COPA Airlines: Cheap Flights

COPA Airlines is the flagship of Panama, with the appropriate motto, “Connected, everything is possible.”  COPA Airlines was founded in 1944 and flew its first flight in 1947, with investors from Pan American Airways. 

Since its beginning it has expanded steadily.  COPA Airlines currently flies more than 300 flights each day to the Americas and the Caribbean, to 74 different destinations.  Not only can passengers get anywhere they want to go, they’ll arrive in a timely fashion, as COPA has the best on time performance of all Latin American major airlines, arriving within 15 minutes of the scheduled time for more than 90% of flights in some months.

COPA Airlines is a member of the Star Alliance, one of the world’s largest airline alliances, with 27 full members and 40 non-voting members and major players such as United, Lufthansa, Air China and Turkish Airlines. COPA Airlines also codeshares with several other airlines. This means that COPA, with its partners and allies, can get you nearly anywhere you want to go.

COPA Airlines’ parent company is Copa Holdings, S.A.

Popular US Destinations

  • Boston, MA: Logan International Airport (BOS)
  • Chicago, IL: O’Hare International Airport (ORD)
  • Denver, CO : Denver International Airport (DEN)
  • Fort Lauderdale, FL: Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL)
  • Las Vegas, NV : Las Vegas International Airport (LAS)
  • Los Angeles, CA: Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
  • Miami, FL: Miami International Airport (MIA)
  • New Orleans, LA: Louis Armstrong International Airport (MSY)
  • New York City, NY: John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
  • Orlando, FL: Orlando International Airport (MCO)
  • San Francisco, CA: San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
  • San Juan, Puerto Rico: Luis Muñoz Marin International Airport (SJU)
  • Tampa, FL: Tampa International Airport (TPA)
  • Washington, D.C.: Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)

Popular International Destinations

  • Argentina: Buenos Aires, Córdoba, Mendoza, Rosario
  • Aruba: Oranjestad
  • Bahamas: Nassau City
  • Brazil: Belo Horizonte, Brasilia, Manaus, Porto Alegre, Recife, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paola
  • Canada: Montreal, Toronto
  • Colombia: Bogota, Pereira
  • Costa Rica: Liberia, Medellín
  • Cuba: Havana, Holguín, Santa Clara
  • Ecuador: Guayaquil, Quito
  • Guatemala: Guatemala City
  • Guyana: Georgetown
  • Jamaica: Kingston, Montego Bay
  • Mexico: Cancún, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey
  • Nicaragua: Managua
  • Panama: David, Panama City
  • Paraguay: Asunción
  • Peru: Chiclayo, Lima
  • Venezuela: Caracas, Maracaibo, Valancia

Copa Hub and Focus Cities

  • Tocumen International Airport (PTY) in Panama City, Panama. The hub and home of COPA Airlines, this airport is the busiest in Central America, with nearly 15 million passengers using it in 2016.
  • El Dorado International Airport (BOG) in Bogota, Colombia. Situated 9 miles west of downtown Bogota, this airport has been ranked the best in South America by Skytrax and World Airport Awards.  It is undergoing renovation and expansion; currently COPA Airlines uses Terminal 1.
  • La Aurora International Airport (GUA) in Guatemala City, Guatemala. Situated about 4 miles south of downtown Guatemala City, this airport has two terminals, the Central Terminal and the North Terminal.
  • Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in Alajuela, Costa Rica. Situated about 12 miles west of downtown San José, this airport has two terminals, Main and Domestic. 
  • Augusto C. Sandino International Airport (MGA) in Managua, Nicaragua. Used by both civilians and the military, the fifth busiest airport in Central America serves between one and two million passengers each year.

Copa Airlines Fleet

  • Boeing 737-700: 11 in service, each seats 124 passengers
  • Boeing 737-800: 66 in service, each seats 154 - 160 passengers
  • Embraer 190: 12 in service, each seats 94 passengers
  • Additions to the fleet are being planned

Flying with COPA Airlines

COPA Airlines: Loyalty Programs, Discounts and Miles promotions

The COPA Airlines frequent flyer program is known as ConnectMiles.

Ways to earn more ConnectMiles

  • Your flight – earn more by flying further
  • Your class of ticket – higher classes earn more miles
  • Your status in ConnectMiles – if you have a higher level of status, you earn more miles with each flight
  • Business partners – you can earn more ConnectMiles by staying at certain hotels, using certain rental cars, or by using a particular credit card, or even while banking
  • Special promotions - ConnectMiles can be earned through special promotions at COPA Airlines
  • Star Alliance – many airline partners
  • Other airlines – Copa Colombia, and others may be joining soon
  • You can even buy ConnectMiles outright

Ways to spend ConnectMiles

  • On award tickets on standard flights
  • On saver flights for passengers with flexible schedules
  • On upgrades to a more luxurious class
  • The higher your status with ConnectMiles, the more you can expect with upgrades to Business Class
  • You can give miles away

Elite Status with ConnectMiles

  • Silver: 25,000 miles in a calendar year or 20 segments
  • Gold: 45,000 miles in a calendar year or 40 segments
  • Platinum: 75,000 miles in a calendar year or 70 segments
  • Presidential Platinum: 95,000 miles in a calendar year or 90 segments

COPA Airlines – How to Check In, Seating Assignment, Leg Room and Other Fees

The space available on COPA Airlines flights depends on the aircraft and your ticket class.  Business class tickets cost more.

  • 737-700: Business seat pitch 38 inches, width 20 inches; Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 17 inches
  • 737-800 v. 1: Business seat pitch 38 inches, width 21 inches; Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 17 inches
  • 737-800 v. 2: Business seat pitch 50 inches, width 20 inches; Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 17 inches
  • Embraer E-190 (E90) v 3: Business seat pitch 33 inches, width 18 inches; Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 18 inches
  • Embraer E-190AR (E90) v 1: Business seat pitch 38 inches, width 20 inches; Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 18 inches
  • Embraer E-190AR (E90) v 2: Economy seat pitch 31 inches, seat width 18 inches
  • More space is available in emergency exit rows

You can use the web to check in: 36 hours before departure for flights not to/from the United States, and starting 24 hours for flights involving US destinations and departures. At this point you can select your seat.

If you are using a paper ticket, you must check in at the airport.

If you have a special situation – traveling with animals or infants – you must check in at the airport as well.

Certain passengers will be eligible to use the lounges, which of course makes waiting more pleasant.

COPA Airlines participates in TSA Pre.  If you have a TSA “known traveler” number, and are traveling from the United States or Puerto Rico, moving through security will be expedited.

COPA Airlines - Baggage Allowance and Fees

COPA Airlines carry-on bags policy

Most passengers may bring one bag (not larger than 46 inches and not heavier than 22 pounds) and one personal item into the cabin.  These passengers include:

ALL passengers, no matter what class, from the US

  • Main Cabin: Regular, ConnectMiles Silver, Star Alliance Silver, ConnectMiles Gold, Star Alliance Gold, Platinum & Presidential Platinum
  • Business Class: Regular, ConnectMiles Silver, Star Alliance Silver

These passengers, when not traveling to/from the US, may bring 2 bags (each not larger than 46 inches and not heavier than 22 pounds) into the cabin

  • Business Class: ConnectMiles Gold, Star Alliance Gold, Platinum & Presidential Platinum

COPA Airlines checked bags policy

  • The amount of checked baggage permitted by COPA Airlines depends on your flight (departure and destination), your class of ticket (Economy or Business) and your frequent flyer status.
  • The permissible weight of each piece of luggage depends on your flight, class of ticket and frequent flyer status, but anything weighing more than 100 pounds will have to be sent as cargo.
  • Bags larger than 62 inches (length + width + height) will be considered oversized; bags larger than 107 inches must be shipped as cargo.
  • Most Significant Carrier rule: If your journey involves several airlines and the longest leg is with another airline, then that airline’s (and not COPA Airlines) baggage policies will apply for the entire route. Exception: flights to and from the United States.
  • You may check your bags up to 4 hours before an international flight and up to 6 hours before a domestic flight within
  • Animal, plants and biological products may be subject to quarantine or refused entry into Panama.

COPA Airlines: Service On Board: In-flight Entertainment and Meals

Food and beverages are served on most flights, depending on the duration of the flight.

Special meals are available on most flights with meals but you must order the service at least 24 hours before departure.  Special meals include:

  • Meal for kids aged 2 through 12
  • Vegan (“straight vegetarian”) meal with no animal products
  • Kosher meal prepared with rabbinical supervision
  • Fruit plate (seasonal) with cheese, crackers and nuts
  • Gluten free meals

Music channels are available on most flights.

On-demand TV is available in some of the newer aircraft; overhead screens are on others.

COPA Airlines - Child Fares/Fees, Minor Service Guidelines

Traveling with Children

  • Infants who are at least 7 days old and who do not require an incubator may travel on a COPA airlines flight.
  • Up until the 2nd birthday, an infant may travel on the lap of an adult passenger. Depending on the destination, the flight may be either free or cost 10% of the adult fare.
  • Car seats may be brought into the cabin as long as they comply with carry-on baggage restrictions.
  • If you use the car seat for a child in the plane (in which case you must pay for the seat) you are responsible for the car seat’s safe operation. The car seat must be secured to the airplane seat and the child must be secured within the car seat.
  • You may bring either a stroller or a car seat at no extra charge, but not both. A second item will be counted as part of regular luggage.
  • If you are flying with a child, check the required paperwork. In addition to passports or visas you may need a notarized letter from the absent parent before you will be granted entry into another country.

Unaccompanied Minor Service

  • Children must travel with someone 18 or older if they have not yet reached their 5th birthday, or if they do not have a direct flight and have not yet reached their 8th
  • Minors of any age requiring medical treatment will not be accepted for Unaccompanied Minor Service.
  • Children from age 5 through 14 must use the Unaccompanied Minor Service; for passengers from 15 to 17, the service is optional.
  • Unaccompanied Minor Service is $60 for a direct flight (each way) and $90 for a flight with connections (each way).
  • To arrange Unaccompanied Minor Service, you must contact COPA Airlines Reservations, which will need information about the young traveler, the person dropping off the child at the departure airport as well as the person retrieving the young traveler at the destination.

COPA Airlines Pet Policy

COPA Airlines can usually help you fly with your dog or cat; birds, however, are no longer accepted.

Service animals

  • Guide dogs and emotional support dogs are permitted in the cabin without additional fees.
  • Passengers must bring proof that their dogs are appropriately trained; certifications should be less than a year old.
  • A service dog must sit at its owner’s feet and not be in the aisle.
  • Passengers with service animals may not sit in emergency exit rows.

Pets in the cabin

  • Pets are only permitted in Economy Class on Monday through Friday and not on Friday-to-Saturday international flights.
  • You must contact COPA Airlines’ Reservation Center at least 48 hours before to make sure the flight has room for your pet in the cabin.

Pets checked as baggage

  • Animals younger than 8 weeks may not be checked.
  • Passengers must travel on the same flight as their pets.

All animals

  • Make sure you have the paperwork needed for your destination. Paperwork varies by destination but usually includes information about the animal’s health, confirmation of the anti-rabies vaccine, etc.
  • Unaccompanied Minors may not bring animals.
  • You may not travel with a pet if you have a connection on your journey with an airline besides COPA Airlines.


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COPA Airlines Contact Information

COPA Airlines Customer Service Phone number

Phone Number for reservations and changes in the US: 1-800-FLY-COPA (359 2672)

COPA Airlines Customer Service Email


COPA Airlines Website

COPA Airlines on Social Media



COPA Airlines Mailing Address

Compañía Panameña de Aviación, S.A. (Copa Airlines)

Av. Principal y Av de la Rotonda Urbanización Costa del Este Complejo Business Park Torre Norte


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