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Old Jul 17, 12, 1:02 pm   #1
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
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MCT in Panama City on Copa

We are looking at flying Copa ORD-GYE next spring. The Copa website gives a nice fare, but with a 52 minute connection in PTY.

Can we make this connection (luggage and all)?

I can get a later flight from PTY to GYE but it means almost a 7 hour layover in PTY.
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Old Jul 18, 12, 8:15 am   #2
 
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I've had similar times there without a problem.
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Old Jul 18, 12, 1:42 pm   #3
 
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Me and my cat did a connection almost as short. And that was with setting up a portable litterbox for him :-)

Very efficient airport for connections. No transit security nonsense, clear directions to gates, nothing too far apart, even from one wing to the other. With a cat.
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Old Jul 19, 12, 10:34 am   #4
 
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It would ne nice to know what the official MCT is at PTY CM/CM as opposed to anecdotal reports. That being said, if CM is willing to sell you a through ticket with a 52 minute connection, barring some unusual IT glitch, that would tell me 52 minutes is a legal connection greater than MCT.

Now back to the anecdotal side of things: yes, I'll echo what everyone else has said. PTY is a quick and convenient airport and you will stay airside for your connection - no transfer lounges, no customs & immigration, just a quick walk from one gate to the next. Rough guesstimate would be that the two farthest gates at PTY are no more than a 6 (fast walkers) to 12 (slow walkers) minute walk from each other.
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Old Jul 19, 12, 10:39 am   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neuromancer View Post
I've had similar times there without a problem.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkXS View Post
Me and my cat did a connection almost as short. And that was with setting up a portable litterbox for him :-)

Very efficient airport for connections. No transit security nonsense, clear directions to gates, nothing too far apart, even from one wing to the other. With a cat.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Herb687 View Post
It would ne nice to know what the official MCT is at PTY CM/CM as opposed to anecdotal reports. That being said, if CM is willing to sell you a through ticket with a 52 minute connection, barring some unusual IT glitch, that would tell me 52 minutes is a legal connection greater than MCT.

Now back to the anecdotal side of things: yes, I'll echo what everyone else has said. PTY is a quick and convenient airport and you will stay airside for your connection - no transfer lounges, no customs & immigration, just a quick walk from one gate to the next. Rough guesstimate would be that the two farthest gates at PTY are no more than a 6 (fast walkers) to 12 (slow walkers) minute walk from each other.
I understand that that airlines only sell tickets that meet their MCT requirements.

I was more interested in actual experience. This will be our first experience with CM.

Thanks to you all!
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Old Jul 20, 12, 6:59 pm   #6
 
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One thing to note is that Copa seems to schedule flights for the same length of time year-round. Actual winds would vary seasonally and would affect actual arrival times. For example, I flew LAX-PTY-PUJ and back in April, when westerlies were still strong. During that month, LAX-PTY constantly arrived early while PTY-LAX was constantly late. PTY-PUJ constantly arrived early and PUJ-PTY was late.

Of course this wouldn't affect the OP too much, ORD-PTY-GYE being north-south.
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Old Jul 22, 12, 10:52 am   #7
 
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I fly COPA through PTY 2-4X per month. I have never missed a connection. In my experience, flights tend to arrive a little ahead of schedule. COPA seems to pad a lot in the flight time. I've been on flights that pushed back 15 minutes late and still arrived 20 minutes early. That may relate to the comment above where it is mentioned they don't adjust flight times for changing weather patterns.

I will also echo the comments that PTY is easy and fast to navigate, and you don't have to worry about your baggage making it.

I would book a 52 minute connection without any hesitation, especially knowing that the worst case is a 7 hour layover in the unlikely event that you misconnect.
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Old Jul 22, 12, 11:08 am   #8
 
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I was looking at the Copa "Visit Panama" promotion. Being near to ORD, I can buy the tickets at the Copa counter in Terminal 5.

We just might build in a 1 or 2 day stopover in PTY, just to check it out (Making my original concern moot).
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Old Aug 21, 12, 12:01 am   #9
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Thumbs up Great Airport!!!

Easy to do when connecting/flying COPA. Did this early this month. Wish EVERY international airport had a great a setup!
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Old Aug 24, 12, 1:53 pm   #10
 
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Like others have said. PTY is ridiculously easy. All Copa gates are next to each other and as soon as you get off the plane you can be at your next gate in <5 minutes.

No immigration or anything to go through for connecting flights.
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Old Aug 29, 12, 8:23 pm   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bachovas View Post
Like others have said. PTY is ridiculously easy. All Copa gates are next to each other and as soon as you get off the plane you can be at your next gate in <5 minutes.

No immigration or anything to go through for connecting flights.
Agree!

5 minutes non-stop

10 minutes if you stop for a delicious flying hot dog

25 minutes if you stop at the duty free (check La Hora to purchase expensive watches at a good price, ask for discounts up to 20% from other even duty free stores)
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Old Aug 30, 12, 5:26 am   #12
 
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Are the hot dogs good? i usually go for empanadas at the food court upstairs. PTY is becoming my favourite airport.

Flew into PTY with KL yesterday, have a flight out Sunday morning and then will come back transitting from MEX to POS next week. I dont know what I ( or my employer) woulkd do without CM and PTY!
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Old Aug 30, 12, 8:36 am   #13
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leandrorar View Post
Agree!

5 minutes non-stop

10 minutes if you stop for a delicious flying hot dog

25 minutes if you stop at the duty free (check La Hora to purchase expensive watches at a good price, ask for discounts up to 20% from other even duty free stores)
It's small and it's crowded. So if restroom use is in order, add 5 minutes for male, 10 minutes for female.
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