How to get to be the only lone passenger on any airline flight

I’ve been one of the only passengers on a flight several times:

first time, the mid 90’s flying Continental Express on a 30 seat Brasilia on Cleveland to Detroit-City during the fall on a Sunday in the late morning. The only passengers were my dad and I and one other lady. The route just did really poorly and it was the off-season.

Second time on a 50 seat RJ in 1998 on Cincinnati to Huntsville during a mid-afternoon in the spring on my way to a camp. The only other passengers were a couple returning from their honeymoon. Again. This route ran on-time and normally. I have no clue how it was so empty.

The third time was more complex. I was working for Northwest Airlines at the time and trying to get back to Minneapolis from Detroit. I was flying standby, all the Detroit-Minneapolis flights were full so I flew to Madison, Wiconsin late Sunday night and planned to fly Madison-Minneapolis early the next morning. Little did I know that the last Madison-Minneapolis flight Sunday night was canceled due to a mechanical problem. All of the passengers were reaccomodated on the Monday morning flights to Minneapolis that I planned to take. All except 2. So I show up at the Northwest gates in Madison on Monday morning and it’s a zoo and I don’t get on the first flight because it’s full, but then learn that the plane that was scheduled to fly the previous evening’s flight to Minneapolis is fixed and will be flying as a “live sector” to Minneapolis and is almost completely empty. Me and a handful of employees as well as two revenue passengers get on board the Airbus A319, we push back and ominously sit there for almost a half hour. It turns out the hydraulic issue that caused the flight to be canceled the night before was not fixed and we would have to return to the gate. The two revenue passengers were overbooked onto an already full flight and me and another employee rented a car to drive to Minneapolis. The plane wasn’t flown to Minneapolis until late that night (and it was done as a ferry with no passengers).

Lone 1x

Group of 10 1x

Lone Passenger on a Continental Express Flight. “Last” flight out 5? hours Late. Since the plane needed to be at the end of the spoke for next morning they ran the flight.

Was a RJ (~50 Passenger Jet, Me, the FA, the Captain and FO). Was a uneventfully flight.

Group of ~10 on a 707 in the 70’s The flight we were on was overbooked. And they had a plane that had gone down for maintenance, now fixed, and did a re-positioning flight to return it to the mainland, Since they had 10 overbooks from the earlier flights they put us on that plane.

Pretty much everyone would have to die or jump out of the plane mid flight. If you were the only person to show up, they’d transfer you to a different flight almost undoubtedly.