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How to Get to Playa Del Carmen From Cozumel Without Any Stress
If you’re looking for a hassle-free way on how to get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel, look no further!
I know that getting around can sometimes be a pain, especially when trying to do it in another country.
I’ve put together this practical guide with all the information you need to make your journey from Cozumel to Playa del Carmen as smooth as possible. (Well, not completely smooth. The journey might be a little rough, but more on that later!)
You’ll be able to relax and enjoy the ride instead of worrying about the logistics. In this post, I’ll tell you everything you need to know so that your journey is easy and stress-free.
You’ll be in paradise in no time – enjoy everything that Playa del Carmen offers!
Exactly How to Get to Playa del Carmen From Cozumel
Cozumel beckons visitors with its clear turquoise waters, beautiful beaches, and abundant marine life, making it a premier destination for scuba divers in the Mexican Caribbean.
While Cozumel island is small, there is plenty to do and see! You can spend the day lounging on the beach, exploring downtown Cozumel, or visiting San Gervasio Mayan ruins.
But, you might want to venture beyond the island at some point.
Maybe you’re taking a day trip from your cruise ship, or perhaps you’re on a Mexico adventure and want to explore more of the Yucatan Peninsula.
Whatever your reasons, if you’re looking to get from Cozumel to Playa del Carmen, you’ll be surprised to know how easy it is.
All you have to do is hop on a ferry, and you’ll be on your merry way. (If you’re new here, know that I never give up an opportunity to rhyme).
How Does the Ferry From Cozumel to Playa del Carmen Work?
You can take one of two ferries: passenger ferries or car ferries.
How to Get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel Via Passenger Ferry
The two ferry companies that passengers can use are Ultramar (yellow) and Winjet (orange), and the ferry companies operate pretty much the same.
The ferry terminal they both use is Ferry Pier. The only difference is their schedules, but they both operate 365 days a year, weather permitting.
They depart from the same ferry terminal and arrive at the same ferry terminal in Playa del Carmen.
Winjet and Ultramar have stable boats and indoor and outdoor seating, making for a luxury ferry experience.
Both ferries offer a cafe on board where you can buy snacks and drinks.
How to Get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel Via Car Ferry
If you’re renting a car or want to take your vehicle, you’ll have to take the vehicle ferry.
The two Cozumel ferry companies for cars are Ultramar and Transcaribe.
Their pricing is similar, and the only difference between the two companies is their schedules.
You’ll depart from the vehicle ferry pier about a mile south of downtown near the lighthouse in Cozumel and arrive at Calica Cruise Pier in Playa del Carmen.
The ride takes about an hour, and I recommend purchasing your ferry tickets in advance.
It’s important to note that the car ferry companies don’t have a passenger-only fare, so don’t mistake booking with them if you’re not going to be transporting a car.
Pro Tip: If you’re traveling around Cozumel for a while, I recommend renting a car. It’s the easiest and cheapest way to get around the island. I love Discover Cars because you can compare rental cars from multiple companies to get the perfect one for you that fits within your budget.
Check rates and book your rental car with Discover Cars!
Important Passenger Ferry Information for Cruise Travelers
I HIGHLY recommend purchasing your tickets in advance online to have an existing reservation for cruise passengers.
If you’re unable to buy them online, you can buy your ferry tickets directly from the ferry company at the ferry terminal.
Make sure you buy a round trip ticket to avoid getting left behind in Playa del Carmen!
Cruise passengers need to have a return ticket back to Cozumel from Playa del Carmen. Do not make the mistake of buying a one way ferry ticket.
There are no guarantees that the ferry back to Cozumel has space, especially if several cruise ships are in port.
How to Get to Ferry Pier In Cozumel to Get on the Passenger Ferry
The passenger ferry companies, Winjet and Ultramar, operate from Ferry Pier.
If you see Palmeras Restaurant, you’re very close to Ferry Pier.
Cozumel hotel guests can get taxi drivers at any taxi stand to take them to the Cozumel ferry terminal for passengers if they’re not within walking distance. (Yes, the taxis are safe).
If you’re flying into Cozumel International Airport, you’ll have to take a taxi or shuttle to the Cozumel ferry dock for passengers since it’s about a ten-minute drive.
If you’re going to visit Cozumel on a cruise, you’ll be arriving at one of three terminals:
- Punta Langosta Cruise Pier
- International Cruise Terminal/International Pier
- Puerta Maya Cruise Terminal
Punta Langosta Cruise Pier is about a five-minute short walk to the Cozumel ferry dock for passengers.
International Cruise Terminal and Puerta Maya Cruise Terminal are about a seven-minute drive to the main square and Ferry Pier.
If you have a car, you can leave it at an underground parking garage or find street parking near Ferry Pier.
What Are the Amenities Like on the Passenger Cruise Ferries?
Winjet and Ultramar are both air-conditioned and very comfortable.
For your convenience, there’s a cafe on board where you can buy snacks and drinks, including alcoholic beverages on both.
They also have electrical outlets onboard if you need to charge your phone.
Ultramar has a kids’ play area onboard, and Ultramar provides live entertainment such as a Mariachi band or DJ to keep you entertained during the journey.
All in all, I enjoyed my experience with Ultramar more, and I recommend them over Winjet. Plus, their website is more functional than Winjet’s.
How Long Is the Ferry Ride From Cozumel to Playa del Carmen?
The car ferry takes around an hour to reach Playa del Carmen, and the passenger ferry ride takes 30-40 minutes. It’s a short and easy journey.
How Much Does It Cost to Get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel for Passenger Ferries?
The pricing for the ferries is subject to change, so it’s best to check their website or call them for the latest information.
Remember that the pricing can vary from the ticket office at the pier and online, especially with Winjet.
Winjet Passenger Cost:
- MXN 235 One-Way Adult
- MXN 155 One-Way Child
Ultramar Passenger Cost:
- Premium Plus Service Adult: MXN 250 one way & MXN 500 round trip
- Premium Plus Service Child: MXN 200 one way & MXN 400 round trip
- First Class: MXN 310 one way & MXN 600 round trip
Can You Bring Luggage On the Ferry?
Yes, you can bring luggage on the ferry. If you’re visiting on a cruise, you won’t have to worry about this.
If you have oversized luggage like a suitcase, they’ll label your bags and store them. Make sure you factor in some time to handle this.
Small carry-on bags like backpacks are perfectly fine to take on board and don’t need to be checked.
Ferry Schedule for Passengers From Cozumel to Playa del Carmen
Just like the pricing, the schedules are also subject to change. In fact, the schedules change every month.
Their departure times change every month, and the times are different depending on if you’re going on an even-numbered date or an odd-numbered date.
To get the latest schedule, visit the companies’ Facebook pages.
Helpful Tips for Taking the Ferry From Cozumel to Playa del Carmen
Here are a few helpful tips to know exactly how to get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel and what to expect on your journey to this mainland Mexico jewel.
- If this is your first time traveling around Mexico, I recommend sitting outside to soak in the scenery.
- If you sit outside, pack some reef-safe sunscreen because it’ll get hot up there.
- The journey will be pretty rough. The seas are choppy, so come prepared with Dramamine.
- If you get seasick easily, consider taking the earliest ferry because the water is calmer in the morning.
- If you start feeling seasick on the ride, move to the bottom back since that’s where the boat rocks the least.
- If you buy your tickets in person, have the cashier charge you in Pesos to get the best rate.
- Make sure you use the emergency brake if you’re taking your car. You don’t want your car rolling around in the rough seas.
- Have some change available to tip the entertainers onboard.
- Check the ferry schedule in advance and factor in some time for check-in and purchase tickets.
- Pay close attention to the ferry departure time from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel. Especially, cruise ship passengers don’t want to get stuck and miss their ship.
- Make sure you get to the terminal at least 30 minutes before the departure time.
- If you hear “Calica cruise passengers,” this refers to car ferry passengers.
- Scope out a parking garage or street level parking lots ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about them being full.
- Read my post about “Is Cozumel Safe” for the best safety tips on the island.
How to Get to Playa del Carmen From Cozumel Summary
The only way to get between Cozumel and Playa del Carmen is via ferry, and you’ll either take the passenger ferry or the car ferry.
The two ferry companies for cars are Ultramar and Transcaribe. The Cozumel ferry for passengers is Ultramar and Winjet.
The ferry schedules change every month, so check the latest schedule before traveling.
You can purchase the tickets at the pier or online, although buying them online in advance is recommended.
If you have any questions, call the ferry services. Their staff speaks English, and they’ll give you the most updated answers.
Final Thoughts About How to Get to Playa del Carmen From Cozumel
So, now you know exactly how to get to Playa del Carmen from Cozumel!
I hope that you enjoy your time exploring the Riviera Maya, whether you’re scuba diving, sightseeing, or just relaxing by the beach.
Playa del Carmen takes the cake for being one of the prettiest places I’ve visited, and I know you’ll enjoy it too!
Have you taken the ferry from Cozumel to Playa del Carmen? Let me know in the comments below!
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How to Get to Playa del Carmen From Cozumel the Easy Way
Disha Smith is the founder of Disha Discovers. She quit her job in 2017 to travel the world to explore new cultures and experience new adventures. She has since been to 95+ countries and counting and has lived in South Africa, Thailand, Croatia, and Australia. She has done all kinds of travel ranging from luxury to budget backpacking, and her mission is to inspire others to discover their own sense of adventure and to help them plan a life full of meaningful experiences through travel.