Flygga From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 893 times:
Next month I am taking the family on vacation to Ixtapa Mexico. We are flying into Zihuatanejo (ZIH). From what I can tell the airport is very small with not many flights. Has anyone been there before? Is there anything interesting at the airport to photograph? From what I can tell the airport is served by AeroMexico, Mexicana, and Alaska (the airline I am using). Are there any other airlines that serve ZIH?
Katekebo From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 684 posts, RR: 6 Reply 1, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 852 times:
I have been there once, 10 years ago, so my information is outdated, but anyway...
Expect a small provincial airport (similar to what you would find in any US city of 100 thousand inhabitants). Maintenance and general conditions should be OK, but don't expect new-like appearance. Services (immigration, baggabe pickup, currency exchange, ground tranportation) will be basic but functional and rather efficient. People will be friendly and most of them will be reasonably competent in what they are doing.
You will probably see few airplanes, most of them MD-80's, A-320 and maybe an old 727. You will probably see some small private or corporate airplanes, some of them rather old (a kind of air taxi), maybe one or two new.
Better concentrate on the beautiful beaches than the airport. Have fun and enjoy your vacations in Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo. Mexican beaches are one of the best in the world, the tourism industry infrastructure is very good, so I am sure that you will have good time.
Rojo From Spain, joined Sep 2000, 2417 posts, RR: 10 Reply 2, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 848 times:
I've been there like 5 or 6 times and I can tell you it is a very small airport similar to most mexican airports. There are two or three stores and counters for AeroMexico, Mexicana, Alaska, Continental and America West. I don´t remember if CO and HP still serve ZIH, but you have to know that Zihuatanejo is a very small tourist beach for Mexico, and being to close to Acapulco (three hour driving) they haven´t develop the place as they would like. Although some of my best vacations have been there.
Which hotel are you staying at?
Enjoy your stay in MEXICO.
Rojo From Spain, joined Sep 2000, 2417 posts, RR: 10 Reply 5, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 846 times:
Las Brisas is a very beautiful hotel with its own beach. You´ll like it.
About Airports in Mexico, they are a mess. Some of them still have what we call Mirador, a place where you can see airplanes and wait for people outside looking at airplanes.
About the authorities, you can never tell. Although it is not prohibited, some times they will see that you are a tourist and they will try to take money from you claiming that it is prohibited and that they will take your camera or take you to the judge. You have to know how to manage authorities in Mexico, so if you find a spot, take a picture. If I remember correctly, you wont be using a jetway, so you can take a very good picture from the Alaska airplane from the Tarmac, and no one can tell you not to do it. And if they do, take the picture and then say that you couldn´t hear. I don´t know, I have taken many pictures in those airports and sometimes I get an officer yelling at me but I try to be polite. If that does not work then I yell at them. But the problem is that you have to know when to do it and how to manage authorities.
Latinplane From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 2666 posts, RR: 14 Reply 7, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 835 times:
Yeah, the best way to handle those bastards is by acting smart with them. Since they're not too bright but very corrupt just act smart and question them a lot but with a high toned polite kind of way. They try to intimidate you sometimes but if you resist and not conform to their ways they'll leave you alone. But then again I speak fluent spanish so this works for me. By the way, my experience photographing inside Mexican airports is pretty much the same. The authorities will stop you if they see you taking pictures of the planes.
AA61hvy From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 13977 posts, RR: 58 Reply 8, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 833 times:
its pretty cool... with the mountains and the approach over the airport then a nice turn over the water... its pretty awesome... the whole scenery is pretty nice palm tree's mountains, everything is good.. when i was there is was fairly busy... a COA 733 a NA 757 a ROY a310 and a mexicana f100... where are you staying at?
the duty free shop is good... i got a bottle of tequila for 8.00
EIPremier From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1540 posts, RR: 1 Reply 10, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 807 times:
Regarding the AS meal service, Alaska serves basically the same meal on every flight between SAN, SFO or LAX and Mexico. The only problem is that a flight like the new SFO-ZIH non-stop is twice as long as the shortest flight, SAN-SJD.
BTW, does anyone know if Alaska offers free beer and wine to coach passengers on their flights to Mexico? I know they did at one point in time, but I'm going back about five or six years.
Rojo From Spain, joined Sep 2000, 2417 posts, RR: 10 Reply 12, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 798 times:
I forgot to tell you that your hotel is in Ixtapa and ZIH airport is in Zihuatanejo, a town located near Ixtapa. So the airport is not so close to your hotel. The good thing is that cabs are cheap in Mexico, so you can take a ride to the airport. Check the schedule of the airlines because there are not too many flights.
The best location for an airport in Mexico is Puerto Vallarta. If you stay at the Velas Vallarta Hotel, you´ll be like 500 meters from the main runway, so you can take a walk at the beach and see a Mexicana F100 just meters from you, taking off. Excelent spot for a picture.
That is the good thing of Mexican airports in tourist places (Acapulco, Ixtapa, Huatulco), their runways end in the beach and the beach is public property so you can be there and take pictures without problem.
AM744 From Mexico, joined Jun 2001, 1727 posts, RR: 0 Reply 13, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 794 times:
I haven't been there for some years now but I've visited ZIH 9 or 10 times. The airport has an open air observation deck in the upper level of the terminal, which is very nice. Mexicana uses F100, 727 and A320, Aeromar ATR42, Aeromexico DC-9-30 and MD88. Delta used to fly there but I don´t know if they still do.
Don't lock yourself in Ixtapa. Zihuatanejo is a tipical mexican town worth visiting with very nice beaches like La Madera, La Ropa and Las Gatas. Don't forget to go to La Isla(the island of Ixtapa) it has a very nice beach on one of its sides. This has nothing to do with the airport, but hope it helps. Enjoy
Flygga From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 15, posted (12 years 6 months 3 days ago) and read 783 times:
Thanks for the info guys. I think I will try and figure out which day is the busiest and try to plan a visit for that day. From the observation deck is it possible to get good photos? Is the sun to your back?
And yes we will definitely check out Zihuatanejo to see some of the "real" mexican flavor. We will be there for 8 days so we will have plenty of time for rest/relaxation, exploring the countryside, and a visit to the airport!
I went to Puerto Vallarta once about 11 years ago but I was there on my honeymoon and the airport was "off limits" on that trip.
Thanks again for everyone's input. I will post a trip report when I get back.