Review of Copa Airlines flight San José Panamá City in Business

Airline Copa Airlines
Flight CM 145
Class Business
Seat 2A
Aircraft Boeing 737-700
Flight time 01:33
Take-off 03 Sep 17, 14:59
Arrival at 03 Sep 17, 17:32
CM   #8 out of 96 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 77 reviews
By 1022
Published on 10th September 2017
Hi and welcome to the return portion of my short weekend trip to Costa Rica. This time I redeemed miles from my ConnectMiles account and had no problem finding J inventory, Here's a summary of my schedule:

SFO-SAL on AV in Y - click here
SAL-SJO on AV in J - click here.
SJO-PTY on CM in J - you are here.
PTY-SFO on CM in J - coming up.

After having lunch in downtown, my family dropped me off at the airport on a quiet Sunday afternoon. The highway was empty except for a few cars and we anticipated a smooth ride.

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Then calamity stroke. There was congestion a few meters ahead and two ambulances passed us with their sirens blasting. Upon reaching the scene we saw the reason for the commotion. A car rammed against the back of a bus and in the driver seat a lifeless body was covered in a white blanket. On the side of the road a group of people were staring at the morbid display. Right after this traffic flowed smoothly once again. For a moment I thought about how fleeting life can be and the importance of enjoying one's life to the fullest - spending more time with loved ones, cherishing old friends and making new ones, indulging in one's passions, whatever it is that gives meaning to your life do it more often.

I was finally dropped off at SJO airport and bid farewell to my relatives. Walking inside the terminal I see that there is a line at the CM counter, but over at the J line, there is only one passenger in line.

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The check in was efficient and I entered security through the special line. I still had to take my shoes and belt off just like everyone else.

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After security I went through a hallway passing a store selling local handicrafts and products. I prefer this over the usual duty free shops in so many other airports around the world with its inventory of brand name luxury goods.

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Since I had some time to kill I did some lounge hopping and visited the Copa Club located by gate 4. This lounge is associated with Mastercard and you take an elevator down to the basement. I was welcomed by the receptionist and settled in a corner.

The reception desk is behind the column after you get off the elevator. Looks like the area in the back is reserved for Mastercard members.

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From the reception desk to the lounge there is a hallway with some interesting pics on the wall.

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Computer terminals.

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Main sitting area.

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There is a bar next to the buffet in the back.

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The buffet spread was very limited with mainly cold items and pastries.

There was also a paid menu for those who wanted something more "robust".

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A mirror replacement is in order here.

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Avianca Club

Directly opposite the Copa Club is the elevator to take you up to the Avianca Club which is co-branded with AMEX.

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The lounge has nice views of the tarmac and allows natural light inside. The buffet is slightly better than the one at Copa and there is a bar that offers panini and sush for sale. When I checked in I was given a coupon for a free item but the person in charge of preparing the food was on break so I skipped it.

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Buffet and bar.

This lounge also has WC's. Below are some pics that I took from a previous visit.

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My snacks.

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I left for the gate at around 1 hr. before dept. and by the time that I arrived they started to board the plane. Walking inside the plane I was greeted by the FA and settled in my seat with my neighbor already occupying his seat.

View of cabin from my seat.

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Good amount of leg room.

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It was pouring outside.

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Water or orange juice were offered as pre-dept. drink and I just had a glass of water. After the door closed we taxied out to the runway and took off.

Taxiing out.

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Bye SJO.

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A few minutes later the FA sprung into action offering a choice of snacks - I vaguely heard a cold artichoke dip of some sort or Montecristo sandwich. I went for the sandwich and it was a decent and satisfying choice. I asked for guava and pineapple juice but it seems that they no longer carry that and the FA offered me a fruit punch instead.

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After the trays were cleared we got ready for descent into PTY.

The left side gets a view of downtown PTY during arrival.

Touch down and new terminal under construction. I hope CM plans to open a new Copa Club there and improves on what they offer now. The present one is just disappointing and is a copy of what ex-CO used to offer.

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Looks like IB, KL and LH have arrived.

See more


Copa Airlines

Cabin crew8.0

AviancaTaca-American Express


San José - SJO


Panamá City - PTY



With the exception of the tragic accident that I witnessed on my way to the airport, everything went as expected on this flight.

It's good that airlines are including the exit tax on the tickets out of Costa Rica making things a bit smoother for some passengers. The CM counter staff was efficient and as a small station they sometimes work at the gate. The agent who checked me in was the one that boarded pax at the gate.

CM did a solid performance on this short flight. The snack was appetizing and tasty.

Information on the route San José (SJO) Panamá City (PTY)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 6 avis concernant 1 compagnies sur la ligne San José (SJO) → Panamá City (PTY).


La compagnie qui obtient la meilleure moyenne est Copa Airlines avec 7.0/10.

La durée moyenne des vols est de 1 heures et 20 minutes.

  More information


If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 412502 by
    757Fan 632 Comments
    Great report. My wife and I went to Panama in September 2015 for vacation and so it was great to see your photos here of PTY. We flew CM between Panama City and David, Panama and found them to be a nice airline with good service on the short flight.

    Thank you for sharing - looking forward to your report of your flight home!
    • Comment 412791 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2283 Comments
      Hi Matthew.

      "We flew CM between Panama City and David, Panama and found them to be a nice airline with good service on the short flight. "
      - CM has a good reputation for punctuality and offering decent fares. Catering in the back is decent but in J it sucks. You will see later on.

      Thank you for your comments.
  • Comment 412697 by
    indianocean SILVER 7535 Comments
    The catering onboard is simple but looks quite nice.

    The Santamaria lounge welcomes all Amex cardholders or only Platinum ones? Is there a fare to pay?

    Thank you Adan
    • Comment 412792 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2283 Comments
      Hi Bernard.

      "The Santamaria lounge welcomes all Amex cardholders or only Platinum ones? Is there a fare to pay?"
      - The lounge consists of two parts. The left one which is the one that I visited is for AV elites, *A Gold, *A/AM/IB Business pax and from what I've heard any AMEX Plat cardholder and walk-in pax who pays a USD 28 entry fee. The one on the right side is a more exclusive "Premium Lounge" which offers unlimited self-pour liquor and is for CREDOMATIC issued AMEX PLT & BLACK CENTURION cardholders and AV PLT & DIAMOND members flying on AV.

      However, my advice is not to expect much. Lounges in SJO are at best utilitarian that provide a quiet ambiance away from the noisy and crowded public terminal.

      Thanks for visiting my friend.
  • Comment 418437 by
    Rl 777 806 Comments
    Thank you for sharing this FR with us!

    “whatever it is that gives meaning to your life do it more often.“
    - A good reminder...

    “store selling local handicrafts and products.“
    - Cool!

    Great pictures from the lounges.

    How was the dessert?

    Beautiful aerial shots.

    Nice spotting shots at PTY, upon arrival.

    Have a good one, see you :).
    • Comment 418452 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2283 Comments
      Hi RI 777.

      The cheesecake was fine and not as "heavy" as the ones that you find in the U.S. I am not a particular fan of this type of dessert but don't avoid it neither.

      "Nice spotting shots at PTY, upon arrival."
      - It would have been better in the morning.

      Thanks for your comments.

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