sayulita from puerto vallarta airport

How to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport in 6 ways

Uber is not allowed in Puerto Vallarta airport so you’ll end up paying a lot of money for an authorized taxi service. In this post, I will share with you 6 ways on how to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport for a lower price.

Reader Mail: Hi Trisha! After reading your posts about Sayulita, I finally decided to come to spend my winter there this year! I was battling between Puerto Escondido and Sayulita but based on your stories, Sayulita won my heart! I am currently planning my travels. Do you still have the local taxi driver that can take me to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta airport? I’d love to support local so let me know how I can avail. Thanks again and I hope to meet you!
– Cherry Ann, USA

Hola, Cherry Ann!

Glad you decided to go to Sayulita! Yes, I still have that local taxi driver and I will definitely connect you with him. I don’t live in Sayulita anymore but I spent 2 years there. I’ve written a lot of super local Sayulita travel guides so if you need anything during your stay, just let me know!

I hope you have a wonderful stay and please, don’t hesitate to contact me if there’s anything I can do for you. All my friends still live there so if you’re traveling by yourself to Sayulita, I’d love to introduce you to them! Good luck!

Xx,
Trisha

If this post is too long and you don’t want to read it, click here to see prices for Sayulita airport taxi service. Use PSIMONMYWAY10 for a 10% discount!

Where is Sayulita?

Sayulita is located in the state of Nayarit, north of Puerto Vallarta. It is famous for its super-friendly surfing waves, small-town vibes, and friendly people. Sayulita is also one of Mexico’s pueblos magicos and is very popular for water sports and activities. Its closest neighbor is San Pancho, about 10 minutes drive from Sayulita.

How far is Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport?

Sayulita is about an hour’s drive from Puerto Vallarta airport. From downtown Puerto Vallarta (say, the Malecon), it can take about 1.5 hours. Through the years, we’ve seen how the traffic situations changed in Sayulita. In 2018, we used to do it for only 40 minutes but as Sayulita gets popular with tourists, traffic gets heavier and heavier. Please note that the number of minutes driving to Sayulita depends if you are taking a bus, a private taxi, or driving yourself.

See also: How safe is Sayulita for solo female travelers?

sayulita travel guide

What is the airport that serves Sayulita?

If you look at TripAdvisor threads and other resources online, you will only see expensive public airport transport from Puerto Vallarta to Sayulita. This is because these are taxi companies and luxury transportation. The Nayarit area is an American and Canadian vacationer’s favorite and usually, their travel style is a grand vacation (ex: all-inclusive stays).

As backpackers ourselves, we understand why you won’t be willing to pay for a $150 USD taxi (come on, we won’t do that, too! It’s a bit too much) so in this post, we will share with you the cheapest ways to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport.

Travel time to Sayulita is just 40 minutes from PV airport. We want you to know this so you’ll have an idea about taxi pricing.

How much is the taxi from Puerto Vallarta to Sayulita?

If you’re coming from downtown Puerto Vallarta, you can simply take an Uber that will charge you around $25 USD – $45 USD. Uber is commonly used in Puerto Vallarta so if you have the app, you’re good to go! White taxis charge $40 – $65 USD and you can’t haggle with that. So better use Uber if you’re coming from PV downtown!

You might also like: Is the Internet in Sayulita fast or slow?

living in Sayulita

Can you take Uber from Puerto Vallarta Airport to Sayulita?

Yes and no. Ubers are not allowed inside Puerto Vallarta airport so you need to go out and wait for your Uber outside the airport (on the highway). It will be discussed in the next sections of this article so keep browsing or refer to the table of contents.

Is there Uber in Sayulita?

You can’t use Uber while you are in Sayulita but there are lots of taxi drivers in town that will take you wherever you want to go. Sayulita is a walking town so I don’t really recommend you taking taxis. It’s better to rent a golf cart especially when you’re traveling as a group.

Uber only works in Sayulita if you are going on an inter-city trip like Punta Mita, San Pancho, or Puerto Vallarta. This is a hit-and-miss opportunity though – there aren’t a lot of cars available all the time.

travelwifi travel guides

How to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport in 6 ways

#1: Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport via local driver

I stopped taking public transport this year because of COVID. I also got a car so I barely use taxi services between Puerto Vallarta and Sayulita but when I do, Since we are always traveling in groups with our staff, I always call my trusted local drivers.

We’ve known each other for a long time and they’ve taken care of me while I was living in Mexico! I am really amazed at how speaking Spanish can easily connect you with people!

Recommended: 40+ things to do in Sayulita with local tour guides

I met Juan and Michelle 2 years ago through Uber. I’d usually be freaked about taxi drivers who are very chatty but Juan has a different vibe. He only speaks Spanish but he’s very willing to learn English. You’ll see how he will be very chatty with you during the ride!

Through the years, Juan and I remained friends. We go to dinners and he even helped me move to different houses while I was living in Sayulita! I am also a proud godmother to one of Juan’s many children. I love supporting Juan so I hope you’ll help me support him, too!

If you are worried about your safety, we assure you that Juan is a good person. I am totally vouching for him!

➢ Click here to book a Sayulita airport taxi with a local driver

#2: Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta airport via authorized taxi service (VIP)

If you don’t know yet, Ubers and taxis without permits are not allowed to enter Puerto Vallarta Airport. That’s just the rules and politics of the airport. You can definitely go for any company that will charge you $200 USD for it if you don’t want to complicate your pick-up.

Read: The digital nomad guide to Sayulita, Mexico

sayulita from puerto vallarta airport

If you’re a group of 3 people max, you can book a VIP taxi service here. However, if you are a big group (more than 3 people), you need to get a Sayulita airport van service. This van can hold up to 7 people and is also a VIP service.

They will have a sign with your name on it and they will be waiting for you at the arrivals gate. These drivers have a permit to operate inside Puerto Vallarta International Airport so don’t worry about its legitimacy.

#3: Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport via Uber

The Uber app does not work in all Mexican cities (for example, Puerto Escondido) but it does in Puerto Vallarta. However, Uber is not allowed to enter PV airport. If you booked an Uber through the app, you will have to go out of the airport to meet your driver. All you have to do is cross the bridge that’s outside the PV airport and your driver will be at the other end waiting for you.

expat insurance bannerIf you are traveling light, this is ideal but if you have heavy luggage, this bridge is a little bit long and high. There is a ramp at the footbridge for your luggage so don’t worry.

See also: Is Puerto Vallarta the cheapest digital nomad destination in Mexico?

sayulita from puerto vallarta airport

Uber in Mexico is really cheap, especially in big cities like Mexico City and Guadalajara. All trips are just less than $5 USD! In the case of Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airportrt, Uber normally charges between $25 USD – $40 USD, depending on the time of the day. I find nighttime taxi fees more expensive but this all depends on Uber’s algorithm, not the drivers.

There’s a lot of taxi politics in PV airport against Uber but if you’re willing to bring all your luggage and go out of the airport to meet your Uber driver, then this option is for you.


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#4: Public bus transport to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport

You can find regular busses from Puerto Vallarta Airport to Sayulita. These busses have the big letters ‘Compostela’ on them and usually have a written sign on the windshield that says SAYULITA. Like Uber, you have to cross the footbridge outside PV airport to get to the bus stop.

Recommended: How I ended up moving to Sayulita
sayulita from puerto vallarta airport

This is how the bus to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta airport looks like. You won’t miss it!

This costs $2 USD and will take you directly to the bus station in Sayulita. However, this trip is longer (can take up to 1.5 hours) as these busses stop frequently. They also don’t stop all the time at the bus stop in Puerto Vallarta airport so make sure to raise your hand when you see the sign! They are not very frequent – sometimes the wait time can take up to 20 minutes.

#5: Rent a car from Puerto Vallarta Airport to Sayulita

Renting a car in Puerto Vallarta airport is also one of the ways on how to get to Sayulita. However, this is a very tedious task as you have to drive yourself, pay for the security deposit (about $350 USD), pay for the daily rates ($25 USD), etc.

This is more ideal if you are going to use your car in Sayulita but bear in mind that parking in Sayulita is a horror story! As this is a walking town, the streets are very narrow and are often one-way. Sayulita is a walking town so heavy traffic in the center is very normal.

Read: The truth about renting a car in Mexico

renting a car in mexico

The best thing to do is to rent a car while you are already in Sayulita. This will allow you to discover day trips from Sayulita such as Lo de Marcos, San Pancho, Los Ayala, and many more. If you’d like for me to arrange a rental car for you while you are in Sayulita, feel free to get in touch!

#6: Hitchhiking

I want to add this to the list of ways to get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport because the question is from a backpacker and solo traveler. I’ve hitchhiked a lot within the Nayarit area and I can assure you that it is really safe! Mexicans are super friendly to foreigners and you will surely get a ride in this area easily.

Read: Riding in cars with boys – my first bla bla car experience
sayulita from puerto vallarta airport

First hitchhiking experience in Sayulita to Puerto Vallarta / May 2019

To hitchhike, all you have to do is cross the bridge from PV airport to the other side. Nayarit is the other way so you have to go to the other side of the road. Put your big smile on and thumbs up! There is only one highway to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta airport so you’ll have higher chances to get a ride!

Do you like what you’re reading? Does it help? I take a lot of time creating valuable and meaningful content. If you like to support my content creation and my blog, consider donating to my coffee fund. Thank you in advance!

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get to Sayulita from Puerto Vallarta Airport

Trisha is one of those people who left their comfortable life to travel the world and learn about life. Her style is to stay in one place she likes for 3 months (or more) to know what it feels like to eat, cook, speak, and sleep in another culture that isn’t hers. She'd like to believe she's not traditionally traveling but she just chooses to be somewhere else all the time. In no particular order, her favorite cities in the world are Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Mexico City, and Tel Aviv.

Comments

  • July 13, 2021

    Good to know in advance that Uber is not allowed at the Puerto Vallarta Airport so that you can make alternate plans. We often travel with so much luggage rolling our bags out of the airport to get our Uber might not be an option. But even better to get input on ways that will save money.

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  • July 13, 2021

    Wow many different ways to get to Sayulita from the airport. Even though I like the idea of hitchhiking, I am still hesitant as I usually travel solo. I have never traveled to Sayulita and I would like to someday. I will surely keep in mind that the Uber taxis are not allowed at the airport. But I may go with a public transport or a taxi service.

    reply
  • July 14, 2021

    Good to know that there is public transport after all! I had this experience quite often – buses and private taxis are not allowed inside the airport area, but you only have walk a few meters further and there is plenty of transport available. Best thing is to ask locals on the plane and do not believe the taxi touts inside the airport. You can always come back and take the more expensive transport.

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  • July 14, 2021

    Okay, so hitchiking wouldn’t be my choice, should I land there. But the idea of light luggage and crossing the bridge seems doable. I am also planning to learn Spanish, so that should make it easy. It looks like a cool place to be in. a lot like India actually.

    reply
  • Ha
    July 15, 2021

    Such a detailed post to get to Sayulita. I didn’t know that the taxi from Puerto Vallarta to Sayulita is so expensive. I would definitely love to use local drivers, or book a VIP transport service if traveling in a big group. Using public buses is a good way to get from the airport too.

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  • July 16, 2021

    Great information about travelling around Mexico. I find the airport taxis can often be extortionate, so it’s worth checking this information before you arrive in any country.

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  • July 16, 2021

    Very nice guide on how to save while reaching Sayulta. Every dollar or euro saved is like earning that many more to spend on something worthwhile. Thank you so much as it would be very useful information when we manage to travel there sometime in future.

    reply
  • Umiko
    July 17, 2021

    After reading this post, it’s good to know that the authority didn’t make all the transportation forms from the highway illegal. Also the local driver because I am sure the VIP drivers know by now if someone hired the local driver. Prices comparison is crazy. I will sure cross the bridge to get an Uber or a bus to go to Sayulita.

    reply
  • Raymond Banks
    July 17, 2021

    Hi trisha thanks for the post! I just ordered a taxi and did not receive a confirmation e-mail. Will Juan be there when I land? I land in two weeks but I wanted to book in advance. Thanks for all your free blogs! They are really helpful.

    reply
  • Francisco Duval
    July 17, 2021

    Hi we are coming on Sunday. Is it too late to book now or we still have time? Please confirm so I can book

    reply
  • Claudia Phillips
    July 17, 2021

    My boyfriend and I rode with Juan last month and he’s such an amazing person! I am so happy to be supporting local businesses like this so thank you for all your efforst, Trish! I will recommend this to my friends 100%. Many thanks for the discount code as well!

    reply
  • Jake Field
    July 17, 2021

    Juan is amazing! My family and I went with him and Michelle. They were so kind to wait for us while we do some quick shopping at the Mega. To everyone reading this post, there are no supermarkets in Sayulita so when you get picked up at the airport, swing by Mega, Costco or Walmart in Puerto Vallarta if you want to have some supplies in your accommodations in Sayulita. I am sure Trisha already shared that tip but thanks to Juan for waiting for us at Mega! Good driver and highly recommended

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  • Thomas S. J
    July 17, 2021

    I usually won;t leave comments like this but Trisha asked me to – LOL. But kidding aside, when you look at the Internet, all the taxi services in Puerto Vallarta are ridiculously expensive! I am a budget traveler and I will never pay $150 for taxi. It is just insane. Thanks to Trisha we find locals like Juan who charge fairly. I love helping the community so thanks again Trisha for allowing me to do so. Until next trip Sayulita!

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  • July 22, 2021

    Juan was great – he picked my friend and me up from the airport and we used him again to drop us back off at the end of our stay in Sayulita. He picked us up on time and got us to the airport with plenty of time to spare. I would definitely use him again when I head back to Sayulita next time.

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  • July 22, 2021

    I had a good experience with Juan. I had arranged him to come for an airport pickup. He had a little trouble finding my place, but we still made it to the airport in good time, and with plenty of time to check-in. I’ll use him again on my next visit to Sayulita.

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  • July 22, 2021

    Juan drove my family to and from the airport when we stayed in Sayulita. He was super friendly and chatty. He answered all my questions, chatted with my kids, offered to wait while we nipped into the supermarket and was always punctual. Highly recommended.

    reply
  • Tim Beech
    July 24, 2021

    Fantastic guide Trisha! I just booked the local taxi driver but I did not get a confirmation about my pick up time? I already received the payment confirmation but nothing else. Is there something that I am missing? Should I call Juan? Thanks for all you do!

    reply
  • Linda Broussard
    August 13, 2021

    We just booked Juan and very excited for our Sayulita trip! Should I send a message when we land or when we are on the way to the meeting point? How do we know who is Juan?

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  • Kirstin Steinmetz
    August 26, 2021

    Hi Trisha

    I just booked the taxi from Puerto Vallarta to Sayulita through your website. How do I get in touch with Juan please to discuss pick-up date and time? Can’t wait to explore Sayulita!

    reply
  • Kirstin Steinmetz
    August 26, 2021

    Hi Trisha – so excited about going to Sayulita! I have just booked the taxi through your website. How do I get in touch with Juan for details please?

    reply

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P.S. I'm On My Way is a blog by Trisha Velarmino. She didn't
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