Stop the early boarding (D0) stupidity

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Old Mar 12, 19, 1:26 pm
  #106  
 
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At least they made the effort. The last time I flew with AA they changed the flight's gate three times, different terminals in under an hour. Then they started boarding early, I was there 10 mins after scheduled boarding was to start, running the whole way, and they had already closed the door. I missed my flight and had to wait 4hrs for the next one. As I said, last time I flew AA.

Patrick
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Old Mar 12, 19, 1:30 pm
  #107  
 
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Originally Posted by jliehr View Post
I don't have my boarding passes anymore, but I am pretty certain that both of my DFW-HNL flights and DFW-KOA flights have had boarding times on the pass at T-45, which makes sense with the larger planes.
Yeah, widebody planes most definitely start boarding at T-45 if not T-50.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 1:46 pm
  #108  
 
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Originally Posted by JALOO5-Flyer View Post
AA's boarding process is really a mystery.
Situation 1: at LAX, left FL lounge at T-30 sharp heading to Gate 42B for a tcon flight. Took me less than 5 minutes on the way and when I arrived at the gate it seemed the majority had boarded and there's no line at gate at that time. Good thing about tcon was there's still plenty OH space in F..
When I fly a 789 out of LAX boarding time starts at T-35 which is reflected on the screen at the gate but not on the app. Once boarding starts it takes10-15min to board. With the new bins there's a lot less jostling over where to put bags in the overhead.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 1:48 pm
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I hate this too!! I had a too-close-for-me call HNL-PHX two years ago and I get anxious just recalling it from your post. We were only like 2 gates over charging our devices and when boarding was scheduled to begin, I walked over since we were in F. I found that the entire plane had boarded already!

More recently, flying LAX-PVG, I left the Flagship Lounge at the scheduled boarding time (which was right at the gate of my aircraft, 41 or 42 I think). When I walked up, I found them already boarding zone 7! I was correctly processed next via the priority lane, but I agree that boarding that early is absurd.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 2:30 pm
  #110  
 
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Originally Posted by Gig103 View Post
I hate this too!! I had a too-close-for-me call HNL-PHX two years ago and I get anxious just recalling it from your post. We were only like 2 gates over charging our devices and when boarding was scheduled to begin, I walked over since we were in F. I found that the entire plane had boarded already!

More recently, flying LAX-PVG, I left the Flagship Lounge at the scheduled boarding time (which was right at the gate of my aircraft, 41 or 42 I think). When I walked up, I found them already boarding zone 7! I was correctly processed next via the priority lane, but I agree that boarding that early is absurd.
I'm fine with early boarding when they are ready, but proper announcement/notification is very needed.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 5:26 pm
  #111  
 
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AA's on-time fixation is crazy. This weekend, was flying MIA-DTW at 13:36. At about 12:45, I received a text that departure was now 14:00. I made my way to the gate -- arriving about 13:20. At that point, they announce that the delay is because there are no pilots available and that they will arrive in Miami at 14:00. At 13:30, they begin boarding the plane "so that they will be ready to go when the pilots arrive". I realize that there will be no way that we will depart before 14:30 and decide to sit in the gate area, rather than board. (My seat was in F on an A319). Almost immediately after they call Group 9 and the last passengers board, they page me to the counter. "Are you planning on getting on this flight?" Yes, I answered. Well, you need to board now or we will give away your seat, I was told. (All through this time, the AA app and the monitor are still showing a 14:00 departure.) I boarded the plane and of course, we did not depart until 14:45. So, when is T-15 or T-10 when AA shows departure at 14:00 even though that is completely impossible?
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Old Mar 12, 19, 5:40 pm
  #112  
 
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Originally Posted by MarkInMichigan View Post
AA's on-time fixation is crazy. This weekend, was flying MIA-DTW at 13:36. At about 12:45, I received a text that departure was now 14:00. I made my way to the gate -- arriving about 13:20. At that point, they announce that the delay is because there are no pilots available and that they will arrive in Miami at 14:00. At 13:30, they begin boarding the plane "so that they will be ready to go when the pilots arrive". I realize that there will be no way that we will depart before 14:30 and decide to sit in the gate area, rather than board. (My seat was in F on an A319). Almost immediately after they call Group 9 and the last passengers board, they page me to the counter. "Are you planning on getting on this flight?" Yes, I answered. Well, you need to board now or we will give away your seat, I was told. (All through this time, the AA app and the monitor are still showing a 14:00 departure.) I boarded the plane and of course, we did not depart until 14:45. So, when is T-15 or T-10 when AA shows departure at 14:00 even though that is completely impossible?
T-15 is always original departure time, AAs reasoning is they can always switch pilots/crew if schedules allow, even if it rarely happens in practice.
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Old Mar 12, 19, 9:44 pm
  #113  
 
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I did have this happen in CLT. The AA club was next to the gate. We had a delay, which was posted but they boarded the plane anyway. Fortunately I figured it out before I sat in the club and watched my plane pull away in front of me.
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Old Mar 17, 19, 10:50 pm
  #114  
 
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Originally Posted by JALOO5-Flyer View Post
AA's boarding process is really a mystery.
Situation 2: at MIA. I was closely monitoring the incoming flight on flightradar24 as the incoming a/c was still held on the taxiway. The app showed "boarding now" despite the a/c had not yet arrived at the gate. Asked an AAgent at lounge she said it should board pretty soon you should head to the gate. Boarding ended up commencing 20 min after scheduled departure. That's way more than enough time to take a shower and grab some small bites.
With MIA being a maint hub for AA, they could easily replace, if available, the aircraft with a similar configured aircraft and depart on time. They have done this in the past if the plane was doing a "turn-around" and coming directly back to MIA. Although rare as planes schedules are usually planned weeks in advance, it can happen, so tracking a plane on flightradar24 is not always accurate.
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Old Mar 18, 19, 6:43 am
  #115  
 
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Had a bad D0 experience over the weekend. Flight into MIA from SFO for a deep South America connection was two hours late. I ran to my gate as I still had 15 minutes to make the connection and got there maybe 10 minutes before departure time. The flight, of course, had closed. By departure time, there was at least 15 people there from my SFO flight when the gate agent came up and started to rebook people for the flight the next night.

Obviously, the gate agent knew the SFO plane had 15 people connecting and would be arriving late. The planes sit in South America for 12 hours so holding the plane wouldn't cause any delays on the other end. I get the importance of D0 when a plane starts its day as those delays add on throughout the day but ... to the last flights of the day to South America?
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Old Mar 18, 19, 6:50 am
  #116  
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On Saturday my JFK/MIA flight boarded 15 minutes early but still took over an hour to complete boarding-772. All kinds of drama over seat assignments.
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Old Mar 18, 19, 8:21 am
  #117  
 
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Originally Posted by newyorkgeorge View Post
On Saturday my JFK/MIA flight boarded 15 minutes early but still took over an hour to complete boarding-772. All kinds of drama over seat assignments.
On a JFK/MIA flight? Call me shocked!
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Old Mar 18, 19, 9:08 am
  #118  
 
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So this makes me worry a little. I usually fly Delta but going on vacation with friends who cant/dont want to spend extra on flights so they go with the cheapest at the time, so were stuck with AA.

Both flights connect at DFW, one way via AA itself, the other via American Eagle.

Both flights have a 40 minute layover which I assumed would be good enough barring delays, but if they regularly close off early, should I try and convince them to do a different connection with longer layover?
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Old Mar 18, 19, 11:17 am
  #119  
 
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Our experience last August:

Flying PHX-ORD-MAD, our PHX-ORD was diverted to STL due to weather and the airplane did not have enough fuel to stay in a holding pattern. While in STL, the airport staff helped with connections due to this delay and held our business class seat on an AA flight to LHR to connect to MAD but it was going to be very close to catch that LHR flight.

We had no checked bags, so we ran to the gate at ORD and made it with passengers still boarding, 25 minutes before schedule departure. The gate agent starts the process of changing our ticket and has some issues and asked for help from another gate agent. The last of the ticketed passengers boarded while the agents were still working on fixing our ticket. The gate supervisor made the decision to close the gate, 20 minutes before the scheduled departure time, leaving us at the counter because all ticketed passengers were on the airplane. The agent working on our tickets apologized, said there was nothing further she could do, told us to go to the AC and have them reschedule us and left for the jet bridge. My wife and I are both EP, at that moment, we made the decision we are no longer going to be loyal to AA and have barely flown them since. We will use up our AA miles and move on.
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Old Mar 18, 19, 12:00 pm
  #120  
 
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Suggested boarding time with a 2 year old in business?

My wife and I will be flying with our 2 year old out of FLL going to Charlotte next month on an A321. And then from Charlotte to Detroit on a Bombardier CRJ-900. I'm interested in advice about when to show up at the gate and when to board for both legs of the flight. I thought it would be wise to board late, hopefully letting my daughter burn off some energy in the terminal rather than make her sit on the plane for an extra half hour, but I'm reading posts up thread saying if you don't board early you risk not getting overhead space even in business. Thoughts?

Last edited by LWT3; Mar 18, 19 at 12:31 pm
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