Private plane experience for only $29? Yes!

Old Sep 2, 17, 3:06 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: STL
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Private plane experience with smaller airline charters

Okay, I know the above headline is clickbait...but it can be true if you fly from STL to Jackson, TN....but read on....

I live near the STL airport and was trying to find a way to get to Rochester, MN (Mayo Clinic) without having to drive about 7-8hrs. I was set to fly from STL to MSP but I had a miserable experience the last few times...I hate that airport, the traffic, the lines, and then having to take a 1hr goShuttle from MSP to Rochester. I could fly into RST airport (Rochester) from STL but that can be more expensive and it takes about 4-5hrs thanks to layovers. At that point, I may as well drive the 7hrs!

I say all of that because I found a great hidden gem that gives you a "private plane" experience for around $50+. It looks like the government has been subsidizing some small airline charters to fly into small airports under the Essential Air Service program . I got the list from that site and then looked them up...Google Flights had their airlines listed sporadically and the information was incorrect. So, I went to the airline's website (in my example, Air Choice One at www.airchoiceone.com) and discovered that Google Flights was not reliable in listing the availability and times for Air Choice One. I snagged a ticket for only $70 to get from STL to Mason City, IA, where I would rent a car and drive to Rochester for another hour for another $70 (dang 1 way drop fee) . Still pretty cheap considering I get to avoid the cattle carrier airlines (AA, SW, etc) and get to my destination faster.

Air Choice One only has a handful of stops around the MidWest (Chicago, Iowa, Michigan, TN, AR) but the flights can be mostly empty. Many online reviews mention that people flew alone in a luxurious cabin with ample legroom and more (check out the Cessna Grand Caravan EX) . If you don't mind a prop plane (better scenery since you're at lower altitude) , give it a whirl!

So this got me asking....anyone know of any other smaller airlines that make short stops around the country?
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Last edited by doss1; Sep 2, 17 at 3:14 pm
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Old Sep 2, 17, 4:16 pm
  #2  
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Join Date: Jun 2006
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great details re airline and its routes, thanks for posting!

would be good to have thread tracking this & similar services
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/other...terminals.html
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