Anyone used UA SFO-MEX then MX for a domestic flight?
I am flying UA SFO-MEX and then connecting to MX to CUN.
I know UA and MX use the same terminal, but on some other boards I've seen where you can walk from the international to domestic section of MEX without passing through customs only to then be turned away at the gate.
Does anyone know the right procedure?
I would assume as my first point of entry into a country and then joining a domestic flight that I must clear customs/immigration.
Our group of 14 did this back in 2007, albeit from ORD not SFO. We landed at the international terminal and went through customs, without claiming our bags that had been checked through to ZIH (interline). It was rather amusing, once we cleared customs we literally turned around and walked out of the same door we had just entered and back into the international terminal. We had to clear security once we left the international terminal to enter into the domestic terminal. All in all the process took about 20 minutes from gate to gate.
Coming back was a different story, we landed at the furthest end of the domestic side and had to walk the entire length of the airport, check in at the UA counter, and then go through security again. We had a 2 hour layover and were the last 14 people the board the UA plane to ORD. Needles to say, give yourself plenty of time on your return trip and get ready to walk/run what will feel like miles!
As indicated by the previous poster you will clear Mexican immigration at MEX. Customs inspection, which is random, takes place at CUN. You won't see your luggage until Cancun.
Connecting passengers at MEX after clearing Mexican immigration are routed back airside (there are plenty of Spanish/English signs directing you the right way). Just prior to re-entering the terminal you'll go through a security checkpoint with a WTMD and X-ray machine.
However it is a bit confusing as you do not clear immigration at the first booth you see but rather at another one further into the airport. There are signs but they are also somewhat confusing. Best thing to do is to ask someone when you arrive.
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After clearing immigration, you'll probably have to climb the stairs on the left (right by the public health booth) - you'll go through three moving sidewalks and turn right. There's a duty-free on the left, and a guard standing there. She'll check your tickets and send you through - do not go downstairs again or you will go through customs.
When you exit, check with a Mexicana agent before going to the domestic side (I once went to the domestic side only to find out my flight to Monterrey was back on the international side). There's a checkpoint near gate 19 - they'll want to see your immigration form, and they'll put your bag in an X-ray again.