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As we approach the end of the year, the days are getting shorter and the nights longer.The team at Boise State Public Radio is leaning into the darkness to share stories that take place at nighttime and bring you to spaces that are bustling – or undisturbed – after the sun sets.Find the stories in our series “After Dark” below, or hear them on Morning Edition.

At the Boise Airport, they’re the last to say ‘goodnight’ and the first to say ‘good morning’

The absolute last flight out of the Boise Airport was a one stroke before midnight.
George Prentice
The absolute last flight out of the Boise Airport was a one stroke before midnight.

This story is part of a series called "After Dark." Find other stories in the series here.

The slang “red-eye” flight began being used widely in the 1960s; when the Etymology Dictionary defined it as an “airplane flight which deprives travelers of sleep.” But red-eye’s remain extremely popular in most world capitals because they transport passengers to their destinations with a full day ahead.

For others, red-eye’s are attractive because of the price. That said, there is the downside of possible sleeplessness, particularly for those who struggle to fall asleep to the sound of a jet engine several feet away.

“This [red-eye] flight is a really good attribute to expand the airport's footprint, get people out to one … well, one of the busiest airports in the world, Atlanta,” said Brad Birkinbine, who helps oversee TSA operations at the Boise Airport. “People are connecting to other flights to go, goodness knows where throughout the world.”

When Morning Edition host George Prentice visited the Boise Airport recently to chat with outbound red-eye passengers, the list of their destinations was nearly as long as the flight’s manifest.

Copyright 2022 Boise State Public Radio

Find reporter George Prentice on Twitter @georgepren

When people ask me, “What time do you start Morning Edition?” my go-to answer is, “Don’t worry. No matter what time you get up, we’re on the job.”

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