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Avelo Makes Summer Return to Bozeman Yellowstone International

Boarding Avelo’s first ever commercial flight in Burbank. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Taylor Rains)

On Wednesday, Jun 28, Avelo Airlines made their return to BZN. A flight that I was excited to be on. My experience with the Purple clad airline is limited as I have only flown with them once before, on their airline’s inaugural in April 2021.

As a Bozeman-based writer, my trip started on the return leg from BZN and it was not off to a great start. I received my check-in email about 24 hours before the flight was due to depart and when I attempted to check in I kept getting an error message saying that my reservation was not found. Alarmed, I called Avelo’s customer service number where a prerecorded message says it will cost $20 to make a new reservation or change an existing one. I spoke with an agent named Amy who was incredibly helpful. She told me she would forward the issue to another agent who would hopefully get me checked in. A few hours passed and I was still unable to check myself in, but at about 2 o’clock in the morning, the issue was finally fixed and I could get my boarding passes printed.

A note about customer service: while I had a wonderful experience on the phone, my parents, who traveled on the inbound leg, said they had a pretty miserable experience with phone support. So pre-flight customer experience seems to be a bit hit or miss with Avelo.

Arriving at Bozeman Airport is always a treat for me, it has grown exponentially since I was a little kid flying in and out on my way to my grandparent’s house, today however, BZN is the busiest airport in the state with seven different airlines regularly serving this destination. Avelo’s check-in desk is in between Southwest’s and JetBlue’s with one lane for bag drop and another for full service. I arrived well before the check-in desk was open, so I made my way straight through security. Avelo is operating out of gate B6, probably one of my favorite gates because of its proximity to the best coffee in the airport. At the gate Avelo had a table of Purple, Gold and Black sunglasses laid across a table for those of us traveling on this flight.

Boarding was prompt, likely due to this plane being about half full. My seat for this flight was 6F a window seat, although I did have the entire row to myself. The legroom at 6F was acceptable, but my knees touched the seat in front of me but in such a way that made my trip horribly uncomfortable. The tray tables are large and sturdy, and each row has air vents. The 737-700 we were flying on was showing its age, though, the plastic surrounding the window was quite yellow and the overhead plane looked like something from the early 2000s.

Food and Service

This is where Avelo loses some serious points. There is no food service, not even a buy-on-board option, and even for a low-cost carrier this is well below par. On a nearly three-hour flight, I would expect at least the option to purchase drinks or snacks. The flight attendant did mention at the end of the safety briefing that there is bottled water available on request, but I never saw anyone take them up on the offer. The last time I flew with this airline there were free snack bags provided with the promise of a buy-on-board menu in the future, but two years on that does not seem to have materialized. The service is hard to rate because, frankly there is not a lot for the crew to do, with no service portion of the flight I rarely saw any of the flight attendants during the entire flight.

If you would like to see the video trip report of this article click here: https://youtu.be/cdjGIlrpP4M


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