One month and a half into the running of the Maya Train, passenger numbers show no sign of slowing down.
With its inaugural route from Palenque, Chiapas to Cancun launching last December, officials, locals, and tourists waited with bated breath to see if it would be a success.
As the next section announces its launch between Cancun and Playa Del Carmen, it certainly looks like it’s going that way.
There are some stand-out routes that are experiencing higher passenger numbers than others, and as more become available, it’s only a matter of time before the entire Maya Train system skyrockets in popularity.
What Are The Standout Routes Currently?
Out of all destinations thus far, the clear front runner is the route between the city of Merida and Cancun Airport station, selling a total of 3,716 tickets in just a month and a half.
This comes as no surprise, with the popularity of the ‘magical town’ of Merida unwavering, home to historical architecture and traditional Yucatan food dishes.
Cancun Airport is the busiest in the region, especially over the winter season, when terminals see a total of up to 700 flights a day.
@ecolibriumgloballiving Get ready to ride the rails of history on the #MayaTrain, exploring ancient ruins and vibrant cultures along the way! 🚈✨ #RivieraMaya #TrenMaya #ExploreMexico #EcolibriumGlobalLiving #Tulum #Yucatan #Cancun ♬ sonido original – Ecolibrium Global Living
Now, without the worry of highly-priced taxis to reach their destination and even free shuttle transfer to the Maya Train station itself, we can see why it is proving most popular.
The billion-dollar infrastructure project was built with the aim of creating affordable and reliable transport links across the Yucatan Peninsula, bringing it into the 21st century and meeting tourist demand.
People are all about convenience these days, so a scenic train ride to transport you from the airport to your hotel definitely sounds like a winning ticket.
Other popular routes are between Campeche to Merida, selling 3,674 tickets and Cancun to Merida, selling 3,502 tickets.
@grassjellyprincesss the best things to do in Merida, Yucatan🌻 1. Visit a local market! There a tons around the city, and i went to the San Benito market 2. Merida is perfect for day trips! Just one hour away from the city is Homun, a town that is known for its cenotes! The most famous cenote there is the Santa Barbara Cenote, which has admission to 3 for around $20 3. Finally, i would reccomend you to try some local Yucatan dishes such as the cochinita pebil or sopa de lima🍋 The Musuem of Yucateca Gastronomy serves many regional dishes and is famous for being part musuem and part restaurant! #merida #meridayucatanmexico #mexicotravel #yucatan #travel #solotravel ♬ Me gustas tú – Annie⭐️🤍
A member of the Ministry of National Defense stated:
“At the end of the day, all the routes have been in demand, but these are the ones with the highest percentage of ticket sales.”
What Routes Are Next For The Maya Train?
Coming in hot on February 29th is the route connecting Cancun to Playa Del Carmen, which is expected to be another popular service, with so many Americans picking these two destinations as their main hotel base.
Playa Del Carmen is home to stunning coastlines and some vibrant city nightlife and should definitely be checked out.
Though a little later than previously planned, the Tulum route is expected to begin operations sometime between April and May, though there has been no official date set.
With the new Tulum International Airport expecting swathes of international tourists in March, the Maya Train is once again going to be the perfect choice to transport excited tourists to their hotel destinations.
Currently, there is only the Ado bus service operator as an affordable option for visitors arriving at the airport, so officials are working tirelessly to complete the route as fast as they can.
Why Are There Delays?
The Maya Train is a gargantuan project, the likes of which the Mexican Caribbean has never seen before.
Officials may have been slightly ambitious with the announcement of so many sections consecutively after one another, but can that ambition really be scrutinized?
The project has also had a lot of controversy surrounding it, with many locals and environmentalists protesting its construction.
They believe that the mass transit system will destroy historic landscapes and natural habitats and leave a carbon footprint worse than anything the tourist boom has caused in the Mexican Caribbean so far.
Protests may be a reason why there is a delay in operation launches, as local communities have created blockades in the past to stop construction from taking place.
The delays could also come from officials wanting to make sure that no historic landscapes or archeological sites are compromised during the building process.
The controversy is certainly not having much of an effect on ticket sales, however, and people are raring to experience all the wonders the Yucatan Peninsula holds.
Let’s just hope the next route launches go to plan, otherwise people may start to lose their patience….
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