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Which Domestic Airline Has Best/Worst Boarding  
User currently offlineD950 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 493 posts, RR: 2
Posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 4541 times:

I fly over 75k with UA, but last week I had the opportunity to fly AA, and CO, wow what a difference. I find the UA boarding process the worst organized in the industry, while I found both AA, and CO to be well organized with line jumpers called aside and made to wait (boarding with section 1 as opposed to section 4 or 5). Any other thoughts??


Resting on your laurels is a synonym for flirting with disaster
24 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineMauiman31 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 450 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4537 times:
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WN's was considered by many - the pits, as discussed many times here. New process is improved. But in PHX last Friday, a couple women still stood by their assigned numbered post for almost an hour ahead of time. Why? Old habits die hard, I guess. Everyone else waited until the A group was called. My perception with the new WN system, is that the medical pre-boards have increased since they still go first. Again, just my undocumented observations. No more early pre-board for family/kids.

I also like AA's boarding process. Organized. Smooth.


User currently offlineBond007 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 5408 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4536 times:

Is this a trick question??


Jimbo



I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 22869 posts, RR: 20
Reply 3, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4528 times:

I like the NW cattle call, though I suspect I'm in the minority on that. Still, it does seem to make boarding quicker than boarding by rows and, in sharp contrast to the WN cattle call, there's a seat waiting for you once you get aboard.


I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineD950 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 493 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4524 times:

No just getting sick of the uncontrolled mayhem developing, and curious as to other's valued opinions, as I said, I was quite taken back by the efficiency of both AA/CO on my last UA trip. Since the advent of the Red carpet, it seems anyone who can breath is "Global Services".


Resting on your laurels is a synonym for flirting with disaster
User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2821 posts, RR: 45
Reply 5, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 4509 times:

I think they are really all about the same, except for Southwest's, which is horrendous.

User currently offlineUalcsr From United States of America, joined May 2006, 485 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 4508 times:

Ryanair is pretty horrible. At STN, at least you can line up next to the window and board first, well, 1 through 60, but boarding them in SZG was a total free for all.

User currently offlineSeptember11 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 3623 posts, RR: 21
Reply 7, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 4499 times:

Interesting question. To me, boarding experience vary by flight. Number of passengers (as well as their behavior) tell the story.


Airliners.net of the Future
User currently offlineSNCntry32 From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1516 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4496 times:



Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 3):
I like the NW cattle call

It goes pretty smoothly surpizingly. You can board a CR2 in about 10-15 minuets flat. 5 minuets if they are biz travelers and know thier shit.



Long Live Memphis!
User currently offlineIAHFLYR From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 4790 posts, RR: 22
Reply 9, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4494 times:

For me it is simply not an issue to board a CO aircraft.

Doesn't matter the aircraft or what the load or how many bags get checked if the overheads are full near the end of the boarding process, I just don't see panic setting in to often with either the crew or gate agents as the departure time nears, all are seated, overheads closed, last PA is made, door is shut, and off we go!



Any views shared are strictly my own and do not a represent those of any former employer.
User currently offlineFbgdavidson From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2004, 3706 posts, RR: 28
Reply 10, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4492 times:



Quoting D950 (Thread starter):
I fly over 75k with UA, but last week I had the opportunity to fly AA, and CO, wow what a difference. I find the UA boarding process the worst organized in the industry,

Are you kidding me? I think the UA (and AS who operate an identical system) have the most sensible boarding process with the red carpet lane and it seems to be well policed too!

Maybe if you were 1K or upgraded to First Class more often then you'd experience the wonder of red carpet boarding  Wink

It does seem to breed weirdoes though...I've seen people waiting ON the tiny square of red carpet for almost an hour before their flight departs reading the newspaper, working on laptops and making phone calls!! It really defeats the point of having the red carpet if you feel the need to stand on it...plus you end up looking like a right dick. It's designed to minimize the time that the priority travellers spend at the gate  thumbsup 



"My first job was selling doors, door to door, that's a tough job innit" - Bill Bailey
User currently offlineNWADC9 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4896 posts, RR: 10
Reply 11, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 4476 times:

The types of boarding I've experienced:
Free-for-all (small plane/not enough pax to bother)
Row-by-Row with/without FC and Elites
Boarding groups/ABC's

I prefer the row-by-row calling. Call me old-school, but I think it makes more sense than zones and boarding groups.



Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that? -Capt. Picard
User currently offlineDeltaRules From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3738 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 4471 times:

Best:
-Row-by-row boarding

Worst:
-Any airline with boarding groups or Zone Boarding. Awful. If I have seat 12A & get zone 9 (happens 9 times out of 10), I don't want to have to crawl over the person in 12B who somehow boarded in zone 3 and 12C who got zone 5.



Let's Kick the Tires & Light the Fires!!
User currently offlineONTFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 380 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 4469 times:

The correct answer to this question is Southwest and Southwest  Big grin


Doin' just fine thanks...
User currently offlineBridogger6 From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 710 posts, RR: 10
Reply 14, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 4464 times:



Quoting DeltaRules (Reply 12):
Best:
-Row-by-row boarding

Worst:
-Any airline with boarding groups or Zone Boarding. Awful. If I have seat 12A & get zone 9 (happens 9 times out of 10), I don't want to have to crawl over the person in 12B who somehow boarded in zone 3 and 12C who got zone 5.

Actually US has a zone boarding system designed to prevent JUST that. They board windows to aisles while simultaneously boarding back to front. Like a reversed pyramid. It was based on studies done by ASU that HP ended up adopting and then with the merger, the whole airline adopted this process.

It works very well when followed correctly.


User currently offlineAY104 From Canada, joined Nov 2005, 505 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 4454 times:

Southwest is by far the best and all others pale in comparison! I like to be able to go onboard and see for myself who I want to sit beside. When I fly Southwest, which admittedly is not often, I check in online as early as possible, and always manage to get a good seat. If I know the flight will fill up, I get an aisle seat in a row of 3 where there is already a couple, and I have never been disappointed. I have been disappointed 90% of the time when I have preselected my seat on airlines which allow it. More often than not, I end up beside a mother and a screaming kid.
Cheers,
AY104



The only thing a customer should expect for his/her loyalty is good service
User currently offlineDeltaRules From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 3738 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 4434 times:

Quoting Bridogger6 (Reply 14):
Actually US has a zone boarding system designed to prevent JUST that. They board windows to aisles while simultaneously boarding back to front. Like a reversed pyramid. It was based on studies done by ASU that HP ended up adopting and then with the merger, the whole airline adopted this process.

It works very well when followed correctly.

Of the two airlines I fly the most (DL & US), I've noticed US's is a little more organized than DL's system. It seems better than DL's procedure anyway.

[Edited 2008-01-30 07:43:29]


Let's Kick the Tires & Light the Fires!!
User currently offlineD950 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 493 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 4392 times:



Quoting Fbgdavidson (Reply 10):
Maybe if you were 1K or upgraded to First Class more often then you'd experience the wonder of red carpet boarding

Actually I am in First 90% of the time, but as you yourself noted, the line starts forming an hour before flight time, I guess my point was, the United personel do NOTHING to stop it, but @ IAH the CO gate agent twice told the folks to beat it or they would board last, just more controlled.



Resting on your laurels is a synonym for flirting with disaster
User currently offlineFbgdavidson From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2004, 3706 posts, RR: 28
Reply 18, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 4366 times:



Quoting D950 (Reply 17):
Actually I am in First 90% of the time, but as you yourself noted, the line starts forming an hour before flight time, I guess my point was, the United personel do NOTHING to stop it

But it isn't a 'menacing' queue, more along the lines of just people without RCC membership who are stupid and feel the need to show off their First/1K/GS-ness. I've used the red carpet maybe a dozen times since it was introduced and have never had to wait for more than one person to board ahead of me just waltzing up to the gate whenever. I certainly wouldn't class it as a problem and I'm yet to encounter a line.

If I'm flying internationally (so more passengers eligible for red carpet) then boarding is spaced out enough that I can go whenever and not wait, and on the domestic routes I use or the times of the week I fly I find there aren't enough red carpet eligible passengers to cause a problem.



"My first job was selling doors, door to door, that's a tough job innit" - Bill Bailey
User currently offlineStarAlliance38 From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 1445 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4359 times:

Now boarding zones A----B----C


Don't fight over A, B, C on S - W - A



Roar, lion, roar
User currently offlineLeskova From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 6075 posts, RR: 70
Reply 20, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 4315 times:

The worst? Lufthansa and Swiss.

Reason: they always call up boarding by rows, which makes perfect sense... unfortunately, no-one ever checks if the passengers wanting to board are actually seated in those rows.

Within the past month, I've experienced 8 boarding calls that never went beyond "We would now like to invite passengers seated in rows 20 to 28 to board the aircraft"... no other calls were made, because, as usual, everyone just jumped up and ran towards the gate, as if you were getting the flight for free if you were among the first people to board...  Yeah sure

Either ENFORCE boarding by rows, or don't even call for boarding that way... one without the other is just completely useless.



Smile - it confuses people!
User currently offlineDavid21487 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 232 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (6 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4258 times:



Quoting DeltaRules (Reply 16):
It seems better than DL's procedure anyway.

I used to like the DL zone boarding procedure (zone one for First Class and the bulkheads, zones two and three for Medallions and SkyTeam Elites, and then zones four through nine for the rest of the coach cabin) and it used to be organized...

But now the rules have been changed and ALL Medallion members and SkyTeam Elites are eligible to board in zone ONE. On Thursdays and Fridays working mainline CMH-ATL flights (which are usually full those days) you have upwards to 70 people who are eligible to board with the first zone. It's complete chaos from the aircraft door all the way up the jetway and into the terminal. The line is so long that the agent has to stop scanning boarding passes because that's where it's stopped and it's because almost half of the plane tries to board at the same time, and they're eligible to do it. It's absolutely rediculous. I'm all for the BREEZEWAY lanes and priority boarding for elites and what have you, but you can't have 70 people boarding the aircraft at the same time.



-- Step! Jump! Slide! --
User currently offlineTommy767 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 6584 posts, RR: 9
Reply 22, posted (6 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4253 times:

AA has the best in my experience. Groups 1-6 and it always works well. CO I find is the worst with boarding by clumps of rows. I remember we had a late departure in SFO onetime because it took forever to board the plane with the "rows 15-25, 6-10" etc..


"Folks that's the news and I'm outta here!" -- Dennis Miller
User currently offlineFXramper From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 7247 posts, RR: 85
Reply 23, posted (6 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 4252 times:
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Southworst is pretty bad. Still waiting for assigned seating.  duck 

User currently offlineBond007 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 5408 posts, RR: 8
Reply 24, posted (6 years 6 months 2 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4229 times:



Quoting David21487 (Reply 21):
But now the rules have been changed and ALL Medallion members and SkyTeam Elites are eligible to board in zone ONE. On Thursdays and Fridays working mainline CMH-ATL flights (which are usually full those days) you have upwards to 70 people who are eligible to board with the first zone

Same happens on US. It seems that Zone 1 has 50% of the pax, or more! My flights on Thursday nights are the same chaos as you describe.

My biggest pet peeve is when all the Zone 1 boarders (and some zone 7!) are crowding around the podium, waiting for boarding to commence, there is always one or two high and mighty Zone 1'ers that arrive late and stroll right through the crowd up to the head of the line .... "well, I'm Zone 1" ...... yeah buddy, so are the 50 people you just cut in front of!

US sometimes boards only F/C first, then Zone 1 ... but doesn't reduce the crowd by much.


Jimbo



I'd rather be on the ground wishing I was in the air, than in the air wishing I was on the ground!
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