I've made it home after every trip same day or virtually the same day (arrived home at 1AM a few times). It hasn't been easy.
Yesterday the direct mainline flights were all full and had mainline jump seaters. I had to find a different route.
I looked and found a flight on my airline to an out station, a 90 minute sit, then a flight on mainline home. Looked decent.
The first flight was full. I got the jump seat. The physical seat was more comfortable than the jump seat on the plane I fly, but there was much less leg room.
Once at the out station the mainline flight cancelled. Ugh. I then had an 5 hour wait before my next chance. This is a risk I took flying through an out station. There are only a handful of flights.
I made do. This was a somewhat small airport. Only one place to eat. I was craving a hamburger. The only place to eat has "grill" in their name. I thought, "they should have burgers!" Lies! They had NO hot food. The cashier said burgers were "coming soon" and that all their sandwhiches were cold and premade in the cooler. Nice.
I grabbed a cold lunch and spent 5 hours playing on my Ipad, talking to my dad and then my wife.
One passenger asked where I was headed. I told her I was passing through on the way home. "I don't know how you do this every week, traveling all the time." I smiled, "I love my job."
Commuting is rough. I hate it. This experience has put a big ugly mark on grabbing the first possible upgrade and commuting to be a Captain.
In bound finally came in. Full flight. Same jump seat. Nice crew.
My family was waiting for me on the curb when I walked out of the terminal. My normal 3 1/2 hour commute took 7 1/2 hours.
Off for two days. I head back down Wednesday to start my next 4 day. I have double Canada overnights. Bleh.
After that trip I'm off for 4 days, on for 4 days, off for 3 days then I finish the month with a 3 day trip with a dead head back to base to start my vacation.