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I prefer Southwest boarding, donít like assigned seats

I prefer Southwest boarding, donít like assigned seats

Old Mar 17, 23, 5:50 pm
  #1  
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I prefer Southwest boarding, donít like assigned seats

I feel like the Southwest boarding process is better. Let me choose the seat I want once on board. I can sit far away from a baby, choose not to sit next to a POS, sit next to someone I met at the airport bar, etc. Even if I get a high group C Iíd at least like to have a choice of which middle seat to sit in. And there are no arguments about seat poaching and people asking to swap seats.
One small improvement could be having families with kids and people traveling together board early, but only sit in the back third of the plane. Those people are most likely to be using the middle seats and so theyíll use up the less desirable middle seats. And also speed up the boarding process because they wonít block the aisle in front of the plane
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Last edited by nd2010; Mar 17, 23 at 6:01 pm
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Old Mar 17, 23, 7:17 pm
  #2  
 
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No friendly and family boarding….
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Old Mar 18, 23, 1:27 am
  #3  
 
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I just used some award miles on UA; it sure seemed like boarding their 737 takes longer than even our 738s. Plus I have to agree with OP; due to status I'm either boarding at "A30.5" (I'm always A16-A30 except during SDCs/Standbys and as I hate lines and standing I don't get up till they call "A15-30" and just board at the back of that group) or "A-61", and I always sit in the back (so I can try to get an empty middle or aisle); on UA/AA/AS (all carriers I've one-and-done'd over this last year) I'd've loved the flexibility to sit where I'd wanted to, as I've noticed that people will put their carryons in the first available spot, usually meaning I have to put mine away from where I'm sitting, and as I have headphones and a tablet and such I have to extract it at my seat then find a place to put the bag later (I'm too tall to put my bag under my seat).

Last edited by kennycrudup; Mar 18, 23 at 1:39 am Reason: UA's "737", not "777-300"
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Old Mar 18, 23, 8:51 am
  #4  
 
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Originally Posted by nd2010
I can sit far away from a baby, choose not to sit next to a POS. Even if I get a high group C Iíd at least like to have a choice of which middle seat to sit in. And there are no arguments about seat poaching and people asking to swap seats.
Unless you don't board towards the end. If you don't, that POS that boarded after you or a family with a baby who boarded after you could sure choose to sit next to or close to you.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 11:11 am
  #5  
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As mentioned sort of.. boarding early has disadvantages. Waiting until at least some have boarded, you can then PICK who you want to sit next to.

If you board early, you have no idea who will sit next to you. In fact, more than once on a full flight, wife and I board then as somebody "smaller" comes down the aisle and appears to be along, we offer the window seat to them vs risking some larger folks with all kinds of stuff, etc.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 1:06 pm
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Offering the window seat to someone smaller a real pro tip. Maybe brandish some drink coupons.

Being A20 doesnít help you if theyíre already boarding the Cís when you show up at the gate. Hard to believe any business flyer wouldn't prefer expediting gate arrival and handicapping on-board "throughs" over assigned seating. Even if tight connections strain reality!
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Old Mar 18, 23, 1:13 pm
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Originally Posted by LegalTender
Hard to believe any business flyer wouldn't prefer expediting gate arrival and handicapping on-board "throughs" over assigned seating
I dunno; me getting to the gate after A-60 happens so rarely it really hasn't been an issue for me (and having moved back to SNA where sadly few places I go are NS anymore I've had plenty of connections, and remember, I'm also among the last to deboard).
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Old Mar 18, 23, 2:28 pm
  #8  
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Big advantage to no assigned seats is when you change flights/standby.
A nightmare on “regular” as last minute change usually means middle seat by the toilet.
If you have status on SWA, last minute change means an aisle seat probably a little farther back - or if on Business select and still available, even the same quality seat,
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Old Mar 18, 23, 4:37 pm
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I don't fly SW that much but we just decided both ways to go way up the back and see what happened. It was great. You don't feel the need to jump out of your seat upon landing and stand in the aisle. Very few people used the restroom in the back, so it wasn't an issue. And both times we had the row to ourselves (I always ask at the gate how full the flight is - in this case it was 30 empty outgoing and 20 empty coming back). Our positions were A60 and B1 outgoing, and B35& 36 returning. If some straggler had come up to the last row we would have moved over and given them the window.

When you are 2 or more it's more difficult to find 2 together. A singleton really has a lot of flexibility.

And we're usually front or middle on other airlines, so it was a lot bumpier back there. It was also easy to get a second cocktail being so close to the back galley.
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Old Mar 18, 23, 4:42 pm
  #10  
 
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie
It was great.
Been tryin' to tell you people!
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Old Mar 18, 23, 8:07 pm
  #11  
 
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Originally Posted by nd2010
One small improvement could be having families with kids and people traveling together board early, but only sit in the back third of the plane.
In Atlanta, Southwest is experimenting with allowing families to board first -- anywhere in the plane:

https://simpleflying.com/southwest-a...mily-boarding/
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Old Mar 19, 23, 6:44 am
  #12  
 
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Ah, I grew up with WN in CA and their process just seems natural to me; matter of fact, IMHO, I think WN has the ideal boarding process, all things considered. Of course, I get this won't work for the Legacies with their elite status schemes, but, absent top tier status with the big three, I really can't fathom why anyone would fly any other airline for the same or similar price.

With A-List, WN is my goto on any flights <90 minutes. No brainer since I'd be assured bin space, boarding is literally idiot proof, and I can pick my seat towards the rear half of the plane.
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Old Mar 19, 23, 8:55 am
  #13  
 
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Intra-CA flyers have entitlements. Smaller airport options, quicker flights and more (I'm speculating) on-time reliability.

No comfort upgrades with a Business Select ticket is a competitive drawback on longer flights. Iíll be sitting in the exact same style of seat as everyone else. Group-preboarding inflation all but negates the benefit.

I'm in the back-of-the-plane club. Just need a slogan and fight song.
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Old Mar 19, 23, 6:10 pm
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Originally Posted by LegalTender
[We back-of-the-plane-ers] just need a [...] fight song.
🤔🤔

😆
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Old Mar 20, 23, 5:59 am
  #15  
 
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Better spokesperson and optics for the cause IMO:

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