Arrived early but gate occupied

Old Feb 7, 18, 5:06 pm
  #16  
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Originally Posted by jiburi View Post

Am hoping Alaska would address this issue of improving coordination of gate usage (arrival and departures) and minimize our wait inside the aircraft. Additional gate (bean counters likely involved here)?

Jiburi
I've had this occur on just about every airline at every major airport.
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Old Feb 7, 18, 5:31 pm
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Landed in LAX at 925PM last night, was scheduled for 950pm-ish from FLL on VX. Ended up on the far far west remote pad. However, we didn't make it to the terminal (via bus) until 10:05PM. The bus drop-off gate entry is a minefield of cargo/baggage cannisters and baggage carts, the bus kept hitting the lips of the bag carts... I think it took us 5 minutes JUST to get from the driving lane to the front of the terminal (could have just walked it). Menzies is NOT doing Swissport (bus operator) any favors by making each bus driver feel like they have to drive thru an obstacle course.
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Old Feb 7, 18, 5:40 pm
  #18  
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Write your federal representatives and demand that Common Use Gates be required on all new airport terminal construction that has any federal financial support. Gate-squating (holding leases on lightly-used gates to assure that another carrier doesn't get them) is inefficient: it demands more construction spending, it uses public assets poorly, it's anti-competitive.

SEA is a lot busier than it was five years ago. LGA, DCA and LAX have been crowded for a long time. It's time for bigger planes (on average) or more construction.
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Old Feb 7, 18, 5:44 pm
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A slightly different problem with the late-evening arrival of the SEA-DCA flight (AS 2) when it arrives early e.g. 915 pm instead of 940 or 10 pm. It is the ONLY late-night flight at that time in that terminal (security to the terminal is long closed), and we have to sit and wait and wait and wait for the GA to arrive and operate the jetbridge. Since it's the only arrival/departure in that terminal at that time, it is not as if the GA is handling another flight, right?

I've never understood why AS, once it realizes that this particular flight will be early, doesn't send a message or automated call to the ground staff to alert them to be at the gate a half-hour earlier than scheduled.

For example, I just looked up AS 2 for tonight, and it is scheduled to arrive early at 9:17 instead of 9:41 pm. What are the odds that the ground staff will be ready inside the jetway by 9:15 at the latest?!

Last edited by AndyPatterson; Feb 7, 18 at 6:20 pm
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Old Feb 7, 18, 5:52 pm
  #20  
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Write your federal representatives and demand that Common Use Gates be required on all new airport terminal construction that has any federal financial support. Gate-squating (holding leases on lightly-used gates to assure that another carrier doesn't get them) is inefficient: it demands more construction spending, it uses public assets poorly, it's anti-competitive.

SEA is a lot busier than it was five years ago. LGA, DCA and LAX have been crowded for a long time. It's time for bigger planes (on average) or more construction.
Does nothing for DCA and LGA which are slot-controlled and does little for many other stations which ought to be slot-controlled and are simply saturated. It's not just gates, but every other bit of infrastructure and airspace which is jammed in many areas.

Maybe a good solid depression to cut back on air travel?
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Old Feb 7, 18, 9:10 pm
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Write your federal representatives and demand that Common Use Gates be required on all new airport terminal construction that has any federal financial support. Gate-squating (holding leases on lightly-used gates to assure that another carrier doesn't get them) is inefficient: it demands more construction spending, it uses public assets poorly, it's anti-competitive.

SEA is a lot busier than it was five years ago. LGA, DCA and LAX have been crowded for a long time. It's time for bigger planes (on average) or more construction.
Based on what I've seen, AA is defintely squating on gates at EWR
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Old Feb 7, 18, 9:12 pm
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Originally Posted by jsguyrus View Post
Did this exact thing two weeks ago, 30 min early into EWR, sit on the ramp for 30 min.
The captain of my flight a couple of weeks ago called out the schedulers! Only time I've seen that happen.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 12:00 am
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Originally Posted by DrAlex View Post
That's very interesting - I didn't know that was even a rare occurrence at SFO. That probably explains what happened to a boarding area full of SEA-bound pax in Dec. I was boarding a flight to SAN and I heard the overhead talking about a plane in the international A area and something about buses... I was glad I wasn't on that flight, but maybe the experience was not terrible!?
I've landed with Air New Zealand at SFO one time 45 minutes early to find our gate occupied by an Air India plane. At T-0 (the AI plane's scheduled departure) it pushed back then taxied back to the gate, parking up for another 30 minutes. We arrived 15 minutes later at the terminal, erasing our 45 minutes early and finally disembarking an hour and a half later 45 minutes late.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 7:37 am
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Originally Posted by jiburi View Post
It seems so often that when a flight arrives early, gate is occupied (at a non-hub destinations) and we have to wait on the tarmac for upwards of 15 to 30 minutes, erasing a chance for early arrival, but just an "on-time" arrival. It happens often to the airport which Alaska leases one or two gates. It has happened to me countless time at BOS, JFK, and BWI. Ive had a couple of instances when they would lease additional gate, but more often wait on the tarmac for a scheduled "on-time" arrival.

Am hoping Alaska would address this issue of improving coordination of gate usage (arrival and departures) and minimize our wait inside the aircraft. Additional gate (bean counters likely involved here)?

Jiburi
I'll take BWI for example. D20 is AS' gate. D22 is Allegiant's gate. Every single D gate is used with the exception of the ground level boarding for Boutique and Southern. The problem is VX has a 1745 departure to SFO and AS922 SEA-BWI while scheduled for a 1752 arrival almost always arrives right around 1715. Last thursday, Allegiant didn't have a departure around that time, so the inbound AS aircraft from SEA went into D22 35-40 mins early and that was the gate we boarded for the SEA flight. However, other days when Allegiant has a departure around that time, the inbound, extremely early AS aircraft sits over on the deice pad until the VX flight pushes. There really isn't anywhere else that AS could park, making it almost impossible to make up for an early arrival.

I equate this to having so few arrivals/departures especially on the east coast (ie, bwi, rdu, chs) that it almost feels like airports that this happens at don't really give much care to those airlines.

And I cannot count the number of times I've done ground based 360s around the N gates in SEA waiting for our gate to become available.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 7:54 am
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Common for AA in DFW, ORD as well. In the case of AA, it is attributed to schedule "banking", where flights arrive in concentrated waves, believed to make connections more efficient (an argument for another time and place).
AS has made a concerted effort to improve its schedule performance, boarding earlier, pushing back before scheduled departure - particularly for first AM flights - inevitable to arrive early when things go well.
I MUCH prefer to sit on the tarmac waiting for a gate than circling in the air, still common in the highly congested northeast.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 9:56 am
  #26  
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or arrive early, and the airport is not yet open, plane just circles and circles. happens often on flights from usa to lhr. i gotta go to the bathroom, i want to get to my room before traffic builds, i want to avoid those monster lines at lhr. i keep telling them i'm special, and to let me off, but the airplane just keeps circling. chances are, i also cannot get another glass of wine.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 10:38 am
  #27  
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Originally Posted by notquiteaff View Post
They could presumably have made it appear you arrived just on time (fly slower, take off later) and you'd have been happy about an on time arrival instead of complaining about it.
I'd imagine, flying slower likely burn more fuel, and while take off or depart later seem to be a good idea.....clogs the gates longer which was the original problem..... staying on tarmac before or after flight is likely the only economical solution.

I wonder how many flights AS wants before considering additional gate (subject to gate availability of course).....

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Old Feb 8, 18, 11:57 am
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Every time they brag over the PA about how we landed half an hour early is when I know they will make an announcement five minutes later about how we have to sit and wait since our gate is still occupied

My worse experiences with landing early and waiting have been with TPAC flights into LAX when there are strong winds pushing us across the Pacific. AA from HND, CX from HKG and JL from KIX but at least I was in C for all of those flights. Even then, I find it annoying cause they have all been waits of at least at hour and at some point, people start getting restless and want to use the restroom (understandable), which then leads to a series of announcements over the PA.
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Old Feb 8, 18, 1:28 pm
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OAK-PDX this morning arrived at the gate 35 minutes early (left 15 early). Was nice to arrive early and not have to wait for a gate...
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Old Feb 8, 18, 4:08 pm
  #30  
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Originally Posted by jiburi View Post
I'd imagine, flying slower likely burn more fuel, and while take off or depart later seem to be a good idea.....clogs the gates longer which was the original problem..... staying on tarmac before or after flight is likely the only economical solution.

I wonder how many flights AS wants before considering additional gate (subject to gate availability of course).....

Jiburi
To make an additional gate effective, you'd need to have additional employee. Even if there was another place to park the plane, the employees who drives the jetway/unload baggage/open the door are probably working the flight that is at the gate where you were supposed to arrive.
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