Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > Southwest Airlines | Rapid Rewards
Reload this Page >

How Much SOP is it at WN to Hold Flights for Connecting Pax and Bags? Varying SOCC

How Much SOP is it at WN to Hold Flights for Connecting Pax and Bags? Varying SOCC

Old Jul 22, 19, 9:25 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: BOS
Programs: JetBlue Mosaic, WN A List Preferred, Hyatt Globalest, Hilton Diamond, Marriott Platinum, IHG Spire
Posts: 3,962
Question How Much SOP is it at WN to Hold Flights for Connecting Pax and Bags? Varying SOCC

I often fly the last flight of the night from STL to ICT, and I would say 80% of the time; WN holds the flight for connecting pax and even more interesting connecting bags.

Though they don't always hold flights, I was on a STL DTW connection, and they did not hold that one for several connections to DTW.

It seems though that WN has radically different operational procedures in these areas from say AA, DL, or UA.

I am absolutely perplexed as to why once the connecting pax board, that they also hold for bags? Sometimes it can be a 20-30 minute hold after the connections board to get the bags loaded ans transferred. Sometimes there is a shortage of ramp personell, but typically, they still would hold for bags even if its say for 45 minutes!

Are they just trying to save money on bagggage delivery vender costs? Or I suppose once a flight is 15 minutes late 15 minutes or 60 minutes; its still late?

Also I am extremely curious who makes the decision whether to hold or not?

Yesterday I had an interesting experience I was flying BOS-STL-ICT. There were 11 connections from BOS to ICT. Apparently BOS may have called SOCC, and they told them they would not hold the flight for connections. I still went as that flight is delayed so often, and 99% of the time they hold it. But some pax elected not to go.

The WN3459 has a scheduled departure time of 21:50. Sure enough we pull up to the gate at say 21:54 and the flight is still boarding. Then, of course at the very last minute, they add a delay to say 22:15 to hold for connections.

I'm not sure why they didn't have the information they would have needed a little sooner to add that delay.

Then they delay the flight 2-3 more times as more connections board and of course they hold also for bags.

Then the ground crew sees a dent in the tail of the plane which does not impact safety, but it still has to be written up by maintneance.

So 21:50 turns in to 23:14 for the actual out time.

I would guess that 95% of pax prefer this WN procedure of holding,m but I'm curious about the differences in operational philosophy and practices with the WN SOICC vs. the SOCC at AA, DL, and UA.
jetsetter is offline  
Old Jul 22, 19, 9:40 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Programs: LTP, PP
Posts: 7,969
The SOP is that it will usually go the way that does not benefit you!

A few years back, same exact last of the day flights exactly one week apart at MDW.

Week one, they left without 4 of us. Week two, we waited an hour for 4 passengers AND then their luggage (separate delay announcements were made).

I'm sure logical reasons and thresholds do exist but the application seems inconsistent to our naked eye (and circumstance). Crew time limits probably play a big (non apparent) factor.
synergistic, dlaue and NextTrip like this.

Last edited by joshua362; Jul 22, 19 at 11:05 am Reason: Clarity
joshua362 is online now  
Old Jul 22, 19, 10:44 am
  #3  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 48,761
What you don't see is the work done by Operations behind the scenes. Many factors at play. Not the least of which is crew rest (which also applies if the crew has to fly first thing in the morning) and weather.. WN makes an effort here and the three legacies are trying as well. But, there is no way to look at a particular situation and know from the number of minutes whether it will be held, simply because you don't have access to the data.
NextTrip and jmw like this.
Often1 is offline  
Old Jul 22, 19, 11:16 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Programs: LTP, PP
Posts: 7,969
Also, more recently, I connected at BWI (again, last flights), was about 20 minutes late and as soon as I deplaned, my name was booming from the speakers as I made the long connecting walk. I was told my bags would not make it and felt they encouraged me not to take the flight! Being stranded in BWI made no sense so I boarded a 1/2 full flight which pushed back immediately. They did deliver the next day.
joshua362 is online now  
Old Jul 22, 19, 11:29 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Nashville -Past DL Plat, FO, WN-CP, various hotel programs
Programs: DL-MM, AA, SW w/companion,HiltonDiamond, Hyatt PLat, IHF Plat, Miles and Points Seeker
Posts: 9,649
If I read the original post correct, the biggest question was not just holding, but holding for bags.

I guess they know they are going to hold for passengers, and assume they have some bags coming over as well. It is close to impossible to guess EXACTLY how long before those bags get there, so they make a best guess. And, if it they think it will only be a few more minutes for all the bags, then why not wait? Not just because of delivery costs the next day, but also airport staff issues filling out claims. And somebody dealing with those bags back at the airport getting them onto flights in the morning, etc.

And of course, having a bunch of pissed off customers with VERY IMPORTANT items in those bags.

Makes sense to me to hold for them. Sadly, there must be times, even with out short connections that bags are stuck somewhere on a cart and not enough staff to find them and get them on the plane.
NextTrip likes this.
NoStressHere is offline  
Old Jul 22, 19, 12:15 pm
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: BOS
Programs: JetBlue Mosaic, WN A List Preferred, Hyatt Globalest, Hilton Diamond, Marriott Platinum, IHG Spire
Posts: 3,962
The other big question was how much more does WN hold compared to the legacy carriers that all have somehwat of a D0 mantra. I know there was a publicized initiative at UA to hold for short periods to protect connections. But its overall hard to see that AA or DL would be holding as much
jetsetter is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: