Something a little different, as it is summer…
The peninsula of Cape Cod and the islands of the New England have long been a popular summer destination for locals and visitors. You can of course get there by a combination of road and ferry. But if you prefer to avoid the hordes and enjoy a more exclusive experience, you can fly on one of the US’s smaller regional airlines, Cape Air.
We’ve taken a few flights on Cape Air over the past couple of years. It’s a quite different experience to what you may be accustomed to flying the Airbus A320 workhorses of short-haul travel in Europe where, if we’re honest, there are few reliable pleasures.
Cape Air has been flying for nearly 30 years.
Cape Air’s principal hub is in Boston where it serves destinations such as Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket and Provincetown, Cape Cod. Some are seasonal services. Others operate year-round. It also operates a small number of routes from White Plains, Westchester County, New York.
The vast majority of flights are operated with Cessna 402 Turboprop aircraft, with seating for just nine passengers.
You can book flights direct at Cape Air.
Cape Air does also have interline agreements with a number of US domestic airlines, including American Airlines, Delta and United, but not any international airlines. If you wish to book a connection at Boston, you can do at these airline websites. We have taken a flight from Provincetown to New York JFK via a connection at Boston with a change of terminal to American Airlines and it all worked well with no problems. Unlike many airlines, you do receive a complimentary checked luggage allowance of one bag.
There’s no online check-in for Cape Air. Nor are there any seating assignments. At the airport, as there are so few passengers on the flight, you are asked to provide your weight. Of course, being the US, this will be in lbs.
At Boston Logan International, Cape Air operates from Terminal C and all flights leave a designated gate, C27. As there is no space in the cabin at all for any carry-on luggage, these are all checked in before boarding the aircraft.
Cape Air is not for the nervous flyer!
There is a just one pilot and there are no cabin crew. If anything happens to the pilot mid-flight, it’s over to you! (Someone more mathematically minded could compare the probability of one pilot falling ill on a 30 minute flight to all 3 pilots falling ill on a 11+ hour flight..) More seriously, you are flying over water and in the highly unlikely event of an emergency assistance would be available very quickly.
Obviously, there’s no in-flight service as such. But you don’t need it on this flight. The views are glorious.
Arrival is pretty much as quick and painless as it could be. Your luggage awaits you “in the porch” and off you go! Check-in and boarding on the return is equally relaxed. So, if it fits your travel plans, it’s certainly worth giving Cape Air a go.
Here’s a hyperlapse film we made of one flight from Boston to Provincetown: