You'll want to travel around while in Playa Del Carmen to visit the sights and explore this beautiful destination.
Whether it be bus, taxi, collectivos, motorcycle or car rentals, you'll definitely find your preferred method of transportation.
Since there's so much to see and do in Playa del Carmen here are a list of transportation methods in detail to get around.
Taxis are abundant in the Mayan Riviera and fairly inexpensive. There are taxi stands throughout Playa del Carmen and at most of the all inclusive resorts in the area.
Taxi prices are fixed, there are no meters. Please ask the bell boys of your hotel what the price should be and always agree on the price with the driver before setting off. Try to have the exact amount, and tipping the driver is not customary. Count on the fare being about $1US per minute of driving. So if something is about 20 minutes drive, the fare will be about $20US. Taxi drivers will accept USD but normally at a lesser exchange rate than the bank or exchange booths.
The taxis in Cancun have green stripes, in Puerto Morelos gold stripes, in Playa del Carmen turquoise stripes and in Tulum red stripes. They will all be numbered as all are part of the taxi union.
Check for functioning seat belts and make sure you know how to say despacio (deh-spa-see-oh) which is the word for slow down, as many of the drivers will drive a bit faster than you would be used to at home.
For more information on getting a cab in Playa del Carmen, make sure to check out our 5 tips & tricks for taking a taxi.
The colectivos are mini-vans that run up and down the main highway in the area the 307. These cost a fraction of the price of the ADO buses, however, there is not necessarily seating and the comfort level is not the same. You can wave them down or head to the colectivo 'terminal' located on Calle 2 south between 10 and 15th avenues. This form of transport is for the more daring that really want to live like the locals.
Parking in Spanish is Estacionamiento, hence the big letter E. Generally, the sidewalk will be painted to reflect the color of the parking status. Red and yellow means no parking, but white allows parking. No parking tickets are issued, but if you have a parking infraction, your license plate will be removed and you need to present yourself at the government office to pay the fine so that they return your license plate.
The ADO is the local bus system with the main Playa del Carmen bus station being located on 5th Avenue and Juarez street. There are different classes, with the first class buses offering wireless internet. All are large buses, with air conditioning, comfortable seating and one seat per passenger.
There are stations in major destinations and stops in less populated areas. Popular routes with tourists are Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Tulum. The more adventurous may even take the bus to Merida, Coba or Chichen Itza. You can consult their schedules and rates at www.ado.com.mx
Within Playa del Carmen itself, you will see many people riding bicycles. You are not permitted to bike on 5th avenue, the main pedestrian walkway, but a bike path has been built on 10th avenue.
There are some shops along 10th that rent bicycles and many of the all inclusive hotels will also offer bicycles, especially when you are closer to town.
Traffic is not respectful of the bicyclists, so remain aware and pedal safely.
Car Rental is readily available, however, the way people drive in Mexico is generally different than in North America. If you do plan on renting a vehicle, please take all the insurance offered and read the top ten tips for driving in Mexico.
1. It is permitted to go right on a red light.
2. Locals will normally slow at the stop signs, but not come to a full stop.
3. There is a blatant lack or courtesy for other drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, so drive carefully.
4. You will encounter an abundance of “topes” speed bumps.
5. A flashing green light means that it is about to turn yellow, not that you have priority to turn.
6. Running red lights is a common occurrence.
7. Once your light turns green, wait a few seconds to make sure no one will run the red.
8. Honking is a normal occurrence here and not considered impolite. Expect honking and lots of it.
9. When it rains, the highways become very slippery, similar to ice. Be cautious.
10. Always close your windows, lock your doors and avoid leaving valuables in the car.
Scooters are available for rent but PlayaDelCarmen.com wants to keep our tourists safe and does not recommend scooter rental.
You can now rent Harley Davidson’s in Playa del Carmen, provided you have the proper motorcycle license. We can help you organize this, just contact us.
If you rent a car in Mexico, there is a chance that you will be stopped by the police.
If you are stopped, don’t panic. Unfortunately, as with most workers in Mexico, the police are severely underpaid and looking to “pad” their wages. They will ask for your paperwork and driver’s license and will invent some sort of infraction on your part and will imply that the fine is very high.
Normally for about 200 pesos, they will miraculously decide that the error merits being let off with a warning. If you don’t want to risk the police keeping your driving license as collateral, bring a photocopy and do not provide them with the original.