For goodness sake, stop queuing!

Old Jun 25, 19, 5:45 am
  #16  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Just turn up when the red FINAL CALL thing goes up, you'll be on swiftly, and at stage they will just have to find somewhere for any baggage. .
My system exactly. Always aim to be the penultimate passenger to board. Never the last mind!
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Old Jun 25, 19, 5:59 am
  #17  
 
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Over the years I have flown to and from Palma Mallorca on many airlines. This happens a lot from Palma.
The moment a ground crew turns up at the gate, some busybody has to go and ask something, in many cases irrelevant (I have listened in a few times) then hangs around the desk, prompting others to join them in a queue.

Fortunately, I have travelled with an elderly relative over the last few years, so bypass all the nonsense as we are boarded first. But have had the occasionally dirty look as we walk past the forming queue. I always smile at them.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:02 am
  #18  
 
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and whilst we're on it what's with the Group 1-3 queue? If Group 1 is then called separately it results in total confusion
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:35 am
  #19  
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Carry a folding walking stick. Has 2 purposes .... Firstly preboarding, secondly ... well use your imagination 😊
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:37 am
  #20  
 
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I agree that boarding, particularly for short haul is a problem. Ideally we’re last to board, but on a busy flight a bag under the seat eats into legroom; a bag a few rows away can be annoying if you’re battling e.g the BoB trolley to access it during the flight; and forced checking is a real pain.

It must come down to enforcement. Whatever they are, passengers have their own reasons for boarding early, so hardly surprising people will (rightly or wrongly) chance it if it repeatedly works for them.

At T5 automated gates there’s no human interaction so you get passengers from groups 1-5 going through the group 1 line because it’s shorter.

And at gates where an agent scans, IME the chances of enforcing groups is not much higher then an automated gate.

It’s true that if you’re organised and chilled out then it doesn’t really matter when you board, but for the other occasions passengers are entitled to expect BA to manage their processes properly, which I think would reduce the issues raised here.

Another issue is that messy boarding encourages more people to turn up 21 mins before departure to try to avoid it. On my most recent long haul the gate agent commented that they’d been waiting for us and they’d been hoping to complete boarding early. Simply not going to happen if the alternative is waiting to join an enormous group 1-3 queue for a 747!
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:39 am
  #21  
 
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Personally I would like to see the boarding pass scanners issue electric shocks to anyone boarding before their group is called or for them to be reallocated to a middle seat at the back of the plane.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:43 am
  #22  
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I’ve developed a wholly un-British approach to this - if a queue is forming incorrectly I’ll ignore it and walk right on past. Most refreshing!
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Last edited by Swanhunter; Jun 25, 19 at 8:25 am
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:47 am
  #23  
 
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One has to ask.. has this been brought upon us passengers by most if not all airlines charging to check bags (elites in this case dont apply)
and for those like myself who never checks a bag, unless I am forced to by some over zealous agent at check in..
After all , everyone is going to the same place, and trying to get on board early can only mean we have space for our carry on.

Although my memory with age has well according to my wife, been missing for a while, I dont remember the mess in front of a gate for boarding prior to airlines charging for checked bags
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Old Jun 25, 19, 6:53 am
  #24  
 
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Originally Posted by AleTrail View Post
I've never seen anyone turned away at the point of scanning/presenting their BP because of wrong group.
To give credit to BA, I saw this a good few times at LHR last Wed and at LYS on Sun.

Plucking some figures out of thin air, I think it’s 60:40 passengers to staff. The airline can have a great system and try to enforce it, but if passengers continue to flout and ignore then it won’t get very far.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:01 am
  #25  
 
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I've found the system at LHR T2 very good. They have the queuing maze at one side of the gate for Economy passengers and the the fast track line directly in front. Flying with SAS I've seen the gate staff refuse many people for being in the wrong group.

The electronic gates are ok. They can set them to only let through certain groups at the time so I've seen the ones in ZRH refuse passengers because it wasn't their group yet.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:12 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by fotographer View Post
One has to ask.. has this been brought upon us passengers by most if not all airlines charging to check bags (elites in this case dont apply)
and for those like myself who never checks a bag, unless I am forced to by some over zealous agent at check in..
After all , everyone is going to the same place, and trying to get on board early can only mean we have space for our carry on.

Although my memory with age has well according to my wife, been missing for a while, I dont remember the mess in front of a gate for boarding prior to airlines charging for checked bags
This is completely true. From charging for a second hold bag (in 2002, i def checked in a 2nd hold bag for free from JFK - LHR) to charging for bags at all, this is what has resulted.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:30 am
  #27  
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Originally Posted by krispy84 View Post
The airline can have a great system and try to enforce it, but if passengers continue to flout and ignore then it won’t get very far.
But if passengers do not work with your system, this surely is a sign that your system is not good as you think it is (i.e. is not a "great system") and does not take into account how people actually behave in the real world as distinct to how you would like them to behave in an ideal world.
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:51 am
  #28  
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Systems can easily be disrupted by the public, as we all know. What IS needed is a degree of assertiveness by those who are supposedly in charge of boarding procedures. However:
  • Any instructions are frequently inaudible due to inadequate hardware or poor microphone technique.
  • Gate layouts are not always compatible with either multiple queues or simply the number of pax.

However, sometimes the public are constructive. This from my CPT18 Trip Report last year (LGW long-haul 777) ...
At 1840 Gate 27 was declared … probably the longest walk available at LGW(S), and so we obediently trotted in that direction. On reaching our destination, we grabbed a couple of seats close to the impending action, and noted with surprise that there were no Tensa barriers or signage deployed. The only sign for a priority queue was abandoned forlornly against the wall. Even more surprising was the way everyone politely stayed well back from the desks, leaving at least 15 ft of clear space!! Where were the notorious Gate Lice we read about on FT?
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:56 am
  #29  
 
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Originally Posted by flyingmonkie View Post
My system exactly. Always aim to be the penultimate passenger to board. Never the last mind!
This might work for BA, but when I had to fly Wizzair last week, the flight was at Final Call before it had even arrived at the stand!
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Old Jun 25, 19, 7:59 am
  #30  
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Originally Posted by NickB View Post
But if passengers do not work with your system, this surely is a sign that your system is not good as you think it is (i.e. is not a "great system") and does not take into account how people actually behave in the real world as distinct to how you would like them to behave in an ideal world.
i agree in principle, but realistically, at outstations, there will always be limits to how flexible the layout will be given that different airlines will have different procedures at their hub. I mean, you may have check in counters or gates which will be used consecutively by BA, LH and KL all of which may have different check in and boarding priorities so ultimately there will be limits to how intuitive your procedures can be.

Besides, culturally, one might argue that the behaviour here is one of ‘first come first served’ ignoring both prioritisation and flight differentiation, ie any system conforming to that intuition would defeat the notion of check in time limits and priority boarding both of which are presumably legitimate.

so I agree in an ideal world but with existing constraints I do think that a bit of self-awareness/openness on the part of passengers would help the process quite significantly.
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