The first USA tour of 2018 started on Friday 9 March. Since the Red Flag exercise, and the rest of our itinerary, looked very interesting, a large group of 32 people had registered for our plans (of which one had to cancel on the day of departure). Because of the group size we had split the party into two groups of 16 that would travel independently, but meet up for the weekends at the air shows and AMARG. The tour started with BA taking 21 from Amsterdam to Heathrow, where seven more joined (from Manchester, Belfast, Toulouse, Paris and Luxembourg). The second flight was a BA 747 flight to Phoenix. After clearing customs at PHX three more joined and we then went through the very slow process of collecting our rental vans. The whole process took that long that it was way past midnight when we ended up at our hotel in Yuma.