- Print out
- inbound and outbound Gen Decs
- Proof of insurance
- Fuel quote from WFS ASA authorization letter
- Ensure that you have all the FAA required docs:
- Certificate (the license card)
- Put your fuel order in upon arrival
This article assumes that you are familiar with US CBP procedures for border crossings and have used eAPIS and is just specific to Mexico and my experience in Cancun. Furthermore, this is just what I have learned from a single flight with one US citizen and one Brazilian citizen who has a US Green Card, so your mileage may vary.
If you use the CBP eAPIS portal for international manifests, you’ll want to download the FlashPass app for iOS app as that can also assist with printing out necessary forms for Mexico.
When you submit your passenger manifests flying into and out of Mexico, you’ll receive at least 2 PDFs and one Excel sheet for your inbound and outbound border crossings. FlashPass support said that you do not need to print these out but that is incorrect. Print them out before you arrive at the airport (more on this later). One PDF is a questionnaire and the other is a “Declaracion General” (aka Gen Dec). The Gen Dec is quite important.
For some reason, the Gen Dec forms that FlashPass generated for me did not have my passenger’s name written, but you can write it in with a pen before you submit it.
Have your crew and pax visit here to print out their immigration landing cards. Can save time at the airport.
Apparently you can buy a multiple landing permit in advance and save money if you intend to make multiple trips. We did not know this and were ok anyway.
Make sure to print out the first few pages of you insurance policy showing that you have coverage in Mexico.
You’ll see several FBO’s listed on ForeFlight like “Universal Aviation”. These are not real FBOs. They are a complete scam that offer “handling” at outrageously inflated prices. We were originally quoted $2,400 USD, excluding fuel, from Universal Aviation when I called to ask about landing fees, etc. The total fees were actually about $200. It would be great if ForeFlight was better at policing scammers like this abusing their system.
The only real FBO on the field is operated by the airport authority: Cancun FBO Services. However, there are two sides to this FBO - General Aviation and “FBO”. “FBO” is their VIP service and will cost at least an extra $100, but if you know the procedures, I don’t think this is worth it. Unfortunately, if you need to print something out, you’ll need to use “FBO”s computers and that will cost at least $100. If you are willing to do the self-service process, you can use the General Aviation side.
Covid tests aren’t necessary but you must be fully vaccinated. Bring your vaccination card with you.
If you are flying from Florida, note that you do not need an overflight permit to transit Cuban airspace, only to directly overfly the island or penetrate the Cuba Inner ADIZ. From Florida to MMUN we entered at CANOA and exited at NOSAT. Outbound we entered at LENUK and exited CANOA.
Upon arrival, simply tell ground that you are heading to “General Aviation” and once reaching the GA ramp you’ll call 130.50 and they’ll assign you a parking space. The GA ramp has internal taxiways that are clearly marked but they are quite helpful if you need a progressive taxi or any other help finding your way to your assigned parking space, its actually a pretty nice system that I’d like to see in the US.
When flying outbound, you’ll need to file a paper ICAO form on the GA side. You can generate these with Foreflight in advance and print them out, but you’ll almost certainly need to amend them, so its not a big deal. They had paper forms there but bring a pen.
I added the Latin and S. America Jeppesen subscription to foreflight. Seemed like the cheapest way to get the local charts.
I thought that I would need an overflight exemption to proceed past KEYW and land directly at KOPF since KEYW is literally directly under my flight path. I called CBP Customs at KOPF and they said this wasn’t necessary. I did get the initials of the office who told me this and I strongly recommend recording the initials and time of call anytime you get a question answered like this.
We waited about 2 hours when we were departing for fuel. Get fuel when you arrive. When we got to the airpot to leave, I immediately placed my fuel order at around 11:30am before passing through customs. We didn’t get fuel until 1:15.
It’s free. Sign up for this service at least 2 weeks before you intend to depart. Once you have an account you’ll get access to a portal where you can get a quote for MMUN. At $3.88 / gal the price was completely reasonable.
After you get your quote from ASA you’ll get a PDF with a fuel authorization emailed to you. Print this out.
The truck in MMUN usually doesn’t have Prist. If thats important for you, bring a can.
Get fuel upon arrival so you aren’t delayed like we were. In front of the FBO building, there’s a little guard station opposite the driveway hidden in what looks like a concrete column. There’s a button you can press to get a ticket with a number, just get that so you have your place in line.
Once you have the number, look for the fuel truck, usually to the left of the building, and hand them your ASA authorization letter and number ticket and let them know your parking space. Hopefully they won’t forget you, like they did the first time I went to the truck on my departure day.
You’ll get bounced around a few desks. I think I made something like 10-12 different transactions / fees which summed to about $200. Just bring plenty of USD and MXN and at least one non-AMEX credit card.
The FBO arranged a taxi for us that charged $65 to get us to our resort. If you plan this in advance with your hotel expect to pay closer to $35.
As long as you have everything printed out, the agents and staff are quite helpful and I really appreciated their work. The process itself is complex, bureaucratic, and generally just reflects inefficient, unaccountable government agencies doing what they do best. Just be patient, ensure you have everything you need, and you’ll be fine.