That Delta Passenger Who Got a Plane to Himself? Didn't Quite Happen That Way
Earlier this week, we reported on Vincent Peone's private jet-like experience on a Delta Connection flight from Aspen to Salt Lake City. According to Peone's Twitter feed and a short video posted to the social media platform, he was the only passenger on his flight to Salt Lake City. Major media outlets, including this one, reported the story. However, Peone's version of what happened omitted key details. Here's what actually happened.
Much of Peone's account of his Delta Connection flight from ASE to SLC adds up. Peone was the only passenger to board Delta Connection flight DL3652. However, he never actually made it to Salt Lake City that evening.
Peone boarded the flight to Salt Lake City. The crew performed all required pre-flight duties and the aircraft made it to the runway. However, that's where Peone's private jet-like experience ended. A Delta spokesperson confirmed to TPG that the aircraft encountered a "mechanical issue" that forced it to return to the gate: "Delta Connection flight 3652 last week returned to the gate due to a maintenance issue. The aircraft departed a short time later without any customers on board."
Once the aircraft returned to the gate, Peone disembarked and was rebooked on another Delta flight. The aircraft Peone had originally boarded did, however, make its way to Salt Lake City later that evening, with no passengers. The airplane, a Bombardier CRJ-700 regional jet, was ferried to Salt Lake City with just the flight crew traveling on-board.
Peone never clarified exact details of the flight. He does appear to imply that he was aboard for the entire flight from Aspen to Salt Lake City. At the end of the short video Peone posted to Twitter, he is seen shaking the hands of both pilots and thanking them for working the flight.
It turns out that flight DL3652 was not a case of a passenger getting an entire aircraft to themselves. However, there have been a few confirmed incidents in which only one passenger was on board a flight including one lucky vacationer to Greece. As for Peone, we reached out to him for comment, but have not yet received a response.