Other posts about the South American exploration:

American Airlines 777-200 First Class – Santiago, Chile (SCL) to Miami, FL (MIA)

Nao Victoria Museo, Estrecho de Magallanes, Chile – Pictorial Trip Report – And New Thoughts on Who Was the First Person to Sail Around the World

Hotel Review – La Yegua Loca, Punta Arenas, Chile

I  was extremely disappointed to be on this flight.  That is because my intended routing was from New York, NY (JFK) to LIM in business class on a new LATAM 787- 9.

This was the start of my long awaited journey to Cuzco, Peru, Machu Picchu , the Sacred Valley, Punta Arenas, Chile and Patagonia and it was off to a bad start.  While waiting at the Admirals Club in Charlotte, NC (CLT), I watched the departure time for my flight to JFK become more and more delayed. The four-hour layover in JFK was looking shaky.  I went to the Admirals Club reps for help.

After a lot of searching and some phone calls the agent booked me in coach from CLT to MIA and in business class from MIA to LIM but on a LATAM 767-300.

I had a coach exit row seat on this erstwhile USAir A321 to MIA

No LATAM 787-9 and coach to MIA on my business class award ticket – %&*#@!  All the work to get that flight was down the drain.

LATAM Salon VIP Lounge

At MIA, after a long hike from my arrival gate on Concourse D to the departure gate on Concourse J, I had time to cool my jets for a couple of hours in the LATAM Salon VIP lounge

The LATAM lounge is located above the concourse level near gate J5.

This is a very comfortable lounge with plenty of seating, decent food and beverages, showers and good WiFi.

LATAM lounge MIA
A better than average selection of food and beverages

Boarding LATAM Flight 2511

Boarding for the flight to LIM was at gate J12.

Boarding at gate J12. Concourse J is the newest concourse at MIA

LATAM Flight 2511 to LIM was my first flight on LATAM Airlines, the entity formed in 2012 by the merger of Chile’s LAN Airlines and Brazil’s TAM Airlines.  Rebranding of the aircraft only began in 2016 and is expected to be complete in 2019.  The 767-300 I was flying was sporting the LAN livery.

LATAM 767-300 at LIM wearing LAN colors

Business Class Cabin and Seat

Business class seating on LATAM 767-300s is configured 2-2-2.  I was assigned seat 1J, an aisle seat in the first row by the windows on the right side of the aircraft.  There were 28 business-class seats on the 767-300.  Each seat comes with 74 inches of pitch and 20 inches of width.

Seat 1J a bulkhead seat in the first row of business class


Amenities on this flight were sparse.  No amenity kit, slippers or pjs, just headphones and a nice blanket and pillow.  In contrast, later on a shorter LATAM 787-8 flight from LIM to Santiago, Chile (SCL), LATAM supplied a plethora of amenities.

Noise-cancelling headphones

The business-class lavatory was basic but there were more amenities than in first class on the American Airlines 777-200 I later flew from Santiago to Miami.img_1365

The flight was slated to take five hours and 12 minutes to cover 2625 miles between MIA and LIM.


Flight attendants offered pre-departure beverages.  Just after takeoff, they returned with another beverage service.img_1360

Then most passengers reclined the seat to full flat position and slept.

Route of flight was over Cuba, the Caribbean Sea, the Isthmus of Panama, the Pacific Ocean and into LIM

Breakfast was served about 90 minutes before landing.

Breakfast on flight 2511 – quiche, salad and cheesecake

The good news of the fiasco of missing ride on the 787-9 was that at least I still made the connecting flight from LIM to Cuzco.

Final Thoughts

When travel plans are disrupted, face-to-face assistance from an experienced agent becomes one of the most valuable benefits of having access to an airline lounge.  On a day with major travel issues, it can be worth purchasing a day pass to the lounge of your airline or airline alliance just for this assistance, avoiding the jammed phone lines, and having a comfortable place to sit out what might be a long delay.