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JannEejit
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BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:18 pm

From Dec 12th BA passengers will be numerically classified from 1-5, based upon price paid for ticket, and those who paid the most invited to board first.

Whilst this may be nothing more than a concept to avoid 'stampede boarding' I wonder how it will work in practice ? Surely tickets aren't sold zonally (outwith business classes) and the spread of economy paying passengers cannot be easily categorised in a way that makes for a cleaner boarding method.

Also, if flying in the higher classes, why would you want to be shepherded out of the lounges onto a waiting aircraft to wait the longest for departure ? Is the best way to call for boarding to call passengers in the rearest most seats to board first ? Either way, it looks very much like good old fashioned snobbery. Will the last man on be able to stow his carry on luggage, will he receive the proverbial 'slow hand clap' etc ? ;-)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42052743
 
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mikegigs
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:29 pm

Actually, all airline tickets are sold in zones, or "fare classes". For economy alone, BA has 12 different classes (Y,B,H,K,L,M,N,S,V,Q,O,G) based on ticket price and upgrade/FF points eligibility. These classes are applied to all tickets so I would imagine it'd actually be quite easy to implement this boarding method.

Additionally, there are 3 premium economy fare classes (W,E,T), 5 for business (J,C,D,R,I), and 2 for first (F,A).

Honestly, it's not much more snobby compared to letting F and J board first - which is a total norm. At least you know that if you got a bad deal on your seat, you get a good boarding position. Not all to different for paying for expedited boarding like on WN.

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DfwRevolution
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:32 pm

If this helps BA call boarding groups more consistently, I'm all for it. Every station does it different today and you've got to be on your toes if you're a OneWorld frequent flier.
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tonystan
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:46 pm

Boarding at BA T5 is a mess. This can only help bring some order.

Personally I always buy the cheapest BA ticket going but I buy so many of them I’m Silver so that means I already jump into group 2, so there are ways and means.

The cheapest fares are generally the handbaggage only fares (on shorthaul anyway) and since their introduction Iv seen crazy abuse of that fare. This way it will be those customers who have overfilled their bags who will have them removed and checked thus hopefully avoiding more regular flyers having to check theirs.

Also, why is this exactly news? Other airlines globally have been doing this for years!
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ikramerica
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:52 pm

Some studies have shown that boarding randomly but in groups is most efficient. The fare price grouping is a form of that because the fares will be scattered about. The problem might occur that group 5 has a lot of middle seats causing a lot of seated passengers to have to stand up towards the end of boarding.
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LJ
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:52 pm

[quote="mikegigs"]Honestly, it's not much more snobby compared to letting F and J board first - which is a total norm. At least you know that if you got a bad deal on your seat, you get a good boarding position. Not all to different for paying for expedited boarding like on WN./quote]

To be honest, I don't know why someone want to board first (at least not in economy). The only reasoon being to get overhead bin space, but that's only a benefit on a full flight. I prefer to be board as one of the last when I don't travel with my kids. Or am I missing some benefit of boarding first? It's a better idea if BA guarantee would distribute overhead bin space according to fare paid.

The OP doesn't mean the fare classes. He means that the fare clases doesn't mean you have a certain seat in the aircraft. Boarding from the rear to the front makes sense. This not.
 
gunnerman
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BA passengers to board in order of their ticket price

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:02 pm

From 12 December 2017 BA will introduce 'group boarding' on all of its flights, with passengers assigned a group number between 1 and 5 depending on ticket price and Executive Club membership tier.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5098643/British-Airways-board-order-ticket-price.html
 
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FlyRow
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Re: BA passengers to board in order of their ticket price

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:11 pm

It's just boarding by travel-class combined with club-tier.
And duh!? you pay more for higher class tickets.

It's brought as a "you pay 50€" and get to board last, "you pay 200€" for the same ticket class and get to board earlier.
It's not that
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ty97
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Re: BA passengers to board in order of their ticket price

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:14 pm

Daily Mail being sensationalistic? Get the smelling salts, I never thought I'd see the day...........
 
B747forever
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Re: BA passengers to board in order of their ticket price

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:15 pm

Yeah, pretty misleading title. Hopefully when this goes into effect gate agents will enforce it.
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Arion640
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:22 pm

Iberia do this in some shape or form. Group 1 2 and 3 I think they have on european flights.

Boarding yesterday at JFK, was F, J and Gold, Silver and bronze all at once.

On the way out to JFK in T5 boarding was just a mass stampede.

Both terminals are operated by the airline too. It's not like it's a 3rd party operator. This will probably be a welcome change for frequent BA flyers.
 
Kestrel333
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:36 pm

American do this. I don’t think it works as well as some seem to say it does. When I’ve seen American do it, they don’t seem to have a great queuing system and there is more of a huddle. The different boarding groups are then called in such quick succession that this huddle becomes a mix of all the groups.

When you do get on the plane the aisles are blocked by people up and down the aircraft. Who’ve basically been called to board in a totally random fashion. Getting sat down seems to take an age.

Took Norwegian across the Pond this week. They board by seat row - from the back forwards. Makes so much more sense.
 
LHRFlyer
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:57 pm

To be honest, the reporting of this story including by some (Simon Calder, BBC News) who really should know better has been frankly pathetic.

If you read press reports you’d think no other airline in the world offered group or priority boarding.
 
bgm
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:02 pm

Most airlines in the US board this way (I believe BA's new boarding process is very similar to one fellow oneworld partner AA has)
 
leghorn
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:03 pm

Let me get this straight; If I pay less then I'm allowed stay in the fresh air at the departure gate or elsewhere longer rather than being cooked up on the plane with stale air?
 
sk736
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:10 pm

The "class" the British media is up in arms about is the social class, not the fare class!! It's something of a national obsession for us.
 
ahmetdouas
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:17 pm

It's a joke anyway. Let's see how BA enforces it. As if anything about BA is high class anymore anyway. Paying 10,000 USD for awful service does not make you high class!
 
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ClassicLover
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:37 pm

It is hilarious how people are so up in arms about it. It is going to save so much hassle at the gate.

Thanks to BA (stupidly IMHO) giving priority boarding to Bronze frequent flyers (oneworld Ruby), which no other oneworld airline does, it means the Priority Boarding line at present is -

First, Club, Gold, Silver, Bronze frequent flyers and their oneworld equivalents.

This means the priority line can be up to 60% of the aircraft. BA created this idiocy themselves to an extent.

Boarding by groups will solve the problem. People who are in group 1 can still get on last if they want to, it's not like when group 4 is boarding and you roll up with a group 1 boarding pass that they're going to tell you you've missed your slot, please step back :)

American Airlines does this really well, so if BA follows their example it will work out fine. Oh, and I like getting on first as I find the aircraft a far more relaxing environment than the gate area of an airport. By a long shot!
I do enjoy a spot of flying, especially when it's not in economy!
 
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Aisak
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:22 pm

ClassicLover wrote:
Thanks to BA (stupidly IMHO) giving priority boarding to Bronze frequent flyers (oneworld Ruby), which no other oneworld airline does, it means the Priority Boarding line at present is -

First, Club, Gold, Silver, Bronze frequent flyers and their oneworld equivalents.

This means the priority line can be up to 60% of the aircraft. BA created this idiocy themselves to an extent.


Well, It doesn't have to be ONE line. MAD has a set-up next to most boarding gates with 4 lanes: Priority, Group 1, 2 and 3. It has even sticks on the floor. If people are so anxious they can't keep seated, then they can wait in line using the assigned group lane.

Ussually there are two agents for boarding. It's quite easy; once they have both processed Priority Group passengers they start "servicing" the group 1 lane and so on... The priority lane (or any) is not closed so passengers can always get in as they please.

BA only needs to set passengers into different groups (5 as per the article). On narrowbody aircrafts there are no more than 200 pax, so it won't be that hard to implement at T5A. T5B and C with dual bridges will be even "roomier"
 
Planesmart
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 6:40 pm

For greatest efficiency / lowest boarding times, customer seat choices will need to be more restrictive. Is disembarking in the same order?

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ltbewr
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:10 pm

UA uses 1 to 5 organization of boarding order, along with priority of special physical needs, 1st, Biz, with small children. I am not sure how 2-4 is organized. Actually as most enter an aircraft from the front, it would make more sense to load the people in the back of the plane first than those in the front (1st/Biz).
 
DfwRevolution
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:11 pm

Kestrel333 wrote:
American do this. I don’t think it works as well as some seem to say it does. When I’ve seen American do it, they don’t seem to have a great queuing system and there is more of a huddle. The different boarding groups are then called in such quick succession that this huddle becomes a mix of all the groups.


Everyone will stand-up and huddle around the gate when boarding begins. That's just human nature. Only WN has really mastered this and that's because the queuing area won't physically permit more than one boarding group at a time. AA has a pretty good system for a few reasons:

1. They properly number groups. At many airlines, "Zone 1" is really the fifth or sixth group to board after F, J, Elite, credit card holders, women & children, and uniformed military members. The first wave of economy passengers is now Group 6.

2. They stick to the boarding procedure every time at every station.

Of course, I've still seen Group 8 people unaware of what's happening and board with Group 2. That's simply human nature. But as an AA frequent flier, I assign value to the fact that I always know when I'm going to board with no uncertainty.

Kestrel333 wrote:
Took Norwegian across the Pond this week. They board by seat row - from the back forwards. Makes so much more sense.


Sense for who? BA isn't going to get extra aircraft utilization if they turn an aircraft 5-10 minutes faster. BA carries way more frequent fliers than a leisure carrier like Norwegian and their operations should reflect that. You're going to upset your most valuable customers if you board them last and all the overhead space is gone.
I have a three post per topic limit. You're welcome to have the last word.
 
32andBelow
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:30 pm

mikegigs wrote:
Actually, all airline tickets are sold in zones, or "fare classes". For economy alone, BA has 12 different classes (Y,B,H,K,L,M,N,S,V,Q,O,G) based on ticket price and upgrade/FF points eligibility. These classes are applied to all tickets so I would imagine it'd actually be quite easy to implement this boarding method.

Additionally, there are 3 premium economy fare classes (W,E,T), 5 for business (J,C,D,R,I), and 2 for first (F,A).

Honestly, it's not much more snobby compared to letting F and J board first - which is a total norm. At least you know that if you got a bad deal on your seat, you get a good boarding position. Not all to different for paying for expedited boarding like on WN.

Source: https://www.britishairways.com/en-us/ex ... os/flights

Yes but all those economy fare classes can be anywhere in economy class. They aren't in actual zones on the aircraft. Also are they going to let a last minute Y board before an advance Business class? The Y may be higher.
 
username21
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:34 pm

DfwRevolution wrote:
Sense for who? BA isn't going to get extra aircraft utilization if they turn an aircraft 5-10 minutes faster. BA carries way more frequent fliers than a leisure carrier like Norwegian and their operations should reflect that. You're going to upset your most valuable customers if you board them last and all the overhead space is gone.


You sure about that? Even if BA isn't able to squeeze an extra segment out of its shorthaul fleet, quick boarding is super helpful in delay recovery, can help prevent missed slots, etc.
 
jfk777
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:34 pm

BA has many Club World seats on their planes that Priority Boarding is 1/3 of the passengers and that is just for Business class. Then you have the 14 First Class( all BA planes are 14 F), Platinum, Gold, and Silvers. By the time they get to the "regular" folk just flying economy with no status they have 70 people left for a 744, 777 or A380. Lousy way to board a plane, they can't make everyone "exclusive".
 
davidjohnson6
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:36 pm

People on a.net should know better than to make a fuss over this. Airlines figured out years ago that making their product very classist is the only way to make money.
You want a nicer seat - you pay more
You want better food - you pay more
You want fresher air - you pay more
You want a quieter seat - you pay more
You want more legroom - yoy pay more
You want to be first off on arrival - you pay more
You want a free newspaper - you pay more
You want more luggage - you pay more

Nobody protests that an airline selling first, business or premium economy is unfair. This is just separation of the economy cabin into different tiers.
Now in economy:
You want to board first - you pay more

If you (like me) buy tickets mainly from LCCs like Easyjet then you are as guilty as anyone else for causing this change. We want a luxury product but are not prepared to pay for it - the obvious response from BA is to make it more obvious that paying a higher fare gives something that the cheapest fare does not
 
smallvoyageur
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:30 pm

sk736 wrote:
The "class" the British media is up in arms about is the social class, not the fare class!! It's something of a national obsession for us.


Absolutely, Do you "rise up from the sofa in the living room, to go to the loo", or "rise up from the settee in the lounge, to go to the toilet". :lol: :stirthepot:
 
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readytotaxi
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BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:03 am

Starting Dec 12th the lowest fare passengers will be boarded last.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42052743

"A BA spokeswoman said: "We are always looking at ways to improve and simplify the airport experience for our customers... Next month we are introducing new boarding procedures to speed up the process and make it simpler for customers to understand."

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Alexsing
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:10 am

So much for Cruz's "we want to make BA a premium airline again".
I really can't see how this will speed up the boarding process, if people sat at opposite end of economy are boarding at the same time...
 
parapente
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:14 am

Something similar has been going on with most airlines for quite a time.Personally I hate the 'scrummaging 'both before you get into the aircraft and particularly in the plane.The worst is when you are at the back of an aircraft and they let those at the middle/front on at the same time.It just slows everything down as they fight over overhead bins etc.
 
2008matt
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:24 am

Hang on... so if I buy a business ticket, I now have no choice but the get on the plane first?? Erm... no. If you've paid a premium you should be able to choose exactly when you get on the plane during the boarding process.
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GCT64
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:35 am

That's just the same as United etc. No overhead bag space for those in Group 5. I don't think it is that controversial.
Although I'm hoping it's not truly done by ticket price as I'm BA Silver but also tend to buy low priced tickets :-o
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zkojq
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:36 am

BA's race to the bottom continues.
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vhtje
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:36 am

Alexsing wrote:
So much for Cruz's "we want to make BA a premium airline again".
I really can't see how this will speed up the boarding process, if people sat at opposite end of economy are boarding at the same time...


With that comment, I do not suppose you have flown recently domestically within the US? In my experience with it in the United States on American, it actually works pretty well. Amazingly, people do respect the grouping and patiently await their turn before fronting up to board the aircraft. Of course, there is the occasional moron who tries to board out of their group, but they are usually given pretty short shrift from the gate agent and sent back.

But the reason it works well is because with any group, there are fewer people boarding at any one time, so that those that are, board more quickly.

I should think that with added British reserve, the process should work even better.

Where it can be comical is on a small aircraft. I was once boarding a UA-branded flight from God-knows where on a tiny regional jet (I think a CRJ200) on a flight that had perhaps 30-35 passengers. The poor gate agent had to go through a myriad of boarding groups ("United PlusPrem, Star Uber Platinum" etc etc) before finally there was anyone to board! It was comical, but she was very good natured about it.
Last edited by vhtje on Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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mcdu
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Re: BA to introduce new boarding policy, cheapest last.

Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:42 am

I like this plan. You get what you pay for. A novel concept for travelers to comprehend obviously. They all want a $99 ticket for a first class international lie flat seat.

Also it frees up the overhead space for those paying the most. Pay more = get more. How is this wrong?
 
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ojjunior
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:40 am

I'm always the last in line to board, no matter the zone i'm in. My seat will be there and those standing 20 minutes on the line even before the boarding process starts wil arrive at the same time than me.
 
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Jayafe
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:56 am

ojjunior wrote:
I'm always the last in line to board, no matter the zone i'm in. My seat will be there and those standing 20 minutes on the line even before the boarding process starts wil arrive at the same time than me.


They will arrive early if they don’t have to wait for their luggage, that was checked-in as last people onboard usually find no available overhead lockers. That’s some good 10-30 additional min depending on the airport
 
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ojjunior
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:38 pm

I meant departure and arrival times. It doesn't change for any one flying any class. You got it.

Perhaps those who stand up before the aircraft reach the gate despite several announcements not to do so and run like a delayed doctor to the surgery to the luggage belt and 10-15 mins later I found them waiting for their luggage just besides me made their day, right?
Yeap, let's pretend we all are really busy and important people and need to board and disembark before everyone else and just happened F is sold out and that's the reason we're flying Y, right?

BTW, never saw this, my grandpa said it happened a lot during the 50''s...
 
sk736
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Re: BA to implement 'class system' boarding method.

Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:45 pm

smallvoyageur wrote:
sk736 wrote:
The "class" the British media is up in arms about is the social class, not the fare class!! It's something of a national obsession for us.


Absolutely, Do you "rise up from the sofa in the living room, to go to the loo", or "rise up from the settee in the lounge, to go to the toilet". :lol: :stirthepot:

If you're proper posh, it would always be the lavatory!

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