Howdy all hope you’re well wherever you are in the world. Today’s airline review is based on my experiences flying Avianca, a Colombian based airline from Quito to Galapagos back in early October 2016. This flight was pretty exciting all told, because I was finally heading to Galapagos, one of the places I most dearly wanted to visit in South America.
This was part of my Intrepid Tour, and I didn’t even know which airline I was flying until the day before the first flight. I flew from Quito via Guayaquil on the coast, to a tiny island just north of Santa Cruz, the Island Baltra. We had to take a boat to the main island and then a bus which was around two hours to get to the main town on the island, Puerto Ayora. We flew out of Isla San Cristobel, also with a stop in Guayaquil.
Yep, airbus A320 again. It seems to be the standard for shorter trips these days. I must say, the biggest hassle was having to get screened in Quito before entering Galapagos, which everyone has to, and having to pay a $20 fee in Quito and a $100 (both USD) when at the airport on Galapagos. Otherwise it was all pretty smooth (and they weren’t major hassles in any way either I should say), on time departures and arrivals. Basic airports on the islands of course, but the one on Isla San Cristobel is right next to Puerto Moreno which was far handier that the one that is used to access Santa Cruz which has nothing near it.
The aeroplane was actually run by ‘AeroGal’ on the way over, it was an actual Avianca plane on the way back not a code share like the first flight.
Food was a roll from memory and that was okay, nice to get anything really. Quito to Guayaquil is around 30 minutes and then I think it was around 90 minutes to Galapagos. The view as you approach Galapagos, well you’re flying over the islands and you see some of the small ones and it really does look pretty amazing I have to say.
Flights weren’t completely full – the one back to mainland Ecuador was much fuller than the one over which was around 2/3 full I think. Service was friendly enough. They are full-service flights, but pretty basic I guess for full service but there’s nothing else you really need. They have an entertainment system in the back of the chair in front of you and I play ‘Who Wants to be a Millionaire’ ad nauseum. When I won the million, however, they were not forth coming with the cash.
There are a few options to Galapagos and they all go through the Ecuadorian mainland, Avianca were everything they needed to be. The approach to Galapagos was amazing, as was the scenery around Quito airport, so I took a little video of the experience which I hope piques you interest! May the Journey Never End!