abrelosojos
Posts: 4050
Joined: Sun May 29, 2005 6:48 am

Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Wed Jun 24, 2009 5:21 am

Feedback always appreciated.

Trip Report: 076
Flight Category: Y-ISR (See Report End)
Date: 19 Apr-09 (See Report End)
SDT/SAT/Dur/Delay: 0832/1052/01:50 hrs (Delayed: 34 mins)
Flight: Aero República/COPA P5 640, 636 miles
Routing: BOG-CCS
Aircraft: E95
Seat: Economy, 12F

I > Background:
Return flight after a quick visit to see some friends in Bogotá and have a little too much drinking time in Parque 93. I believe this will be the 2nd report on Aero República and the first on the BOG-CCS segment; an excellent coverage by Rleiro on their CCS-MDE operation can be found here

II > Pre-Flight:

a) Before Airport:
Aero República is an airline based in Bogotá, Colombia. It is the second largest air carrier in Colombia behind Colombian flag carrier Avianca. It operates scheduled services from Bogotá to 11 domestic destinations and to Panama, as well as domestic and international charter services to the USA and the Caribbean.

This flight is operated by Aero Republica on behalf of COPA. The ticket was thus bought at COPA’s website at www.copaair.com. While I was impressed with the ease with which I could buy the ticket and have it delivered to my e-inbox, I was disappointed that the website had no feature to reserve seats. Also, I had to call their reservation line to include my Delta Skymiles number. Surprising given you’d think a Skyteam airline would allow the same.

b) At Airport:
I cannot wait until the renovations are all complete at Bogotá airport. Moreover, check-in should not take 1 hour. I was lucky that I had actually come to the airport to have a café with a friend who works with Avianca to give me company. Apparently, the ditzy agent were dealing with a “crisis”. There was a man who had arrived on Avianca from Miami and was connecting to the Aero Republica flight to Caracas. He was a Namibian national and since Bogota has no transfer desk for interlined passengers, he was detained as Aero Republica and Bogota immigration staff figured out what to do. When I over-heard the situation, I asked the check-in woman to just print his boarding pass and deliver it to him. Something clicked inside her, and I solved the problem and became the white night  Wink. I later spoke to the Namibian man and he was amused that an international airport did not have any protocol to handle international passengers between 2 airlines. Sad indeed.

Anyways, I bid adieu to my Avianca friend and made my way pass surprisingly quick immigration and security. Boarding was VERY “ILBST” as I used the jet-bridge to some non-smiling crew and a fresh mint (but a little too white and sterile) E95 of Aero Republica. Y load was 75%.

Airport - External:

NONE

Check-in:

NONE

Airport - Internal:

(Internal)
NONE

(FIDS)
NONE

(Post Security)




Scenes of the tarmac:

NONE

Lounge

NONE

Boarding:



III> In-Flight:

a) Service Schedule + Impressions:
After take-off, beverage and snack box.

b) Aircraft + Seats:
Aero Republica’s E95 were in mint condition. The leather seats were comfortable, with recline and pitch both above industry average. Moreover, I actually thought they were pretty good when compared to other “regional jets”. If I had any complaint, it would be that the cabin needed color. Colombia is a colorful country and I wish the airline better reflected the same. It was too-white and I felt like I was in a hospital.

Aircraft:

(@CCS)


Views from Aircraft:

(Beautiful Avianca)


General Seat Views + Seat Legroom



Seat Recline + Angle View:

(Good recline)




Cabin:

(Depressingly white)





c) Meal + Beverage:

On a short flight in Economy, I am happy to receive a meal or snack box. I find this is the segment where there is wide variety from region to region on what is offered on board. The Aero Republica snack-box was “very Latin”. The sweet bread was a bit too sweet and I am not a fan of processed cookies. What was truly disappointing is that the café sucked. Again, this is a flight from Colombia … how about some good café?! Having said that, I did appreciate the gesture on a short-ish flight.

(Snack Box)


d) Inflight Entertainment:
Nothing more than the in-flight magazine was on offer.

(“In-flight magazines”, Boarding Passes, etc.)


e) Crew:
The best words to describe the crew would be “blah” and unmemorable. There was nothing that stood out about them. Upon boarding, they just stood there with no smiles or assistance with luggage. During the flight, they did the beverage and food run and disappeared. I did not see a single smile … and when I am doing a trip report, I usually look at these things. C’est la vie.

IV> Post-Flight:
Arrival at CCS was smooth and I went through surprisingly smooth immigrations to be picked up by my friend in 14 minutes flat.

(Tarmac action @ CCS)










(CCS Arrivals Internal)







V> Impressions + Scores:
Aero Republica gets you from point A to B. One should not expect anything more from them. While their economy seats were comfortable, and I mildly appreciated the gesture of having a snack box, the personnel on the flight made Aero Republica an experience I would likely forget very soon. Both BOG ground personnel and cabin crew were just non-descript. I can overlook the lack of IFE and stuff, but on flights, it is the crew who make all the difference. For the right price, I would fly them again and recommend them only if their fares were dirt cheap. Thumps down.



VI> Other Trip Reports:

PREMIUM:
8.64: Turkish Airlines (59): JFK-IST: 11/2008
8.61: Air Canada (49): YYZ-SCL: 06/2008
8.30: Jet Airways (74): KWI-BOM: 04/2009
8.23: United Airlines (72): SFO-SYD: 03/2009
8.11: Aeroflot (33): MOW-DEL: 09/2007
8.04: Korean Air (40): NRT-ICN: 10/2007
8.02: Delta Airlines (24): JFK-CDG: 08/2007
7.46: LAN (55): YYZ-JFK: 09/2008
7.82: Singapore Airlines (06): EWR-SIN: 09/2006
7.14: Swiss (52): SCL-GRU: 06/2008
7.02: Qatar (68): DOH-JFK: 01/2009
6.96: Etihad (61): JFK-AUH: 12/2008
6.93: Delta Airlines (18): SEA-JFK: 11/2006
6.84: ConViasa (65): CCS-DAM: 01/2009
6.81: Air Canada (17): ICN-YYZ: 10/2006
6.70: KLM (32): EBB-AMS: 08/2007
6.36: Privatair (60): MUC-BOS: 12/2008
6.25: Korean Air (45): NAN-ICN: 10/2007
6.11: TAP Portugal (53): GRU-OPO: 06/2008
6.00: Gulf Air (75): BOM-BAH: 04/2009
5.75: Singapore Airlines (16): CCU-SIN: 10/2006
5.64: NorthWest (46): ICN-NRT-SEA: 10/2007
5.39: LOT (54): WAW-JFK: 06/2008
5.21: Egypt Air (73): CAI-IST: 02/2009
5.07: TACA (66): JFK-SAP: 01/2009
4.42: Air France: CDG-JNB (25): 08/2007

ECONOMY: Long + Medium:
9.26: Air India (48): JFK-DEL: 02/2008
7.38: Avianca (01): BOG-LIM: 07/2006
7.07: Sri Lankan (62): KWI-CMB: 12/2008
6.41: American Airlines (58): LHR-BOS: 11/2008
6.26: Jet Blue (21): CUN-JFK: 02/2007
6.06: Air Canada (04): YYZ-YVR: 09/2006
5.89: USA 3000 (19): PUJ-BDL: 01/2007
5.85: Spanair (69): MAD-LPA: 02/2009
5.79: Air New Zealand (42): RAR-NAN: 10/2007
5.46: TAP Air Portugal (23): OSL-LIS: 05/2007
5.19: Air Europa (70): LPA-MAD: 02/2009
5.16: Iberia (71): MAD-BOS: 02/2009

ECONOMY: Short
8.56: Paramount Airways (38): BLR-MAA: 09/2007
8.56: Kingfisher (64): HYD-CCU: 12/2008
8.24: Kingfisher (14): IXA-GAU: 10/2006
7.87: Indian (34): BOM-MAA: 09/2007
7.72: Alliance Air (13): CCU-IXA: 10/2006
7.57: Indian Airlines (10): DEL-CCU: 09/2006
7.23: West Jet (03): YYC-YVR: 09/2006
7.15: JetLite (37): BOM-GOI: 09/2007
6.70: Spice Jet (09): CCU-DEL: 09/2006
6.63: Air Fiji (44): NAN-SUV: 10/2007
6.63: Jazeera (67): DAM-KWI: 01/2009
6.58: Air Tran (02): EWR-MDW: 08/2006
6.48: Air India Express (63): CMB-MAA: 12/2008
6.44: CO Micronesia (39): ROR-YAP: 10/2007
6.41: Pacific Sun (43): NAN-SUV: 10/2007
6.37: Skybus (47): SWF-CMH: 02/2008
6.33: Kenya Airways (29): NBO-BJM: 08/2007
6.33: Sky Europe (56): LTN-BTS: 10/2008
6.31: Indigo (15): GAU-CCU: 10/2006
6.31: easyJet (57): BUD-LTN: 11/2008
6.22: Air Link Swazi (28): MTS-JNB: 08/2007
6.22: Air India (36): HYD-BOM: 09/2007
6.13: Adam Air (07): SIN-CGK: 09/2006
6.13: Air Rarotonga (41): RAR-AIT: 10/2007
6.00: Transairways (27): INH-MPM: 08/2007
5.95: Air Canada (05): ALB-YYZ: 09/2006
5.85: SAS Norge (22): OSL-AES: 05/2007
5.81: LAM Mozambique (26): JNB-MPM: 08/2007
5.69: Air Deccan (12): IXZ-CCU: 10/2006
5.67: Rwanda Air Exp (30): KGL-NBO: 08/2007
5.11: Aero Republica (76): BOG-CCS: 04/2009
5.07: Go Air (35): MAA-HYD: 09/2007
5.00: Sky Airline (51): IQQ-SCL: 06/2008
4.96: Valuair (08): CGK-SIN: 09/2006
4.78: Air Comet Chile (50): SCL-IQQ: 06/2008
4.74: Fly 540 (31): MYD-LAU: 08/2007
4.33: Viva Aerobus (20): ELP-MTY: 02/2007
4.11: Air Sahara (11): CCU-BOM: 09/2006

(Note on Codes: Y – Economy, J – Business, F – First :: I/D – International/Domestic :: SR/MR/LR – Short/Medium/Long Haul)
(Note on Date: Dates are modified to be +/- 3 days from actual flight date to not reveal actual flight pattern)

VII> Other Pictures:

NONE
Live, and let live.
 
User avatar
NZ107
Posts: 4946
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2005 6:51 pm

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Wed Jun 24, 2009 5:34 am

Hi A.,

Thanks for a nice and enjoyable TR on another airline which isn't covered much at all!

Those seats look really comfortable.


Regards,
Nicholas
It's all about the destination AND the journey.
 
klemmi85
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 8:08 pm

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Wed Jun 24, 2009 12:10 pm

Very nice report! thank you.

One question though:

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Flight: Aero República/COPA P5 640, 636 miles

Now, is this Airline part of Continental just for the southern american market? They pretty much look like CO.
quit a.net 07/2016
 
SR 103
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Joined: Sun Oct 01, 2000 6:19 am

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Wed Jun 24, 2009 2:28 pm



Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Also, I had to call their reservation line to include my Delta Skymiles number. Surprising given you'd think a Skyteam airline would allow the same.

Surprising, not at all!

Until the end of last year if you were a non Skymiles member, you had to call Delta to get your number put in let alone select exit row/elite seats. Even that in itself was far from trouble free. I received numerous answers over the years from the Delta phone agents. Some of the better ones were:
"Sir there are no seats left for you." (This when none of the Elite seats were taken on a 767!)
"Sir, Air France or KLM (My elite account was with them) is not part of Skyteam, your not entitled to the preferred seats unless you pay for them."

Also once Delta started allowing you to put other Skyteam account numbers online, they never opened up any of the Elite seats, not even for a Skyteam Elite Plus.

So surprising, not really. Sometimes you only get as good as you give.

Great report as always. I have been interested in seeing what AeroRepublica offers on their new EMB's.
 
chepos
Posts: 5940
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2000 9:40 am

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:37 am

Thank you for the entertaining trip report, always good to see a trip report from a Latin American carrier.
Your experience sounds very similar to my Copa experience (back in 2001). Copa's planes as well are very sterile, the food is tasteless, and the crews are not very friendly. However, Copa is a very reliable airline, they get you from point A to point B in a timely manner. That AeroRepublica aircraft (interior) looks like any US Carrier, never flown AV but I would think the experience with them is a tad better.

Regards,

Chepos
Fly the Flag!!!!
 
abrelosojos
Posts: 4050
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:05 pm



Quoting Klemmi85 (Reply 2):
Now, is this Airline part of Continental just for the southern american market? They pretty much look like CO.

= They are a CM affiliate, which is a CO affiliate.

Quoting SR 103 (Reply 3):
Also once Delta started allowing you to put other Skyteam account numbers online, they never opened up any of the Elite seats, not even for a Skyteam Elite Plus.

So surprising, not really. Sometimes you only get as good as you give.

= Ya - but does not excuse it though. Just no reason for IT to be sloppy in 2009 - and I guess I am pampered by most Star carriers.

Quoting Chepos (Reply 4):
However, Copa is a very reliable airline, they get you from point A to point B in a timely manner.

= Agreed.

Thanks for reading.

Saludos,
A.
Live, and let live.
 
directorguy
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:25 pm

Thanks for yet another great TR. AeroRepublica seems to be in line withcompeitors in its part of the world. It is indeed strange what happened to the poor Namibian man.
 
RCS763AV
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:38 pm

Another typical P5 flight. Nothing to say about it, lame, bad food (on domestic secotrs in Colombia no food is served on any airline, just a snack), but getting you from point A to point B.

The only thing that has improved about this airline is their punctuality. There were times in which you would hear horror stories of ten hour delays for a 1 hr flight to CTG, the airline not letting the pax leave the airport because the flight would take off "any minute". I was once on a flight to LET that ingested a bird, returned to BOG and then re-departed to LET even though there were severe thunderstorms in the area, so we ended up landing in Rio Branco, Brazil and they kept us for seven hours in a wating room because the airline's representative in Brazil was on vacation and they couldn't reach the guy.
 
ba319-131
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Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 1:27 pm

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:09 pm

Good report & pictures on a little reported carrier, thanks.

Rgds

Mark
111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
 
Summa767
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Mon Jun 29, 2009 4:53 pm

Thank you for another objective report.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
cannot wait until the renovations are all complete at Bogotá airport

Even when complete things will not be anywhere as good as they should be. The current government, which has mismanaged the whole concession process has made a pig's ear of it, with its typical incompetence and lack of vision. The new international terminal will be better than the current building, which will remain for domestic flights. Internationl/domestic connections will continue being far from smooth. Even after realising that the project would lack capacity at the time f delivery, they tried to improvise an alternative project, spending a huge amount of money on plans, but this is also mediocre and badly conceived and will most likely be shelved next month after a shocking audit report.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
he was amused that an international airport did not have any protocol to handle international passengers between 2 airlines. Sad indeed

Terrible state of affairs, and only goes to confirm the lack of vision by those in charge.
It is sad that Bogota's transformation has come to a grinding halt and the airport will reflect that old vices are back. In the mean time, a former transforming mayor, lectures around the world his respected planning ideas and wins awards, is sneered at at home.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
What was truly disappointing is that the café sucked. Again, this is a flight from Colombia … how about some good café?!

Coffee in Colombia is indeed mostly terrible due to its bad preparation and/or use of the dregs. Only decent coffee seems to be Juan Valdez, which is of very high quality. I have it most mornings, but I prefer to prepare it myself, though.
 
davidca
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:37 am

Thanks for an interesting report! I haven't flown Aero Republica, but have always enjoyed Avianca. Aero Republica, from your report, seem to lack sparkle. Avianca, I guess, give a truer representation of what a spectacular country Colombia is and how warm and friendly its people are. Avianca's coffee--at least in Y--is lousy too.  Smile
 
rajrs
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Fri Jul 03, 2009 9:38 am

Nice report as usual.
Thanks for shearing.

Now waiting for next.  yes 



Rajrs.
 
MEA-707
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Fri Jul 03, 2009 10:06 am

Thanks for the interesting report ! I flew on Aero Republica's MD-80 from Panama to BOG last May. I thought the food was OK and the crew a bit aloof indeed, I recognized your description.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Note on Date: Dates are modified to be +/- 3 days from actual flight date to not reveal actual flight pattern

Is it so you don't want to have the crew not get into trouble for not smiling?
nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
 
PlaneHunter
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Sat Jul 04, 2009 8:49 am

Hi A.,

another great report about a rare carrier. The product doesn't look bad in general - but I also find it annoying when crews don't smile at all.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Aircraft: E95

Just a slight correction: It was an Embraer 190, P5 doesn't operate the E195.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
What was truly disappointing is that the café sucked. Again, this is a flight from Colombia … how about some good café?!

Good point!


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
Southamerica
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Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2003 2:56 am

RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Sun Jul 05, 2009 5:08 am

Aero Republica is just an extension of Copa and Continental.

This report concentrates all the basic elements I've found on my flights with the 3 airlines, which for better or for worse means that they are at least offering a coherent product.

Maybe Continental is superior thanks to its website. On the other hand, I find Aero Republica's flight attendants' overall appearance far superior (uniform, spotless). But yeah, the overall experience is blah, with all of them.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
I was disappointed that the website had no feature to reserve seats.

I find this pretty strange. In my recent flights with Copa/Aero Republica I have been able to choose and change seats. In fact, I flew BOG-MDE last week with them and had chosen my seat through Copa's website way before.

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
I cannot wait until the renovations are all complete at Bogotá airport.

Tell me about it. The check-in hall is depressing, but the international arrivals area after immigration is just sad. Can't wait for them to bring down the whole thing.

Quoting RCS763AV (Reply 7):
The only thing that has improved about this airline is their punctuality.

Your experience was pretty terrible, but hey, let's be fair here. The 1998 yellow tacky, pre-historic DC-9s never compare to a 2009 spotless E-190. Copa gave them a complete turn-around. At least now Avianca has a reliable competitor in the domestic market.



SA.
 
abrelosojos
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RE: Aero Republica P5 640: 19/APR/09: BOG-CCS: Y Cabin

Mon Jul 13, 2009 8:51 pm



Quoting MEA-707 (Reply 12):

Quoting Abrelosojos (Thread starter):
Note on Date: Dates are modified to be +/- 3 days from actual flight date to not reveal actual flight pattern

Is it so you don't want to have the crew not get into trouble for not smiling?

= LOL. I am not that harsh ... the average crew scores are pretty high. Actually, if a crew is good ... or bad, I insist on sending information to HQ ... one should always recognize talent; and one should always spot the bad apples instead of saying the entire airline sucks.

I actually change the date because I work in the industry and do not really want people to know of my exact travels.

Saludos,
A.
Live, and let live.

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