Cruise Clearance

Used to get them all the time flying from ABQ to TUS/PHX during my night cargo other traffic around at my altitudes.
Yep, Ive received quite a few. They come in handy when you are going to shoot an approach at an airport that isnt covered by radar.

I was riding along receiving some multi dual on Friday and we received one on our way into GWR. We ended up communicating with Minneapolis Center through another aircraft, but we did lose radar contact and comms with center at 4,000 feet right around the airport. At that time we had not been cleared for the approach, so had that other aircraft not been in the area (he was actually going into GWR also) we would have had to do one of two things. Climb back up to an altitude where we could get comms back with center, or hold over the NDB on field and shoot the approach at our expected arrival time.

We actually went into GWR twice that day, the first time we did not get any kind of cruise clearance. So I suppose not all controllers will think ahead about giving you one in those situations, but instead he cleared us for the approach long before he thought we might lose comms.

The cruise clearance we received was within 30 miles of GWR, but not assigned when we departed BIS. I have never received a cruise clearance while departing. I would think that maybe airspace is too busy in most parts of the country to receive such a liberal clearance from ATC.