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Licenciado Benito Juarez Intl Airport

Benito Juarez International Airport
Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de México

Mexico City
International Airport
Location of airport in Mexico
Airport type Civil
Owner Grupo Aeroportuario de la Ciudad de México
Operator Aeropuertos y Servicios Auxiliares
Serves Mexico City, Mexico
Hub for Aeromar
Elevation AMSL 7,316 ft / 2,230 m
Coordinates 19°26′10″N 099°04′19″W / 19.43611°N 99.07194°W / 19.43611; -99.07194
Direction Length Surface
m ft
05R/23L 3,900 12,795 Asphalt
05L/23R 3,952 12,966 Asphalt
Statistics (2009)
Aircraft operations 348,306
Passengers 24,243,056
Cargo tonnage 321,133
Source: DAFIF

Mexico City International Airport (Spanish: Aeropuerto Internacional de la Ciudad de México or AICM), also called Benito Juárez International Airport (IATA: MEX, ICAO: MMMX) is a commercial airport that serves Mexico City, the capital of Mexico. It is Mexico's and Latin America's busiest. Although this was not its official name for several decades, it was formally named after the 19th century president Benito Juárez in 2006, and is Mexico's main international and domestic gateway. In recent years Toluca airport has become a major alternate airport.

This hot and high airport offers direct flights to more than 100 destinations worldwide. In 2009, the airport served 24,243,056 passengers, a decrease of 7.5% compared with 2008, who received 26,210,217. This modest decline was mainly due to the global financial crisis and the outbreak of influenza. In optimal conditions, and with the current renovations and expansion projects completed, the Benito Juárez airport will be able to handle up to 32 million passengers per year.. It provides non-stop services from Mexico City to North America, Central America and Caribbean, South America, Europe and Asia.

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - The airport as seen from an aircraft in 2011.
Click to enlarge

As the main hub for Mexico's largest airline Aeroméxico and a secondary hub for its subsidiary Aeroméxico Connect, the airport has become a SkyTeam hub. This airport is a focus city for VivaAerobus.

AICM is Latin America's busiest airport. The airport houses a wide variety of lodging options for its passengers, including hotels inside Terminal 1 (the Hilton Hotel, the Camino Real, and the Fiesta Inn), also a NH Hotel at Terminal 2.


The airport first opened as Balbuena Military Airport. The first landing was on November 5, 1928 and regular service started a year later, but was officially inaugurated on May 15, 1931. Its first international route was to Los Angeles International Airport operated by Mexicana. President Miguel Aleman opened the terminal in 1952, thus turning the airport into a civilian one. In 1980, the terminal was expanded to double its capacity, using a single large terminal rather than multiple terminals as in other airports. Ten years later in 1990, the mixed domestic/international gates were separated to increase the terminal's functionality, along with the separation of domestic and international check-in halls.

In 2001, the east wing of the terminal was opened as an international final call waiting area and was mainly used by SkyTeam members. Former president Vicente Fox launched a program called Expansion of Mexico City Airport to its Maximum Capacity in 2002 to increase the airport's capabilities. The whole terminal was expanded and upgraded with new check-in halls, 13 more baggage claim belts, the division of the terminal into Departures and Arrivals floors, construction of several new taxiways and a whole new terminal opposite of the current one, thus breaking the single terminal concept. The project was started with an initial investment of $200,000,000 MXP. Nevertheless, its final cost was $800,000,000 MXP. The original quasi-Terminal 2, which only housed Aeromar's operations in and out the airport was demolished, and the new Terminal 2 was built in less than two years.

On November 15, 2007, terminal 2 was opened, increasing the airport's operational capability by 40%. All SkyTeam members moved their operations to it, except Air France and KLM. It was officially inaugurated on March 2008, once the new road accesses and taxiways were finished. Terminal 2 increased the airport's contact positions by 40%, and the operational capacity by 15%. Terminal 2 is connected to the Domestic Building of Terminal 1 by the Aerotrén monorail system, in which travel between both terminals can be done in less than 7 minutes.

Lack of capacity and slot restriction

Terminal 2
Terminal 2

The airport has suffered from a lack of capacity due to restrictions for expansion, since it is located in a densely-populated area. Some analysts have reported that if the airport had grown at the same speed as demand, it would now serve over 40 million passengers annually. The main issue with the airport is the limitation that its two runways provide, since they are used at 97.3% of their maximum capacity, leaving a very short room for new operations into the airport. Only government, military and commercial aircraft are allowed to land at the airport. Private aircraft must use alternate airports, such as Lic. Adolfo Lopez Mateos International Airport in Toluca, General Mariano Matamoros Airport in Cuernavaca or Hermanos Serdán International Airport in Puebla. Even with the inauguration of the new Terminal 2, the airport would be ideally designed to serve around 18 million passengers per year, according to the international standards for runway and terminal usage. Instead, the airport will keep increasing the number of passengers from around 26 million passengers in 2008 at a rate of 16% per year.

Airport Specifications

Terminal Layout before T2
Terminal Layout before T2

Terminal layout after T2 was built
Terminal layout after T2 was built

Terminal 1

  • Opened in 1958; expanded in 1970, 1989, 1998, 2000 and 2004
  • Overall terminal surface: 548,000 sq meters
  • Contact positions: 33
  • Remote positions: 20 (34 Before New T2 was built)
  • Number of jetways: 32
  • Number of airside halls: 10 (A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J)
  • Number of landside (check-in) halls: 9 (A1, A2, B, C, D, D1, F1, F2, F3)
  • Number of mobile-lounges: 11 (A7-A, A7-B, A7-C, A9-A, A9-B, A9-C, A9-D, A9-E, F19-A, F19-C, F19-D)
  • Hotel service: 600 rooms (Camino Real), 110 rooms (Hilton)
  • Parking service: 3,100 vehicles (Domestic), 2,400 vehicles (International)
  • Space per passenger in T1: 17 sq meters
  • Number of baggage claiming carousels: 22
  • Premium Lounges in T1: Salón Premier Internacional T1 (Aeroméxico), Red Carpet Club (United Airlines), Admirals Club (American Airlines), American Express Lounge (American Express), Elite Lounge Nacional (Mexicana), Elite Lounge Internacional (Mexicana).

Terminal 2

  • Opened in 2007
  • Overall terminal surface: 242,000 sq meters
  • Contact positions: 23
  • Remote positions: 17 (Aeromar and Aeromexico Connect)
  • Number of jetways: 23
  • Number of airside halls: 2 (Domestic, International)
  • Number of landside (check-in) halls: 3 (L1, L2, L3)
  • Hotel service: 287 rooms (NH)
  • Parking service: 3,000 vehicles
  • Space per passenger in T2: 22 sq meters
  • Number of baggage claiming carousels: 15
  • Premium Lounges in T2: Club Diamante (Aeromar), Salón Premier (Aeroméxico), Salón Premier Internacional T2 (Aeroméxico), Riedel Wine Room (Aeroméxico) , Travel Pass Elite Lounge (Banamex) , Centurion American Express Lounge American Express.
  • Platform surface: 426,000 sq meters
  • Inter-terminal Aerotrén capacity: 7,800 daily passengers

Terminal 2 is now housing all Aeroméxico flights out of the airport, becoming the airlines's main distribution center. Although the terminal was intended to be served by all-SkyTeam member airlines, Air France and KLM are not moving their operations until the new cargo terminal is built aside Terminal 2, since the existing one is at the other side of the airport.

Terminals, airlines and destinations

Airlines Destinations Terminal
Aero República Bogotá 2
Aerolíneas Argentinas Buenos Aires-Ezeiza [resumes 11 December] 1
Aeromar Acapulco, Aguascalientes, Ciudad Victoria, Colima, Huatulco, Lázaro Cárdenas, León/El Bajío, Manzanillo, Morelia, Poza Rica, Puerto Escondido, Saltillo, San Luis Potosí, Tepic, Veracruz, Xalapa, Zacatecas 2
Aeroméxico Acapulco, Barcelona, Bogotá, Buenos Aires-Ezeiza, Cancún, Chicago-O'Hare, Chihuahua, Ciudad Juárez, Culiacán, Guadalajara, Havana, Hermosillo, Houston-Intercontinental, Las Vegas, Lima, Los Angeles, Madrid, Mazatlán, Mérida, Mexicali, Miami, Monterrey, New York-JFK, Orlando, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Puerto Vallarta, San Francisco, San José de Costa Rica, San José del Cabo, Santiago de Chile, São Paulo-Guarulhos, Shanghai-Pudong, Tijuana, Tokyo-Narita, Tuxtla Gutierrez, Villahermosa
Seasonal: Denver, Hamilton
Aeroméxico Connect Acapulco, Aguascalientes, Campeche, Chihuahua, Ciudad del Carmen, Ciudad Obregón, Culiacán, Durango, Guadalajara, Houston-Intercontinental, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, La Paz, León/El Bajío, Los Mochis, Matamoros, Mazatlán, Mérida, Minatitlán/Coatzacoalcos, Monterrey, Morelia, Nuevo Laredo, Oaxaca, Poza Rica, Puerto Vallarta, Reynosa, San Antonio, San Luis Potosí, San Pedro Sula, Tampico, Tapachula, Tijuana, Torreón/Gómez Palacio, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Veracruz, Villahermosa, Zacatecas 2
Aeroméxico Travel Cancún, Cozumel, Huatulco, Mazatlán, Mérida, Oaxaca, Puerto Vallarta, Punta Cana 2
Air Canada Montréal-Trudeau [resumes November 1], Toronto-Pearson
New Routes: Vancouver [November 6]
Air France Paris-Charles de Gaulle 1
Alaska Airlines Los Angeles 1
American Airlines Chicago-O'Hare [resumes December 16], Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami 1
Avianca Bogotá 1
British Airways London-Heathrow 1
Continental Airlines Houston-Intercontinental, Newark 2
Continental Express operated by ExpressJet Airlines Houston-Intercontinental 2
Copa Airlines Panama City 2
Cubana de Aviación Havana 1
Delta Air Lines Atlanta, Detroit, New York-JFK, Salt Lake City
New Routes: Minneapolis/St. Paul [December 18]
Iberia Madrid 1
Interjet Cancún, Chetumal, Chihuahua, Ciudad del Carmen, Ciudad Juárez, Ciudad Obregón, Culiacán, Guadalajara, Hermosillo, Los Mochis, Mérida, Monterrey, San José del Cabo, Tampico, Tijuana, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Veracruz, Villahermosa
Seasonal: Acapulco, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Puerto Vallarta
KLM Amsterdam 1
LAN Airlines Santiago de Chile 2
LAN Perú Lima 2
Lufthansa Frankfurt 1
Magni Cancún, Huatulco, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Manzanillo, Mérida, Monterrey, Puerto Vallarta, San José del Cabo 1
TACA Airlines Guatemala City, San Salvador 1
TACA Airlines operated by Lacsa Guatemala City, San José de Costa Rica 1
TACA Perú Lima 1
United Airlines Chicago-O'Hare [resumes October 9], Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington-Dulles
Seasonal: Denver
US Airways Charlotte, Phoenix, Vancouver 1
VivaAerobus Cancún, Guadalajara, Mazatlán, Monterrey, Oaxaca, Puerto Vallarta, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Villahermosa 1
Volaris Cancún, Chihuahua, Guadalajara, Hermosillo, La Paz, Mérida, Mexicali, San José del Cabo, Tijuana 1

A:^ LAN and LanPeru flights to/from Cancún are only for non-domestic, connecting traffic.

Cargo Airlines

Airlines Destinations
ABX Air Guadalajara, Los Angeles, New York-JFK
AeroUnion Chicago-O'Hare, Guadalajara, Los Angeles
Air France Cargo Guadalajara, Houston-Intercontinental, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Porto
Amerijet International Guadalajara, Miami, Monterrey
Astar Air Cargo Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky, Miami
Atlas Air Huntsville
Cargolux Houston-Intercontinental, Guadalajara, Luxembourg, Miami, New York-JFK
Centurion Air Cargo Miami
Cielos Airlines Lima
DHL Aviation Miami
DHL de Guatemala Guatemala City
Estafeta Hermosillo, Mérida, Miami, San Luis Potosí, Villahermosa
Florida West International Airways Bogotá, Miami
Lufthansa Cargo Chicago O'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Frankfurt
MasAir Bogotá, Caracas, Guadalajara, Lima, Los Angeles, Medellín-Córdova, Miami, Quito, Santiago de Chile, São Paulo-Viracopos
Regional Cargo Cancún, Mérida
Tampa Cargo Bogotá
UPS Airlines Louisville

Airlines providing on-demand cargo services.

  • Aeromexpress
  • Air Cargo Carriers
  • Air Transport International
  • Ameristar Jet Charter
  • IFL Group operated by Contract Air Cargo
  • Kalitta Air
  • Líneas Aéreas Suramericanas
  • Martinair Cargo
  • USA Jet Airlines
  • World Airways


Passenger traffic

Year Total passengers  % change
2006 24,727,296 2.5%
2007 25,881,662 4.7%
2008 26,210,217 1.3%
2009 24,243,056 -7.5%


Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - Terminal 2 - Departures waiting area.
Click to enlarge

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - Terminal 2 - AeroMéxico aircraft parked at North Concourse. AeroMéxico is the largest carrier operating at Benito Juárez Airport.
Click to enlarge

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - AeroMéxico Boeing 777-200ER landing from Shanghai Pudong International Airport.
Click to enlarge

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - A Volaris A319 parked at Terminal 1 on a rainy day.
Click to enlarge

External façade of Terminal 2
External façade of Terminal 2

Terminal 2 Hall L3 Entrance
Terminal 2 Hall L3 Entrance

Terminal 2 Hall L3 Check-in Counters
Terminal 2 Hall L3 Check-in Counters

Terminal 2 Hall L2 in the foreground, Hall 1 in the far background
Terminal 2 Hall L2 in the foreground, Hall 1 in the far background
Busiest International Routes out of Mexico City International Airport [2009]
Rank City Passengers
1 Los Angeles, USA 341,906
2 New York, USA 275,526
3 Miami, USA 272,976
4 Houston, USA 267,589
5 Madrid, Spain 215,205
6 Dallas, USA 179,905
7 Paris, France 178,350
8 Chicago, USA 171,197
9 Panama City, Panama 126,263
10 San Francisco, USA 115,321
11 Atlanta, USA 104,296
12 Guatemala City, Guatemala 102,136
13 Frankfurt, Germany 99,560
14 Bogotá, Colombia 92,769
15 San José, Costa Rica 91,427
16 Toronto, Canada 88,645
17 Las Vegas, USA 85,321
18 Amsterdam, Netherlands 82,877
19 São Paulo, Brazil 78,110
20 La Habana, Cuba 75,057
21 Buenos Aires, Argentina 75,024
22 Santiago de Chile, Chile 73,943
23 London, United Kingdom 72,499
24 Lima, Peru 69,284
25 San Antonio, USA 64,413
Busiest Domestic Routes out of Mexico City International Airport [2009]
Rank City Passengers
1 Cancún, Quintana Roo 962,747
2 Monterrey, Nuevo León 947,243
3 Guadalajara, Jalisco 844,015
4 Tijuana, Baja California 352,544
5 Mérida, Yucatán 338,356
6 Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas 315,720
7 Villahermosa, Tabasco 276,148
8 Veracruz, Veracruz 272,025
9 Hermosillo, Sonora 216,971
10 Acapulco, Guerrero 206,483
11 Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco 198,993
12 Tampico, Tamaulipas 188,090
13 Los Cabos, Baja California Sur 186,143
14 Oaxaca, Oaxaca 182,861
15 Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua 179,518
16 Bahías de Huatulco, Oaxaca 145,708
17 Torreón/Gómez Palacio, Coahuila 138,511
18 Culiacán, Sinaloa 133,507
19 Chihuahua, Chihuahua 120,024
20 Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Guerrero 114,514
21 Leon, Guanajuato/Del Bajio 112,909
22 Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche 109,258
23 Mexicali, Baja California 103,101
24 Reynosa, Tamaulipas 94,600
25 Mazatlan, Sinaloa 91,205

Ground transportation

Benito Juárez International Airport
Individuals aircraft spotting from a spot adjacent the taxiways

Metro and bus services

The airport is served by the Terminal Aérea Metro station, located just outside the national terminal; it also has a Bus Terminal, which is served by various bus lines [1] with routes to Cuernavaca, Puebla, Querétaro, Toluca, Pachuca, and Córdoba. Whilst the airport always had a bus area, the bus terminal building itself was not built until 2003, to accommodate the many passengers that utilize this service.

Accidents and Incidents

  • On October 31, 1979, Western Airlines Flight 2605 crash-landed. The crew of the DC-10 had landed on the wrong runway and the jetliner hit construction vehicles that were on the closed runway. There were 78 fatalities (including one on the ground) and 14 survivors.
  • An Aero California DC-9-15 overran in 2006, during an intense storm at the airport. There were no victims, but the aircraft was scrapped. However, a woman died later due to a heart attack.
  • On September 9, 2009, hijacked Aeroméxico Flight 576 landed at Mexico City International Airport from Cancun International Airport.
  • On September 13, 2009, Lufthansa Cargo McDonnell-Douglas MD-11 D-ALCO was severely damaged in a heavy landing. Post landing inspection revealed that there were wrinkles in the fuselage skin and the nose gear was bent. It is reported that the aircraft may be written off.


Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - An Aviacsa Boeing 737-200 landing at MEX. The airline ceased operations in 2009.
Click to enlarge

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - A Mexicana A320 parked at T1.
Click to enlarge

Benito Juárez International Airport

Benito Juárez International Airport - A Mexicana Airbus A318.
Click to enlarge

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General Info
Country Mexico
Time UTC-6(-5DT)
Latitude 19.436303
19° 26' 10.69" N
Longitude -99.072097
099° 04' 19.55" W
Elevation 7316 feet
2230 meters
Type Civil
Magnetic Variation 006° E (01/06)
Beacon Yes
Near City Mexico City
Operating Hours 24 HOUR OPERATIONS
International Clearance Status Airport of Entry
Daylight Saving Time First Sunday in April to the last Saturday in October

GND 121.0
ATIS 127.65

ID Dimensions Surface PCN ILS
05R/23L 12795 x 148 feet
3900 x 45 meters
05L/23R 12966 x 148 feet
3952 x 45 meters

Type ID Name Channel Freq Distance From Field Bearing From Navaid
VOR-DME MEX MEXICO 103X 115.6 At Field -
NDB TPX TEPEXPAN - 359 9.9 NM 205.0

Fuel Jet A1, without icing nhibitor.

FUEL (NC-100LL, A1)
RSTD VFR opr by turbojets proh. All US mil acft diverting to this afld must ctc the Defense Attache Office duty officer at the US Embassy Mexico City. Thru ctl agcy call 011-52-555-080-2000. This afld can accept US mil ldg after proper coord.

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