Do not count on the mini route being available. Over the last 6 months I am batting 0 for 6. The usual reason given by either SMO or TOA ATCT is lack of staffing at LAX Tower. Before COVID it was available about 50% of the time I requested so maybe there is a staffing shortage at LAX tower. I talked to AOPA about it to see if they could get some answers from the FAA but got nowhere with that.
Paid for 2021 and well worth it!
Best return on investment I make all year....
US Army 1st Cavalry Division OH-58 AO
LAPD helicopter pilot, retired