Any airline timetable, ticket jacket, or e-ticket will have a disclaimer somewhere printed on it saying something to the effect that if you are not at the gate within 10 minutes before departure time, you are subject to losing your reservation and ineligible for denied boarding compensation. You also see signs posted at the gates saying this. If you make your reservation over the phone, the customer service agent will also remind you of that. This, of course, is to be sure that the plane leaves on time.
So my question is this:
Why don't any of the airlines actually have the guts to enforce this rule? Every flight I've ever been on, or watched board had at least a couple of people huffing and puffing to the gate. the doors are closed, and the jetway has been pulled back. Yet every time, they hold the plane and let the not so punctual passenger on. It makes a total mockery of the "10 minute rule" as far as I am concerned. It's a rule that is hardly, or not at all enforced. I mean what's the point of being at the airport on time if you know that the airline will hold your flight? Why should the the other 75-300 pax suffer because of somoeone elses tardiness? True, the delay may only be a minute or two, but given todays on time performances, that minute or two could mean the difference between 125 people making or missing connections. Why run that risk for one flake when everyone else managed to get their on time? Why don;t the airlines have the guts to make the 10 minute announcement-then when departure time comes, slam, and bolt that door through the jetway shut? If you arrive at the gate with 9:59 remaining, oh well, too bad. You missed your flight. And you are not eligible for a meal or hotel room. Next time, show up on time!!!!!!
Some people I've asked this to have defended this practice by saying it's "good customer service".
Huh??????? Then, like I said...what's the point of trumpeting the 10 minute rule? Is it good customer service to blow the connections of 85 people to allow 1 traveller on who didn't have the decency to show up late?