Question about domestic business class

Old Oct 14, 18, 6:53 am
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Question about domestic business class

Hi all,
I have to fly from BOG to MDE in January. The difference in price between economy and business is $78 and I'm trying to figure out if it's worth spending the extra money.

I am *G -- is the domestic lounge in BOG different for business class versus *G in economy? The AV website talks about a Diamond versus Gold domestic lounge, but my belief is that info might be outdated and now there's just one brand new lounge for everyone that opened a few months ago (?).

Beyond that, I will only have one carry-on bag for the overhead and a personal item that will fit under the seat in front of me. So unless they are way more strict with carry-on's with economy than business this shouldn't be a big deal.

The only "X factor" is that I've never flown AV before and so part of me would be curious to try their business class service, but I also know this is a very short flight and so perhaps there really is no service.

Thanks for any help/suggestions!
~Adam
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Old Oct 14, 18, 10:09 am
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Originally Posted by autobahnal View Post
Hi all,
I have to fly from BOG to MDE in January. The difference in price between economy and business is $78 and I'm trying to figure out if it's worth spending the extra money.

I am *G -- is the domestic lounge in BOG different for business class versus *G in economy? The AV website talks about a Diamond versus Gold domestic lounge, but my belief is that info might be outdated and now there's just one brand new lounge for everyone that opened a few months ago (?).

Beyond that, I will only have one carry-on bag for the overhead and a personal item that will fit under the seat in front of me. So unless they are way more strict with carry-on's with economy than business this shouldn't be a big deal.

The only "X factor" is that I've never flown AV before and so part of me would be curious to try their business class service, but I also know this is a very short flight and so perhaps there really is no service.

Thanks for any help/suggestions!
~Adam
I flew CTG-BOG in business on AV earlier this year for 247,500 COP or about 80 USD all in. It was a discounted fare only available on AV’s Colombian website and the only reason I chose to fly business was to experience a business seat on Avianca’s Dreamliner which served one daily BOG-CTG-BOG rotation at the time. CTG-BOG is twice as long as BOG-MDE and the service consisted of a free can of beer.

I can’t comment on BOG lounges but for such a short flight I don’t think it’s worth paying extra to fly in business on a narrow body.
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Old Oct 14, 18, 11:38 am
  #3  
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Value or "worth it" is entirely subjective and up to you. What does $78 mean to you? If it is the difference between your kids eating or starving, it's not worth the upgrade. If you spend $78 at the bar on most nights, it's worth a whirl.
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Old Oct 14, 18, 12:13 pm
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Originally Posted by NewbieRunner View Post
I flew CTG-BOG in business on AV earlier this year for 247,500 COP or about 80 USD all in. It was a discounted fare only available on AVís Colombian website and the only reason I chose to fly business was to experience a business seat on Aviancaís Dreamliner which served one daily BOG-CTG-BOG rotation at the time. CTG-BOG is twice as long as BOG-MDE and the service consisted of a free can of beer.

I canít comment on BOG lounges but for such a short flight I donít think itís worth paying extra to fly in business on a narrow body.
Thanks so much for sharing your experience! There's a 788 flight the day I'm traveling as well, but sadly too early for me.
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Old Oct 14, 18, 12:18 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
Value or "worth it" is entirely subjective and up to you.
Thanks for your response. I agree! That's why I didn't ask this question in a super-general way, but instead mentioned criteria that I'm thinking about to get a greater sense of what I'd be buying for the money. Do you have any info about the domestic lounge situation at BOG (in which some recent news articles conflict with what's on the AV website) and/or how strict they are with carry-on's (weighing them, etc.) when traveling domestically?
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Old Oct 14, 18, 1:45 pm
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We flew BOG-CTG biz the end of July this year, the lounge we accessed was to the right when getting off the elevator (I believe it was the Diamond Lounge) not sure what the lounge to the left was called but the other 4 people in the elevator with us went left.
The lounge was large, not crowded and well staffed. There was a wide variety of hot and cold breakfast items with well stocked refrigerators..
It was also our first flights with Avianca (MIA-BOG-CTG-MIA) no lie flats but the seats in biz were comfortable for the short flights and the crew were friendly.
We enjoyed the experience enough that we have already booked JFK-LIM-UIO-JFK for July '19.

edit: After looking at vacation pics the lounge we accessed with domestic biz class was called the "Avianca Diamond VIP Lounge"

Last edited by CarolinaCoopers; Oct 14, 18 at 2:05 pm Reason: Correction..
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Old Oct 14, 18, 3:49 pm
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Originally Posted by CarolinaCoopers View Post
We flew BOG-CTG biz the end of July this year, the lounge we accessed was to the right when getting off the elevator (I believe it was the Diamond Lounge) not sure what the lounge to the left was called but the other 4 people in the elevator with us went left.
The lounge was large, not crowded and well staffed. There was a wide variety of hot and cold breakfast items with well stocked refrigerators..
It was also our first flights with Avianca (MIA-BOG-CTG-MIA) no lie flats but the seats in biz were comfortable for the short flights and the crew were friendly.
We enjoyed the experience enough that we have already booked JFK-LIM-UIO-JFK for July '19.

edit: After looking at vacation pics the lounge we accessed with domestic biz class was called the "Avianca Diamond VIP Lounge"
Thanks for the response! Yeah it sounds like this lounge may have very recently been closed and replaced with something quite new and nice (Finance Colombia Avianca Opens New Domestic VIP Lounge in BogotŠ?s El Dorado Airport - Finance Colombia) but the AV site doesn't say anything about this and instead only refers to the older Diamond and Gold lounges (https://www.avianca.com/ni/en/travel...ht/vip-lounges).
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Old Oct 14, 18, 4:29 pm
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In looking at the pics of the vip lounge on Aviancas website, those pics do not look at all like the lounge we visited July 22nd '18..
I am guessing we were in the new lounge...The lounge is huge and basically split into 3 sections with the front section around the food area being shown in the pics, middle section had couches around a large tv on the wall, and then at the back more bistro style seating.

Avianca Siamond VIP Lounge domestic


Avianca Siamond VIP Lounge domestic

Last edited by CarolinaCoopers; Oct 14, 18 at 4:29 pm Reason: wrong date
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Old Oct 14, 18, 8:24 pm
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Originally Posted by CarolinaCoopers View Post
In looking at the pics of the vip lounge on Aviancas website, those pics do not look at all like the lounge we visited July 22nd '18..
I am guessing we were in the new lounge...The lounge is huge and basically split into 3 sections with the front section around the food area being shown in the pics, middle section had couches around a large tv on the wall, and then at the back more bistro style seating.
Avianca Siamond VIP Lounge domestic

Avianca Siamond VIP Lounge domestic
Thanks for the pictures! Yeah that does look a lot nicer, I agree. So is that the only domestic lounge now, or is there still a separate Gold lounge?
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Old Oct 18, 18, 12:22 am
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The pictures posted by CarolinaCoopers are from Domestic DIAMOND Lounge, which is on the LEFT leaving the elevator. To the RIGHT there is Domestic GOLD lounge.
They both opened end of April 2018 and Domestic DIAMOND is currently the best lounge Avianca has to offer, with hot cooked food, a bar, salad bar and even a dessert bar and lots of different spaces for relax or work.

About domestic Biz: You get more miles (and segments on Lifemiles), and the price is sometimes the same as Econo tickets.
On shorthaul flights with narrow body, there is typically 2-2 seats instead of the 3-3 in Economy. (Be aware! Few new planes have been added with 3-3 "biz" that is not different from Economy seats at all).
Service difference on short flights is that you can choose from Whiskey and Beer (which is not the case in Economy) and that you almost always get a drink (on short hops, especially with turbulence, drink service does not reach to people sitting in the back part of Eco cabin). In only one or two of around 50 flights in short haul biz I did not get a drink because auf turbulence during the whole flight.
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Old Oct 18, 18, 2:29 am
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Originally Posted by Beavis77 View Post
The pictures posted by CarolinaCoopers are from Domestic DIAMOND Lounge, which is on the LEFT leaving the elevator. To the RIGHT there is Domestic GOLD lounge.
They both opened end of April 2018 and Domestic DIAMOND is currently the best lounge Avianca has to offer, with hot cooked food, a bar, salad bar and even a dessert bar and lots of different spaces for relax or work.

About domestic Biz: You get more miles (and segments on Lifemiles), and the price is sometimes the same as Econo tickets.
On shorthaul flights with narrow body, there is typically 2-2 seats instead of the 3-3 in Economy. (Be aware! Few new planes have been added with 3-3 "biz" that is not different from Economy seats at all).
Service difference on short flights is that you can choose from Whiskey and Beer (which is not the case in Economy) and that you almost always get a drink (on short hops, especially with turbulence, drink service does not reach to people sitting in the back part of Eco cabin). In only one or two of around 50 flights in short haul biz I did not get a drink because auf turbulence during the whole flight.
Thanks so much for the extra info, and also looks like this was your first post -- welcome to FT!
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Old Oct 19, 18, 7:05 am
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Here's my trip report from March flying J from BOG-MDE. The lounge wasn't much to boast about although the seat was very nice and spacious for the 30 minutes in the air.

https://www.globalphotos.org/av16.htm
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Old Oct 20, 18, 3:36 pm
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Try booking the flight on the Colombian Avianca site, rates are often cheaper. I fly this route often and J tickets purchased in COP are often about 225 COP versus about 150 COP in economy. That is a difference of only $25 USD. To me the difference is worth it. The flights often get stuck on the tarmac in Bogota so despite the 25 minute in air flight time, you often spend well over an hour on the plane.

Avianca has new domestic lounges. Both are pretty nice and much improved. The Diamond lounge which you can access with a J ticket has a much better beverage and food selection...
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Old Oct 21, 18, 9:02 am
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Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
Here's my trip report from March flying J from BOG-MDE. The lounge wasn't much to boast about although the seat was very nice and spacious for the 30 minutes in the air.

https://www.globalphotos.org/av16.htm
Thanks for the report!
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Old Oct 21, 18, 9:18 am
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Originally Posted by jkreisler999 View Post
Try booking the flight on the Colombian Avianca site, rates are often cheaper. I fly this route often and J tickets purchased in COP are often about 225 COP versus about 150 COP in economy. That is a difference of only $25 USD. To me the difference is worth it. The flights often get stuck on the tarmac in Bogota so despite the 25 minute in air flight time, you often spend well over an hour on the plane.

Avianca has new domestic lounges. Both are pretty nice and much improved. The Diamond lounge which you can access with a J ticket has a much better beverage and food selection...
Ah, bummer -- I already booked my ticket on the UA site before I saw this. Economy price is the same on AV and UA, but the AV site has the "business promo" that is also the same price. Oh well -- maybe I'll consider a buy-up offer if there is one. Does AV do advanced seat assignments in economy for *G?
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