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Delta flights between military airports

Delta flights between military airports

Old Apr 17, 19, 4:16 pm
  #1  
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Delta flights between military airports

I have a friend on DL169 from NRT - SIN today (flightaware) and I was looking at the flight history of that plane. It looks like before arriving in Tokyo, it flew as:
DL 8824 from IWK - NRT
DL 8958 from CRK - IWK
and flew on that route a number of other times operating as various flight numbers.

Does anybody know what's up with that? Is it a contracted service for the government (I'm guessing so), and if so, is there a list of all such routes?
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Old Apr 17, 19, 4:19 pm
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military charters make up a lot of DL's business ... the routes are obviously situation-dependent, but a few years ago someone posted a list of flight number series (the only one I can cite from memory is DL8952 which they use for all Washington Capitals hockey team charter flights)
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Old Apr 17, 19, 4:46 pm
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Here's a list I have from a few years ago, so I don't know how accurate it is today, but I'm guessing it's all the same:

DL 8820-8824 International Military Ferry Charters
DL 8825-8829 Domestic Military Ferry Charters
DL 8830-8834 NCAA Ferry Charters
DL 8835-8839 MLB Ferry Charters
DL 8840-8849 NBA Ferry Charters
DL 8850-8854 Other/Ad Hoc Ferry Charters
DL 8855-8859 NFL Ferry Charters
DL 8860-8881 NFL Live Charters
DL 8882-8896 MLB Live Charters
DL 8897-8931 NCAA Live Charters
DL 8932-8955 NBS Live Charters
DL 8956-8961 International Military Live Charters
DL 8962-8966 Domestic Military Live Charters
DL 8967-8969 Other/Ad Hoc Live Charters.
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Old Apr 17, 19, 5:26 pm
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Thanks for that post @audidudi! This also answers why I happened to spy a JFK-GRQ flight on the board at JFK when I arrived last Friday. I was very confused why "Groningen" was showing up on the flight board as DL8821, but I guess it must have been a military charter for some reason. It looks like that flight number has been used more recently for NRT-IWK and OSN-NRT as well.
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Old Apr 18, 19, 12:59 am
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Does anybody know how these (or other charters) operate in general? As in, who crews the plane - Delta or the military? And do the other airlines do this?

I never knew about this, but it sure is fascinating...
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Old Apr 18, 19, 2:23 am
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Originally Posted by rill2503456 View Post
Does anybody know how these (or other charters) operate in general? As in, who crews the plane - Delta or the military? And do the other airlines do this?

I never knew about this, but it sure is fascinating...
Delta (or whatever carrier) crews the plane. Other airlines do this also if I recall correctly any carrier that is part of the CRAF (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civil_Reserve_Air_Fleet) is expected to actually fly some routes with some degree of regularity. The DOD (specifically AMC) solicits bids for the routes.
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Old Apr 18, 19, 5:01 am
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This is petty, but for the sports teams...who generally sits in 1st?
Coaches, the best players or the biggest players?
I'm sure every team has its own rules, but I’ve always wondered about that..
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Old Apr 18, 19, 5:27 am
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
This is petty, but for the sports teams...who generally sits in 1st?
Coaches, the best players or the biggest players?
I'm sure every team has its own rules, but I’ve always wondered about that..
They re-configure these planes for sports teams, they put a lot more 1st seats in with up to 60" of pitch:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...air-adds-teams
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Old Apr 18, 19, 6:26 am
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Originally Posted by rill2503456 View Post
Does anybody know how these (or other charters) operate in general? As in, who crews the plane - Delta or the military?
As any Delta pilot or any official of the Delta Master Executive Council of the Air Line Pilots Association will tell you, only Delta pilots fly Delta jets. Period. Yes, it's a contract item.
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Old Apr 18, 19, 6:28 am
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
This is petty, but for the sports teams...who generally sits in 1st?
Many of the top players have a clause in their contract that they get first class seats.
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Old Apr 18, 19, 7:19 am
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Originally Posted by rill2503456 View Post
Does anybody know how these (or other charters) operate in general? As in, who crews the plane - Delta or the military? And do the other airlines do this?

I never knew about this, but it sure is fascinating...
The charters are just that...charters. It's not a dry/wet lease of the plane to the military. The government is just contracting with Delta to move people from A to B. All the flights are operated under the Delta callsign, Delta crew, etc.

No different for the Military than sports team or other private charters.

Heck, if you wanted to charter an A350 yourself, you can, for the right price. Sadly it will earn no MQMs/MQSs/MQDs.

The remaining question is, on the Military charters, are the passengers' weapons secured in the hold? Or how does security work? If they have to meet 91K or standard 121/TSA regs, then I'd assume it's operated like any other flight. If not, the plane would have to be security sanitized post-flight.
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Old Apr 18, 19, 8:38 am
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Originally Posted by bloc0102 View Post
They re-configure these planes for sports teams, they put a lot more 1st seats in with up to 60" of pitch:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...air-adds-teams
They used to display this config on the web site too, but it seems to be gone.

Most recent version I can find in the Internet Archive is from the end of 2016:

https://web.archive.org/web/20161115...7-200-75c.html
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Old Apr 18, 19, 9:09 am
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
This is petty, but for the sports teams...who generally sits in 1st?
Coaches, the best players or the biggest players?
I'm sure every team has its own rules, but I’ve always wondered about that..
the time I flew on “Seahawk One” N297AS (~1990), the F seats had small brass plaques with the coaches’ names, and the window and aisle Y seats had small brass plaques with the players’ names ... I was in 6A (bulkhead window) with Dave Brown’s name on the seat; iirc he was a defensive back and one of the captains
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Old Apr 18, 19, 9:14 am
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Originally Posted by joeyE View Post
This is petty, but for the sports teams...who generally sits in 1st?
Coaches, the best players or the biggest players?
I'm sure every team has its own rules, but I’ve always wondered about that..
Whoever pays for the rental of the plane gets to decide who sits where. It varies by organization..
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Old Apr 18, 19, 10:48 am
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When my family had to PCS back to the United States from Japan, we flew a DL charter OKO-SEA. I recall OKO and DNA having a lot of charter flights. IWK has become a much larger operation recently with the Navy moving their carrier air wings there from NJA, so they'll probably get a lot more of these flights going forward.
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