LATAM Adds Premium Economy On Regional Flights

Filed Under: LATAM

LATAM has been making significant investments in their product lately. For example, the airline is in the process of installing awesome new business class seats throughout their long haul fleet, and they’ve even been doing so at a good pace.

LATAM’s new business class

Well, the airline has now started to install premium economy on their short haul planes, which is another positive development.

LATAM premium economy on regional flights

LATAM will be introducing premium economy on all domestic and international flights within Latin America that are operated by Airbus A320 family aircraft. This includes 240 aircraft, which operate around 1,280 flights per day.


LATAM’s new premium economy

The airline will fully be rolling this out as of March 16, 2020, which is around two months from now.

LATAM doesn’t have business class on A320 family aircraft, so these planes will feature premium economy and economy. Furthermore, in economy there will continue to be the option of purchasing LATAM+ seats, which offer increased legroom and reserved overhead bin space.

LATAM premium economy airport perks

Passengers booked in LATAM premium economy on regional flights will receive the following perks:

  • Priority check-in
  • Baggage allowance from one to three pieces (up to 23 kg each)
  • Priority boarding
  • Priority baggage at luggage claim
  • VIP lounge access in airports where available (Santiago, São Paulo/GRU, Lima, Bogotá, Miami and Buenos Aires) on selected international flights

LATAM premium economy inflight perks

LATAM premium economy will feature the following inflight perks:

  • Seat in the first three rows of the aircraft
  • Middle seat blocked for greater space and privacy
  • Exclusive overhead bin for hand luggage
  • Differentiated onboard service (including complimentary snacks and drinks)


LATAM’s new premium economy

Booking LATAM premium economy

As mentioned above, premium economy will be launching throughout LATAM’s regional network for flights as of March 16, 2020. Seats are already bookable for flights as of that date.

On top of that, the product has already been rolled out as of today on select hub-to-hub routes, outlined below.

From Santiago (Chile) to:

  • São Paulo (GRU)
  • Lima (LIM)
  • Buenos Aires (EZE)

From Lima (Peru) to:

  • São Paulo (GRU)
  • Santiago (SCL)

From São Paulo (Brazil) to:

  • Lima (LIM)
  • Buenos Aires (EZE)
  • Santiago (SCL)

A couple of notes:

  • You’d think a long haul business class ticket with a regional connection would automatically get you premium economy on the shorter flight, though I’m not finding that to be the case yet based on doing some searches on LATAM’s website
  • I’m not seeing any LATAM premium economy awards bookable through partner programs yet

I suspect both of these may be a function of the seats having just been loaded into the system, so I imagine/hope that will change soon.

Bottom line

I’m happy to see LATAM finally introduce a premium product on their massive fleet of A320s. LATAM has an incredible route network throughout South America, and a lot of their flights are quite long.

So while these economy seats with blocked middles and better service are hardly a business class substitute, they make the experience a lot more enjoyable.

I’ve been looking at some trips to South America that involve three hour flights on LATAM A320s, and it seems a lot more pleasant to fly that in premium economy.

Anyone else excited to see LATAM introduce premium economy on regional flights?

Comments
  1. So basically this is the same as intra-Europe business class. I think LATAM deserves (a little bit) of credit for not branding it as business class like the European carriers do

  2. Interesting that LATAM’s proposed Regional Premium Economy is pretty much the standard these days for European Short Hall Business Class.

    I quite like the product naming, seems more “honest” as to what you are getting?

  3. I just flew LATAM in economy 3h domestic in Brazil from Rio to Fortaleza and would have loved this concept. Hope the will make it avalible also on the Brazillian domestic market in the future.

  4. To be honest I don’t see this having much of an effect on the average J traveler. With the exception of GRU-EZE, LA already operates wide-bodies featuring J. And GRU-EZE is also already operated by QR (Suites), a OW partner, albeit not for much longer.

  5. Basically their Premium Economy is Inter-Europe Business Class on many airlines in the Europe. I would wish that there would be Business Class (with proper seats) available on flights in Europe like they are in Middle East, Asia and North America.

  6. This is nothing too new for LATAM. Flew them on my trip to Ecuador last year. Iberia PE ticket to Quito via Lima. Last short haul part way with LATAM. The product is as described. It is basically just Euro business class. I found the service better then many short-haul euro J flights.

  7. Did 9 LATAM flights over the last 3 weeks. This Premium Economy would have been nice for the 3+ hours flights.

    Overall experience excellent: clean (Airbus) planes, friendly staff, all flights on time or even earlier.
    Most impressive the boarding process. Very disciplined, group by group, and strictly enforced. And no people trying to bring too much luggage into the cabin.
    Boarding was fast on all flights.

  8. Not the most exciting announcement since I’ve flown LATAM premium economy on multiple regional flights in the last two years, many of which were on A320s. I guess the news is that they will be introducing it on all A320 flights, while they only have it on some flights now.

  9. I would appropriate if there would be proper Business Class on Lufthansa flights to south Europe and Middle East (like AMM, ATH, LIS, CAI). They could operate A320/321 with lower Y seats (like 135) and rest J (24 seats). This would be appreciated by passengers not to be flown with A319 and A320s.

  10. So this is basically intra Europe Business Class but the sad reality is that while LATAM names it as Premium Economy product, European airlines still brand it as a Business Class top notch product. (I’m looking specially at you 5-Starhansa)

  11. @lucky: seats in PE are available using BA Avios. Search GRU-EZE and you should find them for 12,500 miles + $60.

  12. Flown the product from GRU to EZE using an bidding upgrade of about USD 35 in late october 2019. Lounge access, priority check in, good food (albeit cold), but Group 4 boarding which meant I didn’t have space on the overhead bins due to crew and other customers there.
    Friendly crew.
    I would not recommend row 1 due to bulkhead. Not a long space to stretch your legs.

  13. I’m confused – I flew EZE to Santiago earlier this month and sat in this exact product on an A321. I really liked it, and like LATAM much better than Aerolineas Argentinas.

  14. Also, Lucky – I sat in the Premium Economy as part of an AA-booked international business class ticket, and it was automatic. Not sure how leaving One World will change things.

  15. This is more of a product relaunch because Latam (even before the merger) has been offering premium economy in South American routes for several years now.

  16. Ha, in the top photo, it’s interesting/funny the female seated by the window is brightly illuminated and practically glows, almost with an angelic quality. Ditto, to a lesser extent, for the female in the bottom photo. The guys, OTOH, are just average Joes.

  17. This is an effort by LATAM to streamline the experience. Previously some A320’s (ex TAM Brazil) offered proper business class recliner seats, and all of LAN A320’s offered all economy seating with blocked middle seats sold as Premium Economy. After the merger they were trying to reconfigure all A320’s with the ex LAN layout. I see this as a move to offer at least a consistent experience in all of Latam subsidiaries. Is sad nevertheless, because Tam Brazil used to offer a far superior experience than Lan in regional and long haul flights as well.

  18. Well, it‘s just another turn in their strategy. For many years LA (not necessarily JJ) has had this product on their international short- and medium haul sectors operated with A319 and A320. Then, they purchased the A321 … and discontinued this tradition. The A321 was all Economy. Don’t ask me why, because the concept with middle seat blocking and a curtain could easily have been implemented on the A321, as well. To make things worse, you got downgraded if a 319/320 service got operated by a 321 … and to add insult to injury, all W pax got reseated in the last three rows (36 to 38) of their very dense 220 seater version … As a compensation they only offered a USD 100 voucher … This was perceived by many as a sign that the days of W were counted.

    So now, they apparently turn the other way around, introducing W on all flights operated by A319/320/321 …

  19. Interesting.

    Last Saturday, I “won” an auction for a Y to Y+ upgrade on AR from AEP to Ushuaia.

    I was most impressed. Their Y+ was 2-2 on either a 737 or A320 and very comfortable. They could have easily marketed it as domestic business.

  20. The national and regional flights operated with airbus have all economy seats. They will just block middle seat.
    Will be similar to intra European business class. And they will charge you a lot of money for a awful service.

    This a a scam and a theft

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