Boston Herald

Seaplane soars above traffic as Boston-to-New York City gets closer than ever

Tailwind is the only seaplane carrier allowed to take off and land in Boston Harbor.

By JOE DWINELL

The fastest commute to Manhattan by land, sea or air takes just 20 seconds to catch wind.

That’s how long Tailwind Air’s Cessna Grand Caravan seaplane needed to start its climb high over the Seaport.

The bumper-to-bumper traffic is someone else’s problem as you begin a 1-hour journey to New York City that brings you a few docks down from the United Nations.

“Wow! What a view,” a traveling companion said as the amphibious turboprop swooshed down on the East River with the majestic skyline climbing high like steel sequoias.

Tailwind Air is the only carrier allowed to land in Boston Harbor — and they plan on expanding their fleet this summer.

“We hope to keep on growing,” said Tailwind Air co-founder Peter Manice, adding that flights to Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard are on the horizon. They already offer trips out of Plymouth, Provincetown, Boston, East Hampton, N.Y., NYC and Washington, D.C.

With the pandemic finally easing up, traffic jams are returning with a vengeance — especially in New York City and Boston. Seaplanes appear to be the future, and they are here now.

A one-way Tailwind flight from Boston to Manhattan runs from $395 to $795, depending on when you book. The company offers programs for frequent fliers, and you can purchase books of tickets. They take the winter off from late December to mid-March.

Kids, pets, sightseers, theatergoers, business travelers, leaf-peepers and all others are welcome and gift cards are available. You land so close to Broadway, you could come dressed for a show and arrive in minutes once you hail a taxi.

Tailwind also partners with Omni Hotels — Omni Berkshire Place in New York City and Omni Boston Hotel at the Seaport. It’s a synergy aimed at attracting the VFR crowd — those visiting friends and relatives.

The Omni Berkshire Place is close to all the action, from 30 Rock to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Radio City Music Hall.

If the weather turns bad, Tailwind’s Cessnas can take off from Logan Airport or land at Norwood Airport.

For one-off trips, all the pilots need is a lake or clear spot on the ocean to plunk passengers down if they want to charter a flight. David Ortiz and Pedro Martinez did just that when Big Papi needed a ride to the Hall of Fame induction ceremony in July, Manice said.

“In New England, we can go just about anywhere,” he added.

Taking off and landing in both Boston and Manhattan is exhilarating. Along the way you see central Massachusetts, the Connecticut River, and Long Island Sound before the skyscrapers bring you home.

You pick up the ferry on Fan Pier in the Seaport and board the plane on a dock in the Harbor not far from the Logan runways. Soon all boats ease out of the way and snap photos of the seaplane as it soars into the sky.

That’s the last traffic you’ll see — other than a few geese — until you hit the docks.

©2022 Boston Herald.

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