lifestyle, travel This is Cozumel

Getting from Europe to Cozumel and the Mexican Caribbean has never been easier, with a wide range of economical, direct flights now available from many European cities to Cancun.

For those flying from south, central and even northern Europe, some of the best deals can be found via Madrid in Spain. Aside from being a comfortable, modern airport, there are plenty of connections to and from other European countries.

There are two airlines flying direct routes to Cancun through from Madrid's Barajas airport. Our recommendation is Wamos Air, they fly passengers for Pullmantur luxury cruises and package vacations, so they know how to treat customers well. They sell flight-only options to help fill up empty seats, so also offer some excellent prices.

Since they have recently rebranded from Pullmantur Air, the large, comfortable aircraft have been given a facelift and the seats are more comfortable than you find on most low price long-haul routes.

The other option through Madrid is with Air Europa, although they also offer connections to other European cities the prices tend to be higher and the aircraft may not have such a modern feel.

For those flying from northern Europe, the best hubs to fly though are London Gatwick, with Virgin Atlantic or TUI, or Brussels with JetAirfly.

All three airlines carry package vacation passengers but also offer flight-only options. Virgin Atlantic perhaps has the best reputation for trans-Atlantic routes, operating key London to New York flights as well. This is reflected in their excellent publicity, onboard entertainment and cabin crew attention.

Thomson and JetairFly are arguably more bucket-shop in their approach, but service is still good and JetairFly in particular offers some incredible last minute fare prices online.

Aside from these options you can also find direct flights to Cancun from German cities with Air Berlin and from Italian cities with Blue Panorama.

Once you arrive to Cancun it is very easy to transfer by land to Cancun or Playa del Carmen by taxi, a shared colectivo van or comfortable bus, usually taking about 1-2 hours.

If you are headed to Cozumel island you can make the short hop on a small aircraft with Mayair in less than 30 minutes, or transfer to Playa del Carmen and then take the frequent ferries, which take about 30-40 minutes to cross the channel.

If you want to break your journey to or from Cozumel, you may also want to consider spending a night in Puerto Morelos, which is only a 30 minute drive away from Cancun airport.

Wherever you're starting from in Europe, all this variety and competition between airlines means - if you check out different options and try to be flexible with your dates - you may now find it's cheaper to fly to the Mexican Caribbean than many other destinations within Europe itself.