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Patriot Express Questions (military)

mchris3217

New member
My family and I are moving to Germany as part of a military move. For any pilots, flight attendants, or any military members that have used the Patriot Express chartered flights to Germany, I have few questions. I am moving to Germany in September and from my understanding, I will have the option of using Patriot Express to fly my family over the Atlantic. We have 2 small children and my son who is 2 will not wear a mask at this time. As you may guess, we are a little nervous about how the kids will do on the long flight over. I am leaning toward using the Patriot Express because I feel that other passengers will be a little more understanding if my son happens to act up, as well as the plane possibly being a little less crowded. For those pilots, flight attendants, or military members who may have happened to work to use this service, what can I expect as far as the amenities, and rules with masks for children ages 2-5? For the big question, will be able to safely ship our dog on the same flight? Thank you for your responses.

Chris
 

Rochopn

New member
Chris,
It sounds like you are worried for no reason. The flight is chartered or contracted so it's like being on a normal flight. They serve drinks, snacks and meals as they would on a civilian flight. Best part is they usually land right on the base. At least in the AF they do when possible. I cant speak for the mask issue. I never had to deal with it, and you are correct that people will understand a little more with little kids. You will not be the only ones. Just have plenty of stuff for them to do. They probably wont fall asleep until you are about to land. That's what my daughter did to us everytime.
 

Xtasy

New member
Hi,

I used to be a Loadmaster for Atlas Air doing a lot of those flights. As you are moving to Germany you will go BWI-RMS. While I can't explain you all the ins and out of the patriot flight process within the military, I can give you a little bit insight on how it is done in terms of the airline.

Those flights are usually done on Boeing 747-400 passenger airplanes. You have around 474 seats on board but usually only around 300 are used give or take. Obviously it all comes down to the military as they are the customer and decide how things are done.

BWI has a AMC terminal where you and your family will go through. Usually on the patriot express is a wild mix of regular people just traveling on their free time to and from the US over to Europe, Families pcsing and individual military members on orders.

Amenities are like a regular airline flights. You will go to an AMC check-in counter, drop your bags, go through regular TSA to the terminal. There you will eventually board the airplane which as mentioned before is just a regular Boeing 747-400 like any other civilian airline would fly. There is infotainment on board providing child friendly movies.
Catering is just regular nothing special airplane food. Usually you get a choice of chicken with mashed potatoes or pasta if and later a sandwich / snack before landing. If your kids are picky you might want to bring maybe your own sandwich / snacks with. Food is no problem to bring onboard unless it is liquids. Few exceptions obviously like breast milk etc.

Yes your dog can easily be shipped on the same flight. If it is a pet they will have to travel in a hard case. They will be loaded in the bulk part of the aircraft. Don't worry, it's pressurized and heated. They are taken care off, believe me. If your doggy is small it might be able to fly inside the cabin as long as it fits under the seat. There are restrictions though how many animals can be inside the cabin so it might still end up being put into the belly of the airplane.
If its a WMD then that is a different story and they usually are allowed to travel inside the cabin and do not require to fit under the seat, obviously.

Arrival in RMS is pretty straight forward as its a military pax terminal so everything is streamlined. Taxis are available outside of the terminal to take you of base. If you want to stay at the hotel in RMS I would suggest calling ahead as sometimes it might simply be full with travelers.

For the masks, I do not know as I don't work for Atlas Air anymore. Call AMC in BWI, they can provide you all that information.

My last flight I did for AMC was in 2017 but I don't think anything majorly changed since then.
 

Rochopn

New member
Ahhh sorry I forgot about the dog, depends on the time of year. Check the flight rules. Their are restrictions in summer due to the heat. If the dog is in the carrier and with you their should not be a problem as long as you have the paperwork.
 

mchris3217

New member
Chris,
It sounds like you are worried for no reason. The flight is chartered or contracted so it's like being on a normal flight. They serve drinks, snacks and meals as they would on a civilian flight. Best part is they usually land right on the base. At least in the AF they do when possible. I cant speak for the mask issue. I never had to deal with it, and you are correct that people will understand a little more with little kids. You will not be the only ones. Just have plenty of stuff for them to do. They probably wont fall asleep until you are about to land. That's what my daughter did to us everytime.
Rochopn,

Thank you for info. We have lots of movies on the Ipad for them, but hopefully they sleep..

Chris
 

mchris3217

New member
Hi,

I used to be a Loadmaster for Atlas Air doing a lot of those flights. As you are moving to Germany you will go BWI-RMS. While I can't explain you all the ins and out of the patriot flight process within the military, I can give you a little bit insight on how it is done in terms of the airline.

Those flights are usually done on Boeing 747-400 passenger airplanes. You have around 474 seats on board but usually only around 300 are used give or take. Obviously it all comes down to the military as they are the customer and decide how things are done.

BWI has a AMC terminal where you and your family will go through. Usually on the patriot express is a wild mix of regular people just traveling on their free time to and from the US over to Europe, Families pcsing and individual military members on orders.

Amenities are like a regular airline flights. You will go to an AMC check-in counter, drop your bags, go through regular TSA to the terminal. There you will eventually board the airplane which as mentioned before is just a regular Boeing 747-400 like any other civilian airline would fly. There is infotainment on board providing child friendly movies.
Catering is just regular nothing special airplane food. Usually you get a choice of chicken with mashed potatoes or pasta if and later a sandwich / snack before landing. If your kids are picky you might want to bring maybe your own sandwich / snacks with. Food is no problem to bring onboard unless it is liquids. Few exceptions obviously like breast milk etc.

Yes your dog can easily be shipped on the same flight. If it is a pet they will have to travel in a hard case. They will be loaded in the bulk part of the aircraft. Don't worry, it's pressurized and heated. They are taken care off, believe me. If your doggy is small it might be able to fly inside the cabin as long as it fits under the seat. There are restrictions though how many animals can be inside the cabin so it might still end up being put into the belly of the airplane.
If its a WMD then that is a different story and they usually are allowed to travel inside the cabin and do not require to fit under the seat, obviously.

Arrival in RMS is pretty straight forward as its a military pax terminal so everything is streamlined. Taxis are available outside of the terminal to take you of base. If you want to stay at the hotel in RMS I would suggest calling ahead as sometimes it might simply be full with travelers.

For the masks, I do not know as I don't work for Atlas Air anymore. Call AMC in BWI, they can provide you all that information.

My last flight I did for AMC was in 2017 but I don't think anything majorly changed since then.
Thank you so much for the great info, especially about how the conditions maybe for a dog.. It is amazing how little there is about this on the internet. You have helped our stress levels a lot. Stay safe.

Chris
 
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