The route is a direct flight: 02/05 21:35 IST to 02/06 8:25 CUN (18h 50m) with a "Stopovers (No Connecting Flight) for Mexico City, Mexico Benito Juarez International Airport (1h 30m)".

What does this mean? Does it mean I need to get off the plane at mexico city airport instead of cancun?

Edit: Based on the first response below, I have another question. If I'm a Sri Lankan national trying to transit through Istanbul (IST) to Cancun (CUN) to Nassau (NAS) and the stopover is at mexico city (MEX), does this count as a double transit? I ask because I'm trying to transit without visa because according to TIMTAC, you can transit without visa aslong as it is 24 hours or less but you cannot double transit.

  • I'm not sure TWOV is possible in Cancun. It looks like it's possible only in Mexico City (MEX). But I can't find any flight from either Mexico City or Cancun to Nassau anyway?
    – jcaron
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 23:32
  • 1
    Also note that TWOV is only possible if you stay in the international area of the airport. If you are self-connecting (have two different bookings/tickets) and need to reclaim your luggage and check it back in (or need to go to the check-in desk even if you don't have hold luggage), TWOV won't be possible. It seems in most cases TWOV only works for flights on the same airline (or possibly alliance).
    – jcaron
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 23:49
  • As far as I remember, there is a transfer area in Cancun, at least it should be because many US flights depart from there and Europe passengers should be able to change the flight
    – Suncatcher
    Commented Jan 26, 2021 at 7:32
  • 2
    You should ask your second question as a separate question (use the ask question button in the top right). (I saw on the question page that you already asked it separately; you should probably still delete the edited bit from this question.)
    – Jan
    Commented Jan 26, 2021 at 10:35

1 Answer 1


It's actually the same flight (TK181) which stops first in Mexico City (MEX), and then goes on to Cancun (CUN) after staying 1h30 in MEX.

Depending on the airlines and airports, usually two things can happen:

  • You stay on board during the stop. This is unlikely for a stop this long after a flight this long, though I have no experience of either TK nor MEX, so I can't say for sure.

  • You leave the aircraft (but can probably leave your hand luggage in overhead bins — though you must usually take your boarding pass and ID), and re-board the same aircraft after stretching your legs. This is the most plausible IMHO.

    Depending on the airport, you may be confined to the departure lounge/gate for the specific flight, or be allowed to visit the rest of the departures area in the terminal.

In both cases, you should keep the same seat for both legs.

Note that on the way back the flight is non-stop from CUN to IST: the aircraft actually flies a triangular route IST-MEX-CUN-IST, so in this direction it's the passengers flying MEX-IST who will have a stop in CUN. It's also the reason it's the same flight number in both directions!


This blog post states that passengers going to Cancun are actually not allowed to leave the aircraft in MEX:

Once we arrived at the parking place, passengers ticketed only to Mexico city were allowed the disembark. People continuing to Cancun had to stay on the plane and were not allowed into the terminal. I would have preferred to walk around and get a feeling of the terminal, however that was not so.

Once the passengers disembarked cleaning crew came and quickly cleaned the plane. It was quite superficial, understandingly though as half of the plane was full with Cancun bound passengers.

After the cleaning, new passengers for Istanbul boarded the plane.

That's harsh! This was posted in September 2019 so it might have changed since then, but don't hold your breath for that.

  • Ok, question. In case of Transiting without Visa, I think Sri Lankan nationals with onward ticket can transit upto 24 hours however, double transit is not allowed without a visa. So does this type of "stopover" count as double transit?
    – zwdev2
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 21:47
  • @zwdev2 as you don’t go through passport control in MEX (you don’t even exit the plane) and the MEX-CUN flight seems to operate as an international flight even though it’s domestic, I would think it’s no different from a real direct IST-CUN flight. But it’s probably worth it to post this as a new question to see if others have more precise information on this subject.
    – jcaron
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 22:27

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