I love XKCD and I came across this comic long ago:
Turns out you can actually get a commercial flight where the co-pilot seat is an option for passengers. On some Cape Air flights the seat next to the pilot is open for passenger use (Video Here). This of course does not give you legal control of the plane like in the comic.
I was looking at a flight from ORD to DEC and was suprised to see that Air Choice One no longer services that route. They had lost the EAS route to Cape Air. Of course the big wigs at ADM wanted SkyWest with their CRJ-200 jet planes, but let’s face it that was not going to happen for awhile. For General Aviation Plane geeks like myself, I was happy to see a change to another company.
Cape Air has an even smaller plane than the Cessna Caravan that I took last time. The Cessna 402c has two piston engines, and because of it’s tiny size there is no requirement for cockpit doors or even any restriction of needing more than one pilot. On top of being able to fly in row 1 seat B next to the pilot, I was able to book this adventure for 1.5 cents per US Bank Altitude Card Points! I just went to their portal and found the flight for 3,933 points. The flight is normally $59:
The booking engine then uses Hahn Air of Germany to book the flight at 1.5 cents per point:
Now I earned the points by getting 3 points for every Apple Pay transaction I ever made. For this flight, the 3,933 points came from $1,311 in Apple Pay spend. Now if you get the card it comes with 50,000 points and they have been good at waiving the $400 annual fee for military. I get noting for the referral, but you must have an existing relationship with US Bank to get the card. I outlined my experience here in my first month of use.
I will let you know how it is from the flight deck!