The Easter holidays are coming and we all begin to dream of traveling to paradisiacal destinations of sun, beach and drinks served with umbrellas. At the national level, Cancun and the Riviera Maya are the most important destinations – in 2018 the Cancun International Airport received more than eight million Mexican visitors. So many people can’t be wrong: a Cancun vacation is worth it.
But how much does it cost to go to Cancun?
If you know what to look for (and you will know after reading this article), this paradise can be much cheaper than you imagine. Read on for tips on how to save money and reduce your expenses while in Cancun, as well as some ideas of what to do in Cancun on a budget.
Cancun: How expensive is it really?
First thing’s first; To properly plan a budget and know how much a trip to Cancun costs, it is necessary to break down each of the expenses that must be made.
Of course, the final budget will depend on your personal preferences and the activities you decide to do. Some will want to exclusively enjoy the crystal clear sea and the reef, others will be more interested in the Mayan archaeological sites, and others will seek a party vacation in the clubs. In any of these cases there are a series of basic expenses that you should take into account:
- Plane tickets
- Your accommodation in Cancun
- Excursions and tours
- Transportation in Cancun
Although the price range varies a lot depending on the date and the city where you come from, the appearance of low-cost airlines and promotion pages (think Travel Guru, Skyscanner, Kayak) has made it much easier for us to travel.
With the help of these tools, you can find round-trip flights to Cancun by less than $ 500 mxn, leaving cities such as Guadalajara, CDMX, Monterrey, Querétaro, Puebla, León and Tuxtla. The trick here is to plan ahead.
If your beans are already burned from taking a vacation in Cancun this Easter, you can still find round flights for less than $ 10,000 mxn per adult.
For practical purposes, let’s pretend that your goal is to be in Cancun during the Easter holidays 2019, leaving the CDMX on Wednesday April 17 and returning on Sunday 21. With the help of Skyscanner.com we were able to find a one-way flight with Viva Aerobus and back with Volaris, which in total per adult would cost $ 8,873 mxn.
Expense # 1 – Airline tickets: $ 8,573 mxn
From luxurious beach resorts to backpacker hostels, Cancun has all kinds of accommodations. From the outset, the cheapest area for you to stay if you want to save is the center of Cancun, although in the Hotel Zone itself (which is where the beaches are) it is possible to find hotels with good prices.
If your budget is limited, but you plan to stay more than a couple of nights, your best option might be to rent a small apartment or take a look at Airbnb. You can rent a room and sometimes even an entire apartment for less money than a hotel.
With a quick search on Airbnb.mxFor the dates mentioned above, we found advertisements for very well located accommodations for less than $ 500 mxn per night. (Whatthis, located at the entrance of the Hotel Zone, with a pool and space for two adults for $ 450 mxn.)
Expense # 2 – Lodging for 2 adults for 4 nights: $ 2,449 mxn
At this point, the city of Cancun offers a very wide range of dining options; from luxurious restaurants by international chefs to inexpensive menus of traditional Yucatecan food, and let’s not forget the delicious marine cuisine! You will find something that suits your pocket and your palate.
For the travel plan that we are putting together right now, the easiest thing is to simply set a daily budget. Assigning $ 250 mxn per person for meals is more than enough; This will allow you to buy food and prepare it in your Airbnb kitchen and you could even eat out in modest but tasty establishments.
Expense # 3 – Food per person for 4 days: $ 1,000 mxn
You can simplify your life and be content with enjoying the beautiful public beaches of Cancun. The white sand and turquoise waters are well worth it, but if you want to take advantage of the fact that you already came here to learn more about what Cancun can offer, here we recommend three categories that you cannot miss: archaeological sites, water activities and parties.
With a price of 70 pesos per person during the week (and free for nationals on Sundays), Tulum is the most accessible option. ADO has three direct services a day leaving Cancun at 3:40, 7:45 and 8:45 PM. The price is $ 168 mxn and the journey is two hours. It also has a service to Playa del Carmen, almost every hour, for $ 120 mxn. Once in Playa del Carmen there are direct buses to Tulum for $ 50 mxn.
From where the buses leave you to the entrance of the ruins it is about a kilometer, but the road is flat and short. If you don’t want to walk there is a small train that takes you for $ 20 mxn.
Now that if yours is the sea and water fun, there are 3 options of experiences that we highly recommend.
Did you know that the second largest barrier reef in the world is located in Cancun and the Riviera Maya? Discovering the wonders of this underwater world is something you cannot miss and with the Paradise Adventure package you can explore it from above, below and everywhere. For only$ 899 mxn, this package offers you two tours for the price of one: the Subsee Explorer and Snorkel in the Nizuc Reef.
First you will get on a boat that will cross the mangrove swamp of the Nichupté Lagoon and will transport you to the yellow submarine Subsee. Upon arrival in the reef area, you will board the Sub and sit comfortably on the fully heated bottom. Our bilingual guides will teach you the different species of corals, marine life and exotic fish. Strolling on the Subsee is an incredible way to explore the Caribbean reefs without having to swim – the perfect Cancun tour for kids!
Then you can snorkel for an unlimited time on the reef of Punta Nizuc, the most beautiful in Cancun. You will also see some of the statues from the Cancun Underwater Museum of Art (MUSA)!
If you want some beach fun, going to Isla Mujeres is a must do during your vacation: there you can swim in crystal clear waters, get an incredible tan and take hundreds of photos. For only$ 1,199 mxn for nationals You can enjoy an all-inclusive tour to Isla Mujeres with drinks, lunch, and fun in the sun.
As with food, what you spend in this category will depend a lot on your plans and preferences. As Cancun is a city dedicated almost exclusively to tourism, you will find many options.
If what you want is a good night out, you can go to Mandala Cancun, one of the trendy clubs where for $ 800 mxn you will have a national open bar.
Expense # 3 – 3 tours per person (Tulum + Paradise Adventure + Open Bar in Mandala): $ 1,887 mxn
One piece of advice if you plan to take a taxi: always ask how much it will cost you to get to your destination before getting on; it will save you a lot of trouble later.
If we had to suggest the best way to get around Cancun, it would be public buses; it is still the best and cheapest way. The buses from the center are $ 10 mxn per person and those that go to the hotel zone cost $ 12.
Another option increasingly used by tourists is Uber Cancun, which has already announced its soon return.
Expense # 5 – Public transportation per person for 4 days: $ 500 mxn (approximately)
So how much $ was it?
After much planning and searching, a 4-day trip to Cancun in the middle of Easter 2019 would turn out like this (per person):
The plane – $ 8,573 mxn
Accommodation – $ 1,249.50 mxn (if you consider that the total price of accommodation is for 2 people)
Food – $ 1,000 mxn
The tours – $ 1,887 mxn
Transportation – $ 500 mxn
Total – $ 13,209.50 mxn
This is the minimum expense necessary to determine how much a trip to Cancun costs during Easter with a moderate budget, but remember that if you want to go shopping, take souvenirs, have romantic dinners in restaurants, go out partying to the clubs or go on more excursions , the expense could increase considerably.
It is best to plan ahead to be able to save much more with flight offers, but in any case we hope that this guide will help you make your dream of visiting Cancun and the Riviera Maya come true.