There were only a very few days left until my flight back to Europe so I decided to join Donna and take a flight as well. Two airlines have flights from Barranquilla to Bogotá, Avianca and Aires. We found a better deal with Avianca so we booked a flight with them. It was an evening flight with the departure from Barranquilla at 17:31 and arrival to Bogotá at 19:01 and it was COP 189.100. I booked it almost a month in advance. I tried to book it online but had some difficulties. So I went to the Avianca office in Popayán and bought the ticket there.
At Bogotá's airport Donna's father was waiting for us with the car. Though not on the direction to their home, he kindly offered to drive me to Candelaria. We were stuck in a traffic jam so it took us quite a while to get there. With all my luggage, I was really glad to be delivered right to the door of Platypus hostel where I was staying.
You're likely to arrive in Bogota by air (it's not too safe to drive around Colombia great distances) at El Dorado International Airport, which is on the western edge of the city around 30 minutes from the northern part of the city where most visitors will stay. When you leave the country, there is a departure tax as well that must be paid in cash.
To get into town, I recommend taking a taxi and buying your ticket from the official taxi stand just outside the main entrance of the airport and to the right. A ride into downtown cost me about 10 USD (paid in Colombian Pesos, of course).
The national airline is Avianca and it's been flying as such since 1919, making it the second oldest airline in the world behind KLM. The main operations are held out of El Dorado, so making travel arrangements from here is easy, but there are many tour operators in the city if you prefer to do it there.
I arrived in Bogota on American Airlines, but flew Avianca to Quito, Ecuador.
While the air travel experience as a rule has deteriorated over the years with most carriers offering less and less, South American carriers never cease to amaze me in their ability to provide more than those from the US. On my three separate trips to South America I used a different SA carrier and was very happy with choice each time. With Colombia, I went with national carrier Avianca. It was the cheapest direct flight I could find anyway and with a convenient departure right from my hometown airport of Ft. Lauderdale, a no brainer. The 3.5 hour flight to Bogota cost $430 and about the only complaint I could make would be it brought us into the Colombian capitol at night when a morning arrival would have been more desirable. The seats were comfortable and more spacious than their US counterparts, the entertainment system free, and the food tasty. The stewardesses were very nice too. This round trip flight included an extra flight from Pasto in the far south of Colombia back to Bogota as well which saved us about 36 hours on a bus.
Arriving at El Dorado International Airport in Bogota was very pleasant and not confusing. About the only difficult part was finding an ATM which I sorted out quickly enough to be oddly in the departures area! There is a taxi counter where they give you the agreed upon fair to your destination, making getting ripped off nearly impossible.
Bogota airport (officially named El Dorado) has 2 terminals, one called El Dorado (Int. + domestic), the other Puente Aereo. The latter is Avianca-domestic only and almost all (but not all) AV-domestic departures/arrivals are handled here. Check. See also the Avianca website. All other domestic airlines use the main terminal (El Dorado, domestic part).
Check my Colombia travel page, transportation by airplane, for latest info. Updated January 2010.
El Dorado is Colombia's main international airport and if you are flying into the country, chances are, this is where you will land. Ther are direct flights to several European, Canadian and United States destinations, as well as direct flights to other Central & South American coutnries.
El Dorado is a modern well run airport (from my experience anyways). It has all the usual facilities an airport is expected to have, such as duty free stuff, restaurants, cafes and money changers & ATM's.
To get to the airport from downtown, catch a colectivo labelled 'Aeropuerto', in the opposite direction catch one labelled 'Germania'. Alternately a taxi to/from downtown should not be more than about 16,000-18,000pesos. The airport runs a service where you go tell them your destination, and they will give you a printout of the price you should pay. You then hand this printout to a taxi and it will take you there, in this way, you do not get ripped off.
The best way to get to Bogotá is by plane...no matter from where you are coming.
Airlines serving El Dorado International Airport are:
-Avianca and ACES (Colombia) -
-Aerolineas Argentinas (Argentina) -
-Aeropostal (Venezuela) -
-Air France (France) -
-Alitalia (Italy) -
-American Airlines (USA) -
-Aserca (Venezuela) -
-British Airways (UK) -
-Continental Airlines (USA) -
-Copa (Panama) -
-Iberia (Spain) -
-Lufthansa (Germany) -
-Varig (Brasil) -
Even from other cities in Colombia you should take the plane to avoid the hazardous roads.
Colombia has several airlines like Avianca, ACES, Aerorepública,...
Avianca, ACES and Sam just founded an alliance called Summa!
Bogota, has an international airport called EL DORADO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT. Go to my Colombia page to see the airlines serving Colombia (national and international). There are two terminals: El Dorado and Avianca Terminal. All the international flight are in El Dorado and Avianca terminal is only for national flight of Avianca.
Also Bogota is conected to the main roads which are in very good shaped.
There are at least three flights between Caracas and Bogota and they are mostly operated by Avianca, the colombian airlines. Flights are a little less frequent to Quito, the Ecuadorian capital.
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