Ok, so you finally arrived at the vacations of your dreams. Now all you have to do is get out of the airplane and get to the resort so you can start enjoying all that beautiful beach and sun. We know airports can be a little hectic and daunting, especially if it’s the first time you visit, here’s a quick guide to make your landing in the PUJ airport a little bit smoother.
Punta Cana International Airport, otherwise known as PUJ, is Dominican Republic’s leading airport for inbound flights to the country. It is the first ever privately owned international airport in the world. Moreover, in the year 2014, this airport was said to have accounted for as much as 60% of the total air arrivals into the country. About six million international passengers arrive in the country at this airport every year making it the busiest airport in the Dominican Republic, and the second busiest when it comes to the Caribbean islands. The airport has five terminals in which two are meant for international passengers.
When you arrive, you will be off-loaded directly either into the terminal or onto the tarmac, most times they will bring a stairway to both the front and the rear section of the plane to make it go a little quicker. You’ll step out of the plane and immediately enjoy the warmth and the sun on your face. Once a fair amount of people has deplaned, one of the airport workers will lead you over to immigration.
- On the plane, your stewardesses will have given you forms to fill out for the immigration process.
- Make sure you have filled out completely the immigration/customs immigration to you on the flight.
- Have your Immigration cards and passports in hand when you approach the immigration booth. This will make things go much quicker.
- Depending on how many other flights arrive at the same time as yours, the wait to get through immigration could take a while.
- A Customs officer will stamp your passport and take one of your forms.
After clearing Immigrations, proceed to the baggage claim area. There are television screens that will direct you to the correct area for your baggage. Depending on how long it took you to get through Immigrations, your luggage may already be off the carousel and just grouped together with other pieces of luggage. This is when it’s handy to have some sort of colorful ribbon or something to distinguish your luggage from everyone else’s. There are many porters available to help you with your luggage for a small tip and they will also help you find where to go with your transportation company or to get a taxi. If you prefer to just do it yourself, remember to look for the blue-flowered shirt – that’s us – after passing through customs.
CUSTOMS AND TOURIST CARDS
Once you have claimed your luggage, proceed to Customs.
Until very recently, all visitors had to buy a tourist card before arriving in the country or directly at the Customs booth. The cost of the Tourist Cards is $10,00 dollars. To make things easier for travelers and to avoid making you wait, you no longer need to buy this card at the airport. The airlines are applying this charge to your plane ticket on behalf of the Dominican government, this should greatly decrease the time you spend in costume.
If you booked your trip before the change in policy, the tourist fee is most likely not included in your airfare and you may have to purchase it at this point. Please have the $10.00 dollars in cash. As a precaution though, we suggest visitors call their airline to confirm whether this fee is included or not.
You will then pass throughout a final check where you will hand over the second form that you received on the plane. These forms are also available as you hand through customs. It is possible they will do a search of your luggage at this point but if so, it is usually very quick. Customs officers are very friendly and polite, just smile and say ‘hola’.
After clearing Customs, you’ll go to the area where all the transportation companies have small booths set up. Just look for the blue-flowered shirt and the friendly face and we will help you from there. You can take a look at this map and guide to help you identify us better.
By: Marie Marion Landais Mesa. Marie is a dedicated marketing professional working for Amstar in the Dominican Republic sharing the beauty of this amazing destination with passion and care.