New Delta Boarding Process Jan 2019

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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:24 am
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New Delta Boarding Process Jan 2019

https://www.usatoday.com/story/trave...19/2267416002/
Some interesting changes. Curious what my boarding pass will say now with Delta One vs First Class as both were Prem before (Diamonds still board with these groups). And now, Comf + has it's own boarding and is before SkyPriority (Plat and Gold downgrade).
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:27 am
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The thing that sucks about this (Other than getting kicked as a platinum) is that the Comfort + value proposition isn't even that good. I'm always amazed to see the price difference between coach and C+, and shocked that people would actually pay hundreds more for it. I'm only 5'10".
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:34 am
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Oh man, Platinums are about to lose their minds when they have trouble finding overhead bin space in C+...

It's somewhat disappointing as nothing they are changing will really speed up the boarding process. I really wish they would mix in some lucky back of the bus folks in with the First/SKY boarding if only to make boarding faster. I know, when pigs fly and all...

edit: I realize now that if you are upgraded to C+ then you can still board with the new SKY group. Oh my god. Why would Delta do this? This will literally slow the boarding process down even more! What harm does having Plat/Gold board with SKY if they are not in C+? Delta is literally trying to slow down boarding even more.. I don't understand.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:38 am
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Originally Posted by micstatic View Post
I'm only 5'10".
There ya go. I think you answered your own question.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:48 am
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Originally Posted by ljreinholt View Post
https://www.usatoday.com/story/trave...19/2267416002/
Some interesting changes. Curious what my boarding pass will say now with Delta One vs First Class as both were Prem before (Diamonds still board with these groups). And now, Comf + has it's own boarding and is before SkyPriority (Plat and Gold downgrade).
This explains it better. No more numbers or abbreviations. Boarding zones will say Delta One, Premium Select, First Class, Delta Comfort+, Sky Priority, Main Cabin 1, Main Cabin 2, Main Cabin 3, Basic Economy. They will also each have their own color coding. DM's will presumably say Delta One or First Class boarding zones (even if they are not in those cabins).

https://news.delta.com/boarding-simp...tte-tie-it-all
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:50 am
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More detail straight from Delta here: https://news.delta.com/boarding-simp...tte-tie-it-all

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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:52 am
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That literally reads to me as "what is the slowest way we can board our planes? here are years of innovation at work to make sure that we need to start boarding our jets T-45 rather than just T-40 (already industry leading for longest boarding time)!".
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:56 am
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They can call these zones anything they like and make them any colour they like like but unless the gate staff enforce the order properly - and that includes telling interlopers to go away until it is their turn AND not adding the groups together - it will make absolutely no difference at all.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:56 am
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Two other observations. You can see the marketing guys trying to earn their two cents with this new "hue scheme thing" But the color changes don't even make sense. Plum is the highest which does make sense. But if you follow the color changes all of a sudden blue just pops up for comfort plus then red then blue. Even that's not a natural progression. This just in no way speeds anything up. At this point, I'd rather just have a southwest type boarding system. It's chaotic enough at the gate.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:56 am
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Originally Posted by ethernal View Post
That literally reads to me as "what is the slowest way we can board our planes? here are years of innovation at work to make sure that we need to start boarding our jets T-45 rather than just T-40 (already industry leading for longest boarding time)!".
I'm curious as to why you think this will slow down the boarding process? I personally think it will stay roughly the same duration and I quite like that there will be a separate zone for comfort +. SKY can easily get to be 70-80 people on a Monday morning if not more so I think splitting that up might actually be a good thing.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 7:58 am
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The name changes make more sense (though I imagine pitching the DL Amex will be harder when you can’t say “Zone 1 boarding”) but I am annoyed that as a PM if I book late and miss C+ or want to stick with an exit row I now have to board later including after every standby who clears into C+.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 8:03 am
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Originally Posted by WidgetKid View Post
I'm curious as to why you think this will slow down the boarding process? I personally think it will stay roughly the same duration and I quite like that there will be a separate zone for comfort +. SKY can easily get to be 70-80 people on a Monday morning if not more so I think splitting that up might actually be a good thing.
Boarding speed is constrained by aisle space competition. The most efficient (fastest) boarding methods enable people in different parts of the plane to board at the same time (i.e, boarding a mix of some people in the front, middle, and back of the plane at the same time would be fastest). Delta is moving to an approach that further increases aisle space competition by boarding the exact same parts of the plane together.

First: Boards the first portion of the plane
C+: Board next front portion of the plane
Gold/Plat: Board primarily preferred seats in the front of the plane
Main Cabin 1 (Silver, CC holders): Board primarily preferred seats in the front portion of the plane
Main Cabin 2/3: Board the middle portion of the plane
Basic Economy: Board back of the plane and/or middle seats

At least before flights with high density of Elites (Gold/Plats) got to board at the same time as C+ - meaning that there was some heterogenous boarding going on (preferred seats + C+ seats).

The flights this will slow boarding down the most are the flights you mention that have 70+ people in the SKY lane.

One can argue that it won't make that much of a difference - but that is only because Delta already has the (statistically) slowest boarding process of any US carrier. So maybe it is just an extra minute or two, but it is an extra minute or two added to what is already the slowest boarding process.
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Old Dec 11, 18, 8:12 am
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I think this reinforces that speed of boarding isn't the most important priority to Delta (which I assume isn't be a surprise to them)...this may not slow down boarding but probably doesn't speed it up.

There does sound like one conflict between the article and the chart...the article sounds like Diamonds are only boarding with Delta one (if available) if they are riding there, the chart seems to suggest Diamonds will board with Delta One regardless...I assume the chart is correct (or maybe I am just misinterpreting)
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Old Dec 11, 18, 8:13 am
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Boarding might be faster if there are fewer ESAs.

Two DL announcements on the same day. (BTW, the USA Today piece seems to only be in the online edition; maybe it will appear in actual print tomorrow, and probably the international editions on Wednesday.)
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Old Dec 11, 18, 8:20 am
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Originally Posted by ethernal View Post
Boarding speed is constrained by aisle space competition. The most efficient (fastest) boarding methods enable people in different parts of the plane to board at the same time (i.e, boarding a mix of some people in the front, middle, and back of the plane at the same time would be fastest).
Actually studies show that randomized boarding is fastest. Part of the reason WN is able to turn its aircraft in 30 minutes (free checked bags helps, too).
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