Review of Copa Airlines flight Los Angeles Panamá City in Business

Airline Copa Airlines
Flight CM473
Class Business
Seat 4F
Aircraft Boeing 737 MAX 9
Flight time 05:55
Take-off 26 Apr 24, 02:05
Arrival at 26 Apr 24, 10:00
CM   #16 out of 94 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 77 reviews
jettoajet
By GOLD 579
Published on 13th May 2024

intro


Good news and bad news fills the air, as this will be the last series of trip reports for the next 1.5 months before I embark on 36 flights around Africa. The good news is that I'm going to leave you all with some (hopefully) interesting and unique trip reports before I bear a temporary farewell.

The first flight of this 7-leg trip covers Copa Airlines on their new 737 Max 9 in Business Class. I was especially excited about this trip as not many reviews had been published, and it was a product that I have always wanted to try.

The routing for this trip is as follows: 


Routing

  • CM473- Los Angeles- Panama City- Business Class- 737 Max 9 You are here
  • CM280- Panama City- Belize City- Business Class- 737-700 Coming soon
  • 2M2064- Belize City- Caye Caulker- FO Seat- Cessna Caravan Coming soon
  • AA700- Belize City- Miami- Business Class- 737-800 Coming soon
  • AA23- Miami- Los Angeles- First Class- 777-300ER Coming soon
  • AA2201- Los Angeles- New York- Business Class- A321T Coming soon
  • AA976- New York- Santa Ana- First Class- A321T Coming soon

Copa Airlines provides a competitive, hard product on routes down to Panama. However, the soft product leaves quite a bit to be desired. Let's get into it! 


how i booked


Fares are typically quite high on Copa Airlines in their "dreams business class". However, I found an award that made me decide to go to Belize. Yes, it was that good. For 38.5K United Miles and 8$ in taxes, I managed to book Los Angeles-Panama City- Belize City all in Business Class!


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Mileage awards on Copa Airlines are dynamic (I think the only partner award on UA, that is), meaning you will often see this fare going for around 200K miles+. If you are looking to book with cash, the fare would have come out to 1100$ one way. 


check-in


After finishing up class on a Thursday night, I headed straight up to LAX to get a chance to review the Star Alliance Lounge. 


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With two flights heading out at similar times, check-in was quite busy.


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But… there was no queue for business class!


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Boarding pass in hand, immigration was imminent. 


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A cheeky bit of TSA precheck never did anyone harm…


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star alliance lounge lax


Once through security, I made my way over to the Star Alliance Lounge at LAX. I love this lounge to bits, I'll share a couple of pictures here, but will attach the full report at the bottom. Food was on point and the outdoor terrace ugh!!!



I spent almost the whole time out here! 


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boarding


After spending a couple of hours in the Star Alliance lounge, I headed over at 1 am to the gate.

Boarding commenced at 1:15 am for a 2:11 am departure. 


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I asked to pre-board in order to take a couple of shots of the cabin, and they happily obliged.


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Excited to board this bird!!!


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The FA warmly greeted me at the door, and I made my way to my seat, 4F, for tonight's flight.


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Shoes off, I was ready to head to sleep…


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departure


By 1:50 am, boarding was completed, and I found myself next to a man who had just upgraded (he seemed to be a top Copa elite). 


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Approximately 5 minutes after that, the FA came around and greeted us by name while asking for our meal order.

She first asked us what we would like to drink after takeoff, followed by letting us know there would be a sandwich served after takeoff. Lastly, there was a choice of breakfast consisting of crepes or scrambled eggs.

I decided on a mimosa and crepes.

At 2:01, we pushed back, and 6 minutes later, we began our taxi.


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The safety video was played, and it was nice not to see an American Airlines one for once😅.


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According to Flighty, we were airborne by about 2:22, but then again, I was passed out at this point😂.


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the cabin/seat


The cabin on this Copa Airlines 737 Max 9 is an intimate one consisting of 16 business class seats laid out in a 2-2 configuration. 


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The footwells are narrow, so if you like a bigger footwell, I recommend row 1 due to the lack of seats in front of you.


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The seat is practically identical to the A321T in Business Class on American Airlines (if you've read that report of mine). The seat controls and a remote are to your side.


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And the tray table is located where it usually is.


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Of course, there are two issues with this seat. The first is privacy… There is almost no privacy divider between you and your neighbor while sitting upright.


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The second is storage. The only real storage space you get is behind your seat and over your shoulder…


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In all fairness, this was a 2:00 am red-eye, so the only thing on my mind was to sleep. That I did, since I woke up 40 minutes before landing in Panama City! The bed was comfortable, and that's all I could have asked for.


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Here are just a couple more shots of the cabin!



amenities/ife


About 25 minutes before departure, the FA came around to offer us amenity kits and bottles of water. 


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I thought this was another great personal touch instead of just placing them on the seat. 


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The amenity kit was relatively simple inside but provided everything you could need on a 6-hour flight. The cloud socks, though!  


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The bedding was also laid out on the seats, consisting of a very soft (and warm) blanket, as well as an amazing pillow!


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Considering I slept for 5.5 hours (ish) uninterrupted, I am not complaining about the bedding here.


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For a narrowbody, the IFE might have been some of the crispest I have come across. It is large, responsive, and has a beautiful map feature. 



Note to others: There is no wifi onboard Copa Airlines🥴 but you can stream the same entertainment through your phone.


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meal service


How do I put this? I was really excited to try out this Copa Airlines product to review the whole experience, but I somehow managed to sleep the whole way… A big shame, and I am sorry. However, the crew did give me a paper bag (without asking) to go, consisting of a sandwich they served during the flight. 


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While the thought was nice, this didn't look too appetizing to me. The confirmation came later onboard my next flight up to Belize🥴. Guess I have to this flight all over again to get a better review of the food😅


arrival


At 9:20 am local time (2 hour time change), I was awakened as the captain came onto the PA to announce our descent into Panama. 


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The FA asked if I had a good sleep and provided me with a pen and immigration card to enter Panama. Country 84, wooooo! 


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It was a gorgeous morning to be gazing out of the window.


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The plane took some twists and turns as we began lining up to land. 



By 9:48 am, the cabin crew was instructed with "Cabin crew seats for landing."

We touched down at exactly 10:00 am on the head. 



Panama is so beautiful!!! I digress.


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Erm I don't think we are here (not yet at least). 


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It was a short taxi to our gate, and we were off the plane about 20 minutes early. 


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I headed out of the airport, got my passport stamped, and then went back to the lounge to enjoy some breakfast. Don't wait up on that report, as it's not worth losing sleep over😅.


Thanks for reading this flight report, I hope you enjoyed! Would love to follow along with everyone else's travels, feel free to add me on instagram @ktfxrce and I'll follow you back! 


Also, if you are interested in a more comprehensive review of the Star Alliance Lounge at LAX, feel free to check it out here!

See more

Verdict

Copa Airlines

6.9/10
Cabin9.0
Cabin crew8.5
Entertainment/wifi5.5
Meal/catering4.5

Star Alliance Lounge Business Class Section - TBIT

8.9/10
Comfort9.5
Meal/catering8.5
Entertainment/wifi8.5
Services9.0

Los Angeles - LAX

8.0/10
Efficiency8.0
Access8.0
Services8.5
Cleanliness7.5

Panamá City - PTY

6.8/10
Efficiency7.5
Access7.0
Services6.5
Cleanliness6.0

Conclusion

Copa Airlines has a very competitive, hard product when it comes to flights within the Americas. The seats turn into a very comfortable bed, and the pillow provides a great sleeping surface. The IFE is crisp, with plenty of options, and the service was pretty good on this flight.

However, from what I gathered in my to-go bag, the sandwiches came wrapped in plastic, no pre-departure beverage was offered, and there was no wifi on the planes. It seems like this product is great for getting on board, getting a night of sleep, and waking up at your next destination rested.

It is to be known that I am not saying I wouldn't fly them again because I would (38K United Miles) for this price. However, I wouldn't pay 1500$ to fly this route in Business Class as I don't feel that it is worth the money. The good news is Copa Airlines routinely sells bidding upgrades on this route for 350$. Now, that is a good way to fly!

Information on the route Los Angeles (LAX) Panamá City (PTY)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 4 avis concernant 1 compagnies sur la ligne Los Angeles (LAX) → Panamá City (PTY).


Useful

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

La durée moyenne des vols est de 6 heures et 25 minutes.

  More information

6 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 651238 by
    ThomasDutch SILVER 649 Comments
    So you need to enter the country to connect to your next flight? Kind of odd considering Copa's basically relying on connecting passengers from the US to Latin and vice versa.

    Thanks for sharing though!
  • Comment 651398 by
    KévinDC TEAM SILVER 6814 Comments
    Very nice to see a review on COPA's lie-flat 737 MAX cabins!

    Good news and bad news fills the air, as this will be the last series of trip reports for the next 1.5 months before I embark on 36 flights around Africa

    Hah yeah, probably good to have a little break. 1.5 months isn't too bad to have to wait haha.

    For 38.5K United Miles and 8$ in taxes

    Hot damn! That's a good price for a 5.5h flight in lie-flat seats!

    Food was on point and the outdoor terrace ugh!!!

    Ugh, I really wish one of the oneworld lounges had an outdoor terrace, but they're both on the non-window side

    I asked to pre-board in order to take a couple of shots of the cabin, and they happily obliged.

    Hah, good for you! I've never felt comfortable doing that, nice to see it can work.

    Don't blame you for sleeping through the services...a 5.5 hour red-eye leaving at 2AM I would definitely be sleeping too!

    However, the crew did give me a paper bag (without asking) to go, consisting of a sandwich they served during the flight.

    Wow, that's great service! Very throughful.

    Thanks for sharing!
    • Comment 651409 by
      jettoajet GOLD AUTHOR 116 Comments
      Hi Kevin! Thanks again for your comments!

      Very nice to see a review on COPA's lie-flat 737 MAX cabins!

      I feel like there are very reviews on the internet of this cabin, and on the English version of FR couldn't find any, yet Copa flies quite a lot of Max 9;s. Interesting.

      Hot damn! That's a good price for a 5.5h flight in lie-flat seats!

      The best part is it included the next flight up to Belize as well! 10 hours in Business Class for 38K ain't too shabby.

      Hah, good for you! I've never felt comfortable doing that, nice to see it can work.

      From what I read, at least with BA, you get to board early with your kid right (lucky!)? Some airlines say no to me, but Copa was nice.

      Thanks for reading Kevin and have a great day!
  • Comment 651451 by
    Chibcha SILVER 574 Comments
    Hi again!
    Its nice to see Copa is stepping up its hardware compared to LA, AV and AM on their narrowbodies. Sadly this came with the downgrade for the people in the back!
    Copa seems to be hit/miss...never consistently good, but they must be doing something right to keep groing as they do.

    The SA lounge at LAX looks awesome, it's a shame I don't have any excuse for visiting it and make use of my TK status that is soon to expire :(

    Thanks for sharing!
    • Comment 651456 by
      jettoajet GOLD AUTHOR 116 Comments
      Hi Chibcha, thanks for your comments!

      Sadly this came with the downgrade for the people in the back!

      It sort of does and sort of doesn't. The economy plus section is beautiful with great IFE, but the normal economy has been stripped of IFE and other stuff sadly. I don't think they charge too much for economy plus either so could be good value there.

      but they must be doing something right to keep groing as they do.

      It's interesting as I was reading up on them, and they are turning profit 🤔. Just like your hometown, it's a great centrally located hub in the Americas. Apart form AV flies Europe etc while Copa doesn't.

      The SA lounge at LAX looks awesome, it's a shame I don't have any excuse for visiting it and make use of my TK status that is soon to expire :(

      Noooo that's such a shame😒. Next time you get Turkish status again!

      Thanks for your comments Chibcha, have a great day!

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