Old Aug 26, 22, 5:21 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: Adam Smith
AC link:
UPDATED HERE January 2, 2022

Boarding Process

https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...g-by-zone.html

Pre-boarding: Customers who have requested wheelchair assistance
Zone 1: J and SE customers
Zone 2: 75K, 50K, 35K, 25K, Star Alliance Gold, Premium Economy, Latitude and Primary or Secondary Cardholder on Aeroplan black credit cards
Zone 2.5:
- Passengers travelling with children under the age of 6 or who require additional time to board the aircraft
- Passengers travelling with a musical instrument as part of their carry-on baggage
Zone 3: Comfort fares, passengers who purchased preferred seats in advance
Zones 3, 4 and 5: General boarding (back to front). AC Express flights will not have Zone 5.
Zone 6: Economy Basic

Companions travelling on the same PNR as an Aeroplan Elite/*Gold member will receive the same priority boarding zone.

Original thread covering 2014-2019 can be found here
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Zoned Boarding (2020 onwards)

Old Jan 25, 23, 6:28 pm
  #526  
 
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Originally Posted by cavitron View Post
You can board with immediate family members and one companion whether or not they are on the same reservation. On the same PNR, they will most likely get the same zone on their boarding cards.

details here: https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...by-zone.html#/
Thats very odd. I never had the same zone as my family even when we are traveling on the same PNR. Yes they alway allowed us to board together after I tell them that we are a family and traveling together but always had different zones. The last two flights were about 10 days ago.

Originally Posted by Bohemian1 View Post
Has anyone noticed if some stations are boarding families before Zone 1? I haven't seen it for a while, but my sample size may be limited.
Do you mean families with children or just only families?

Last edited by Adam Smith; Jan 26, 23 at 12:25 am Reason: Merge consecutive posts by same user
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Old Jan 25, 23, 6:37 pm
  #527  
 
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Originally Posted by Davvidd View Post
Thats very odd. I never had the same zone as my family even when we are traveling on the same PNR. Yes they alway allowed us to board together after I tell them that we are a family and traveling together but always had different zones. The last two flights were about 10 days ago.
Agree it hasnít always been my experience. Iím rarely on one PNR with the family but when we are it has happened that we are all the same zone. Clearly not an iron clad system. My son has the same name as me, and even when Iím not on board he has gotten zone 1/2 when Iíve booked the ticket!

Originally Posted by Bohemian1 View Post
Has anyone noticed if some stations are boarding families before Zone 1? I haven't seen it for a while, but my sample size may be limited.
I havenít noticed this. I still see it after zone 2. I have noticed lots of families boarding when one of them is in a wheelchair or something.

Last edited by Adam Smith; Jan 26, 23 at 12:20 am Reason: Merge consecutive posts by same user
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Old Jan 25, 23, 6:46 pm
  #528  
 
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Originally Posted by cavitron View Post
Agree it hasnít always been my experience. Iím rarely on one PNR with the family but when we are it has happened that we are all the same zone. Clearly not an iron clad system. My son has the same name as me, and even when Iím not on board he has gotten zone 1/2 when Iíve booked the ticket!
Doesn't the Zone depend on the FF Status and then also on the ticket you purchase? So if you buy the ticket for him. and you purchase a higher fare ticket then he may get the earlier boarding zone?
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Old Jan 25, 23, 6:52 pm
  #529  
 
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Originally Posted by Davvidd View Post
Doesn't the Zone depend on the FF Status and then also on the ticket you purchase? So if you buy the ticket for him. and you purchase a higher fare ticket then he may get the earlier boarding zone?
The time it happened he was traveling alone on a flex
ticket. He even had my status on his boarding pass. No idea how it happened but he was very proud of himself. 😂
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Old Jan 25, 23, 7:07 pm
  #530  
 
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I travel on AC several times a year with my family and theyíve always had Zone 1 on their boarding passes regardless of which cabin weíre in or how expensive (or not) the ticket is. They donít have any status themselves, but weíre always on the same PNR and we all have the same surname, if that makes any difference.
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Old Jan 26, 23, 12:09 am
  #531  
 
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Originally Posted by SuperCargo View Post
I travel on AC several times a year with my family and theyíve always had Zone 1 on their boarding passes regardless of which cabin weíre in or how expensive (or not) the ticket is. They donít have any status themselves, but weíre always on the same PNR and we all have the same surname, if that makes any difference.
So do I but it never happened to me. By the way I do not have status with AC but Star G only. So that may be different with AC.
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Old Jan 26, 23, 2:04 pm
  #532  
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8785 today. An FA in uniform bypasses the standing line up to the very front. Eventually boards first.

Goes place her larger bag somewhere in the back, but leaves a smaller one in the corridor, in the middle of the front section. I push it aside with my feet so I could walk over it. She was not pleased, good for her. :-)

Sat in front. Possible that there were no upgrades requests left so possibly OK.

But I thought policy was the crews board later, definitely not before zone 1? Or is Jazz different?

(BTW I was surprised that some CR9, possibly original AC ones since it had the older small screen, has pretty small bins in the J cabin. Most people's luggage had to go in the closet.
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Old Jan 26, 23, 2:07 pm
  #533  
 
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Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
8785 today. An FA in uniform bypasses the standing line up to the very front. Eventually boards first.

Goes place her larger bag somewhere in the back, but leaves a smaller one in the corridor, in the middle of the front section. I push it aside with my feet so I could walk over it. She was not pleased, good for her. :-)

Sat in front. Possible that there were no upgrades requests left so possibly OK.

But I thought policy was the crews board later, definitely not before zone 1? Or is Jazz different?

(BTW I was surprised that some CR9, possibly original AC ones since it had the older small screen, has pretty small bins in the J cabin. Most people's luggage had to go in the closet.
Living on the east coast, quite a few of our routes get ďjazzedĒ in the winter and I get a lot of RJ9. Some of them have bigger overheads than others. But if you get one of the really small ones I have a carryon that fits in the sizer but wonít fit in the overhead. The SD usually puts it in the closet for me
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Old Feb 2, 23, 6:42 am
  #534  
 
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First flight of the year for me, doing my weekly flight to YVR. The gate crew announced the usual boarding announcement but then added "Please note there are two Priority Boarding types. Zone 1 and Zone 2..." Its a small q400 and not a lot of zone 1s but still new to hear that.
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Old Feb 2, 23, 9:51 am
  #535  
 
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Originally Posted by theranj View Post
First flight of the year for me, doing my weekly flight to YVR. The gate crew announced the usual boarding announcement but then added "Please note there are two Priority Boarding types. Zone 1 and Zone 2..." Its a small q400 and not a lot of zone 1s but still new to hear that.
I guess the team in YCD is more enlightened than many in YVR, who seem to believe in a more laissez-faire approach to zoned boarding.
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Old Feb 7, 23, 7:20 pm
  #536  
 
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Just an FYI for all you Zone 1's out there. Boarding AC 420 today, I'm standing in the Zone 1 line (there were separate Zone 1 & 2 signs) and an entitled A-H standing to the side decided to just go to the front of the line as soon as Zone 1 was called. On Board I pointed out that there was a line up and he had butted in. Apparently (according to him) if Zone 1 and 2 are in the same line you dont need to line up, so going forward we can all just push to the front and ignore the line....
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Old Feb 7, 23, 7:25 pm
  #537  
 
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Originally Posted by MME2YYZ View Post
Just an FYI for all you Zone 1's out there. Boarding AC 420 today, I'm standing in the Zone 1 line (there were separate Zone 1 & 2 signs) and an entitled A-H standing to the side decided to just go to the front of the line as soon as Zone 1 was called. On Board I pointed out that there was a line up and he had butted in. Apparently (according to him) if Zone 1 and 2 are in the same line you dont need to line up, so going forward we can all just push to the front and ignore the line....
On widebody flights like that when I know bin space isnít an issue I donít like to even board with the Zone 1/2 debacle. Iíll usually hang back and board later. Priority boarding is nothing short of a circus in like 98% of the cases.
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Old Feb 7, 23, 7:39 pm
  #538  
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Originally Posted by MME2YYZ View Post
Just an FYI for all you Zone 1's out there. Boarding AC 420 today, I'm standing in the Zone 1 line (there were separate Zone 1 & 2 signs) and an entitled A-H standing to the side decided to just go to the front of the line as soon as Zone 1 was called. On Board I pointed out that there was a line up and he had butted in. Apparently (according to him) if Zone 1 and 2 are in the same line you dont need to line up, so going forward we can all just push to the front and ignore the line....
I mean I wouldn't do it like that, but I'd certainly cut in when they're about to call zone 2 if it's a combined line.

If I get to a gate and the combined line has 100 people waiting, I'm probably going to find a way around. Or I'll sit down somewhere. Depends on the gate.

But you said they were separate lines, but his statement was about a combined line? That confuses me.
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Old Feb 7, 23, 7:49 pm
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Originally Posted by canadiancow View Post
I mean I wouldn't do it like that, but I'd certainly cut in when they're about to call zone 2 if it's a combined line.

If I get to a gate and the combined line has 100 people waiting, I'm probably going to find a way around. Or I'll sit down somewhere. Depends on the gate.
If there's clearly a dedicated zone one line I will join the end of that. When there's a crowd, or a combined zone 1/2 line, I start at the front and walk towards the end, asking "zone 1? zone 1? zone 1?" As soon as I find the first zone 2, I thank them and step in front of them.
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Old Feb 8, 23, 1:35 am
  #540  
 
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Originally Posted by canopus27 View Post
If there's clearly a dedicated zone one line I will join the end of that.
I have sometimes seen, when arriving midway through boarding, that the zone 1 line has a bunch of people from zones 3+ because "they called my zone". I'm not sure what part of that entitles them to use whatever line they want.
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