If you’ve ever spotted a Boeing 737-600 with no livery except for a red line running from nose to tail, you might have just met ‘Janet’ – or Janet Airlines to be precise.
An acronym for either “Joint Air Network for Employee Transportation”, referencing the operator’s activities and fake identifiers to shield operational details.
Or “Just Another Non-Existent Terminal”, referencing the lack of public-facing documentation.
The carrier was designed to connect US Defense Department employees with weapons ranges and research centers.
What we do know is that Janet flights are known to fly from Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas, Nevada in the US.
In fact, there’s an entire terminal and parking lot dedicated to ‘Janet’.
What’s more, the mysterious carrier is sometimes spotted flying to the secretive confines of Area 51.
The secret U.S. Air Force military base in a remote area of southern Nevada is shrouded in mystery, but a military historian has finally unveiled the ‘real secrets’ of Area 51.
Highly classified, its existence and name was not actually acknowledged by the U.S. government until 2013.
The information was finally made public via several documents that were released via a Freedom of Information Act request.
Due to secretive testing of the U-2 spy plane, reports took flight of unidentified flying objects in the 1950s and 1960s.
And, of course, tales of aliens still persist.
In an effort to maintain national security, you can only get to Area 51 via the airline.
In the same vein, ‘Janet’ also flies to Tonopah Test Range.
The F-117A Nighthawk, RQ-171A Sentinel reconnaissance drone, and other stealth aircraft are taken from the initial idea to the skies above the base.
The airline’s Boeing 737s – a craft which has also been found lurking mysteriously in a field – have also been seen supporting other military ranges and research facilities.
These include Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake, US Air Force Production Flight Test Installation (Plant 42), and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
It seems one mission of ‘Janet’ could be to ferry aviation technicians working in the military to ensure maximum operational security.
Want to fly with Janet?
Sorry, it’s not available to the civilian population – plus you’ll likely be detained when you get there.
In addition to the six Boeing 737-66N, there are five twin-engine Beechcraft turboprops for when there’s a shorter runway to play with or the mission needs to be kept on classified.
The 737-66Ns flew for Air China until 2008.
Their crew and other aviation employees are not only trained for the job, but they also must have top-secret clearance.
Even flight attendants “must qualify for and maintain a top-secret government security clearance and associated work location access,” per Business Insider.
Makes sense when they might hear a confidential and potentially sensitive nugget on info as they ask: “Chicken or fish?”
They have to know that information won’t end up in the press, on social media or in even more dangerous hands.
It was revealed this month that the the Air Force is considering replacing the operator of the ‘Janet’ service.
Replacements must be “FAR Part 121 certificated and be a member of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF).”
Legacy carriers including United Airlines, American Airlines, and Delta Air Lines are all contenders.