Closer to becoming an LCC? Avianca’s new “Low-Cost” feature

Avianca continues to introduce new features that make the company look more like a low-cost airline than a legacy airline, moving away from the former business model it operated before the COVID-19 pandemic and the Chapter 11 process. Starting starting December 1, Avianca will offer a new in-flight sales program with more than 40 options available for purchase.

Avianca’s new in-flight sales program

On Monday, Avianca announced the new in-flight sales program on most of its domestic and international routes. This in-flight sales program will be available starting December 1 and will offer drinks, snacks, combos and other products.


Paula Ayala, Avianca’s director of customer experience and in-flight service, said:

“After months of listening to our passengers’ feedback and adapting to industry challenges, we are launching our new onboard sales menu. This is a service for our customers to continue to choose what they want to pay for and where they can find different options for snacks, drinks and some additional items. You will be able to find our menu for all domestic flights from Colombia and Ecuador and international flights from the Americas. Service for flights to and from Europe and the Bogota-Los Angeles-Bogota route remains the same.”

In the second phase of the program, Avianca will invite local entrepreneurs from Colombia, El Salvador and Ecuador to sell their products on board the airline’s flights. In addition, in this second phase, the airline will add new forms of payment (currently Avianca will only accept debit and credit cards, Visa and MasterCard), and a team of gastronomy experts will provide new products, Avianca . said.

Avianca seats

Photo: Daniel Martínez Garbuno | Simple flight.

Other low-cost Avianca features?

The introduction of this in-flight sales program is the latest of Avianca’s post-Chapter 11 changes. Previously, Avianca introduced new seats, densifying its narrowbody fleet and launched four travel schemes, allowing passengers to pay only for what they need.

Last year, Avianca announced it would redesign the cabin of its narrow-gauge fleet. By introducing new seats designed by Recaro Aircraft Seating, Avianca could offer 20% more capacity, enabling lower prices and a 13% reduction in CO2 emissions per passenger. The transition between booths happened this year.

The introduction of the four travel schemes took place in June 2022. These branded schemes, XS, S, M and L, include from a minimum (such as a personal item and check-in on the web, app or Avianca kiosk for passengers. the flight with the XS schedule) to all features included in the Avianca service (such as a personal item, a 10 kg carry-on bag, a 23 kg checked bag, check-in, itinerary changes, refunds, accumulation of kilometers and seat selection in economy, plus emergency exit seats).

In addition, Avianca launched several point-to-point routes, as opposed to a hub and spoke model. It is focusing more on Latin American routes, most likely reinforcing its need for narrow-body aircraft in the future, rather than long-haul.

An Avianca plane

Photo: Avianca.

Is Avianca turning into a low-cost carrier?

Following the exit from Chapter 11, Avianca changed its business model, adapting to the new post-pandemic times. The airline has also sought to merge with true ultra-low-cost competitors Viva Colombia and Viva Peru.

Last week, while addressing why Colombia should approve the merger, Avianca CEO Adrián Neuhauser said Viva generated and promoted the low-cost model in Colombia. The airline is a pioneer, promoting lower prices and democratizing air operations in the country, “Which, in a way, is part of what made Avianca change as well. Avianca’s changes today respond to the great market response to the product that Viva offers and leads.” he added.

What do you think about Avianca’s transition from a legacy carrier to an apparently low-cost airline? Tell us in the comments.

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