The Mexico City International Airport (Aeropuerto Internacional Benito Juarez) is the fastest, easiest, and safest way to get to Mexico City from the States. The airport is divided up into two major terminals, and a SkyTrain connects the two terminals. International flights often land in Terminal 1, and domestic flights often land in Terminal 2, so if you’re meeting friends there, make sure you tell the security guards at the SkyTrain terminals, and they’ll direct you to the way you should go.
Once you’ve landed, you have several options for transportation. One is to take the MetroBus to your destination. One trip (connections are included for one-way tickets but not round trip) is about 6 pesos or 32 cents.
We chose to take the subway, which is 5 pesos or 27 cents per trip. The Mexico City subway is truly impressive, and there is a stop right beside the airport, just make a left out of Terminal 2 and follow the signs. It’s relatively easy to follow, covers the vast majority of the city, and allows endless connections until you’ve exited the subway. All you have to do is purchase a ticket at any of the stands near the entrance to the subway, walk through the turnstiles, and find your stop. I would shy away from using it during rush hour, and don’t try to carry luggage or bikes on it. It’s crowded, hot, and dirty but effective, efficient, and cheap. In addition, there is a car just for women and children (sexual harassment is a big issue here) on most subways- typically, it is the first car and there is a small gate or barrier to separate the line waiting for the women’s car from everyone else.
The third option for transport is the taxis. You’ll hear everything from “Taxi drivers will murder you,” to “Why would you take anything but a taxi?” when trying to research transportation options within the city. I can’t speak a lot from personal experience, as we only took one taxi and that taxi was associated with the hotel we stayed at, but I can tell you what we heard as the general rule of thumb. To maximize safety, use the sitio taxis that are marked specifically as city regulated taxis. There is a sitio stand inside the airport that can assist you with this if you only want to transport luggage to the hotel and use the subway or bus otherwise. For transport to and from the hotel/airport we used the company Servicios de Calidad, and our driver was Mr. Miguel Angel Guerra. The company advertises taxi services 24 hours a day, and will allow you to reserve up until the day before your journey. They were associated with the Block Hotel in downtown Mexico City.
Side Note for CA residents or those considering flights out of San Diego:
If you are lucky enough to reside in SoCal, you can travel from San Diego to the Tijuana Airport on the CBX, an enclosed pedestrian skywalk bridge that requires an outgoing ticket and special CBX ticket, allowing you to literally skywalk across the border. Tickets out of Tijuana tend to be cheaper, and the flight is a straight shot into Mexico City. Our co-travelers, Christy and David, used the CBX on their way to and from Mexico City and were pleased with how simple it was. You are required to have the following documents:
-Airline boarding pass
-CBX ticket (can be purchased online at Border Express Tickets)
Prices are $16 one way, or $30 round trip. Good for one year, transferrable, and totally worth it.