Mexico City International Airport

Coordinates: 19°26′10″N 099°04′19″W / 19.43611°N 99.07194°W / 19.43611; -99.07194
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Mexico City International Airport

Aeropuerto Internacional de la
Ciudad de México
Summary
Airport typePublic
OwnerMexican Navy
OperatorGrupo Aeroportuario de la Ciudad de México
ServesGreater Mexico City
LocationMexico City, Mexico
OpenedMay 15, 1931; 92 years ago (1931-05-15)
Hub forPassenger Cargo
Focus city forMagnicharters
Time zoneCST (UTC−06:00)
Elevation AMSL2,230 m / 7,316 ft
Coordinates19°26′10″N 099°04′19″W / 19.43611°N 99.07194°W / 19.43611; -99.07194
Websitewww.aicm.com.mx
Map
MEX is located in Mexico City
MEX
MEX
Location within Mexico City
MEX is located in Mexico City
MEX
MEX
MEX (Mexico City)
MEX is located in Mexico
MEX
MEX
MEX (Mexico)
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
05R/23L 3,900 12,795 Asphalt
05L/23R 3,952 12,966 Asphalt
Statistics (2023)
Total passengers48,415,693
Ranking in Mexico1st Steady
Cargo tonnage447,887.2
Source: DAFIF[1][2]
Statistics: Airport website[3]

Mexico City International Airport (Spanish: Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de México, AICM); officially Aeropuerto Internacional Benito Juárez (Benito Juárez International Airport) (IATA: MEX, ICAO: MMMX) is the primary international airport serving Greater Mexico City. It is the busiest airport in Mexico and Latin America,[4] ranking as the 17th-busiest in the world and eighth in North America as of 2022, based on passenger traffic and aircraft movements.[5]

The airport is served by more than 25 airlines, handling flights to over 100 destinations across Mexico, the Americas, Europe, and Asia. With an average of 132,000 daily passengers, the airport handled 46,200,529 passengers in 2022 and 48,415,693 in 2023.[3]

As the primary hub for Mexico's flag carrier, Aeroméxico, Mexico City Airport functions as a SkyTeam hub. Additionally, it serves as a hub for Volaris and Viva Aerobus, and a focus city for Magnicharters. The facility comprises two passenger terminals and two runways. It supports cargo activities and accommodates entities such as Mexican Airspace Navigation Services, the Mexican Federal Civil Aviation Agency, and an Air Force Base. It is owned by the Mexican Navy and operated by Grupo Aeroportuario de la Ciudad de Mexico. It was named after the 19th-century president Benito Juárez.[6]

Part of Mexico City's airport system, which also includes Toluca International Airport and Felipe Ángeles International Airport, the Mexico City International Airport is currently operating at full capacity.[7] With an average of 1,056 daily aircraft movements, it ranks as the busiest two-runway airport in the world.[8]

History[edit]

Origins[edit]

Mexicana de Havilland DH-106 Comet 4 landing at the airport

The original site, known as Llanos de Balbuena, had been utilized for aeronautical activities since 1910, marking a significant milestone when Alberto Braniff became the first person to fly an airplane in Mexico and Latin America.[9][10] This historic flight took place on board a Voisin biplane. On November 30, 1911, President Francisco I. Madero achieved another aviation first by being the world's inaugural head of state to fly on an airplane, piloted by Geo M. Dyott of Moisant International.[11]

In 1915, the site opened as Balbuena Military Airport, equipped with five runways.[12] The construction of a small civilian airport commenced in 1928. The first landing occurred on November 5, 1928, regular services began in 1929, and the official inauguration took place on May 15, 1931. On July 8, 1943, it gained international status, launching its initial international route to Los Angeles International Airport operated by Mexicana de Aviación.

From 1949 to 1951, the airport underwent an expansion that involved the construction of a new runway, designated as 05R-23L, an apron, a control tower, and administration offices. President Miguel Alemán inaugurated a renovated passenger terminal on November 19, 1952.[13] By 1956, the airport operated with four runways: 05L-23R (2,720 metres (8,920 ft)), 05R-23L (3,000 metres (9,800 ft)), featuring electric lights for night-time service; 13-31 (2,300 metres (7,500 ft)), constructed to relieve the runway 14-32, which was too close to adjacent residential areas; and Runway 5 Auxiliary (759 metres (2,490 ft)).[14]

On December 2, 1963, the airport's name changed from "Aeropuerto Central" (Central Airport) to "Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de México" (Mexico City International Airport).[15] In the 1970s, the two shortest runways (13/31 and 5 Auxiliary) were closed to facilitate the construction of a social housing complex in that area, named Unidad Fiviport.[16][17][18] This initiative resulted in the airport's current configuration with two parallel runways. On November 24, 1978, the Mexico City Area Control Center (ACC) commenced its operations and has been in continuous service since then.[15][19]

Expansion and decentralization[edit]

President and Mrs. Kennedy disembark Air Force One at the airport, June 29, 1962.

The airport, constrained by its location in a densely populated area, faced limitations in infrastructure expansion due to urban constraints, limited runway space, and congestion during peak hours. The proximity of the two parallel runways restricts fully simultaneous operations, contributing significantly to the constraint. The terminal underwent expansion on multiple occasions: in 1980, doubling its capacity with a single large terminal layout, and in 1990, separating domestic and international facilities for increased functionality. Renovations continued, and on April 11, 1994, a new International section became operational through a joint venture between Aeropuertos y Servicios Auxiliares (ASA) and Hakim Grupo Industrial, led by Alfredo Hakim Aburto at the time. [20][21]

Mexicana, a key player in the country's aviation industry, initiated a decentralization effort to alleviate congestion at the airport. This effort involved relocating numerous flights to airports in Guadalajara, Monterrey, and Mérida. In 1994, all general aviation operations were moved to Toluca International Airport.[22] Since then, only government, military, commercial, and specially authorized aircraft are allowed at the airport. In 2001, the passenger terminal expanded with the construction of a satellite building east of the terminal featuring eight gates.[23]

Congestion challenges[edit]

Satellite view of the airport

The congestion challenges at Mexico City Airport became a prominent issue in Mexican politics in the early 2000s. Large infrastructure projects, particularly in transportation, have historically played a crucial role in presidential legacies due to centralized decision-making, their symbolic significance for progress, and leaders' aspirations to leave a lasting impact.[citation needed]

In 2002, President Vicente Fox's administration introduced an ambitious plan for a new expansive airport covering 5,000 hectares (12,000 acres) in the municipalities of Atenco and Texcoco. However, the Atenco project faced substantial opposition and controversy, especially from the Community Front in Defense of Land (Spanish: Frente del Pueblo en Defensa de La Tierra, FPDT), representing locals facing displacement. Protests escalated into violent clashes, resulting in the cancellation of the new airport.[24]

Mobile lounge at Mexico City Airport

In response, the federal government in 2003 announced an extension to the existing terminal, expanding its service capacity from 20 million to 32 million passengers annually. The expansion covered 90,000 square metres (970,000 sq ft), with 48,000 square metres (520,000 sq ft) as new construction and 42,000 square metres (450,000 sq ft) as renovated areas. Renovations included new check-in areas, commercial spaces, a new departures concourse, and the construction of a long-distance bus terminal. The bus station provided access to a food court, the international arrivals and departures area, and a pedestrian bridge connecting to "The Peñón de los Baños" neighborhood.

Throughout the 2000s and 2010s, political initiatives aimed at establishing nearby airports such as Puebla, Toluca, Cuernavaca, and Querétaro as supplementary options for serving the Mexico City Area were introduced. This initiative, known as the Metropolitan Airport System, was promoted by the Federal Administration.

On November 15, 2007, Terminal 2 was inaugurated, significantly increasing the airport's capacity. All SkyTeam members, except Air France and KLM, relocated their operations to the new terminal. Officially opened in March 2008, Terminal 2 expanded the gates number by 40% and operational capacity by 15%. The inauguration ceremony was led by President Felipe Calderón.[25]

Image showing the physical constraints of the airport

Replacement controversy[edit]

In 2014, Mexican authorities declared the airspace around Mexico City Airport saturated, setting a maximum capacity of 61 operations per hour from 7:00 to 23:59.[26] President Peña Nieto's administration reignited major airport infrastructure plans in the same year, introducing the Texcoco Airport project.[27][28][29] Positioned as Mexico's most significant public infrastructure project in a century, it aimed to replace the ageing Mexico City International Airport by 2023, featuring a state-of-the-art terminal of 560,000 square metres (6,000,000 sq ft) and six runways.[30][31][32] However, President López Obrador, then a candidate, campaigned against Texcoco Airport, leading to a divisive political discourse.[33]

Terminal 2 - display screens

Upon assuming the presidency, López Obrador´s administration initiated a controversial referendum to gauge public opinion on completing Texcoco Airport or proceeding with the Santa Lucía expansion.[34] Despite facing criticism for lacking official validity and result interpretation challenges, López Obrador's administration pursued the Santa Lucía expansion, resulting in Felipe Ángeles International Airport, officially opened in 2022. Positioned as the secondary airport of Mexico City, it has been slow to gain prominence.

On July 23, 2020, an extension of Terminal 2, named Pier L, was inaugurated, adding 7 gates to reduce the use of buses. However, in 2022, a declaration of airport saturation was issued from 5:00 to 23:59 for Terminal 1 and from 6:00 to 23:00 for Terminal 2, maintaining the 61 operations/hour limit.[35] In 2023, the Mexican government attempted to decongest the airport by announcing the relocation of all cargo aircraft landing at Mexico City to Felipe Ángeles Airport to "protect the safety of the operations."[36] This forced relocation led to logistical challenges, increased inefficiencies, safety concerns, and a lack of storage facilities at Felipe Ángeles Airport.[37]

Facilities[edit]

Current airport layout

The airport is located in the neighborhood of Peñón de los Baños within Venustiano Carranza, one of the sixteen boroughs of Mexico City, situated 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) east of Downtown Mexico City. Surrounded by the built-up areas of Gustavo A. Madero borough to the north and Venustiano Carranza borough to the west, south, and east, the airport's runways, running southwest–northeast, contribute to overflying problems and noise pollution over Mexico City during landings with a northeast wind.[38][39]

Considered a Hot and dry airport at an elevation 2,230 metres (7,320 ft) above sea level, it spans 747 hectares (1,850 acres), featuring two parallel runways, less than 300 metres (980 ft) apart, hindering simultaneous operations. Runway 05L/23R is 3,900 metres (12,800 ft) long, and runway 05R/23L is 3,950 metres (12,960 ft) long. North of the airfield houses Terminal 1, cargo facilities, maintenance hangars, and administration buildings. On its northern edge, Aeropuertos y Servicios Auxiliares (ASA), a government-owned corporation, has its headquarters.[40][41] South of the airfield, there is Terminal 2, maintenance hangars, police and Mexican Airspace Navigation Services facilities, and a military complex.

Air Force Base No. 19 (Spanish: Base Aérea Militar No. 19 Ciudad de México) (B.A.M. 19) is located on the airport grounds, adjacent to Terminal 2. It serves as the home for the High Command Special Air Transport Unit (UETAAM) managing a diverse fleet of aircraft that includes the Boeing 737, IAI 201, JetStar, King Air, SA 330J, and UH-60 Black Hawk. It also hosts the General Coordination of the Presidential Air Transport Unit. B.A.M. 19 features an apron and several hangars, one of which is called the Presidential Hangar, used for receiving state visits and presidential travels.[42] In addition to these, it includes administrative buildings and various other facilities for accommodating Air Force personnel.[43]

Terminal 2 Airside

Mexico City Area Control Center (ACC) is one of four Area Control Centres in Mexico, with the others being the Mazatlán ACC, Monterrey ACC, and Mérida ACC. It operates under the Mexican Airspace Navigation Services, (Spanish: Servicios a la Navegación en el Espacio Aéreo Mexicano). Mexico ACC provides air traffic control services to aircraft within the Mexico Flight Data Region (FDRG). This region includes the central portion of Mexico. It shares its boundaries with six other Area Control Centers. To the north, it is adjacent to the Monterrey ACC, while to the east, it borders the Merida ACC. To the west, it borders the Mazatlán ACC, and to the south, it borders the Mazatlán Oceanic (MMFO).

The airport features 95 hardstands for aircraft, with 63 connected via Jet bridges to the terminals (33 in Terminal 1 and 30 in Terminal 2) and 32 remote stands. With an average of 1,056 daily operations, it holds the highest number for any two-runway airport globally.

Terminals[edit]

Terminal 1 landside main hall
Terminal 1 main hall by entrance 6

Terminal 1[edit]

Terminal 1, operational since 1958, has undergone several expansions, with significant upgrades in 1970, 1989, 1998, 2000, and 2004, resulting in a total surface area of 542,000 square metres (5,830,000 sq ft). The structure is an 800 metres (2,600 ft) long, two-story building, with international services located in the eastern section and domestic services in the west. The ground floor accommodates all arrival facilities, featuring 22 baggage claim carousels, domestic check-in areas for Volaris, Viva Aerobus, and Magnicharters (A1, A2, B, C, D, D1), as well as a commercial corridor along the street hosting snack kiosks, banks, souvenir shops and car rental services. The top floor comprises international check-in areas (F1, F2, F3), food courts, restaurants, multiple security checkpoints, and a 900 metres (3,000 ft) long departures concourse (gates 1 to 28) connected via a walkway to a satellite building (gates 29-36).

Gates 1 to 18 serve domestic flights, while gates 19 to 36 cater to international flights. Thirty-three gates are equipped with jetbridges, and additional 17 remote positions can be reached by bus. The terminal also houses a 110-room Hilton hotel, administrative offices, two long-distance bus terminals, and parking facilities available for 5,500 vehicles.

Terminal 1 features various VIP lounges, including the Admirals Club by American Airlines, Elite Lounge by MasterCard, Salón Centurión by American Express, Salón Beyond by Citibanamex, Televisa Vip Lounge, Terraza Elite, The Grand Lounge Elite, The Grand Lounge Elite 19, The Lounge by Global Network, United Club by United Airlines, and VIPort Lounge.

In the vicinity of the terminal, a variety of hotels are available. Hilton Aeropuerto México, Camino Real Aeropuerto México, Courtyard Mexico City Airport, and izZzleep Hotel have direct access from the terminal. Nearby airports include Fiesta Inn Aeropuerto México, Holiday Inn México Dalí Aeropuerto, City Express Aeropuerto Ciudad de México, Hotel Grand Prix, Hotel Riazor, NH Aeropuerto T2 México, and We Hotel Aeropuerto.

The primary tenants at the terminal are Volaris and Viva Aerobus, which operate their hub at this location. Other airlines serving Terminal 1 include Air Canada, Air France, All Nippon Airways, American Airlines, Avianca, Avianca Costa Rica, Avianca El Salvador, British Airways, Emirates, Iberia, KLM, Lufthansa, Magnicharters, Turkish Airlines, United Airlines, Volaris Costa Rica, and Volaris El Salvador.

Terminal 2[edit]

Terminal 2 entrance
Terminal 2 departures concourse

Operations at Terminal 2 commenced on November 15, 2007, with inaugural flights by Delta Air Lines, followed by Aeroméxico, Copa, LAN, and Continental Airlines. Former President Felipe Calderón formally inaugurated Terminal 2 on March 26, 2008. Despite the initial plan for all SkyTeam member airlines to use the terminal, Air France and KLM opted to remain at Terminal 1. Currently, Terminal 2 serves as the main hub for Aeromexico. Due to capacity constraints at Terminal 2, some of Aeromexico's domestic services temporarily operated from Terminal 1 between 2021 and 2023.[44]

The terminal spans a total surface area of 288,000 square metres (3,100,000 sq ft). Arrivals are handled on the lower level, featuring 15 baggage claim carousels, customs and immigration facilities, and an arrivals hall with a long-distance bus terminal. The upper level includes three check-in areas (L1-L3), two security checkpoints, and a main concourse connected to three piers. A mezzanine houses VIP lounges and administrative offices.

Three piers contain food courts, duty-free shops, and 30 gates (numbered 52 to 81), all equipped with jetbridges. The northern Pier hosts gates 52-62, and the southern pier has gates 63-75. In 2020, the terminal underwent its only expansion with the inauguration of Pier L, a new infrastructure located at the southern end, adjacent to the airport's boundary with Boulevard Fuerza Aérea Mexicana.[45] Gates 75 to 81, dedicated to serving Aeromexico Connect services with narrow-body aircraft, are situated here. Due to the building's narrowness, it lacks commercial amenities. Additionally, there are 10 remote positions accessible via bus.

Terminal 2 Check-in hall

Terminal 2 provides passengers access to various VIP lounges, including HSBC Salón Premier by HSBC, Salón Beyond by Citibanamex, Salón Centurión by American Express, Salón Premier Nacional by Aeroméxico, Salón Premier Internacional by Aeroméxico, Terraza Premier by Heineken and Aeroméxico, and VIPort Lounge. Furthermore, hotel services are available, including a 287-room NH hotel, and izZzleep Hotel Terminal 2. The parking facilities accommodate 3,000 vehicles.

Airlines serving Terminal 2 include Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Copa Airlines, Delta Air Lines, LATAM Brasil, LATAM Chile, and LATAM Perú.

Inter-terminal transportation bus
Aerotrén people mover system with Terminal 2 in the background

Inter-terminal transportation[edit]

The distance between the two terminals is 3 kilometres (1.9 mi). A bus shuttle service named "inter-terminal transportation" facilitates seamless transit between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Bus stops are conveniently positioned at entrance 6 of Terminal 1 and entrance 4 of Terminal 2.[46]

Passengers holding a boarding pass, as well as technical and cabin crew, have the option to utilize the Aerotrén people mover system. Operating at a speed of 45 kilometres per hour (28 mph), the Aerotrén has a daily passenger capacity of 7,800.

Terminal 3 (proposed)[edit]

The intended construction of Terminal 3 faced cancellation amid the global COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The recovery of flight numbers to 2019 levels is anticipated to take several years. Furthermore, the opening of the Felipe Ángeles Airport in Mexico State in 2022 may pose challenges for the Mexico City Airport in achieving pre-pandemic levels.[7]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

The airport connects 50 domestic and 64 international destinations in Latin America, North America, Europe and Asia. Aeromexico serves the largest number of cities from any Latin American hub (80), 46 domestic and 34 international.[47] It also operates the most departures and most destinations from the airport followed by Volaris. The most prominent foreign airlines are United Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Avianca Holdings.

Passenger[edit]

AirlinesDestinations
AeroméxicoAcapulco, Aguascalientes, Amsterdam, Bogotá, Boston (resumes March 21, 2024),[48] Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Cancún, Chetumal, Chicago–O'Hare, Chihuahua, Ciudad del Carmen, Ciudad Juárez, Cozumel, Culiacán, Denver, Guadalajara, Guatemala City, Havana, Hermosillo, Houston–Intercontinental, Huatulco, La Paz, Las Vegas, León/El Bajío, Lima, London–Heathrow, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mazatlán, Medellín–JMC, Mérida, Mexicali, Miami, Monterrey, Montréal–Trudeau, New York–JFK, Oaxaca, Orlando, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Puerto Vallarta, Querétaro, Quito, Rome–Fiumicino, Salt Lake City (resumes July 1, 2024),[48] San Francisco, San José (CR), San José del Cabo, San Luis Potosí, Santo Domingo–Las Américas, São Paulo–Guarulhos, Seattle/Tacoma, Seoul–Incheon (resumes August 1, 2024),[49] Tapachula, Tijuana, Tokyo–Narita, Toronto–Pearson, Torreón/Gómez Palacio, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Vancouver, Veracruz, Villahermosa, Washington–Dulles (resumes July 1, 2024)[48]
Seasonal: Reynosa, Santiago de Chile[50]
Aeroméxico ConnectAcapulco, Aguascalientes, Austin, Campeche, Cancún, Chetumal, Chihuahua, Ciudad del Carmen, Ciudad Juárez, Ciudad Obregón, Cozumel, Culiacán, Dallas/Fort Worth, Durango, Guatemala City, Hermosillo, Houston–Intercontinental, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, La Paz, León/El Bajío, Los Mochis, Managua, Manzanillo, Matamoros, Mazatlán, Mérida, Minatitlán/Coatzacoalcos, Nuevo Laredo, Oaxaca, Puerto Escondido, Puerto Vallarta, Querétaro, Raleigh/Durham (begins July 1, 2024),[51] Reynosa, San Antonio, San José (CR), San José del Cabo, San Luis Potosí, San Pedro Sula, San Salvador, Santo Domingo–Las Américas, Tampa (begins July 1, 2024),[52] Tampico, Tapachula, Tepic, Tulum,[53] Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Veracruz, Villahermosa, Zacatecas
Air CanadaMontréal–Trudeau, Toronto–Pearson, Vancouver
Air FranceParis–Charles de Gaulle
All Nippon AirwaysTokyo–Narita
American AirlinesCharlotte, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami, New York–JFK, Phoenix–Sky Harbor
AviancaBogotá, Medellín–JMC
Avianca Costa Rica San José (CR)
Avianca El SalvadorSan Salvador
British AirwaysLondon–Heathrow
Copa AirlinesPanama City–Tocumen
Delta Air LinesAtlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–JFK, Salt Lake City
EmiratesBarcelona, Dubai–International
IberiaMadrid
KLMAmsterdam
LATAM BrasilSão Paulo–Guarulhos
LATAM ChileSantiago de Chile
LATAM PerúLima
LufthansaFrankfurt, Munich
MagnichartersCancún, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Mérida, Puerto Vallarta, San José del Cabo
Seasonal: Cozumel, Manzanillo
Turkish AirlinesIstanbul
United AirlinesChicago–O'Hare, Houston–Intercontinental, Newark, San Francisco, Washington–Dulles
Viva AerobusAcapulco, Bogotá, Cancún, Chetumal, Chicago–O'Hare, Chihuahua, Ciudad Juárez, Culiacán, Dallas/Fort Worth, Guadalajara, Hermosillo, Houston–Intercontinental, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, La Paz, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Mazatlán, Mérida, Monterrey, New York–JFK, Nuevo Laredo, Oaxaca, Puerto Escondido, Puerto Vallarta, Reynosa, San Antonio, San José del Cabo, Tampico, Tijuana, Torreón/Gómez Palacio, Tulum,[54] Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Veracruz, Villahermosa
VolarisAcapulco, Bogotá, Cancún, Chetumal, Chicago–O'Hare, Chihuahua, Ciudad Juárez, Cozumel, Culiacán, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Guadalajara, Hermosillo, Houston–Intercontinental, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, La Paz, Las Vegas, Lima, Los Angeles, Los Mochis, Mazatlán, Mérida, Mexicali, Miami, Monterrey, Oakland, Oaxaca, Orlando, Puerto Escondido, Puerto Vallarta, Sacramento, San Antonio, San José del Cabo, Tapachula, Tijuana, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Villahermosa
Volaris Costa RicaGuatemala City, San José (CR)
Volaris El SalvadorSan Salvador

Other services[edit]

Apart from the scheduled airlines mentioned earlier, Mexico City Airport is utilized by several other carriers for chartered flights, such as Sunwing Airlines.

Cargo[edit]

As of January 2022, Mexico City airport was served by 20 cargo airlines flying directly to Europe, Central, North and South America, the Middle East, Africa and East Asia. The following airlines operate the scheduled destinations below.

AirlinesDestinations
ABX AirCincinnati, Guadalajara, Los Angeles
Aeroméxico Cargo Wuhan[55]
AeroUnionChicago–O'Hare, Cincinnati, Guadalajara, León/El Bajío, Los Angeles, Miami, Monterrey
Air Canada Cargo Toronto–Pearson
Air France CargoAtlanta, Guadalajara, Houston–Intercontinental, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Porto
Amerijet InternationalMiami
Atlas Air[56]Cincinnati, Houston–Intercontinental, Huntsville
Avianca CargoBogotá
CAL Cargo Air LinesLiège, Tel Aviv
CargoluxDallas/Fort Worth, Houston–Intercontinental, Los Angeles, Luxembourg, New York–JFK
Cargolux ItaliaMilan–Malpensa
Cathay CargoAnchorage, Guadalajara, Hong Kong, Los Angeles
DHL Aviation Cincinnati, Guadalajara, Los Angeles
Seasonal: Guatemala City
Emirates SkyCargoCopenhagen, Dubai–Al Maktoum, Frankfurt, Houston–Intercontinental, Guadalajara, Los Angeles, Quito, Zaragoza
Estafeta Air CargoSan Luis Potosí, Villahermosa
Seasonal: Mérida
Lufthansa CargoChicago O'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Frankfurt, Guadalajara, New York–JFK
Mas AirBogotá, Buenos Aires, Frankfurt, Guadalajara, Guayaquil, Hangzhou,[57] Hong Kong, Lima, Los Angeles, Miami, Quito, Zhengzhou[58]
Qatar Airways CargoAtlanta, Bogotá, Doha, Houston–Intercontinental, Liège, Los Angeles, Luxembourg, Macau, Ostend/Bruges,[59] Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Zaragoza
Turkish CargoBogotá, Curaçao, Houston–Intercontinental, Istanbul, Maastricht/Aachen, Madrid
UPS AirlinesLouisville

Airlines providing on-demand cargo services

  • Aeronaves TSM
  • Air Cargo Carriers
  • Air Transport International
  • Ameristar Air Cargo
  • Atlas Air operated by Panalpina
  • IFL Group
  • Kalitta Air
  • LATAM Cargo Chile
  • Líneas Aéreas Suramericanas
  • USA Jet Airlines
  • Vigo Jet

Destination maps[edit]

South American destinations from Mexico City International Airport
Red = Year-round destination
Blue = Future destination
Green = Seasonal destination
European and Asian destinations from Mexico City International Airport
Red = Year-round destination
Blue = Future destination
Green = Seasonal destination

Statistics[edit]

In 2023, Mexico City International Airport handled 48,415,693 passengers, establishing itself as the busiest airport in Latin America. The recorded year-to-year increase was 4.7%. In the realm of international passengers, it ranks as the third busiest airport in Latin America, serving 16,332,734 passengers, following Cancún and Panama City-Tocumen airports.[3]

In 2022, it was the eighth in North America, and the 20th globally in terms of total passengers.[5]

With 387,450 aircraft movements in 2022, the airport ranked as the busiest in Latin America, 14th in North America, and 19th in the world, experiencing an 18.2% increase from the previous year. Averaging 1,061 daily aircraft movements, it stands out as the busiest two-runway airport globally.[60]

Regarding cargo operations, in 2022 the airport held its position as the busiest in Mexico and the second busiest in Latin America, following El Dorado International Airport in Bogotá, and the 54th globally, having moved 548,743.1 tons.[5]

On a typical day, over 130,000 passengers travel through the airport, connecting to more than 100 destinations across three continents. Additionally, the airport significantly contributes to the economy of Mexico City, directly supporting 35,000 jobs and indirectly influencing another 15,000 in the immediate area.[61]

Mexico City Airport passengers – 1990–present. See Wikidata query.
Cargo [metric tons][62]
Year Domestic % change International % change Total % change
2023 72,921.4 Decrease 16.3 374,965.8 Decrease 22.5 447,887.2 Decrease 21.5
2022 87,101.2 Decrease 8.7 483,707.8 Increase 2.4 570,809.0 Increase 0.5
2021 95,377.9 Increase 19.9 472,401.2 Increase 21.0 567,779.1 Increase 18.4
2020 79,536.3 Decrease 24.1 390,178.0 Decrease 13.5 469,714.3 Decrease 15.5
2019 104,832.5 Increase 3.0 451,309.8 Decrease 6.0 556,142.3 Decrease 4.4
2018 101,774.72 Increase 2.49 479,900.56 Increase 9.58 581,675.28 Increase 8.27
2017 99,303.94 Increase 8.15 437,958.75 Increase 11.83 537,262.69 Increase 11.13
2016 91,820.00 Increase 11.84 391,613.40 Increase 7.35 483,433.40 Increase 8.17
2015 82,100.42 Increase 21.92 364,814.69 Increase 10.14 446,915.11 Increase 12.13
2014 67,341.85 Increase 5.75 331,214.62 Increase 5.85 398,556.47 Increase 5.83
2013 63,678.54 Decrease 19.05 312,911.31 Decrease 1.71 376,589.85 Decrease 5.15
2012 78,666.10 Decrease 4.01 318,351.98 Decrease 3.38 397,018.08 Decrease 3.51
2011 81,953.37 Decrease 3.41 329,502.22 Increase 6.90 411,455.59 Increase 4.68
2010 84,846.88 Increase 1.01 308,228.992 Increase 29.98 393,075.87 Increase 22.40
2009 83,999.43 Decrease 13.47 237,134.01 Decrease 15.01 321,133.44 Decrease 14.61
2008 97,070.08 - 279,025.63 - 376,095.71 -

Busiest routes[edit]

Busiest domestic routes from Mexico City International Airport (2023)[63]
Rank Airport Passengers YoY % change Ranking Airline(s)
1  Quintana Roo, Cancún 2,126,132 Decrease 9.32% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Magnicharters, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
2  Nuevo León, Monterrey 1,741,538 Increase 7.27% Steady Aeroméxico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
3  Jalisco, Guadalajara 1,515,894 Increase 3.64% Steady Aeroméxico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
4  Baja California, Tijuana 1,207,975 Decrease 9.00% Steady Aeroméxico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
5  Yucatán, Mérida 951,912 Decrease 2.33% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Magnicharters, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
6  Jalisco, Puerto Vallarta 568,541 Decrease 14.81% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Magnicharters, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
7  Baja California Sur, San José del Cabo 542,565 Decrease 12.34% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Magnicharters, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
8  Sonora, Hermosillo 491,417 Decrease 5.94% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
9  Chihuahua, Ciudad Juárez 462,712 Decrease 2.69% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
10  Chiapas, Tuxtla Gutiérrez 446,703 Increase 1.35% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
11  Tabasco, Villahermosa 445,157 Increase 11.36% Increase 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
12  Chihuahua, Chihuahua 395,240 Decrease 4.80% Decrease 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
13  Oaxaca, Oaxaca 358,983 Increase 14.52% Increase 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
14  Oaxaca, Huatulco 332,881 Decrease 13.69% Decrease 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Magnicharters, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
15  Oaxaca, Puerto Escondido 332,500 Increase 10.68% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
16  Baja California, Mexicali 314,935 Increase 14.15% Steady Aeroméxico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
17  Sinaloa, Mazatlán 280,279 Increase 8.23% Increase 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
18  Veracruz, Veracruz 274,949 Increase 24.45% Increase 3 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
19  Sinaloa, Culiacán 263,059 Decrease 3.36% Decrease 2 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
20  Coahuila, Torreón 256,820 Increase 6.41% Steady Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
Busiest international routes from Mexico City International Airport (2023)[63]
Rank Airport Passengers YoY % change Ranking Airline(s)
1  Spain, Madrid 517,214 Increase 13.72% Steady Aeroméxico, Iberia
2  United States, Los Angeles 446,324 Increase 6.93% Increase 1 Aeroméxico, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, VivaAerobús, Volaris
3  United States, Houston–Intercontinental 440,510 Increase 2.02% Decrease 1 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, United Airlines, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
4  Colombia, Bogotá 426,646 Increase 3.81% Steady Aeroméxico, Avianca, Viva Aerobus, Volaris, Wingo
5  United States, Miami 383,288 Decrease 7.25% Steady Aeroméxico, American Airlines, Volaris
6  United States, New York–JFK 365,180 Increase 24.25% Increase 2 Aeroméxico, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Viva Aerobus
7  United States, Chicago–O'Hare 342,261 Increase 9.12% Decrease 1 Aeroméxico, United Airlines, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
8  United States, Dallas/Fort Worth 280,069 Decrease 7.26% Decrease 1 Aeroméxico Connect, American Airlines, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
9  France, Paris – Charles de Gaulle 265,654 Increase 5.34% Steady Aeroméxico, Air France
10  Panama, Panama City–Tocumen 248,588 Increase 6.07% Steady Copa Airlines
11  United States, Atlanta 242,665 Increase 16.45% Steady Delta Air Lines
12  United States, San Francisco 237,045 Increase 20.71% Steady Aeroméxico, United Airlines
13  Canada, Toronto-Pearson 210,108 Increase 15.09% Steady Aeroméxico, Air Canada
14  United States, Orlando 199,706 Increase 26.18% Increase 3 Aeroméxico, Volaris
15  Costa Rica, San José (CR) 197,002 Increase 29.47% Increase 5 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Avianca Costa Rica, Volaris Costa Rica
16  Guatemala, Guatemala City 193,991 Increase 25.13% Increase 3 Aeroméxico, Aeroméxico Connect, Volaris Costa Rica
17  United States, Las Vegas 193,658 Increase 13.01% Decrease 2 Aeroméxico, Viva Aerobus, Volaris
18  Canada, Vancouver 175,347 Increase 12.18% Steady Aeroméxico, Air Canada
19  Netherlands, Amsterdam 162,156 Decrease 0.03% Decrease 3 Aeroméxico, KLM
20  Peru, Lima 161,168 Increase 10.32% Decrease 6 Aeroméxico, LATAM Perú, Volaris

Ground transportation[edit]

Mexico City public transportation map

Metrobús[edit]

Metrobus Line 4 provides an express service from Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 at the airport. This service links the airport directly to San Lázaro Metro Station. San Lázaro Metro Station is served by Metro lines 1, 9, and B, and it is adjacent to the TAPO (Terminal de Autobuses de Pasajeros de Oriente), the largest long-distance bus terminal in Mexico City. TAPO offers bus services to central, eastern, and southern Mexico.

Terminal 1 features a dedicated Metrobus stop at Entrance 7, and Terminal 2 has its Metrobus stop at Entrance 2. Passengers can access the service by obtaining a Metrobus Card from vending machines at these bus stops. The fare for the service to San Lázaro is 30 Mexican Pesos, and the cost of the card is 21 Mexican Pesos as of 2024. The Metrobus services operate from 5 am to midnight.[64]

Service Destinations [departing from the airport] Operator
San Lázaro Metro Station/(TAPO bus terminal) Metrobús

Metro Station[edit]

Terminal Aerea Metro Station entrance

Terminal 1 is connected to the Terminal Aérea metro station, a part of Mexico City Metro Line 5 running from Pantitlán metro station to Politécnico metro station. It is linked to Terminal 1 through an open-air walkway starting at Entrance 1. The Terminal Aérea Metro station is also served by Trolley bus line 4 in the northbound direction, following a route similar to Metro line 2 but branching towards El Rosario metro station.

Terminal 2, on the other hand, lacks a nearby metro station. However, it is an 800 metres (2,600 ft) walk from Pantitlán metro station, served by Metro lines 1, 5, 9, A, and various local buses.

Long-distance Buses[edit]

In Terminal 1, the Long-distance Bus terminal, also known as Terminal de Autobuses or Autobuses Foráneos, serves various bus companies. Access is from the international departures section on the top floor, near the food court, through an elevated walkway spanning the entrance road. Ticketing counters are available, and platforms can be reached via escalators to the ground floor.

Terminal 1 features a specific terminal for the ADO bus company, named ADO Llegadas Nacionales. Situated next to the Hotel Camino Real, it can be accessed through a secondary elevated walkway spanning the entrance road. This walkway originates from the national section on the top floor, in front of Hall B, above Entrance 4.

In Terminal 2, the long-distance bus terminal, labeled "Transportación Terrestre," is on the ground floor next to arrivals hall Q.

Long-distance bus services
Terminal 1 Terminal de Autobuses Foráneos
Bus Company Type of Service Destinations
ADO Long distance couch Puebla CAPU, Puebla Paseo Destino
ADO conecta Shuttle service Mexico City-Felipe Ángles Airport (AIFA)
Caminante Long distance couch Toluca Tollocan
Estrella Blanca Pachuca
Estrella Roja Puebla CAPU, Puebla Paseo Destino
Primera Plus Querétaro Central, Querétaro 5 de Febrero, Celaya, San Juan del Río
Pullman de Morelos Cuernavaca Casino
Terminal 1 ADO Llegadas Nacionales
ADO Long distance couch Córdoba, Orizaba, Veracruz
ADO Aeropuerto Shuttle service Xalapa
ADO GL First class long-distance couch Oaxaca
Diamante Long distance couch Acapulco Costera
Terminal 2 Autobuses Foráneos
ADO Long distance couch Puebla CAPU, Puebla Paseo Destino
Caminante Toluca Tollocan
Estrella Roja Puebla CAPU, Puebla Paseo Destino
Primera Plus Querétaro Central, Querétaro 5 de Febrero, Celaya, San Juan del Río

Bus service to Felipe Angeles Airport[edit]

Transportation options to Mexico City´s secondary airport, Felipe Ángeles International Airport, are limited. Shuttle services from Terminal 1 are provided by ADO and Aeropuertos y Servicios Auxiliares.

Authorized taxis[edit]

Taxis are in operation in Terminals 1 and 2 and there are two models of service: ordinary service in a sedan-type vehicle for four passengers, and executive service in eight-passenger vans. There are five taxi groups in operation. These are the only taxis authorized by the Mexican Department of Transportation (SCT).

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On September 26, 1949, a Mexicana de Aviacion DC-3 crashed into the Popocatepetl volcano while approaching the airport with clouds and turbulence en route from Tapachula; all 23 on board, including actress Blanca Estela Pavon and senator Gabriel Ramos Millan, died.[65]
  • On April 10, 1968, an Aerovías Rojas Douglas R4D-3 crashed on approach, killing all eighteen people on board. The aircraft was operating a domestic scheduled passenger flight, which was the airline's inaugural flight from Aguascalientes International Airport to Mexico City.[66]
  • On October 31, 1979, Western Airlines Flight 2605 crash-landed. The crew of the DC-10 landed on a closed runway and hit construction vehicles on the runway. There were 73 fatalities (including one on the ground) and 16 survivors.[67][68]
  • On December 12, 1981, a bomb exploded inside the passenger cabin of a parked Aeronica Boeing 727-100, tearing a hole into the fuselage. The captain, two flight attendants, and a groundworker were injured. They had been on board the aircraft for pre-departure checks for a scheduled passenger flight to San Salvador and onwards to Managua's Augusto C. Sandino International Airport.[69]
  • An Aero California DC-9-15 overran a runway on July 21, 2004, during an intense storm at the airport. There were no victims, but the aircraft was scrapped. However, a woman died later due to a heart attack.[70]
  • On November 4, 2008, a Mexican Interior Ministry LearJet 45 crashed on approach around 18:45 local time. On board was Mexican Secretary of the Interior Juan Camilo Mouriño, who was a top aide to President Felipe Calderón. Mouriño was in charge of the fight against the drug trade in Mexico. Also on board was José Luis Santiago Vasconcelos, former assistant attorney general and current head of the federal technical secretariat for implementing the recent constitutional reforms on criminal justice and public security. All eight on board died, along with eight others on the ground. 40 others on the ground were injured. The crash was attributed to pilot error.[71]
  • On September 9, 2009, hijacked Aeroméxico Flight 576 landed at Mexico City International Airport from Cancún International Airport.[72]
  • On September 13, 2009, a Lufthansa Cargo McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 was damaged in a heavy landing. Post-landing inspection revealed that there were wrinkles in the fuselage skin and the nose gear was bent.[73] According to a Lufthansa spokesman, the aircraft would be repaired and returned to full service.[74]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]