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Copa Airlines Selects Austin as its 15th U.S. Gateway

Panama's flag carrier, Copa Airlines, has chosen Austin as its newest North American destination with four weekly flights, starting in July

by Enrique Perrella

February 13, 2023

Photo: Courtesy of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

Just a couple of weeks after announcing new flights to Baltimore, Copa Airlines continues to boost its presence in North America by adding its 15th destination in the U.S. The Panama City-based carrier will launch its inaugural flight to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) in July with a frequency of four weekly rotations.

Copa’s evergrowing expansion into North American territory continues apace. During the last week of January, the airline announced new direct services to Baltimore, followed by its first-ever destination in Texas, set to launch on July 6, 2023.

Photo: Copa Airlines, Boeing 737 MAX 9. Courtesy of Enrique Perrella

The Panamanian carrier’s vast presence in the U.S. currently links its Hub of the Americas at Tocumen Airport (PTY) with Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Orlando, Tampa, San Francisco, and Washington D.C.

Copa’s Vice President Global Sales and Distribution, Christophe Didier, noted that the airline is on a path to strengthening its network of destinations in the U.S. “Incorporating this new route represents a window of opportunities to increase commerce, tourism, and cultural and educational exchanges between the state capital of Texas, Panama and our entire region,” he said.

For AUS, Copa becomes its newest international airline and the fourth new carrier to join its roster since 2020. The new flight to Panama City will also become its first-ever nonstop flight to Central America.

Photo: Courtesy of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

Currently, AUS offers nonstop flights to six cities in Mexico, two in the Caribbean, two in Canada, and three in Europe with Aeromexico, Air Canada, British Airways, KLM, Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic, and WestJet.

“This exciting announcement has been years in the making,” said Jacqueline Yaft, Austin Airport’s CEO. “We are thrilled to welcome Copa Airlines to Austin, Texas, and cannot wait for Austinites and Central Texas to discover the gem of Panama City.”

Yaft added that Copa’s new service would bring “more convenient options for connecting Central Texas to Central and South America,” as the new flight will provide more than 55 onward connections in Panama City to Latin America and the Caribbean.

The new flights to Austin will depart Panama City at 9:18 am and arrive in Austin by 2:04 pm. The return flight departs at 3:34 pm, landing in Panama City by 8:16 pm, allowing passengers flying in from Austin to connect to the late-night bank of departing flights to deep South America and some Caribbean destinations.

Photo: Copa Airlines, Business Class, Boeing 737-800. Courtesy of Enrique Perrella

Copa Airlines operates an all-Boeing 737 fleet comprising 85 planes, ranging from the smallest 737-700 to the largest and newest 737 MAX 9. The MAX planes feature flat beds on its ‘Dreams’ Business Class cabin, specially designed for the airline’s long-haul flights to South America, such as Montevideo, Buenos Aires, and Santiago, which can last up to eight hours.

However, the new flight to AUS will be operated with one of the airline’s Boeing 737-800NG aircraft, equipped with 16 recliner Business Class seats and 144 Economy Class seats. According to Copa, fares to its newest Texan destination are now on sale, starting at $241 each way.