I'm looking to fly to Quito end of May from the UK with expensive equipment (Digital camera, laptop, GPS etc). Does anyone have experience of flying with Avianca? I've found a flight from Madrid for £330, so i was thinking i could buy a cheap flight with Easyjet or similar for £50 UK-Madrid. I know two-ticketing means leaving loads of time between flights to make sure i get the connection. The flight also has an overnight stop in Bogota... Are Avianca reliable re delays and luggage security? I have heard some bad stories, so i'm not sure if its worth the risk... but flights ex UK are normally £550 and i'm time rather than money rich!
take the most valuable equipment as a hand luggage - you can always explain that those items can be easily damaged
As Massageuk says, definately take as much expensive equipment as hand luggage as at least you know you have it on you and your insurance should cover all your belongings anyway if you have anything damaged stolen.
I am sorry but i know little about reputable airline firms so I cannot comment. If you are time rich however then why not save money and get Easyjet to Madrid and the flight from Madrid? I would! You say its an overnight stop off in Bogota. Although I know so many people that have travelled through Columbia and had no problems, if you have to stay outside the airport be careful, especially being an obvious backpacker and carrying such expensive specialist equipment that may be invaluable or hard to replace.