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|Catedral Metropolitana de la Asunción de María|
|Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe|
|Palacio de Bellas Artes|
SOME WORDS OF ADVICE FOR PEOPLE WISHING TO TRAVEL TO MEXICO
Language. It’s Spanish here. Very, very few people speak English.
Currency and foreign exchange. I saw the dollar sign everywhere, but the currency here is peso. 1 peso is divided into 100 centavos. Different banks have different foreign exchange rates even at the airport. When at the airport, it’s better to use banks in Terminal 2; they have a LOT better rates.
Mexican Customs. Only one laptop is allowed. A second laptop (and that includes iPad) is taxable, even if it’s an old one. Luckily, I brought only 2 cameras. A 3rd camera would have been taxable, too.
Mexico Metro. Mexico’s subway (called the Metro) was great; it made easier (cheaper and faster, too) going from Mexico City Airport to the city center, and vice-versa. The nearest Metro station from the airport is Terminal Aerea (Linea 5). But the train only goes to Terminal 1, not Terminal 2. I arrived in Terminal 2. There is a 3-km distance between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Walking is not an option. Darn. Fortunately, at Terminal 2, I saw the Aerotrén sign to Terminal 1. Thankfully, I kept my boarding pass; the Aerotrén isn’t open to the general public. (I needed to show either my boarding pass as an arriving passenger or, if I was leaving Mexico, my plane ticket.) I waited for at least 15 minutes for the next Aerotrén. When I reached Terminal 1, I couldn’t find the Metro easily. I asked a police officer for directions to the Metro. I had to get out of the airport and walked a bit to reach the train station. If you don’t speak Spanish and you have checked baggage, I do not recommend taking the Metro subway; take the Metrobus instead, which is more expensive, or taxi, which is even a lot more expensive. (The Metro subway costs 5 pesos regardless of destination, less than U.S. $0.50.) Mexico City trains come regularly, but they are not air-conditioned. I left the airport at past 8 p.m., so I wasn’t sweating, and I could actually find a place to sit inside the train. But because rarely do train stations have escalators, and elevators are not easy to find, even with a small carry-on bag, changing from one Metro line to the next can be challenging. On the day of my departure, from the city center to the airport I allotted 1.5 hours on the Metro and Aerotrén, just to be safe, as I was flying from Terminal 2.
Public Restrooms. I’m not sure how Mexicans do it. Even in tourist areas, restrooms are difficult to find. If you can find a restroom, there is an entrance fee (usually 5 pesos). It’s best to use the restroom before leaving the hotel.