Review of Copa Airlines flight Havana Panamá City in Economy

Airline Copa Airlines
Flight CM231
Class Economy
Seat 29A
Aircraft Embraer E-190
Flight time 02:40
Take-off 07 Dec 16, 07:15
Arrival at 07 Dec 16, 09:55
CM 65 reviews
Published on 8th March 2017
I would like to welcome you to this trip report covering the HAV-PTY route.
This is the screen including the flight details from Copa´s website.

photo 1

Time to go back to Mexico and since I was not able to check-in online due to internet limitations, had to go to the airport in advance to obtain my BP, and the curious thing of this process is that when you exit Cuba, the other part of the BP is the one that gets stamped, and kept by the gate agents, but I think that if you want your passport stamped it won´t be a problem.

photo 2

This is the arrivals hall, and as you can see it is crowded. At this time (20h00 approx.) is when European flights arrive so you can have an idea of the passenger’s volume the airport must handle. I heard somebody complaining about everything being delayed. I shared the taxi with a girl from Spain (paid 8CUC) and she asked me if we could stay together waiting for her friends from CDG by AF.

photo 3

She wanted to drink beer but I was reluctant until she told me that drinking in HAV was allowed and of course we were not alone doing this. Long lines at the bar and store to get some of any drink/snack/souvenirs, it was chaotic and warm. After drinking and smoking strong Cuban cigarettes we got ready to welcome her friends. We removed the bottles.

photo 4

The time was passing by and after chatting nicely with her and friends it was time to continue solo, sitting outside just watching the interesting vibe produced by both Cubans and foreigners. Caught my attention the fact that this is a very active airport anytime and since I felt relaxed it was a good way to kill time.

photo 5

And I had to kill time because my flight was scheduled to depart at 7h15 and check-in would open at 4h15 so I thought the best I could do was overnight at the airport, and as I did at arrival, I went upstairs to the first floor and found a chair, organized my travel backpack, and off I went to a freezing night, the people staying there was wearing foulards so you can have an idea. After a few hours of sleep in the super cold floor I went to Copa check-in counters just to find a long queue so I joined it and suddenly the agent providing bag tags stated that passengers for the 7h15 flight should come to the front of the line immediately to proceed with documentation which by the way was a breeze and the agent offered a class upgrade but since I was not interested… Time to cross security checkpoint and was kind of funny because the stress took over me and I did not know if I was going to be asked anything so I started speaking to the officer and she got surprised but nicely suggested me to proceed.
I stopped by the duty free shop to buy bottles of Cuban rum and you have to add 1 CUC for the plastic bag.
The gate area included a bar/restaurant and a smoke lounge.
This is the general view of the gate area in HAV. That wheel case is not mine. It belong to the man sitted in front of me that was flying in the same flight in Clase Ejecutiva, so you can have idea how rude he was and at the same time doing some drama-scene over the cell phone with his son, I was more than glad by flying Economy!

photo 6

I boarded this aircraft and wasn´t welcome because as usual F/A´s were busy in whatever thing. So I had to wait in Clase Ejecutiva cabin and saw the rude passenger sitted already. At the middle of the aircraft was standing a male FA and he said hola. Finally at my seat and again no pillow and no blanket! I immediately requested him those amenities with no luck because I really needed them after my night in the cold floor. Anyways you can see my rum bottles and the seat pitch and I have to say that it is reduced compared to the Boeing 737 fleet.

photo 7

The seat pocket contents: just the Panorama magazine. Probably the previous passenger took the safety card and the airsickness bag as a souvenir.

photo 8

While taxiing, I saw the magnificent Boeing 777 wearing the TAAG livery parked on a remote stand.
So take-off was imminent and then, we started climbing through the Cuban sky.

photo 9

It was a truly beautiful view and the Embraer rocketing to get high with turbulence at the moment.

photo 10

Flying over the Caribbean Sea.

photo 11

I saw islands with beautiful views but since no personal screen on this aircraft I had no idea the flown route until I tracked later at home.

photo 12

The F/A serving breakfast.

photo 13


photo 14

This cheese was delicious.

photo 15

Umm American, nothing to say about this.

photo 16

Well, I wanted other kind of breakfast…

photo 17

This is a joke, right?

photo 18

The drinks cart got to my row and I chose orange juice and café which after many years of flying became my favorite soft drink selection.

photo 19

The lavatory seemed very cramped to me.

photo 20

The lavatories were not cleaned in flight, so the passenger decided if wanted to leave it like this:

photo 21

I went to the galley to take pictures, ask a glass of still water and stretch my legs and arms a bit.

photo 22

The cabin view when we were flying over Panamá.

photo 23

Captain announced the descent to PTY, and he also explained that due to regular meteorological conditions in the area of Panamá City light turbulences would be found. So it does not matter if you were flying through a sunny sky. This was interesting to know. But I was surprised to see many passengers getting up to the lavatory or just to open their bags and the F/A´s said something over the PA but were ignored.

photo 24

And then I was able to see the Canal traffic which was more than interesting and I felt satisfied because it was not possible to visit it this time.

photo 25

The aircraft landed safely.

photo 26

Time to get up and clean the seat but I decided to wait seated, you know long line to leave the aircraft.

photo 27

We disembarked by stairs with a walk to the jetbridge and I was not going to miss the opportunity to take this picture of the aircraft that brought me from Cuba.

photo 28

Bonus : Click here display

I´m posting a few pictures from Cuba, and I really want you to enjoy!

Looking for a restaurant to have breakfast and I had this view.

photo 30

This view is from the top of the edificio Bacardí.

photo 31

A must see in Cuba.

photo 32

El centro in the Capitolio square.

photo 33

Quite interesting no?

photo 34
See more


Copa Airlines

Cabin crew8.5

Havana - HAV


Panamá City - PTY



This flight was delayed by few minutes and the agents did not inform us the reason or the new estimated departure time. I think the staff is in need of clear organization in HAV.
Regarding the catering I´m not sure but I think it was loaded in PTY hence it included industrial American products. This was the biggest letdown.
If you are stranded or just need to overnight at the airport let me tell you that you are more than welcome to do so. The police will go and make sure that everything is hassle-free but the real problem is the A/C system, you will need a jacket though.
Overall HAV is a nice airport, taking into account its limitations. I´m used to fast and cheap transportation between airports and the cities so I found outrageous the taxi fare for this segment.



  • Comment 389093 by
    Pilpintu 757 Comments

    Genial! Me encantó tu informe!

    Es obvio que el aeropuerto de La Habana se está quedando chico para la demanda que tiene!

    Me asombra que hables de frío. Nunca he estado en Cuba, pero no me imagino que allá pueda hacer tanto frío!

    Me encanta llevarme recuerdos de mis vuelos, pero nunca he volado en Copa, así que no me miren a mí !! ^^

    No te gustan las cosas hechas en EEUU? Se entiende. Los sentimientos pueden ser fuertes. Pero hay gente buena ahí también. Recién en enero estuve alojado en casa de un gringo viejito que se vino a vivir a Chile, se casó aquí, y puso un hostal. Se desvivía por hacerme sentir en casa. Fue muy amable. Bueno, por algo se vino!

    Me desagrada cuando las aerolíneas ofrecen este tipo de snack en vuelos internacionales. Lo encuentro demasiado infantil. Parece más bien una cajita para cumpleaños! Deberían ofrecer algo caliente y bien preparado. En julio voy a volar en Aerolíneas Argentinas, y es lo mismo. Al menos, para variar, pude pedir los mismos pastelitos y dulces, pero sin gluten, aunque no soy celíaco! ^^

    El bolso del pasajero mal educado yo lo habría usado para apoyar los pies!! ^^

    Muchas gracias por compartir. Especialmente el "bonus". Muy bonito!

    • Comment 389214 by
      JonathanNd AUTHOR 27 Comments

      Hola Nechus ;
      Concuerdo contigo respecto al aeropuerto de La Habana, además es confuso lo que la tripulación te dice y lo que en tierra te dicen. Y el frío es por el aire acondicionado del aeropuerto, es horrible.
      Quería llevarme una almohada y una manta, pero ya ves que no hubo. Está bien, tú no fuiste, esta vez.
      No me gusta algo de USA, pero como país vecino la situación es diferente, sólo he estado en SCL una vez y de conexión así que no puedo opinar de la situación americana allá.
      Y pues qué decir del desayuno, concuerdo contigo, al menos dieron algo, aunque americano :p
      Ese pasajero muestra lo que muchas veces los pasajeros de la clase ejecutivo hacen, exigir y hacer lo que quieran, además muchos no son nada elegantes en la forma de vestir y de ser, por eso la evito.
      Sí algún día planeas ir a Cuba te prometo que no te arrepentirás, un abrazo desde Ciudad de México.

  • Comment 389340 by
    nicobcn TEAM GOLD 5603 Comments

    Gracias !

    Tu FR me recuerda mi maravilloso viaje en Cuba :)
    El aeropuerto de La Habana es demasiaso pequeno. Lo peor es a las nueve de la tarde cuando salen los vuelos hacia Europea (478 pasageros en el de Air France!).

    Supongo que has pagado los 25CUC de tasas de aeropuerto?

    Hasta luego!

    • Comment 556902 by
      JonathanNd AUTHOR 27 Comments

      Hola Nicobcn!

      Un poco tarde la respuesta, jaja disculpa.
      Es correcto, el aeropuerto se vuelve caotico al momento de recibir y despedir a los vuelos europeos, al menos puedes tomarte dentro del aeropuerto una cerveza cubana!
      Y no, los CUC de impuesto ya estaban incluidos en el billete.

      Cuidate y que tengas buen dia.

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