American Airlines Admirals Club New York JFK
LAN Business Class: New York to Lima
LAN Economy Class: Lima to Cusco
LAN Economy Class: Cusco to Lima
Radisson Decapolis Miraflores
SUMAQ Lounge Lima
LAN Business Class Lima to Easter Island
LAN Business Class: Easter Island to Santiago
LAN Neruda Lounge Santiago
LAN Business Class: Santiago to Lima
LAN Business Class: Lima to New York
Yotel New York City
American Airlines Transcontinental Business Class: New York to Los Angeles
While I was able to use the Preferente line, all passengers ended up having to wait in a long line for a second security check.
Santiago (SCL) – Lima (LIM)
Tuesday February 21, 2012
Aircraft: Boeing 767-300ER
Seat: 2A (Premium Business – Window)
I picked up my Duty Free and boarded the plane, taking seat 2A, the same seat I had on the JFK-LIM sector. I really think Row 2 is the best row on LAN’s 767 in business — you are one of the first to be served, since service is always front to back. Row 1 is not available until the airport, but if you are on the left side, you’ll be close to a lavatory. Plus I prefer having the storage area in the back of the seat in front of me (unavailable in the bulkhead), especially since the seats are fixed back. I’m a big fan of window seats, and wanted one that faced the sunset. Also, while online check-in had shown the new 3-row business class configuration, it was a full 5-row configuration aircraft for this flight, with only 3 seats empty.
Pisco Sour was not an option for a pre-boarding beverage on this flight, which seemed odd since it was SCL-LIM. Shame. I ended up going with the champers instead. My flight attendant decided to address me in Spanish, and I played along the entire flight, despite having my U.S. passport clearly out on the cocktail table during our first interaction.
Boarding was still going on at 8:50pm, and I had a feeling we’d be late. However, the LAN boarding system works, and we pushed back right on schedule at 8:55pm. Due to winds, we took off toward the south and made a right-handed u-turn back north toward Lima, flying over Valparaiso and Viña del Mar on the Chilean coast. Our flight time was estimated at 3h20m.
After takeoff, I tried to turn on the in-flight entertainment, but to my disappointment, none of the movies, TV shows, or audio showed up. Just at that moment, the in-flight service manager introduced herself, addressing me in Spanish. I let out a “yeah” instead of “sí,” and she asked, “hablas ingles?” Figuring that this would be the person to report my IFE troubles to, I responded, “yes,” and explained the IFE situation.
She went off to reset it and told me to wait 5 minutes. I did just that, and 5 minutes later, the same problem occurred. I could see the center pax in 2H/D watching movies on their IFE, so it wasn’t a systemwide problem, just for myself (and I found out later, for 2C as well). The system was reboot for the entire plane some few moments later, but it still did not work for me then.
After a quick hot-towel service, we were asked options for dinner. Here’s the menu, with my choices pictured (the wine menu was the same, and I have abbreviated the sommelier’s suggestions for each dish. The full wine list is on my first LAN TR, LAN 531 JFK-LIM):
Salad greens with seasonal vegetables
Smoked salmon and sour cream
Master Sommelier suggestion: Torrontés 2011
Pumpkin soup with toasted almonds
Grilled filet of beef with vegetable coulis and sautéed asparagus, onion and mushrooms
Master Sommelier suggestion: Syrah 2008
Mozzarella ravioli with tomato and olive sauce
Master Sommelier suggestion: Malbec 2007
Prosciutto salad with cottage cheese, olives, sun dried tomatoes, arugula and assorted lettuce
Master Sommelier suggestion: Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Special cheese selection
Häagen Dazs ice cream
Fresh seasonal fruit
Cherimoya and dulce de leche torte
Choose this alternative if you want more time to rest
-Select one of the options of appetizers and main entrées
-Select your dessert
(There was more to the menu, but it was more relevant for the next sector, LIM-JFK, with the same flight number)
The pumpkin soup was very … pumpkiny. Good, but pumpkin. I don’t know what I was expecting. The ravioli was delicious, as was the torte.
After dinner, I was somewhat curious about how a through-flight like this would work (SCL to JFK, via LIM). As I said before, I flew the reverse route (LAN 531) to start, but got off in LIM. It seemed like that same aircraft was going on to SCL. I went to an FA and showed my 2 BPs, both for LAN 530, but for each leg, and asked, “does this aircraft go on toward NYC?” I was told, “no, you must deplane at Lima.”
If there’s one thing about airlines that really peeves me, it’s booking a flight with the same flight number that requires aircraft changes. If I have to change planes, the airline has to change flight numbers.
After some quick shut-eye, I woke up during preparations for landing, at around 10:10pm Lima time. We flew past Lima to the west and made another right-handed U-turn, landing toward the South. It seemed like we were going to taxi for a while, until I realized that we were going to be parking at a remote stand. So not only were we going to have to switch aircraft, we’d have to take a bus.
When the seat belt sign turned off, I noticed that several in business, as well as many in coach, did not stand up. It wasn’t until the purser mentioned that “passengers continuing on to New York or Easter Island must leave the aircraft with all baggage” before everyone stood up. (Also, talk about 2 completely different destinations in that sentence. When I arrived in New York and met up with a friend, he mentioned, “You just went from the middle of nowhere to the center of everywhere.”)
I got on the bus to the terminal and walked briskly toward international connections. I went through another security check, this time with duty-free liquids, but was let through with just a simple search, needing only to remove things from my pockets and my belt. After walking upstairs, I found myself near the SUMAQ lounge. Despite my prior experience, I went inside, explaining to the desk agent that I didn’t have an invitation because I was connecting from Santiago, but that my BP clearly said LAN Business class. One last use of the orange juicer, as well as some email sending from the business center, and I was out within 10 minutes to go to Gate 20, for the continuation flight to JFK.