I've only ever flown Y, but here are some really good check-in experiences that I remember:
Humphrey Terminal - I got there early, got my bag tagged and dropped off, and got to the gate in about five minutes. Usually security is long there, though. But it was so early that I went right through!
Lindbergh Terminal - My flight was out of the end of the G concourse, so I got to take advantage of some of the places that are basically to the benefit of people who bother to research them. First, on drop-off, I was let out on the left side of the departure road and went to the hidden NW
check-in counter that is in a room on the first floor of the parking garage. I checked in and dropped my bag very quickly with no line. And the agent was super nice as well! Then I went downstairs, took the tram to the skyway security checkpoint (usually about 80% of the people who use it are the knowing employees) which I got through very quickly. All in all, it was about ten minutes from when I got dropped off to when I got to the gate, which for a legacy carrier at their biggest hub is pretty impressive.
And the worst three check-in experiences I remember:
Champion Air in PVR
for a flight to MSP
. Since it was international, everyone had to check in at the counter AND
fill out paperwork. That took forever.
Humphrey Terminal - the very first time I flew Sun Country I was with my mom. We booked it with Expedia but for some reason the ticket agent wasn't looking it up properly and they said they had no record of recieving payment from Expedia for our tickets (despite us having the Expedia confirmation in our hands) and so she made us buy the walk-up fare which was $880 r/t MSP
for two people. Then we had to fill out a "lost ticket request" and something like six weeks later we got our money back except for our original airfare that we paid with Expedia. Since then I've almost always avoided those websites and use the airline website, unless the airfare difference is severe.
Terminal C, Domestic check-in - I'd expect a domestic check-in line to move quickly. But the line was very, very long despite having many counters open. It took us half-an-hour to check in for domestic flight. Of course, it was rush hour. And it was 6 PM
so our flight was three hours late anyway. Fortunately we had expected the delay and just enjoyed the food court and watching people board their transatlantic flights.