Recline your seats and let your tray tables down while enjoying a pleasant FLYINGTIME. My trip took just over 8 minutes from LANDINGGEAR up to touch down. Others may have experienced a different ETA. In case you haven't guessed, today's theme answers are all related to air travel. As a bonus, each answer starts and ends with the postal abbreviations of the departure and arrival locations mentioned in the clue. For example, 18A: "What follows a plane going from Richmond to Chicago?" The answer is VAPORTRAIL with the postal codes VA for Virginia and IL for Illinois circled at each end.
IMHO, the mid-west section of the puzzle is first class because it contains both my favorite clues: "What makes clay clammy?" (EMS) - ha! - and "Share one's seat?" MOON - lol! In other C/AP news, I liked "Be real" for EXIST and the specificity of TAP for "Choose, as a running mate."
Fill-wise, I liked BANAL and MINOANS, plus, you don't see NEOLOGIC, GLUGGED, or INGMAR everyday. Less interesting were your standard crosswordese INANE, EARNS, and OLIO. OTH, how about HOOHA making an appearance two days in a row? It's getting to be a regular flight pattern.