New Airport in Cabo – Important Instructions

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Tips on using the almost unusable new airport terminal.


The GG has received reports from irate airport users that it is a nightmare to drop off and pick off passengers at this new terminal, but airport operations manager Eduardo Gonzalez assures us that this is most likely a lack of education and awareness of the public and employees and they will improve the drop-off/pick up situation. The drop off is not too difficult to figure out. You drive in and follow the signs for drop off. You cannot park close to the airport but you can stop and drop off passengers who are leaving. If you want to park and go in, you park in the pay parking lot where at least for now you can park for free. (But you’ll walk another 100 yards). Park under the billboard where everyone else seems to be parking.

There are now two parking lots, as the permitted vehicle road for passenger pick-up cuts the parking lot in two. The one which is a little closer to the airport says VIP parking. It isn’t VIP pricing though. Each parking lot now has an automatic cashier and the base rate for both is 25 pesos per hour. You take the ticket that the machine gives you to raise the bar to let you enter. When you leave, you give the ticket to the automatic cashier. You pay and the toll booth gives you a receipt. You put the receipt in the machine at the exit gate, and it opens the bar to allow you to leave. This has caused havoc for people who haven’t figured out the new system, so they have installed a human being to help people operate the parking payment machine. Some new signage is needed in respect to this new system.

But the real problem for locals has been picking up passengers. Here, they need some more detailed signs and explanations because it is really not clear where you are supposed to pick up your people. Pay attention, and try and remember this before you get to the airport:

The only way you can meet your guests is to park your car in the parking lot and go inside the airport. People departing leave from an accessible street level, but arriving passengers come out on the restricted lower street level and will be wandering around wondering where their ride is. Well, their ride can’t reach them on the arrival level. But the airport has provided space for commercial vehicles, the taxis, buses, limos and shuttles, to pick up arrivals on that level. Individuals are no longer allowed to pull their car up and see if their guests have arrived at this lower level. This is causing a lot of grief as individuals, and even legitimate transportation companies that lack their new ID, block the exits to the parking lot while they argue with the parking lot attendants and lower level security.

You can however drive up to the airport doors at the departure level. To meet your guests at the door with your car, they have to go to the upper level. There are stairs and an elevator that you can take between levels. You still cannot linger with your car at departures (you cannot at any airport), so you will have to have impeccable timing or excellent communication. For example you can call the airport (146-5111) and find out if the flights are on time, but of course you have no idea how long it will take to get through immigration and customs. It would be a good idea to tell your guests that when they arrive they should go to the upper level for pick up. To get there after clearing customs they can take the staircase that is to the left of the outside exit door, or turn right down a fairly unmarked hall where they will find the elevator. Or you can park your personal vehicle and wait for them at the customs discharge door, and guide them to where to wait, while you go get the car.

On the lower level there is a sign that says there is another automated parking lot payment booth right there, but there isn’t yet. The kinks will get worked out assures Gonzalez, but then he’s paid to say that.

So was this new terminal screwed up deliberately so that the expensive commercial vehicles have no competition in snagging airport arrivals? Or did the architects bungle the design this badly accidently? Quien sabe? Who knows? Airport operations manager Eduardo Gonzalez will only say our unhappiness with our new terminal shows a lack of education on our part.

Comments are closed.