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time we actually get into our rooms

Barrie
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49 posts
1 review
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time we actually get into our rooms

Just read a couple of reviews about not getting luggage and delays into the room. Arriving at airport by 3:30 am for our 6:30 flight and then the long drive from the airport to the resort. This makes for a long day. On average what should we expect. If we are prepared then it shouldn't really matter.

Calgary
Destination Expert
for Akumal, Riviera Maya, Cancun
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23,276 posts
8 reviews
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1. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

Check-in time at hotels is typically 3 o4 4 pm. If you arrive at the resort prior to this time, your room may not be ready (and even if you arrive later, there's still a chance that your room won't be made up).

I one of those types that hope for the best but plan for the worst. In addition to the sorts of things you should NEVER put in checked baggage (prescription meds, valuables such as cameras, etc.), my carry on also contains enough to get by for my first day plus "emergency" stuff for day two, just in case my luggage goes astray. My list is:

- sunglasses

- bathing suit

- pareo (has a myriad of uses, takes minimal space)

- sunscreen

- clean t shirt/top

- clean undies;

- cosmetics; and

- hair brush etc.

Alright, so now you've arrived at Cancun airport. The length of time it takes you to get through customs/immigration, pick up your luggage and be on your way really depends upon just how many other planes have landed just before yours. It can take a few minutes or an hour plus. Weekends are usually worse than weekday. Remember, even if the line-ups are huge, there's nothing you can do about it so relax and think about how good that margerita is going to taste once you finally get to your resort.

(I was last at Cancun airport 4 years ago, so this is to the best of my recollection. If I'm mistaken about anything regarding immigration, customs etc., I'm sure someone will point it out!).

Once you've made it though immigration (where you'll hand in the top part of the completed tourist card that you were given on the plane - don't forget to pack a pen in your hand luggage!), you'll proceed through to get your luggage. As you exit this area, you have to push a button. If you get a green light, away you go; if you get a red light, customs will do a hand-search of your luggage. It's my understanding that such a search is pretty cursory and so long as your not bringing anything illegal into the country, you've nothing to worry about.

Next comes the "shark tank". This is where all the timeshare folks are. Some of them are uniformed and look very "official". Just completely ignore them, don't even make eye contact and continue on until you reach the part of the airport where you can see outside. This is where you'll be meeting your tour rep. (i.e. Sunquest, Nolitours, Air Transat, etc.)

Now, I think Akumal is about an hours drive from Cancun airport. However, if you're on a bus provided by your tour operator, unless there's a full load going directly to your specific resort, you'll be making several stops before reaching your destination .... and considering the geographical location of Akumal, it's quite likely that you'll be the last stop.

If this really concerns you, then you could always pre-book a private transfer (Cancun Valet, Best Day, Entertainment Plus - there are others two, these three just spring to mind). However, be aware that you're looking at about $80 per vehicle (car) each way. If you do decide to go the private transfer route, your driver will be just at the doorway to the airport (i.e. just as you go outside), holding a card with your name on it. Don't forget to seek out your travel company rep and tell them that you won't be taking their bus BEFORE you swan off to the luxury of your private transfer; it would be most unkind of you to leave a busload of people waiting at the airport wondering where the heck you are.

If you wanted to reduce the cost of your transfer, you could try to find someone else on your flight headed to the same resort and split both the vehicle and the cost. Vans are more expensive but can accommodate more people, therefore leas cost per head.

FWIW, I find ANY travel day incredibly long, boring and tiring no matter how great the flight or how smoth the whole airport and ground transfer thing goes. I cope by making sure I've got some decent reading material and some good tunes on my MP3 player .... that and copious chanting of "serenity now" (thank you Seinfeld!) under my breath gets me through it!

phoenix
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631 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

Lisa hit most of it, smack on the head. The only thing I would add is Cancun has a new International terminal. Very nice, but a half hour or more would be normal (from landing to front door). Out front of the Cancun airport is even nicer now then before.

Barrie
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49 posts
1 review
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3. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

Thank you Lisa for your wealth of information. Now to decide whether or not to spend 80.00 or take the scenic route. I guess if you can't get into your room until late afternoon. I guess the scenic route is more economical. I'll just add a few things to my carry on and change at the resort.

Calgary
Destination Expert
for Akumal, Riviera Maya, Cancun
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23,276 posts
8 reviews
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4. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

You're welcome!

I was wrestling with the private transfer cost too - $80 each way = an awful lot of margarita money! However, I just figured out how much $160 is in relation to my overall vacation package cost; it's about 3% - now it doesn't seem so expensive/extravagent after all!!!!

Vancouver , Canada
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168 posts
3 reviews
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5. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

Book with beachdestinations and the private transfer to and from airport is included.

Plus it was the cheapest price on the internet.

Shhh...don't tell anyone else though ok?

California
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277 posts
7 reviews
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6. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

My group had transport on a bus as 60.00 per person RT and since there are 4 of us it added 240.00 to our cost. We were able to book private transfer for 145.00 round trip through ent-plus. We saved time and some money!

7. Re: time we actually get into our rooms

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