COPA Woos Toronto
with Martha Chapman

Laura Marin and Joanne Lundy of Discover the World Marketing, who help promote COPA in Canada

Elegant ambassadors for COPA Aldopho Sen and Fernando Fondevila  

Guests Daniel Morano of Guia Hispana, Christina Garcia of Destinos Latinos, Gonz Moreno of Moreno Travel and Adelino Sales of Latin World Tours

Location, location, location. It’s not just about real estate, it’s about your airline’s headquarters.

For the folks at Panamanian carrier COPA, the fact that their main hub is smack dab between North and South America is a strong selling feature.  A great way to transit between continents (or even explore the charms of Central American countries).  Hmm…where would you rather connect: vast and overwhelming Miami…or Panama City where (oh la la!) an enormous mall of duty-free goodies awaits to help you while away your connecting time?

COPA came to Toronto recently to have a chat with travel industry types and share some interesting facts.  They now serve 44 destinations in 22 countries, with a fleet of Boeing 737s and Embraer 190s. The average fleet age is 4.2 years and they boast an on-time performance of 90 per cent.

And thanks to the long-time American presence in Panama (after all, they engineered the Canal), the country combines North American efficiency with Central American hospitality and culture, Joanne Lundy of Discover the World Marketing informed me.

“Our vision,†said Fernando Fondevila, regional manager for the US, Canada and Mexico, “is to unite Latin American countries from our hub in Panama City.â€

And perhaps even expand way north into Canada. “We’re hoping to announce three times weekly service into Toronto in the next few months, targeting not only travellers connecting within Latin America but the growing number of business travellers flying into Panama.â€

Not to mention those who are itching to visit those famous duty free shops, and hoping for the slight chance of a flight delay on COPA!

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