Monday, June 2, 2008
We are home from Sacramento. The flights back were very full. So full in fact that I made a back up plan of flying from Sacramento to Los Angeles on Southwest airlines and then hopping on American back to Dallas. I fly free on Southwest while I have to pay a very small fee for Kelli to fly on them. I can buy standby passes on most other US Airlines for Kelli and Myself although if I am in uniform I can normally get by free. Our flight left at 6AM. I can check in 4 hours prior. I set my alarm for 1:58AM, woke up and checked in and put Kelli and I number one and two on the list. I had to use 2 of our 4 "high priority" passes that we get per year to gaurantee we got home on time. We got to the airport on time (thanks Jami!), breezed thru security (although some couple had a bunch of liquids and hair gels DOH!) and heard that the flight was full and that everyone on the standby list was going to have to wait. I checked and saw one open coach seat...that's it. Everyone on standby was in pairs...but I was the only pilot. Sure enough the agent called our names. I had the jumpseat in the cockpit while Kelli had the last coach seat. Good thing about the jumpseat....it's totally free. That's all that's good about it. The jumpseat is a thinly padded chair high off the ground so my feet would dangle if not for footrest. The American Airlines crew was nice. Three and a half hours later we landed in Dallas. It was a good experience at least learning how easy it is for us to fly on other airlines. Southwest is a breeze to list on (listing is putting our names on the standby list). The automated phone number for listing even gives odds of getting on the flight! Sweet! I might purchase a few ZED (Zonal Employee Discount) passes to put in my back pocket "just in case." They are fully refundable for up to a year.