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WN Assigned Seating Is Not Assigned Seating.  
User currently offlineMTSUATC From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 120 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5504 times:

So I flew WN this past week for the first time since they introduced the new boarding process. And after reading on here about the new assigned seating procedure I was thrown off guard and a bit confused during the new boarding process. In my opinion its confusing having those numbered signs in the boarding area. I mean boarding overall went smoothly but it just seems to me that they just divided the A, B,C groups which are still groups into more groups. The new boarding process just seems redundant and rediclious to me. But this is just my opinion.

53 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5462 posts, RR: 12
Reply 1, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 5457 times:

First, there is no "assigned seating", never has been, and I'm not sure where you got the impression there was such a thing.

Second, I've heard good things from family and friends who have recently flown (and some of whom I personally checked in exactly 24-hours prior to sked departure and all got around number 20 in group A and were very happy with the seats they selected on board, as well as with the gate environment and check-in procedure.

I think WN has managed to improve their system with this while leaving the original boarding ideas in tact (which is apparently what they and a majority of their customers wanted.) Just another opinion.  Smile

bb

[Edited 2008-02-29 17:57:38]

[Edited 2008-02-29 17:58:38]

User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6341 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 5352 times:



Quoting SANFan (Reply 1):
never has been,

Well, yes there has been...didn't they do it out of SAN a couple years back as a test? Nothing permanent or big though...

But yeah...I don't know how you got the crazy idea that Southwest had assigned seating...the new boarding process is nice, I like it a lot.


User currently offlineTxAgKuwait From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1803 posts, RR: 42
Reply 3, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 5291 times:



Quote:
But yeah...I don't know how you got the crazy idea that Southwest had assigned seating...the new boarding process is nice, I like it a lot.

As a long time advocate of the status quo, I was prepared to hate it. Recently flew DAL-DEN-DAL and (1) found the new boarding procedure pretty user friendly - kept what was good about open seating while making the gate a bit more orderly as well as (2) noticed that most of the other passengers seemed pretty okay with the way it was done, too.


User currently offlineSkyTeamTriStar From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 394 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5207 times:

The WN boarding process is smooth and super efficient whenever I've flown out of BWI & DTW. In a way, its like having assigned before walking down the jetway rather than onboard. The gate agents explained the new procedures flawlessly.

User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5462 posts, RR: 12
Reply 5, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5131 times:



Quoting SW733 (Reply 2):
Well, yes there has been...didn't they do it out of SAN a couple years back as a test? Nothing permanent or big though...

You're right '733, there was a test on a few selected flights out of SAN for a month or two during the summer of '06 so I guess technically, yes, WN has offered assigned seating during its existence. I just don't consider that sufficient basis to say "WN has offered assigned seating".

I did send my sons on WN earlier this month from SEA to DEN; I checked them in 24 hours ahead and got them A-20 and A-21. When they got to the airport, the flight had been cancelled and consolidated with another (ABQ) flight so their boarding passes (and priority numbers) were invalidated and they were re-assigned at the gate. (They ended up with B-30-ish and still got good seats so no big deal.) This sort of thing can happen on any carrier due to cancelled flights or equipment changes, etc., so it doesn't really bother me.

As I said before, I believe the "new and improved" WN procedure essentially works well.

bb


User currently offlineONTFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 380 posts, RR: 3
Reply 6, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5117 times:



Quoting TxAgKuwait (Reply 3):

I was that same way before it was rolled out but it sure is nice to just sit in the gate area and when its time to board, all you have to do is walk to the assigned area. So much better than waiting in line way prior to depature. They took a good thing and made it better in my opinion



Doin' just fine thanks...
User currently offlineSilver1SWA From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 4838 posts, RR: 26
Reply 7, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 4970 times:
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Quoting MTSUATC (Thread starter):
And after reading on here about the new assigned seating procedure

Hmm...there was no announcement or discussion here of WN implementing assigned seating. Yes, WN adopted a new boarding process, but assigned seating was not a part of it.

Yes, WN did test assigned seating at SAN in '06. They also did various testing in SAT last year. This new boarding process is the result of the testing in SAN and SAT.

Quoting SkyTeamTriStar (Reply 4):
In a way, its like having assigned before walking down the jetway rather than onboard.

That's exactly what it is. Your spot in line is assigned, not your seat. This allows everyone to remain seated until their group is called. The benefit is that people do not need to camp out in line hours early as it does absolutely no good under the new procedure.

Things go very smoothly. The only hitch is that folks either don't get that they are supposed to find their spot in line, or they try to pull fast ones by standing with the 1-5 people when they are something like #22. Agents are consistent and ensure that people do not board until it is their turn in line.



ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
User currently offlineBWI5OH From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 161 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 4926 times:

I find that the new boarding process is great and easy. Can't figure out how your place in line is chosen though. I purchased the VERY last seat on WN2205 from BWI-AUS 2 hours before departure and was given my boarding pass...my place in line was A-1!! I couldn't believe that one, but did pay a full fare, so that may have something to do with it. BTW- the aircraft that day was only 1 week old...the rear lav didn't work because boeing forgot to hook the toilet to the holding tank!!! A BEAUTIFUL aircraft nonetheless...


"It's all fun and games until the cops show up"
User currently offlineGentFromAlaska From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3190 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4811 times:



Quoting BWI5OH (Reply 8):
my place in line was A-1!! I couldn't believe that one, but did pay a full fare, so that may have something to do with it

On another thread posted in this forum I recall reading A-1 through A-15 are set aside on every revenue flight for passengers who pay full fare (tier 1) of the new fare structure.

The reserved boarding assignment policy may apply to the tier 2 pricing structure in certain markets. So unless you are a full fare paying pax the very best numeric assignment number you could receive would be A-16, a passenger paying full fare could receive A-1 - A-15 even if he/she checked in at the airport ticket counter one or two hours in advance of the flight, based on the passengers who previously checked in. I chuckled once hearing a employee in a WN kind of way indicating the reserve boarding policy was WN first class cabin.

I recently checked my wife for a flight between from BNA-PVD at 23 hours and 50 minutes in advance of her flight and received A-49. It appears timezone is a factor I'll have to figure out if it is the time zone the flight is departing from or twenty four hours using the Central time zone where at WN Dallas HQ is located or just a standard default to the Eastern Standard Timezone.

Overall I think the new boarding procedure is better organized than what the airline previously had. I did however notice At BWI over Christmas a few pax who were quite anal about having there exact numeric place in the boarding line in the A-30 and A-60 tiers. At the time It didn't make a allot of since to me in that there are more than twice as many seats on a flight. I guess it could matter if the flight was a one-stop continuing on to another destination at certain airports or if a pax was assigned into the "B" boarding group.



Man can be taken from Alaska. Alaska can never be taken from the man.
User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6341 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 4745 times:



Quoting GentFromAlaska (Reply 9):
On another thread posted in this forum I recall reading A-1 through A-15 are set aside on every revenue flight for passengers who pay full fare (tier 1) of the new fare structure.

Yes, I believe just for the Business Select fares where you get the free drink. I have bumped up to a full "Business" fare when my plans changed last minute out of OKC, but still ended up in a B group if I remember correctly, so that's why I believe it's just for the "Business Select" fares.


User currently offlineSPREE34 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2248 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 4731 times:



Quoting MTSUATC (Thread starter):
And after reading on here about the new assigned seating procedure

Reading "on here"?

I guess that about covers it.



I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
User currently offlineGlbltrvlr From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 743 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 4649 times:



Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 7):
The only hitch is that folks either don't get that they are supposed to find their spot in line, or they try to pull fast ones by standing with the 1-5 people when they are something like #22.

I agree - I frequently see agents pull people aside and tell them they need to wait in the "penalty box". As long as they continue to enforce boarding that way, the new system works great.


User currently offlineHeathrow From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2005, 979 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 4453 times:

I don't fly WN, however if I was to travel inthe U.S. I would rather have an assigned seat. It just gives me more of a sense of security. Although you can pay upwards of 20$ CAD for a seat and have them stick you in the centre, but that's AC for you

[Edited 2008-03-01 13:48:34]

User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5694 posts, RR: 52
Reply 14, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 4378 times:



Quoting GentFromAlaska (Reply 9):
It appears timezone is a factor I'll have to figure out if it is the time zone the flight is departing from or twenty four hours using the Central time zone where at WN Dallas HQ is located or just a standard default to the Eastern Standard Timezone.

You check in at the 24hr mark of that time zone departure.

If you have a flight leaving at 5pm out of BWI, and your in California, you'd check in online 2pm Cali time.

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineThegeek From Australia, joined Nov 2007, 2638 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 3936 times:



Quoting Heathrow (Reply 13):
I would rather have an assigned seat.

You're not alone on that one. JQ have been called the Ryanair of Australia, and they started with no allocated seating, but quickly introduced allocated seating because a lot of people hated it. I personally didn't mind that much.


User currently offlineXJETFlyer From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 327 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3709 times:

This is why I do not fly South West. They need to have atleast 2/3rds assigned seating. Then they can play with people and overboarding on the rest of the aircraft. South West will always over sell their aircraft and they even say they do it on their little A&E show.

I just don't care for the attitudes at South West. If you work for South West, it's nothing against you, unless your one of the people that I did not care for. I'm glad South West has sheep that follow them and buy their seats.


User currently offlineGoingboeing From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 4875 posts, RR: 16
Reply 17, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3663 times:



Quoting Heathrow (Reply 13):
I don't fly WN, however if I was to travel inthe U.S. I would rather have an assigned seat. It just gives me more of a sense of security. Although you can pay upwards of 20$ CAD for a seat and have them stick you in the centre, but that's AC for you

Just curious...is part of the security you feel knowing in advance that you've been assigned a middle seat? The only reason I ask is that most folks seem to indicate that you "won't get a center seat" with assigned seating - yet every airline I've flown has had several center seats on board the aircraft. Given that, I have always wondered if an assigned center seat was more comfortable than an unassigned middle seat.


User currently offlineSW733 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 6341 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3613 times:



Quoting XJETFlyer (Reply 16):
I'm glad South West has sheep that follow them and buy their seats.

I'm proud to be one of those people you can count when you cant fall asleep!  Smile Southwest is my best friend. And yes, I am a business traveller too, and even then, I like them a lot.


User currently offlineCatdaddy63 From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 306 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3579 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!



Quoting SW733 (Reply 10):
recently checked my wife for a flight between from BNA-PVD at 23 hours and 50 minutes in advance of her flight and received A-49. It appears timezone is a factor I'll have to figure out if it is the time zone the flight is departing from or twenty four hours using the Central time zone where at WN Dallas HQ is located or just a standard default to the Eastern Standard Timezone.

Passengers making connections also come into play, if their first flight leaves at 12 noon for example, they would also get a number for their second (or more) flight at the same time, allowing them to be several hours ahead. It seems that A16-30 are reserved for A-list fliers (32 or more flights in a 12 month period.) WN certainly knows how to get up to 137 folks on an aircraft in a quick manner. Much better than the AA chaos where the group 1 and 2 people have to squeeze through the group 5-6 people to get to the jetway.


User currently offlinePlanesNTrains From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 5624 posts, RR: 29
Reply 20, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 3536 times:



Quoting ONTFlyer (Reply 6):
I was that same way before it was rolled out but it sure is nice to just sit in the gate area and when its time to board, all you have to do is walk to the assigned area. So much better than waiting in line way prior to depature. They took a good thing and made it better in my opinion

Couldn't agree more. It's probably about as good as unassigned seating can get for folks.

Quoting Silver1SWA (Reply 7):
or they try to pull fast ones by standing with the 1-5 people when they are something like #22. Agents are consistent and ensure that people do not board until it is their turn in line.



Quoting Glbltrvlr (Reply 12):
I agree - I frequently see agents pull people aside and tell them they need to wait in the "penalty box". As long as they continue to enforce boarding that way, the new system works great.

Good to hear. That was the one thing I was watching for out of curiousity when we flew them a few weeks back. Everyone needs to follow the routine if it is gonna work.

-Dave



Next Trip: SEA-ABQ-SEA on Alaska
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5694 posts, RR: 52
Reply 21, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 3447 times:



Quoting XJETFlyer (Reply 16):
Then they can play with people and overboarding on the rest of the aircraft. South West will always over sell their aircraft and they even say they do it on their little A&E show.

Just like every airline out there that purposely oversells there flights except Jetblue?

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineSpinner145 From Hong Kong, joined Jan 2008, 63 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 3428 times:

I recently flew WN with a business select ticket. I bought the ticket about 24 hours before the flight and the price was only about $15 more than the regular fare. I consider this well worth it. I was assigned as A 04 (4th person to board) on the outbound flight, and got A 03 on the return.

It was quite nice, I got the front row window which has extra legroom on the outbound flight, and it really felt like first class (for WN). On the way back I wanted to get the same seat but one of the early boarders took it. I couldn't see any reason the guy should be entitled to board early except maybe he had health conditions because he was morbidly obsese. He actually took the aisle seat and then put his stuff in the window seat. When I went for the seat he says that the seat was saved for his "partner" (who just turned out to be one of his buddies) and that if I wanted the front row I had to sit in the middle seat. I said he wasn't allowed to save, but he told me tough luck and look for another seat. I though about involving the flight attendants but decided it wouldn't be worth it and I didn't want to sit next to this jerk anyway.

Other than guys like him, though, I thought the system worked nicely and I still got a pretty good seat on both flights. Certainly a big improvement over the previous system IMO.


User currently offlineRedTailDTW From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 755 posts, RR: 3
Reply 23, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 3385 times:

I have nothing against Southwest, they are a good carrier but the only reason I don't fly with them is because they don't have assigned seating. I like to know that when I get to the airport, I have the seat that I want waiting there so I can go right to it when I get on the plane. I like to know that I will get seat 9F and no one else can get it. It is so much easier to not have to worry about everyone ahead of you taking up all the good seats and then you get on and get the crappy ones.



Mason (RedTailDTW)



Northwest Airlines. Now you're flying smart! (RIP 1926-2009)
User currently offlineAviationbuff08 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 346 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (6 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3321 times:

I haven't flown WN, but have been to DEN several times with time to spare and got to watch several WN boardings. I found it more entertaining than a circus. Then i grab something quick to eat and wonder over to the DL gates to catch my flight home. One of these days I will have to fly WN and get a better look at this different style boarding process. Although living in ATL does make flying WN difficult.

25 Goingboeing : So tell me...what if you're booking at the last minute and 9F isn't available and you are assigned 9B...a center seat, which is still waiting for you
26 GentFromAlaska : Am I correct in assuming (I know I shouldn't assume) if you begin your WN flight at a originating city and one stop in another city before your reachi
27 Goingboeing : Gent...if your wife has a one stop with no change of planes, she'll only get one boarding pass. If she has to change planes, she'll get two boarding p
28 RedTailDTW : Well in those situations Southwest may be better but really I have never bought a ticket less than a month in advance. I was just talking about when
29 Goingboeing : I don't travel as much as I used to, but back in the day, it was not at all uncommon for me to be called at 10:00 p.m. and told to be on the 8:00 a.m
30 Post contains images Luv2cattlecall : I hope they start enforcing it that well at MCO. I really like the new boarding system, but as someone who pays an extra $15-$25 for Business Select
31 Silver1SWA : That is just wrong. I'm sorry you had to deal with that. The agent should not only have caught that he was in the wrong group, but should have payed
32 MtnWest1979 : The biggest problem I have with new system is boarding families between A and B. Doesn't seem to really help them out much. I think it would be better
33 WNCrew : From what I've seen the family boarding works well, there are the occasional times when it's not perfect, but 9 times out of 10 it's just fine. Sure
34 Atrude777 : I am not positive myself either, but I will re state a large majority of airlines do purposely overbook, and it is not maliciously done by SWA as the
35 XJETFlyer : Never been bumped on CO before! I fly a lot with them. Never been a issue. I was bumped 6 times with in a year when I use to fly South West. Smile??
36 Post contains images Heathrow : I'm guessing DJ is much better. After all, it is Virgin Well,I like knowing in advance that I HAVEN'T been assidgned a middle seat, However AC has sc
37 Thegeek : Too right DJ are better. We're getting off the topic, but flying JQ means you will cop attitude from the staff you have to deal with, miss out on fre
38 DesertAir : I am a frequent WN flyer and find the new boarding process a positive experience. I no longer have to camp out on the floor like in the past.
39 Post contains images EA CO AS : If you're looking for assigned seating on that route, Alaska Airlines offers great nonstop service between SEA and DEN. Then why is one of XJT's majo
40 Post contains images PHLBOS : I've flown WN at least 2 different times since they've implemented the new procedure; the camping out issue was the only nuisance factor I experience
41 RFields5421 : The biggest thing I see with the advanced check-in is second legs of flights. I normally get A-25 to A-35 for the first leg of my two leg flights fro
42 Goingboeing : Why? If I had an A card (even on the old system), I'd usually just sit tight in a gate area chair and get up to board when the last of the A line was
43 Post contains images Alfa75 : Is this for real? Public humiliation? Awesome!!!!!
44 N5014K : I don't like WN very much overall, but I fly out of BWI and they have either nonstop or direct flights to most of the cities I need to travel to. This
45 Post contains images TOLtommy : Oh puhleeze.... At 16-20 years old, you'll fly whoever Mommy and Daddy buy you a ticket on.... When you start spending your own money on airplane tic
46 Atrude777 : Be a little bit nicer. When I was 16-20 I was always buying my own tickets as well anytime I wanted to fly. So don't assume every 16-20 yr old is bac
47 WNbob : Right away, the OP doesn't know what he's talking about. ASSIGNED SEATING??? No wonder he was confused by the procedure.[Edited 2008-03-04 20:58:00]
48 WNCrew : Well, at least you're honest about your attitude. I can relate, as a crewmember I've worked trips with FA's where they were so corny even I found it
49 XT6Wagon : But you are wrong. WN does assign your seats. Its whichever seat you want that is open when you enter the aircraft. Isn't that wonderful? Its much be
50 RedTailDTW : I do buy my own tickets...that hasn't changed my ways of booking flights at all. I still fly the airlines I like to fly and nothing really is any dif
51 Alfa75 : I am in no way a frequent flier with WN (or anyone else) but I got our boarding passes for our flight tomorrow and got A26 and A27, and A19 and A20 on
52 RFields5421 : Because I spent 20 years in the US Navy - so when I see a line - I have to get in the line.
53 Iflyswa : Just as Alex stated, online check-in is 24 hours before departure in the timezone in which your flight is departing. In your wife's case, the flight
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