What to do and expect the day you travel:
Getting to the airport:
If you’re flying a direct, non-stop flight, arrive at the airport 2 hours before the scheduled departure time. You and your bags need to be checked-in a minimum of 1 hours before.
If you’re transferring and have a layover somewhere, arrive at least an hour before. They’ll start boarding the plane around 30 minutes before the departure time, and you’ll want enough time to check-in and get through security.
If you’re flying out of General Mitchell airport in Milwaukee and parking a car, consider the “Super Saver” parking lot which is only $6 per day. Park there and find the nearest shuttle depot. A shuttle will pick you up within 10 minutes and drop you off at the terminal. http://www.mitchellairport.com/parking/
Fast Park & Relax is another great option. For $5.97 + tax, the shuttle will pick you up and drop you off at your car. How nice. http://www.thefastpark.com/location/milwaukee/
Bring a pen with you on the plane, you’ll want it later.
On the Plane:
While flying over the Gulf of México, the flight attendents will hand out two pieces of paper to you.
One is Immigrations (entering México) and the other, a customs form (what you’re bringing to México)
Both are fairly straight forward, however, note that México and most other countries in the world as DAY/MONTH/YEAR (LSB first, techies).
You’ll need the address of the place you’re staying on Islá Mujeres. If you leave this blank, they’ll harass you.
Don’t forget to sign both halves.
The customs form is easy. Just say ‘no’ to everything, or throw away on the airplane anything you have that you might say ‘yes’ to.
Use the bathroom on the plane before you land. There’s a bathroom in the immegrations waiting area, but the sooner you can get in line before the rest of the people on your flight, the sooner you’ll be on the beach.
De-planing in Cancún:
As you deplane, someone will breifly inspect your immegrations form to make sure you blatently didn’t screw it up and subsequently hold up the lines for everyone else later in the immigrations line.
Getting from Cancun Airport to Isla Mujeres:
You’ve got a few choices on how you get to the ferries. The airport shuttles, located outside the baggage claim, are very reliable and reasonably priced (around 12 U.S. dollars per person). This is probably the most reasonable manner to get to Puerto Juarez, although you may be required to make a few stops through Cancun to drop off fellow vacationers at their hotels.
If you just can’t wait to get there, you will need to take a cab. All the cabs at Cancun International Airport belong to the same union, therefore, you have little choice and no bargaining power, and they gouge you ($60+ for a carload). Just tell the representative where you want to go and how many people are in your party. Pay up and get going. The less fuss, the faster you’ll get out of there and the sooner you’ll arrive in paradise.
You can also arrange for a private van to take you or your group directly to the ferry dock.
Our recommendation: USA TRANSFERS (We had booked a van for the 6 of us coming in on Saturday for $45)
*Shoestring Travelers: If you’re feeling adventurous or just want the cheapest means to get to Isla, you can take the buses. When you leave the terminal go directly to your right and follow the sidewalk along the departures section until you come to the end. There you’ll find the very comfortable and air conditioned buses run by ADO. The cost is next to nothing ($4/pp). This bus will drop you at the bus station in downtown Cancun. From there you can take a taxi (for much less, around $7) to the dock or can walk out and wait for another bus heading to Puerto Juarez.
However you choose to get to get there… once you arrive at Puerto Juarez, buy a ferry ticket for the UltraMar, grab a beer or two from the Oxxo and enjoy the ride over to Isla Mujeres!!