Delta to launch flights from Atlanta to Tulum, Mexico

The vacation destination offers Mayan ruins and beaches on the Yucatan Peninsula
Tulum on the Mexico Yucatan Peninsula is one of the most important Mayan sites. (Photo courtesy Virtuoso/TNS)

Tulum on the Mexico Yucatan Peninsula is one of the most important Mayan sites. (Photo courtesy Virtuoso/TNS)

Delta Air Lines announced Friday it will launch daily flights from Atlanta to Tulum, Mexico starting in March 2024, making it the first U.S. airline to chart plans for direct flights to the vacation destination along the Riviera Maya.

Tulum, a popular site on the Yucatan Peninsula with Mayan ruins and beaches, is usually reached by tourists after a nearly two-hour drive from Cancun. But Tulum’s new Felipe Carrillo Puerto International Airport is set to open for international flights next March, allowing for the nonstop flights from Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

Delta’s new Atlanta-Tulum route will start March 28 on 160-seat Boeing 737-800 jets. The airline has secured Mexican aviation authority approval to fly to the new Tulum airport.

It’s part of a broader expansion of flights to Mexico, with Delta saying it will fly its largest-ever spring break schedule to Mexico next year.

Aeromexico, which has a joint cooperation agreement with Delta, also plans to expand its flight schedule with new routes next year from Atlanta to Bajio, Queretaro, Merida, Monterrey and Guadalajara in Mexico — with specific itineraries subject to government approvals. The new routes would also be sold via Delta through a code-share marketing agreement.

“Mexico has been a great source of strength for us through the last year,” said Delta President Glen Hauenstein on Thursday during an investor conference call. Through the joint venture with Aeromexico, Delta aims to expand service with “Atlanta as a primary gateway to Mexico,” Hauenstein said.

Delta operates its own flights to major destinations in Mexico including Guadalajara and Monterrey, but does not currently have flights to Bajio, Queretaro and Merida.

Delta continues to add other flights from Atlanta, a hub where it has not yet fully restored service to pre-pandemic levels.

In addition to the flights to Mexico, Delta has announced plans to launch daily flights from Atlanta to Santa Barbara and Fresno, California starting June 7, 2024. The airline also plans to resume flights from Atlanta to Reno, Nevada and Burbank and Oakland, California starting June 7.