How far is Puerto Vallarta from Cabo San Lucas? Here's the quick answer if you have friends taking shifts as driver so that you can make the entire trip by car without stopping.
Nonstop drive: 774 miles or 1246 km
Driving time: 20 hours, 44 minutes
Now let's assume you have a private jet and you can fly in the fastest possible straight line between Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Because of the curvature of the Earth, the shortest distance is actually the "great circle" distance, or "as the crow flies" which is calculated using an iterative Vincenty formula.
Flight distance: 338 miles or 544 km
Flight time: 1 hour, 11 minutes
The straight line flight distance is 436 miles less than driving on roads, which means the driving distance is roughly 2.3x of the flight distance.
Your plane flies much faster than a car, so the flight time is about 1/18th of the time it would take to drive.
This is a relatively short flight in a private plane, but you might be planning to book a commercial flight. In that case, your travel time would really need to include how many minutes to get to your local airport, wait for security, board and taxi on the runway, land at the other airport, and get to your destination. Scroll down to see a more realistic calculation that takes into account all these factors to get a more accurate estimate of your actual flight time.
In the quick calculation above, we assumed you had a private plane and just wanted to know the time in the air from city to city. But for most of us, we're going to be flying on a commercial airline (whether it's first class or coach). So that means we really need to account for all the extra travel time getting to the airport, waiting for our flight, and making it to the destination.
To give you a better estimate of real-life travel, we've put together a flight itinerary with actual airports. Eventually you'll be able to customize this plan, choosing your own airports and flights. But for now, here's an example we've selected to give you an idea of how traveling might work between airports.
Departure airport: Los Cabos International Airport (SJD)
Arrival airport: Licenciado Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport (PVR)
With the airports selected, we can estimate the travel time to and from the airport, based on how far the airport is from downtown.
Getting to the airport: 65 minutes
Getting to your destination: 13 minutes
Now finally, let's look at an actual flight from SJD connecting through TLC and arriving at PVR flying on Interjet. We can figure out how long it would take to fly including take-off and landing, time to taxi on the runways, and an average layover time of about 2 hours.
Initial flight time: 1 hour, 55 minutes
Connecting airport: Licenciado Adolfo López Mateos International Airport (TLC)
Connection flight time: 1 hour, 16 minutes
So now we can finally get an idea of the total travel time from Cabo San Lucas to Puerto Vallarta including time spent getting to and from the airports, roughly 2 hours at the departure airport for TSA security lines and waiting at the gate, plus the connecting flight with a 2-hour layover.
Total travel time: 8 hours
Trippy has a ton of information that can help you plan your trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Start by reading the Trippy page on where to stay in Puerto Vallarta. If you're looking for a place to stay, you might want to check out San Pancho. A great place to eat might be Don Pedro's. Trippy members can suggest things to do in Puerto Vallarta like La Palapa Restaurant. Check out some of the questions people have asked about Puerto Vallarta like fun restaurant for a group with one teenager. Click the button below to explore Puerto Vallarta in detail.
The distance is the same either way if you're flying a straight line (or driving the same roads back and forth). But for a real trip, there can be plenty of differences so go ahead and check the reverse directions to get the distance from Puerto Vallarta to Cabo San Lucas, or go to the main page to calculate the distance between cities.
If you happen to know Cabo San Lucas, don't forget to help other travelers and answer some questions about Cabo San Lucas!