Originally Posted by timmhaan
is it even possible to rely on standby anymore? every flight i'm on now seems to be completely full. i miss the days where there might be an empty seat next to you. doesn't happen that much anymore.
You're right, more flights are full these days. It's just a reflection of the economics of the situation. With fuel prices remaining high and fares remaining at all-time lows, the only way airline companies can remain in business is to shrink capacity until flights are full. Even at that, we are still barely managing to make any profit at all. Flying is a good value these days, but planes are full.
If you're traveling standby, you just have to be flexible with your plans. In order to get to Lake Tahoe, for example, we considered flying into Reno, Sacramento, Oakland, San Fransico, San Jose, and even Fresno. We also left two days before the rest of our team to makle sure we got there. It turned out great, though. It gave us a chance to just relax and look around before doing the century ride. If there's a prettier place to hang out at in June than Lake Tahoe, I haven't seen it!
Of course, the Team In Training teams normally don't fly standby. My wife and I just did that because we have it available, and it meant that just a few more dollars went to the cause.