Airlines An Avianca Airbus A330. Photo: Pabolo Andrés Ortega Chávez

Published on February 10th, 2012 | by Mark Chesnut

An Avianca Airbus A330. Photo: Pabolo Andrés Ortega Chávez

AIRLINE REVIEW: Avianca Business Class (Airbus A330)

THE TRIP: New York Bogota Avianca — Flight 21, New York/John F. Kennedy International Airport to Bogota/El Dorado, flying Clase Ejecutiva (Business Class).
Access to The Lounge, a VIP lounge at JFK Airport’s Terminal 4, is free for Avianca’s business class passengers. Photo: 

THE DEPARTURE: Check-in was fast and efficient at JFK’s Terminal 4. Clase Ejecutiva passengers have free access to The Lounge, a cheerily colored, independently operated VIP lounge that was uncrowded and stocked with free snacks and drinks during my morning visit. Especially nice is the free WiFi and the custom-order free breakfast menu that includes waffles, yogurt, cereals, fruit salad and a “baker’s basket” with toasted bagel, croissant and muffin. (If you’re not flying business class, you can still get in by paying $40 per person, or by joining a program such as Priority Pass.)

Business-class seating on Avianca’s A330 aircraft. Photo:

THE PLANE: Avianca’s wide-body Airbus A330 is soothingly decorated with blue and gray tones. This is definitely an international-caliber business class, with lots of leg room and a 2-2-2 seating configuration. A generously sized comforter and pillow were provided on each seat, and an amenity kit tucked in between the seats contains toothbrush and toothpaste, L’Occitane hand cream, lip balm, tissues and a sticker to place on the seat if you want to be woken up for meals. 

The seats are particularly comfortable, with lots of adjustments and a near-flat bed setting that I found ideal for sleeping. Easily accessible power outlets and USB ports between each seating pair are ideal for travelers looking to stay productive or use their own entertainment items. 

Control panel for business-class seats on the Avianca A330 aircraft. Photo:

THE ENTERTAINMENT: The individual seat-back video screens are quite large (I estimate somewhere between 12 and 15 inches), with a variety of music, television and movie options. Business travelers might be especially interested in the system’s SkyOffice section, which, with a USB, allows the use of TextMaker (which creates, edits and saves word processing documents), PlanMaker (same idea, but for spreadsheets) and Presentations (for PowerPoint). 

Individual video screens on the Avianca A330 aircraft. Photo:

THE SERVICE: Before leaving the gate, we were offered water and orange juice (it was an early morning flight), as well as the menu for the flight, which includes a variety of breakfast items and a later snack (sandwich and chips) served about an hour before landing in Bogotá. Overall, service was efficient and cordial, and the amenities and comfort of the seats definitely place Avianca’s business-class product on a competitive level with other airlines to Latin America. 

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About the Author

The founder and editor of, Mark has more than 15 years of experience as a writer, editor and manager. He's worked with some of the biggest consumer, in-flight and travel trade publishers that cover Latin America.

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