Enlisting in the Armed Forces of the United States brings a number of other rights and privileges for the individual, some of which are not well known. For decades, if you are in the military Armed Forces there has been leisure off duty travel program that has been a privilege only for those who are Active Duty, Reserve or retired Veterans of the military. This program is called Space Available Travel.
Space Available travel is based on priority, and it can be a true adventure. It is a method of flying for no cost that the Government has made available to members of the Armed Forces as a way of giving support and assistance. It is not a right, nor is it something to do if you are pressed for time. But if you have flexibility and time off, and wish to travel, it can really be a way of flying on the cheap to many places in the United States and even internationally.
Flying on Space Available is a privilege that is not open to the public. In order to travel on military aircraft on a Space Available basis you must be either Active Duty or a Reservist, or a retired military Veteran. It is flight on military aircraft after the mission needs are taken care of. Military Servicemembers have been able to book travel on a Space Available basis, and it is that ability that is the true benefit.
Flying space available is flying without cost. It is travel that is best done when you truly have some time to spare, as it is on the specific needs of the service. For example, if there is a C-130 flying from Edwards Air Force Base in California to Cape Canaveral, Florida, and there is space on board not taken up by the purpose or military mission of the craft, if you want to go to Florida and you are at Edwards AFB on the day of the flight, and you qualify, then you can ride on the flight, for free.
It must be said; that there are some tricks and tips to know about before using Space Available travel. The biggest is flexibility, while if you are patient you can fly for free, and it can be very lucrative, you have to realize that it can be hit or miss. If you are going to fly Space Available, then it is a good idea to be prepared to purchase a commercial ticket should you find that for whatever reason you cant book a Space Available flight back. If there is not any room, and you run out of time, then you may have to pay a commercial rate to return.