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Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

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Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

Hi,

Since I'm unable to find information on the ADO website, I need basic information on how/where to take a bus from Cancun airport to Tulum.

The flight arrives around 1pm this Sunday, March 16th.

Where in the airport to I purchase a ticket?

Will the buses say ADO?

If purchasing round trip, do I have to choose my return time or is it an open fare?

Is there a time schedule available?

Are there direct routes to Tulum?

If changing in Playa del Carmen, where do I change (what is the name of the stop?)

Is it easy to identify the bus/es to Tulum?

Other than resorts, Is there more than one stop in Tulum. I'm staying near town on the road from town to the beach.

Thanks in advance for your help!

New York City, New...
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1. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

There are ADO ticket booths in most (all?) terminals but typically a worker arrives about 10 minutes before the bus to sell tickets.

If you're arriving at Terminal 3, the buses are outside and all the way to the right, with the terminal behind you. You can walk through the air conditioned terminal as far as you can go - then head outside and you will see a bus/van area.

2 ADO buses will come to that stop - 1 for downtown Cancun and the other for Playa del Carmen. Im not sure which terminal in Playa (every time I've taken the airport bus, Ive arrived in the old terminal and was able to transfer to a Tulum bound bus there; Robert the bus expert has indicated they arrive at the new terminal in Playa now).

Have an idea in your head when the next but to Tulum is - they're pretty regular, but there could be a gap and it might make sense if you arrive during that gap to go to downtown Cancun and transfer to ADO to Tulum there.

Suitcaseready.com

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2. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

Thank you for this. I'm not sure which terminal but it's United.

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3. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

Aha, Should have done my research. It's Terminal 3. My return flight is Saturday, 3/22 - departing around 1pm.

Hopefully there is a time schedule available somewhere.

Cozumel, Mexico
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4. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

ADO is currently showing no direct service from the airport to Tulum. The Playa del Carmen bus only stops at the ADO 5th Av. terminal so no problem knowing where to get off.

ADO has 6 buses a day TO the airport from Tulum. With your schedule, you would likely need to take the 9AM bus since the trip is a bit over 2 hours.

You can see schedules at www.ado.com.mx

New Jersey
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5. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

I would just buy a one-way ticket, keep things flexible for the return. If you like the bus you can always buy a ticket when you get to Tulum.

I just checked, and for Sunday the 16th it looks like there are buses from the airport to Playa at 1:30 and 2:00 (and pretty much every half hour) for 140 pesos, trip takes an hour. Then, from Playa (regular terminal) to Tulum, there are second-class buses leaving at 3:30 and 4:00. The next first-class bus from Playa to Tulum is at 4:30, so an hour and a half layover.

Then I checked from the Playa del Carmen "Alterna" location and only two morning buses showed up at all. Not sure why since Robert says that's where they leave from.

The second class bus is only 38 pesos (vs. 76 for the first class) to Tulum. It will stop along the highway but according to the site, the time in transit is the same (another hour). Not sure how, but each of those stops is pretty short and the bus doesn't leave the highway, so maybe they make up the time somehow.

Looking then at going through Cancun centro, buses from the airport leave at 1:20, 1:50, 2:20, 2:50, take 30 minutes and cost 62 pesos.

But again, no easy connection to a first-class to Tulum. The next first class leaves at 3:45, takes 2 hrs. 20 minutes and costs 124 pesos. There are second class buses that leave at 2:00, 3:00 and 3:30, take 2.5 hours and cost 90 pesos.

Total time in transit, not including layovers, is 3 hours going via Cancun centro, 2 hours going through Playa. It's a bit more expensive through Playa, but just by a couple of dollars.

The drag of it all is that the schedules just don't mesh nicely to get two first-class buses. That's always nagged at me.

On the bright side, the return will be easier. I see that there's a direct bus (not non-stop but you don't have to change buses) from Tulum to the airport leaving at 9 a.m. on your departure day. Gets you to the airport by 11:10 a.m. and IMO that's enough time to make your flight at 1. The next direct bus earlier leaves at 7 a.m. but that's too much time at the airport for me. I took the 9 a.m. bus last year and it worked out great. Make sure the driver knows you're going to Terminal 3--when I was on it everyone else on the bus got off at Terminal 2 and I worried that I'd have to get off as well, but he kept going to T3.

I did need to buy my ticket at least the day before for my trip from Tulum-CUN. The bus seemed so empty when we left Tulum I wondered why such a big deal to buy the tkt in advance, but it filled up in Playa and they had to allow for those tickets when selling me mine.

Sorry, this probably went on very long but I'm procrastinating on some work and decided to look things up.

The website I used is ticketbus.com.mx/wtbkd/ConsultaCorrida.tb. That's actually the page where I was looking at the return, but the main site is ticketbus.com.mx. If you get a page in Spanish there should be an English button at the upper left.

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6. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

Thanks so much for your help! I'll check the ticketbus link. I didn't have any success the first time but maybe I didn't enter the correct locations.

Colo Spgs
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7. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

You will find some useful pictures here

tinyurl.com/7m3r6

Cozumel, Mexico
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8. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

Good information, beachreader. I really can´t explain about ADO not showing the buses on the "Alterna" departures. I use the ADO buses frequently to Merida and if you look, they show nothing from "Alterna" to Merida. But actually all the ADO buses to Merida depart from "Alterna"---about 15 per day. The same goes for Tulum. Most ADO first class buses depart for Tulum from "Alterna", since for most of the buses, Tulum is just a stop as part of a longer route.

ADO is a very good operation but the Playa situation is a mystery to me!

Colo Spgs
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9. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

If you end up at the main station on 5th Ave, a taxi to the alternate station is relatively cheap and fast (< five minutes).

New Jersey
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10. Re: Bus from Cancun airport to Tulum

But how do you find out if there's a bus leaving from there? I didn't specify ADO, just asked for all buses on a given date leaving from Alterna to Tulum and only got two. It's tough when websites don't work properly. I guess when you arrive at Playa 5th Ave., you can just ask at the ticket booth if there's an earlier bus leaving from Alterna?