Panama City TocumenTocumen, Panama City
Inbound and outbound flights at Tocumen International Airport (PTY)
I flew six hours from Boston Logan to Tocumen to Panama City, the main city of Panama. From 20° meteorological and snows in Boston to a marvellous 90 in the warm, sunshine and beauty of Panama City. The Tocumen Internacional and Copa Airports is a major centre for Copa and several other intercontinental carriers also operate to and from this location.
Panama has one of the few airfields in the area with two airstrips serving some of the biggest airliners. Almost 9 million travellers travelled through Tocumen International in 2014, more than 6 million more than in 2003. The Tocumen International was opened on June 1, 1947.
In 1971, the air traffic control system and the air field were considered too small and development projects were drawn up. In order for the extension to take place, the Tocumen River embankment, among other things, had to be diverted from its initial location. Completion of the first two stages of development is scheduled for 2017, with a further 20 gateways, more car parks and a brand-new 2 end of phase.
Tocumen will be home to one of the longest non-stop services in the overhaul. Emirates in August 2015 unveiled a 266-seat Boeing 777-200LR from Dubai to Panama City. After leaving the aircraft, you must go through INS before leaving the aircraft.
With only one single kiosk at the international airports, orientation is simple. In a few moments I discovered the immigrant plaque, where you can take either the staircase or the lift to the lower floor. INS has three lines: The inhabitants come to the furthest street on the lefthand side, where they can quickly drive through the INS.
Aircrew members take to the outside lanes for help with immigration to get through immigration quickly. Please have your immigration registration and declaration forms with you. Once they have checked your ID card, take a photo of you and place your finger on the paper so that they can use your fingerprint before you leave the immigration office.
As soon as you have completed your migration, you only need to take a few more footsteps to be in the luggage area. You can see that the airfield is being renovated so that some areas look flawless, like here, while others are equipped with tarpaulins and half-painted partitions. After we had gone through the INS and the luggage reclaim, we could now get out of the airfield, but not so quickly, especially since I lay behind these two ladies, each with several pockets.
We were now prepared to depart from the airfield, but we first had to arrange transport to the hospital. Cuddling up to the front window of the airfield to get away from the crowd in quest of some private space while trying to link the web via the aerodrome WiFi.
The majority of the passengers were either collected, driven their own vehicles to the airfield or took a cab. I was able to coordinate our trip through Uber within a few moments and we were soon on our way to Panama City. Even though I had already booked in with Copa Airlines for my plane back, we had to pick up our tickets at the Aiport.
We went into a queue from there to go through safety. You will then go to the uniformed guard behind a platform, who will check your passport again before you can go through the checkpoint. In the end we walked through the airfield after we had gone through the safety precautions and checked the many shops inside the area.
As I was on my way to the Copa Lounge, I came across a chapel in the centre of the area. It is a 100% true parish and a great place for those who want to come to a peaceful place in the midst of a bustling international airpor.
The Copa Lounges, Copa Airlines' commercial lounges, were chosen instead of the churches. You will find the lounging area near door 21, but more towards the inner hallway instead of near the window at the passage. It is a large commercial area with important shower and toilet facilities, but also a home area, a film projection room with comfortable cinema seats, a pub (free beverages - just give a tip) and a small dining area.
Most of the lounges have been used by dormant travellers. There was not enough space for the loungers to get around as much as I would have liked, because the place was quite filthy with dishes, mugs, and meals that were omitted most of the while.
But the Copa Lounge wasn't a failure, because I could recharge my mobile and use the WiFi and Mr TSG was enjoying a cold drink and a fresh cheesebagel before the game. Approximately 30 mins. before getting on board for our plane we left the Copa Lounge and made our way to gates 4.
When we got there, the Stargate operative had already begun the initial boarding procedure, so we actually were on board. In order to get into the aircraft, you have to go through a second safety check to the door, where you have to put your pockets, boots etc. through the X-ray unit.
Did you ever fly in or out of Panama City at Tocumen International Airport?