On board the first commercial flight from Paine Field


On board and ready to fly with the first public flight from the new Paine Field terminal
On board and ready to fly with the first public flight from the new Paine Field terminal

Welcome to day one of scheduled commercial service at Paine Field in Everett, Washington. The new terminal opened this week with plenty of fanfare from the local community and a passenger experience that easily scores among the top airports in the USA. I was in town to partake in the celebrations and then board the first flight sold to the public departing from the new facility.

Commercial service is not entirely new, but it has not existed for decades. Indeed, getting the necessary approvals and sign-offs to restart the service has been generations in the making. And it certainly felt like a proper grand opening celebration throughout the day.



From the (slightly comical and mildly failed) christening of the building, an off-script play by Propeller Airports CEO Brett Smith …

… to the ribbon cutting …

… the traditional water salute from the Paine Field ARFF team, the entire morning was packed with festivities.

We also got a quick visit to the ramp for some exterior shots airside of the facility. Not surprisingly, it looks an awful lot like an airport.

Hanging out on the ramp prior to the inaugural flight departure in Everett
Hanging out on the ramp prior to the inaugural flight departure in Everett


We watched as the first departure headed out to Portland – this was effectively a charter flight; no seats were sold to the public – and then boarded our E175 to Las Vegas.

Welcome on board the first public flight from Paine Field!
Welcome on board the first public flight from Paine Field!

Passengers received goodie bags, including a chocolate bar and awesome pin to commemorate the event.

Goodies for passengers on the first flights
Goodies for passengers on the first flights

The pilot made a few announcements on board regarding the historic nature of the departure, and then we were off.

The flight itself was normal enough, though also with the excitement and quirks that inaugurals bring to life. Passengers talked to each other on board rather than doing everything possible to avoid such contact. Stories were shared and in at least a couple cases people who only previously knew each other online finally met in real life.

Nothing special about the catering on board for the inaugural flight
Nothing special about the catering on board for the inaugural flight

Celebrations continued after that first flight, with the return departure to PAE feted in the gate area. For us, however, the party was over.

Celebrating the first departure to Paine Field from Las Vegas
Celebrating the first departure to Paine Field from Las Vegas

So, uhhh, anyone want one of the goodie kits from the first flight? I might have a spare picked up as I was getting off the plane.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and .

11 Comments

  1. A goodie bag celebrating the first flight from Paine Field? Who wouldn’t want it!

  2. What an amazing first flight! Though it breaks my heart when they are treating that bottle of Veuve in such a cruel fashion…

  3. Anybody get the goodie bag?

    I am booked for my first flight from PAE! I will be gone on _____ ___, 2019 for __ days. Don’t break into my house, which is located at __________.

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