Last Updated on November 23, 2022 by Janine
Wondering what the best Mexico City airport transportation options are? This guide outlines all the safest ways to get from the Mexico City airport to your accommodation.
One of the most important logistical details of any trip is how you’ll get from the airport to your hotel when you arrive in your destination. After a long, exhausting day of travel, the last thing you want to do is piecemeal your transportation plan together upon arrival.
Planning ahead will help you avoid being overcharged, protect you from potential scammers, and save you a lot of time and energy. Mexico City is one of the biggest cities in the world and the transportation options may appear complex at first glance.
This Mexico City Airport transportation guide will give you an overview of all the different options to help you choose the one that best fits your budget, comfort level, and travel style.
Where is the Mexico City international airport?
Mexico City’s Benito Juárez International Airport (MEX) is located about 5 miles from the city’s centro histórico and about 8 miles from the popular neighborhoods of Roma and Condesa. Though the airport is quite close to these popular areas, the travel time may be anywhere from 25 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic.
The Mexico City airport is the biggest and busiest in the country and it’s a major travel hub for not just Mexico, but Latin America. It processes over 100,000 travelers each day and is the hub for airlines such as Aeroméxico, Aeromar, Volaris, and VivaAerobús.
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Average cost: $250 MXN to $500 MXN, depending on your destination.
If you ask me, official airport taxis are the best option for airport transportation in CDMX because they are abundant and easy to use. When you exit the arrivals hall you will see booths selling tickets for “Taxi Seguro” (or something similar)– this is where you purchase a taxi ticket. Fares are fixed and based on which zone of the city you are traveling to. Purchasing a ticket from one of these booths will ensure you get a fair price and are placed in a legitimate taxi.
There are several different authorized taxi companies operating this way within the airport, and each of them is legitimate. Some offer more luxurious vehicles, and some provide services exclusively to women and employ female taxi drivers. In my experience, you can’t go wrong with any of them, but the prices may vary depending on your choice.
If you’re a budget traveler, know that taxi fares will be slightly elevated when you depart from the airport. Budget accordingly, and know that the rest of your transportation expenses will be lower. It’s worth paying a little more to ensure you get to your accommodation safely after a long day of travel.
Expect it to cost about 250 to 350 pesos to get from the airport to the Condesa/Reforma area (where many Mexico City hotels are located).
Once you purchase your taxi ticket, an attendant will direct you to a taxi queue where you’ll wait in line with other travelers until a car becomes available. Be warned. These taxi lines can be long if you’re traveling during rush hour. Expect to wait at least 30 minutes. Keep a few coins handy to tip the attendants if they help you load your bags into the taxi.
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Average cost: $250 MXN to $500 MXN, depending on your destination.
I’ve heard a lot of conflicting accounts of travelers trying to use Uber from the Mexico City airport. Many have been successful, but there are potential obstacles too.
Ubers are not technically permitted to operate out of the Mexico City airport, so it may be tricky to get one.
I’ve taken Uber from the airport myself, and the drivers always instructed me to go to the “Departures” area to be picked up. However, the last time I did this was in 2019, and it sounds like things may have changed.
I polled my Facebook Group to see what experiences others have had using Uber, and several people reported having successfully taken Ubers from the airport as recently as this week.
On the other hand, I’ve also heard of travelers having drivers cancel on them or asking them to meet somewhere a couple of blocks from the airport (not ideal if you have a lot of bulky luggage or fly in late at night).
These inconsistencies in rules and experiences are pretty common in Mexico– it just loves to keep us guessing! In my experience with other things of this nature, there may be long bouts of time where you can get Ubers from the airport without issue, and then suddenly, there will be a crackdown that makes it more challenging.
A similar thing happened with the 180-day immigration visa in 2021– for months, travelers reported being granted as little as a few days… but then a couple of months later, everything went back to normal, and now everyone seems to get 180 days by default.
I digress. The point is these things are constantly in flux.
If you’re the type of traveler who appreciates a concrete plan, I’d avoid Uber and take a taxi. A taxi may cost a couple of dollars more, but as long as you buy your ticket from one of the booths inside the terminal, Mexico City airport taxis are perfectly safe.
But, I know many travelers really prefer Uber. If this is you, go ahead and give it a try. Just know that there could be hangups, and taxis are always there as a backup!
When it comes time to return to the airport at the end of your trip, you shouldn’t have any problem getting Uber to drop you off.
Mexico City Airport Transfers
Average Cost: Around $450 MXN to downtown Mexico City.
Airport shuttles typically cost a little more than a taxi or uber, but they are really convenient and come with great perks. First, you can book them in advance, so you know a transfer will be waiting for you when you arrive– this saves you the hassle of having to even think about any other options. Plus, you won’t have to stop to get cash because you can pay for your shuttle online in advance.
A private transportation service usually offers nicer vehicles too, which means you’ll have more legroom and will inevitably be more comfortable– a nice perk after a long flight.
And finally, a professional driver will usually wait for you even if your arrival time changes. Knowing a driver will be there to pick you up when you land offers enormous peace of mind in what can be a hectic experience (navigating immigration in a foreign language).
Airport Taxi Transfers is a great company that you can use to book airport shuttle services in cities around the world. Click here to reserve your Mexico City airport transfer!
Average cost: $5 MXN
Mexico City has an extensive metro system with lines that cover most of the city. The Terminal Aérea metro station is located just outside of Terminal 1 at the Mexico City airport.
You can use Google Maps or Rome2Rio to plan your route to your accommodation, but I’ve outlined how to get to a couple of the most common destinations:
- Condesa: To get to Condesa from the airport, take Line 5 from Terminal Aérea toward Pantitlán. At the Pantitlán station, transfer to Line 9 in the direction of Tacubaya and get off at the Chilpancingo station.
- Centro Histórico: To get to Mexico City’s Zócalo from the airport, take metro Line 5 from the Terminal Aérea station toward Pantitlán. At the Pantitlán station, transfer to Line 1 toward Observatorio. Get off at the Pino Suárez station and walk North along Calle Pino Suárez for about 10 minutes to reach the Zócalo, also known as Plaza de La Constitución.
The metro is super economical (it costs 5 pesos) and it’s very efficient given that it enables you to avoid the city’s traffic congestion. However, it can be uncomfortably crowded at peak times.
I’ve used the metro several times and had some unpleasant experiences (including my partner having his phone and wallet stolen), so I’ve ultimately decided that I’d rather just take taxis or Ubers. They may cost more, but to me, it’s worth it because they’re more comfortable and less stressful.
That said, the metro can still be a good option, and it’s definitely the best way to go for budget travelers (if you feel comfortable navigating metro systems). Always be mindful of your surroundings and note how far the metro stations are from your final destination. If you’re traveling at night, walking alone in the dark is not advisable unless you know the neighborhood.
Local Bus Lines & Metrobus
Average cost: $5 – $10 MXN
There are all kinds of different local bus systems in Mexico, and you can use them to get to the airport. I have never done this because it’s the most confusing of the options on this list. But I wanted to list it just in case you want to try it.
Metrobus is one of the most popular types of buses in Mexico City and it stops at both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 of the airport.
To get to the city center, take Metrobus Line 4 from Terminal 1 toward San Lázaro. At San Lázaro, transfer to the Metro Line 1 toward Observatorio and get off at the Pino Suárez Station. From there transfer to Metro Line 2 toward Cuatro Caminos and get off at the Zócalo station.
For more detail, use Rome2Rio or Google Maps to figure out how to get to and from the Mexico City airport using buses.
Average cost: Anywhere from $300 MXN to $1500 MXN, depending on your destination and the level of service you opt for.
Depending on where you’re headed from Mexico City, you may be able to catch a bus there directly from the airport. There are regular departures for cities like Puebla, Queretaro, Cuernavaca, Córdoba, and more.
There are two bus stations attached to the Mexico City airport. One is near Terminal 1, by the ramp that leads to the international area of the airport. The other is in Terminal 2 near Gate D, between entrance 4 and the domestic arrivals exit.
If there aren’t direct buses from the airport to your next destination, you’ll have to find your way to the appropriate Mexico City bus station for the next leg of your journey.
Outside of the airport, there are four bus terminals in Mexico City:
- Terminal de Autobuses Norte: This station has buses departing for areas north of Mexico City, including Queretaro, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, and San Luis Potosí.
- Terminal de Autobuses de Pasajeros Oriente (TAPO): This station is very close to the Mexico City airport and has buses departing for destinations both east and south of Mexico City, including Oaxaca, Puebla, Xalapa, and more. The ADO bus line primarily operates out of this station.
- Terminal de Autobuses del Sur (Taxqueña): Buses from this station head to places south of Mexico City, including Puebla, Taxco, and Cuernavaca.
- Terminal de Autobuses del Poniente: Buses from Poniente head west of Mexico City to destinations like Manzanillo and Guadalajara.
You can use Busbud to plan and reserve intercity buses from the Mexico City airport.
Related Reading: The Ultimate Guide to Mexico’s Long-Haul Bus Network
Average cost: $1000 MXN/day (including insurance & fees)
I’m basically just including this option to tell you why I don’t recommend it.
If you’re thinking about renting a car for Mexico City, don’t bother. The traffic is horrible, and parking is tough to come by and expensive. It’s affordable to get around via Uber, Taxi, and metro, so there’s no reason to subject yourself to the hassle of renting a car here.
Rental cars can be awesome in other parts of the country, but you simply don’t need one here.
If you’re transiting through Mexico City to visit another area, I still don’t recommend a rental car. In most cases, taking a bus to the next city will be easier, safer, and more efficient than renting a car. You can always rent a car when you reach that destination if you still feel you need one (which you might, depending on your plans).
When it comes to renting cars, I recommend using Discover Cars to find the best rates on rental cars anywhere in Mexico.
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Mexico Guide Books
This Mexico phrasebook will help you communicate, even if your Spanish skills are lacking.
This Mexico travel guide is packed with all the info you could ever need.
I use a combination of Expedia, Airbnb, and VRBO to find accommodation throughout Mexico.
Some cities in Mexico have more listings on VRBO than Airbnb (or vice versa), so it’s best to check both to find the perfect place!
Rental cars add tons of flexibility to your travel plans. If you opt to rent one, I recommend using Discover Cars to find the best rates!
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