playa del Carmen, 90 minutes from Tulum and 2 hours from the Chichen Itza archaeological site. Regular city taxis are not authorized to pick up passengers from the airport, so you should choose one of the authorized transportation services.
Ground transfers: Pre-arrange your transfer to your hotel in Cancun or the Riviera Maya through one of the many companies offering the service on the internet or through your hotel. A few companies that offer transportation service, both private and shared, are Best Day, and Lomas Travel which besides offering airport transfers also offers tours throughout the area.
Renting a car: Renting a car is a good option for visits to Cancun and the Riviera Maya. Roads are generally in good condition and signage is ample. Get info about renting a car in Mexico.
Bus Service: For a more economical option, the ADO bus company offers service to the center of Cancun, Playa del Carmen, or Merida. There are frequent departures between 8 am and 11 pm. Taxis from the bus station offer much more economical rates than those from the airport. The ADO bus ticket booth is located just outside Terminal 2.
Where to Eat and Drink
Within the airport, there is a large selection of restaurants, bars, and fast food outlets as well as a wide variety of shops. You will also find banks, ATMs, and currency exchange booths as well as options for car rentals, and tourist information desks.
- Baskin Robbins: Lower Level Foodcourt
- Burger King: Lower Level Foodcourt
- Corona Beach Bar: Lower Level near Gate B
- Domino's Pizza: Lower Level Foodcourt
- Snack & Bar To Go: Lower Level near Gate B
- Grab & Go Lower Level Foodcourt and Upper-Level Gate A
- Guacamole Grill: Lower Level Foodcourt
- Jose Cuervo: Upper-Level Gate A
- Kahlua Cafe: Lower Level Foodcourt
- TGI Fridays: Lower Level Foodcourt and Upper Level
- Bubba Gump: Upper Level
- Domino's Pizza: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Johnny Rocket: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Grab & Go: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Guacamole Grill: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Margarita Ville: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Peking Xpress: Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Haagen-Dazs: Main Level Check-In and Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Starbucks Coffee: Main Level Check-In and Upper-Level Foodcourt
- Berry Hill: Main Level Entrance
Where to Shop
Terminal 3 hosts the widest variety of shopping options. In addition to the usual Duty-Free selections, there are clothing, souvenir, book and magazine, and even watch and jewelry stores.
- Air Shop: Convenience Store, Main, and Upper Level
- Hard Rock Store: Clothing and Souvenirs, Main level
- International News Shop: Books, Magazines, Newspapers, Main and Upper Level
- Los Cinco Soles: Jewelry and Handcrafts, Main + Upper Level
- Senor Frogs: Clothing and Accessories, Main Level
- Pineda Covalin: Clothing and Accessories, Main + Upper Level
- Sunglass Island: SunglassesMain and Upper Level
- Harley Davidson: Clothing and Accessories, Main and Upper Level
- Portfolio: Clothing, Main Level
- Xpress Spa: Spa, Upper Level
- Watch my Watch: Watches, Main Level
In Terminal 3 there are fewer shopping choices of note.
- Les Boutiques: Luxury Accessories, Main Level
- Aldeasa Duty-Free: Wine, Liquor, Tobacco, Cosmetics, Main and Upper Level
Prior to security in Terminal 3, the Grupo Mera offers a bar, snacks, toilets, massage chairs, restrooms, and unlimited internet connection for $35.00 USD. Children are free with an adult. For those with a long wait before their flight, this can be a great bargain.
There is a free internet offered in all terminals. Once you connect to the network, open up a mobile browser and a web page will display a page from the sponsored the host of the wireless network— at that point, you will be able to start surfing the Internet.
Airlines Serving the Cancun Airport
Mexican Airlines: Aeromar, Aeromexico, Aerotucan, Interjet, MAYAir, VivaAerobus, Volaris
Air Canada, Aircomet, AirEuropa, Air Tran, Air Transat, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, America West Airlines, Amerijet, Atlantic Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Belair, Blue Panorama Airlines, CanJet, Condor, Continental Airlines, Copa Airlines, Corsair, Cubana, Delta, Edelweiss Air, Euro Atlantic Airways, Eurofly, Frontier Airlines, Global Air, Iberia, Iberworld, JetBlue Airways, KLM Northwest Airlines, LAB Lloyd Aereo Boliviano, LanChile, MagniCharters, Martinair, Miami Air, Monarch, North American Airlines, Northwest Airlines, Novair, Pace Airlines, Primaris Airlines, Ryan International Airlines, Skyservice Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, Tam Airlines, Tikal Jets Airlines, United Airlines, U.S. Airways, Westjet.