Flight Review: AeroMexico (737-800) Economy From New York to Cancun
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To The Point
I loved my first flight with AeroMexico. The Pros: an updated 737, friendly service and a surprise complimentary breakfast. The Cons: no in-flight Wi-Fi and seasonal service only.
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After booking a last-minute long weekend trip to Cancun, I needed to find a good way to get there from NYC. I hadn’t flown with AeroMexico before, and since the airline was offering nonstop service on the departure day I needed, I decided to test it out.
One-way fares from New York (JFK) to Cancún International Airport (CUN) were going for $280 at the time, so we used The Platinum Card from American Express to book directly with the airline so I’d earn 5x Membership Rewards points, yielding me a total of 1,400 MR points for this one-way flight.
Those looking to redeem Delta SkyMiles can book this flight from 17,500 miles one-way. While there was no availability when I was searching for my flight, you should be able to find at least a few days open if you plan your trip farther in advance and have more flexibility with your travel dates than I did.
I credited the flight to my SkyMiles account and earned a total of 2,177 redeemable SkyMiles (1,555 base miles + 622 bonus miles for being a Silver Medallion), 1,555 MQMs and $311 in MQDs for this one-way trip.
A few days before my flight, I looked up my reservation on AeroMexico’s site and saw the option to upgrade to an AM Plus seat, which offered several more inches of legroom. I figured it was worth buying paying a little more for the privilege of being able to spread out during such an early flight, so I paid the additional $79 with my Citi Prestige Card, which offers a $250 airline credit and had the charge credited back to my account a few days later.
Airport and Check-In
Note that when I went on this AeroMexico flight, it departed from Terminal 1 — the carrier has since moved over to JFK Terminal 4 to be with its partner, Delta.
I arrived very early in the morning, which meant minimal traffic and small lines at check-in — or so I thought. While I was able to check-in quickly with the agent, checking my bag was a whole different story. Looking back, I can’t figure out for the life of me why I even checked a bag for such a quick weekend trip, but what’s done is done.
In order to check my bag, I had to go from the check-in desk to another line. Once I finally made it to the front, I used my Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card to pay the $25 fee, which I’ve since had credited back to me thanks to the card’s nifty $300 annual travel credit.
Security was a breeze, probably because it was so early in the morning, and I was on my way to the gate in under 10 minutes.
If I had been at the airport later in the day, I could’ve visited the Air France lounge in T1, which I had access to through Priority Pass. It wasn’t open yet, so instead, I bought an overpriced bagel sandwich and a water from an eatery near the gate.
I was hoping to snap some pictures of the cabin before too many people were on the plane, so I stood by the gate area as early as I could — I’d barely finished my sandwich before it was time to board. Even though the gate agents had set up signs that were clearly meant to separate people into distinct boarding groups, that process wasn’t being followed at all.
Cabin and Seat
This AeroMexico 737-800 has a total of 160 seats that are divided into three classes. First class is known as Clase Premier and is comprised of 16 recliner seats in a 2-2 configuration that are 21 inches wide, with 39 inches of pitch.
AM Plus is AeroMexico’s extra legroom economy product. There are 18 of these seats arranged in a 3-3 pattern, with each measuring in at 17 inches wide, with 34 inches of pitch. The AM Plus seats sported gray headrests that had AM Plus branding to help distinguish them from the regular economy seats.
This aircraft has 126 regular economy seats arranged in a 3-3 pattern, each of them with 17 inches of width and a tighter 31 inches of pitch. Overall, the cabin looks fresh and new, and reminded me of some of the newer Delta 737s that I’ve flown on before.
I chose 7F, a window seat in the AM Plus section. There was a slim blanket waiting for me there, which was an unexpected surprise. While the blanket itself wasn’t anything special, I consider anything that goes beyond what the major US carriers offer to be a perk.
As I mentioned above, I believe upgrading to the AM Plus seat was worth it because I was able to stretch out a little more. I was trying to get some sleep for much of the flight and was more than happy to have the extra bit of legroom. Plus, the extra fee I paid was eventually credited back to me as part of the Citi Prestige Card’s $250 annual airline credit, so it was a win-win.
Food and Beverage
Although the flight from JFK to Cancun is only around 3.5 hours, AeroMexico (surprisingly) served a meal to every passenger. Even better, the food — eggs served with black beans and cheese, a cup of fresh fruit and yogurt — was delicious and even felt authentically Mexican. The complimentary hot meal was enough to persuade me to choose AeroMexico again over one of the major US airlines, especially because the fare I paid was about the same as what the other carriers were charging on the same route.
Each seat on the aircraft was equipped with a seat-back IFE screen, which I love — I appreciate having the ability to not deal with a laptop or tablet in order to watch movies or TV shows. Plus, the seats had USB power, which is pretty much an essential amenity in my book.
There was a great selection of pre-loaded movies, as well as TV shows, a real-time airshow and special content designed for kids. If I had been more awake, I wouldn’t have had any trouble finding a movie to watch.
Instead, I aimlessly watched the airshow whenever I wasn’t sleeping. And while the screen wasn’t as big as some of the ones you’d find in business class, the graphics were sharp and the screen responded quickly.
This plane wasn’t equipped with Wi-Fi, which wasn’t all that surprising to me because it’s such a leisure-heavy route and Wi-Fi isn’t likely to be as important to travelers as it would be on other flights. However, that alone could dissuade some from picking the carrier on this route.
I had a great flight with AeroMexico — the crew members were all very polite, friendly and spoke great English, though I also liked the opportunity to speak a little Spanish. I was pleasantly surprised to be served a complimentary breakfast, especially when it turned out to be delicious. I do wish this was a year-round route instead of just being seasonal service, and would certainly consider this carrier my first choice for getting between NYC and Cancun in the future.
Have you ever flown in economy aboard AeroMexico’s 737-800? Tell us about your experience, below.