Flight-Report

Review of Avianca flight Porto Alegre Lima in Economy

Airline Avianca
Flight TPU918
Class Economy
Seat 18A
Aircraft Airbus A319
Flight time 04:47
Take-off 05 Jul 18, 06:16
Arrival at 05 Jul 18, 09:03
AV   #59 out of 126 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 63 reviews
joaointhesky
Published on 13th July 2018
Hey everybody and welcome to my latest flight report! This time, covering a direct flight between Porto Alegre and Lima.


BACKGROUND



As a real AvGeek, I have always dreamt about flying some rare birds, though I never had the chance. In Brazil, we mostly see - and fly - the common ones: 737s, A320s, Embraers… so at the beggining of this year I decided it would all be different on my winter vacations. I bought a ticket to Lima, Peru, so I could make an aviation tour by there.
Peru, along with Venezuela and possibly Colombia, has the rarest and oldest aircrafts in South America. Of course I could go to Africa or North Korea and attain an even higher level, but that would go waaaay beyond my tight budget.
Well, ticket buying was quite easy, though Avianca's website is not the most modern nowadays. I got the roundtrip for fair BRL1299.08, or USD335.06 in current (July 12, 2018) values.
This POA-Lima route may seem strange. Why the hell does a Colombian airline fly between a secondary city in Brazil and the capital of Peru? Well, this flight was originally operated by TACA Peru, a TACA Group affiliate, since December 2009; TACA Peru had a modest hub in Lima, with connecting possibilities to Central America, northern South America and also North America. TACA merged with Avianca Group in 2010, and not only they mantained the hub, but they increased operations there.


CHECK-IN



The flight to Lima is one of the first departures of the day in Porto Alegre, so I arrived early at Avianca's check-in counters. It's important to say they separate domestic counters from the international ones. For this day, they had two open counters for my flight. I waited for some ten minutes in the queue. It would had taken way less, but a family spent their whole time being attended. When my time arrived, I was attended by a cordial bloke. In like one minute I had my boarding pass in hands!

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Some months ago Fraport took over Porto Alegre airport, and there is already work in progress. Still nothing different from what I've shown in previous reports, though, so I didn't mind taking photos of the terminal. The only difference is now we have a wi-fi connection, which is free and fast. Way to go, Fraport!
Testing the connection a little bit…

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As I still had some spare time, I went to the second floor for taking some coffee.

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BOARDING



Passing by the safety check and customs was fast, in no more than ten minutes I was ready at my gate.

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At 05:43AM, that is, 27 minutes before departure time, boarding was started.

Boarding lines

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This day, we would fly with N520TA, a ten years-old A319, delivered in September 2007 for TACA.

Psychodelic view from the gate ;-)

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Avianca's configuration in the A319 is really good: 12 seats in Business class (2-2 recliner configuration) and 108 in Economy. Hope someday I can go Business on this flight!
For my surprise, N520TA has no personal entertainment. A shame, but that's how it works sometimes… during the boarding, the ceiling screens promoted some brands and also some Avianca destinations, like Aruba and Havana.
This time, load was quite high: 6 passengers on Coach and 90 in Economy, making for 80% of occupation. Boarding was finished at 05:58AM.

View from my seat

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FLYING



At 06:04AM we were pushed back. As traffic was really not much, at 06:15AM we took-off.



Fastly we surpassed the haze layer that covered Porto Alegre that day, showing us the pretty pre-dusk sky.

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At 06:20AM the screens were again turned up, showing five minutes of advertisements and then starting a movie, which I don't know if it was good or not. You know, these days nobody cares about entertainment on the overhead screens.
In some minutes the sun was beautifully shining on the other side of the plane.



It took too much time for the catering service to be started. I was really hungry! It was only 08:06AM when the FAs started serving the passengers. At 08:18AM, it was finally my time. There were two options of hot breakfast: omelet and spinach pie. I chose the omelet, that came along with a little bread and a tiny fruit salad. The omelet was tasty: there was cheese and ham in it, though inside it was not as hot as expected.
For drinking, the options were Coke, water, orange juice, peach juice and also coffee. I chose a Coke and a coffee. Coffee was good, but really weak: in Brazil, we call this "chafé", which stands for tea (chá) and coffee (café).
Overall, the presentation was also very good, with a red tray and a paper promoting Avianca in it. Plastic cutlery was hard to use, but as soon as you learned to use it, it's alright. At 08:28AM, service was ended, with everyone served.



Flight attendants were mostly polite, and attended everyone well. Though none of them dominated Portuguese and most of the passengers were Brazilian (mainly in this period of Winter, with the scholar vacations), they handled pretty well the Portunhol when communicating. Anyway, possibly because of the flight hard time, they didn't seem that happy…

The aircraft was very clean. The toilet was well-mantained (A320's standards - honestly, I prefer the E-Jets one, which is way more spacious).


This is a very important photo!

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No-smoking sign

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About the seat, it was very comfortable, in a pretty blue leather. But I missed the adjustable headrest! Also, the space between seats was really good, though, as I always say, I'm not tall (5'51 feet).

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Armrest controls

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View from my seat; another movie was passing now.

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Besides the screen entertainment, Avianca also offered "Avianca en Revista", a very good magazine, and an entertainment brochure.

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The safety card

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But the best entertaiment option that day, and that's for sure, was the impressive landscapes we passed by. It was my first time seeing snow and seeing the Andes. I hope I can visit the Andes mountains personally some day! There is so much to see in South America.



Possibly lake Poopó, Bolívia



As the second movie ended, the screen was like that.
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Some clouds down there

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At 10:35AM (Brazilian time, 08:35 in Lima) we started our descent. The overhead screens passed a video - both in Spanish and in English - showing the passengers how to connect in Lima.

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Lima, as far as I read, has simply no sun in the winter. So you'll always see that when you arrive in Peru's capital city.

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Mood lighting turned on

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At 09:03 (Lima local time) we landed in Jorge Chavez international airport.



We stopped, and on our side there was Avianca's A330 N279AV, in the Star Alliance colors. 279 had just arrived from Guarulhos as AV916 and was getting ready to go to San Salvador, another Avianca hub, as AV928.
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When deboarding ended, I took some photos of the cabin.



Bye bye, N520TA! He would now go to México City as AV960.

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Intense traffic: CC-BJF coming from Cuzco as LA2010, N684TA (Avianca-TACA merging livery) arriving from Montevideo as AV904 and CC-BAF taking-off to Cancún as LA2458.

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And what a cramped airport! Really, it lacks structure for further growth. Besides that, in a little time I passed through customs and was officialy in Peru. My bag, by the way, was the first to be delivered in the carousel!

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Arrivals timetable

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Now I'd pay a visit to ATSA Perú hangars before going to my hotel… this you'll see in my next report!

Thanks for reading my report and I hope you liked it! If you have any doubts, comments and suggestions, let me know it in the comments.

João
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Verdict

Avianca

7.4/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew7.5
In-flight Entertainment6.0
Meal/catering8.0

Porto Alegre - POA

9.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness10.0

Lima - LIM

5.6/10
Efficiency6.0
Access4.0
Services4.0
Cleanliness8.5

Conclusion

Cabin: very clean and fresh. Spacious seats, though I felt they could have a headrest for this kind of flight.
Cabin crew: polite and attentive, but they didn't see too happy for me.
Entertainment: no AVOD this day, but at least some magazines and tremendous landscapes to see.
Meal: very good for a breakfast. The only problem I had was with the temperature of the omelet!

Related

4 Comments

  • Comment 454118 by
    Zadas88 8 Comments

    Very nice TR Joao! I travel to Lima a few times a year and love the city! Enjoy your time there and thanks for sharing!

  • Comment 454494 by
    nechus SILVER 603 Comments

    Oi, Joao!! Tudo bem????

    has the rarest and oldest aircrafts in South America

    I wonder if I could fly on a 737-200 in Peru. That was the first (commercial) kind of airplane I ever boarded!! They are still in use in Chile, but only by some obscure charter airline.

    This POA-Lima route may seem strange

    Indeed, but it's fascinating. Such route would look very well on my profile page map!! :D

    Testing the connection a little bit…

    LOL. Manuel Ariola was in overdrive in those days.

    Psychodelic view from the gate

    What was in that coffee, Joao??? XDD

    View from my seat

    Uau!!! The triangle on the left... do you know what it is for?????

    the sun was beautifully shining on the other side of the plane

    Amazing!!

    chafé

    kkkkkkk. My mother would call it "mea'o de vieja" (an old woman's piss) XDDD

    possibly because of the flight hard time, they didn't seem that happy

    They must have been in zombie mode. Poor things.

    I hope I can visit the Andes mountains personally some day!

    You can come to Farellones ski resort and rent all the necessary equipment on a daily basis, from the boots to the glasses! Prices here: http://skifarellones.com/ski-rentals

    Lima, as far as I read, has simply no sun in the winter.

    Good tip. Then I'll visit it in winter!!

    what a cramped airport!

    I have read that LIM handles more passengers than SCL, but it's much smaller. Uff! It must be terrible.

    A very interesting route and report. Thanks for sharing, Joao!

  • Comment 454596 by
    KL651 TEAM 4304 Comments

    Thanks for this FR.
    Well I find the catering pretty small for a 4 hour flight, though it looks good.
    Beautiful views during the flight, Peru is such a scenic country.

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