Travel Report – 2022 Mexico City Grand Prix

Stephanie from the UK, who attended the Mexico City Grand Prix for the fifth time in 2022, shares her experience and some tips for F1 fans interested in attending the race.

Travel to Mexico City

Living in the UK, we took a direct flight from London Heathrow to Mexico City. The flight time is around 11 hours. Upon arrival, immigration seemed much easier than in previous years. We did not need to complete the forms we had in the past (usually handed out on the plane but also available at the airport) and the queuing time was much shorter.

We had arranged a private transfer from the airport to our hotel which took around 25 minutes. Travel time from the airport can vary hugely. Traffic in Mexico City can be crazy and whilst this year’s journey was quick, we have had similar journeys that have taken twice as long. The time is obviously dependent upon where in the city you are staying, the time of day you are travelling and an element of luck. It is also possible to take the metro from the airport.

Where to Stay in Mexico City

We stayed at the Hyatt Regency in the Polanco area of the city. It had all the facilities you would expect from a five star hotel and we had the added benefits of a Regency Club room. This gave us access to the Club lounge where we could eat breakfast; they also served drinks and a buffet in the evenings. There were a number of famous names staying at the hotel including David Coulthard, Martin Brundle, Juan Manuel Correa and a number of ex CART drivers who were competing in a race at the circuit over the weekend. We also saw Pato O’Ward, Enzo and Pietro Fittipaldi and lots of F1 team personnel.

The Polanco area has a good selection of places to eat and drink plus a number of other high end hotels. We stayed in the W hotel a few years ago and would recommend both hotels and the area in general. It is close to a number of museums and Chapultapec park.

We have also stayed in the Zona Rosa area of the city which again has a good selection of hotels, restaurants and bars and has a lively feel. The Centro Historico (downtown) area is also a great place to base yourself and it is here you will find the most historic parts of the city including the Zocalo, Plaza Garibaldi and a number of museums. Although we haven’t stayed here over the Grand Prix weekend, we have whilst visiting the city and again we would recommend.

Transport to Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez

We always take the metro from our hotel to the circuit. Whilst it obviously gets busy, we have found it quick and efficient and very cheap! A single journey costs around 25p.

We buy all the tickets we need in advance on Friday morning to save having to queue at other times. We always buy from the ticket window where most of the time we can make ourselves understood in English but it’s helpful to know a little Spanish. For each journey, you put a ticket in at the turnstile.

The metro is reasonably easy to navigate if you are familiar with underground systems elsewhere. We have always needed to make one change to get from our hotel to the circuit, but the lines are colour coded to help you find your way around the interchanges. Each station has a symbol as well as a name which again makes things a little easier for getting on and off.

There are three stations that are useful for the circuit. They are all on the brown/number 9 line and are called Velodromo, Ciudad Deportivo and Puebla. Which one you need depends on which grandstand you are in. We have always used Puebla. It has an advantage for the return journey in that it is the first of the circuit stops so whilst busy it is easier to get on here than the other two stops.

Entering the Circuit

Taking your own food and drink is prohibited. Bags are subject to searches, but we found this process very quick and efficient. Entry to the circuit is well organised and we didn’t queue on any of the days. The gate staff were friendly and welcoming.

Grandstand 10

Although one of the most expensive options, we had a great view from this grandstand and would definitely recommend it if price is not a consideration. If possible, request seats towards the back to allow the best view. There is a good quality TV screen opposite although it is some distance away and binoculars were helpful for reading times etc.

Access at the circuit works on zones and Grandstand 10 is in the Yellow Zone so you can walk around in this area and also into the adjacent Blue zone. This is good as it means you can visit the fan zone area and have a wide range of food, drink and entertainment options available. We have only ever had grandstands in these areas so can’t comment on how they compare to others.

Food & Drink

There are a good selection of food and drink available, much from known concessions such as Domino’s Pizza. There is plenty of Mexican options plus burgers and sandwiches and snacks such as crisps. As well as the stalls, there are plenty of mobile vendors walking around and some come into the grandstand, so you don’t even need to leave your seat. As with all circuits, food and drink are expensive but we would say no more so than elsewhere.

A new cashless system was in place this year and whilst we initially thought this would be a nightmare it actually worked really well and we had no problems at all.

A card had to be purchased at an approximate (non-refundable) cost of £2. This then had to be topped up with an amount to spend on food and drink. There was a minimum but given that it could be used over all three days for all purchases and for any number of people it wasn’t unreasonable. You can add more money to the card at any time. The queues for buying the card and topping up were never too long. All signage was in Spanish but some of the staff spoke English and we found them willing to help.

Any money remaining on the card could be refunded after the Grand Prix weekend. This was done online and the window for claiming started a few days after the race. There was a US$25 charge for refunds to non-Mexican bank accounts so something to bear in mind.

Extended Travel

We really enjoyed our time at the Mexican Grand Prix although the race was a real disappointment in terms of excitement and action. After the F1, we headed to Zihuatanejo, a beach resort on the Pacific Coast and we welcomed the opportunity for some rest and relaxation and also to take in the local Day of the Dead celebrations.

It was also nice to see a new part of this beautiful country having previously spent time in Merida, Oaxaca and various beach resorts in the Yucatan, including Tulum, Isla Holbox and the Riviera Maya.

Before heading home, we had a final two nights in Mexico City, We stayed in the Centro area and took the opportunity to see some of the more historical sites that we hadn’t had time to do on earlier trips.

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