Short for "Aerovias del Continente Americano S.A", Avianca is Colombia's national airline. Based at Bogota's El Dorado International Airport (BOG), the airline serves around 31 million passengers every year, making it the second largest carrier in South America. Working under the slogan "Everything For Your Love", the company has a loyal following, and a strong reputation for reliability and comfort.
Avianca is also a major airline for North American fliers. It runs services from Colombia, Ecuador and Peru to various American airports, including New York JFK, Boston, Chicago O' Hare, Fort Lauderdale, Washington D.C., and Miami. So it could also be a handy option for Canadian travelers who need to reach South America.
Because it is part of the Star Alliance) of 26 global airlines, including Air Canada, Lufthansa, and United Airlines, the company can offer flexible ticketing for more complex journeys. It also has a strong customer service and safety record, scoring 7/7 at industry experts AirlineRatings. It has won various SkyTrax Awards for service, as well as the 2019 Apex Global Passenger Choice Awards for Best Regional Airline. So passengers can expect a high-quality service.
The Avianca fleet is also modern and versatile. Most of the 103 planes the airline operates are Airbus models, while a few Boeing 787 Dreamliners also provide connections between North America and South America. In total, these planes serve 187 destinations, spread across 27 nations, providing true global reach.
If you want to explore more, it may also be worth getting to know LifeMiles, the company's frequent flyer program. Along with earning air miles, it allows travelers to use lounges, arrange upgrades, and add extra baggage at no charge. So it's a useful option for many customers.
Avianca's seat classes generally fall into two major categories: Economy and Business Class. However, the airline also allows travelers to customize their bookings via fees for preselecting seats, checking extra bags, increasing carry-on allowances, and making bookings more flexible.
Avianca Business Class
In Business Class, passengers can look forward to a seat pitch of 102 cm (40-inches), with recliner seats and spacious individual places. Adjustable foot rests add to the comfort, while flip-out 28 cm (11-inch) screens deliver entertainment in high resolution. Noise canceling headphones are also provided to ensure total privacy. Food and drink includes complimentary beverages, and the cuisine varies from Colombian gastronomy to western standards.
The seat pitch in Economy varies from 79-92cm (31-36-inches) depending on which plane is involved. Economy provides fewer perks, but entertainment is still part of the package via 20cm (8-inch) screens. The screens also allow travelers to order food and drink from their seat. Meals are less diverse, but vegetarian and meat options will be available, and a full bar service is also provided.
Wi-Fi and Pre-Flight Benefits
Avianca allows customers to connect to Wi-Fi during flights, providing connectivity in 2 hour chunks for a small fee. Social media and email are covered, although streaming won't be an option. On the ground, several US airports host VIP Lounges. Any Star Alliance members can use them, and benefits include Wi-Fi, snacks, restrooms, and free magazines.
Passengers flying with Avianca can use their phones to check in between 24 and 2 hours before their flights leave. Airport check in concludes 1 hour before international flights depart, and passengers are advised to arrive 3 hours before planes take off. Check-in ends 45 minutes before flying for domestic flights.
In Business Class, travelers can check in 2 bags, with each one weighing less than 32kg (70lbs).
Passengers can carry-on a single larger bag and one personal item. Bags should weigh less than 10kg (22lbs).
Those flying Economy can check in a single bag, weighing less than 23kg (50lbs).
Economy passengers have the same carry-on allowance: 1 bag weighing less than 10kg (22lbs) and a single personal item.
Whether travelers fly Business or Economy, each bag must have total dimensions of less than 158cm (62-inches).
Personal carry-on items must be small enough to fit under the seat in front. Bags must measure less than 55 x 35 x 25cm (21.5 x 13.8 x 9.8-inches).
When flying with Avianca, all passengers can purchase extra baggage allowances, and it's also possible to add oversized baggage. Fees will apply, and may increase if you intend to check 1 or 2 extra bags. These fees can be paid at the point of booking or charged at the airport, and apply to sporting goods or musical instruments.
Parents can take on-board collapsible strollers weighing less than 9kg (20lbs), but fees may kick in for larger models. Infants under 2 years of age will require a ticket, but this only costs 10% of adult fares. Car seats can be taken on-board as well, with no extra fees.
As stated earlier, there are also baggage perks for LifeMiles members. For instance, members traveling Business Class can check an extra item, which can help to keep costs down for regular fliers.