Mexico Travel Guides
Flight and Transfers
Virgin Atlantic operates direct flights from Gatwick to Cancun International Airport on Tuesdays and Saturdays with the flight lasting approximately 10 hours 30 minutes. British Airways operates a direct service on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday with the flight lasting approximately 11 hours.
Regional flights connecting with Virgin Atlantic flights from Gatwick are available with Flybe from Guernsey, Jersey, Belfast City Airport, Isle of Wight, Inverness, Aberdeen, Newcastle, Leeds Bradford and Newquay. Regional flights connecting with British Airways flights are available from Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Jersey, Manchester and Newcastle. Due to connections times it may be necessary to overnight at Gatwick when booking regional flights.
Thomson Airways operate charter flights from Gatwick, Manchester and Birmingham year round, from Newcastle from March to October, from Glasgow from May to November, from East Midlands and Bristol from May to October and from Edinburgh from June to July.
If you are staying at a resort in the Cancun area, transfers will take around 15-30 minutes. If your hotel is based in Riviera Cancun, Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen or Tulum, the transfer time will be 30-90 minutes depending the resort that you’ve chosen. If you’re staying on Cozumel your transfer will include a ferry ride from Playa del Carmen and the total transfer time will be 2-3 hours.
If you’ve pre-booked your transfer arrangements with us, a Tropical Sky representative will meet you on arrival and direct you to your transfer vehicle.
Currently a visa is not required for British or Irish passport holders but you must obtain a travel card on arrival, which at present time costs less than £20. This should be re-checked on booking for any changes. Passports must be valid for at least the duration of stay and you must have a return or onward ticket. All travellers should check full entry requirements prior to travel by visiting the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) website or by contacting the relevant embassy.
Bus: Buses are an excellent way to get around Cancun – they are cheap and plentiful and can take you to pretty much anywhere that you’re likely to want to visit. The driving style employed here is often fast and frantic – but it’s quite a fun and different way to experience a bus journey. The buses run very regularly and you won’t need to stand at a bus stop for very long before one arrives. They are, however, very busy and can’t be considered the most luxurious way to get around.
Around the hotel zone, bus is by far the best method of transport if your hotel does not offer a shuttle to wherever you want to go.
Taxi: Taxis are perfect if you’d like have the freedom of driving without the stress. There are plenty of them around, although you’ll find that they’re much cheaper in the downtown area and a tad expensive in the hotel zone.
Self-Drive: It can be a very convenient option to drive yourself around Cancun. The road surfaces are generally good and it can be cheaper than taking a taxi, especially if you’re likely to take any long trips that are not arranged by your resort.
Spanish is the official language but English is widely spoken as a second language in the tourist areas. Most people you encounter will have at least a basic understanding of English. Nevertheless, it might be worth brushing up on your Spanish a little – it may not be required, but it may well make things easier.
The Mexican Peso is the local currency, although it is often the case that US dollars are accepted, especially in tourist areas. It’s best to check rather than to assume, and may be true that some shops will give a less-than-favourable exchange rate if you want to pay in US dollars. Credit cards are widely accepted.
110-120V, 60 Hz, flat two pronged plugs (US/Canada standard)
Vaccination and Health
Health requirements often change, so check with your GP or specialist travel clinic in advance of your holiday for specific information related to your travel and medical history. Additional information can be found by visiting NaTHNaC or MASTA Travel health.
The sun is very bright and strong in Cancun, this means that UV rays will burn you very quickly if your skin is used to less intense sunlight. The use of high factor sun cream is absolutely essential and topping up is a good idea if you’re out in the sun for much of the day.
Equally, you should drink plenty of water to avoid sunstroke and dehydration. Be aware that most resorts and high-quality restaurants will use a water filtration system to ensure tap water is safe to drink, however, if you find yourself away from your resort you should stick to bottled water to make sure it’s safe. Tap water outside of the resorts is not safe to drink.
GMT -6 hours (-7 hours in summer)