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Above seat carry on space in first class if late arrival and/or row 1

Above seat carry on space in first class if late arrival and/or row 1

Old Feb 26, 18, 12:42 pm
  #1  
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Above seat carry on space in first class if late arrival and/or row 1

So for the second time in three days, I go to my seat 1A to find there is no room for my carryon until the very end of first class. At least there is room. Yes, late connecting flight so unable to get to the gate before BG 3, but at least I made the connection.

I remove what I need during the flight, but trying to swim upstream at the end of the flight is a nightmare as obviously everyone else wants to get off.

It is not as if the FAs are unable to see there is no one seated yet in 1A and there is obviously no room for carryon and you are not permitted to put anything in front of you (as there is no seat) and I then try to hide my purse behind my legs as my purse being four or five rows from where I am seated is a no go.

I know I am not the only person in First Class who has these issues as I see it happen to others who board after me.

United should really look at this issue.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 12:45 pm
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Not much they can do IMO. Sure they can police it, but on most aircraft, part of the overhead bins over row 1 are taken up by safety/FA equipment. That already gets rid of some space. Then theres space for about 2-3 bags for the 4 people in row 1, not including the personal items that also need to fit somewhere. I've recently only been sitting in row 1 as I prefer the bulkhead, and I always make sure I'm first in line to board so I find space. Even then, with GS boarding before, etc, I still have to put one of my items above row 2. Not the end of the world, but it is a negative about row 1.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 12:46 pm
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Agree, although the problem is broader.

United should do two things:

1) Instruct FAs that their baggage should go at the back of the cabin, if there's not separate storage, not the front of the cabin.
2) Install signs in the bins above bulkhead seats stating "this bin for bulkhead passengers only". Of course, if that space goes unused after boarding is complete, the FA could use it, but not before then.

The problem is not just First class but also economy bulkhead.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 12:47 pm
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Unfortunately, the solution is to board early, which is why many of us in bulkhead do.

It's a widely documented issue that bulkheads don't have enough seating since everything must go aboard. What do you suggest the FA's do? Stop someone in 2A/B from using the bin? Make them move their stuff back and leave the first overhead bin exclusively for 1A? What if it's full because of 1B? Tell them they have to put their stuff back as they have to leave room? There's just too many scenarios.

Aren't the bins in the front also smaller / used for a fire extinguisher also limiting their size?
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Old Feb 26, 18, 12:47 pm
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OP needs to be proactive here. When I'm in 1ABDF I know the bin will fill quick as the flight attendants sometimes throw their bags there. That being said I always make a conscious effort to be the 1st person in line always to capture that overhead space.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 12:48 pm
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Originally Posted by laxmillenial View Post
Unfortunately, the solution is to board early
Originally Posted by enviroian View Post
OP needs to be proactive here.
Perhaps you missed the OP?
Originally Posted by Aussienarelle View Post
late connecting flight so unable to get to the gate before BG 3
As long as we have shared space, there will be issues. There is no magic bullet solution.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 1:01 pm
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I've never seen mainline FAs put their personal bags over row 1. I have seen pilots do it, though. There are some united equipment bags (blankets, inflight kit) that usually get put in those bins by the cleaners (occasionally right before/during the boarding process).

The tiny bins over row 1 on a 737 will not fit a roller unless it's exactly the max dimensions for a carry on (and most people's are oversized). If you do manage to fit one roller on each side, where do the other two passengers put their rollers? Not to mention personal items. On a 739 at the Y bulkhead, there's a raft on a/c right and a lav and emergency equipment on a/c left, leaving even less room.

It's definitely a problem, but I can't think of a solution that works across the fleet. Placards don't work - You wouldn't believe the amount of times I've seen people storing stuff in front/on top of emergency equipment.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 1:02 pm
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A FA canít sit there policing every space above every seat. Coach passengers face the same thing. My observation is the problem is hardly big enough to warrant some huge effort by UA. Iíve only had to swim upstream once in my last 50 segments or so. At worst, my bag is only one row back and fellow passengers are overwhelmingly helpful in passing it forward.

There are far more important things UA ďought to look atĒ.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 1:07 pm
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I think the simple answer is book 2A or 3A... I actively avoid 1A if I think I may not be there first. The lack of space in the overhead is legendary. Known factor, so nothing to worry about.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 2:22 pm
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Originally Posted by fezzington View Post
I've never seen mainline FAs put their personal bags over row 1. I have seen pilots do it, though. There are some united equipment bags (blankets, inflight kit) that usually get put in those bins by the cleaners (occasionally right before/during the boarding process).
I see this all the time, especially with flights to Canada on mainline. I agree with others that FAs should put stuff further back in the cabin if there is not a closet -- they are the last to deplane after all.

I've seen other carriers put placards in place as an attempt to reserve space. Some FAs will also proactively close the first two bins if they notice the bulkhead pax are not boarded and there is still space; this often helps save the space.

I'm both empathic to OP and understand what others are saying ... the space fills up and sometimes sitting bulkhead in F means you either swim upstream or check your luggage. Sometimes I don't have the patience to swim upstream and, if I know I have time to hit the baggage claim, I will just gate check if I'm running late to board.

The WORST are the DYKWIA moments or those who board late and throw a hissy fit and blame the FA ... it's not the FA's fault.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 2:31 pm
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I will agree that if I'm worried about getting to the gate on time, I would try to avoid being in Row 1. I don't think there's a lot anyone can do about it; as fezzington mentioned the first bin set is usually slightly too narrow to fit a standard rollaboard but there is frequently emergency equipment up there as well. The space bins on the new aircraft are probably a sufficient fix though; with the bags upright there is a ton of space at F density.

I should add though.. I continually worry about overhead space in F. However, in ~80 segments over the last two years, I have never been forced to gate-check a bag (except on green-tag flights). This included a number of flights where I boarded late (sometimes literally the last pax on the plane). In the most stressful cases, I've had to stare down the FA in F until they moved around some bags for me (once they evicted a Y bag from an F bin and gate checked it). I've definitely had to swim upstream a couple rows, but that's no big deal. (I suppose I'm well-trained from snagging the bulkhead on WN..)
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Old Feb 26, 18, 3:07 pm
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A

Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
A FA can’t sit there policing every space above every seat. Coach passengers face the same thing. My observation is the problem is hardly big enough to warrant some huge effort by UA. I’ve only had to swim upstream once in my last 50 segments or so. At worst, my bag is only one row back and fellow passengers are overwhelmingly helpful in passing it forward.

There are far more important things UA “ought to look at”.
I flew Aer Lingus domestic this weekend on an A320 and got to the flight mid-boarding with 1A as a seat. I was super pleased to find the first row overheads closed and labeled “Row 1 Only” with an FA enforcing it from the galley. Which meant I had space for my rollaboard. So it can be done, and it was great...

Last edited by djmp; Feb 26, 18 at 4:32 pm
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Old Feb 26, 18, 3:08 pm
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One thing you can do is see if the bin above row 1 is taken up by a bag of blankets. I don't hesitate to pull the bag out and hand it to the FA's who will put it in the closet. Or actually distribute them.
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Old Feb 26, 18, 3:10 pm
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Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
A FA canít sit there policing every space above every seat. Coach passengers face the same thing. My observation is the problem is hardly big enough to warrant some huge effort by UA.
1) It's not every seat - it's bulkheads in F and Y (at least on single aisle planes).
2) Addressing it wouldn't require a "huge" effort, just a modest one.

FWIW, I have seen pax in F throw their bag in the first available bin even if they're in row 3 or 4. Why? Because no one says "hey, could you leave that space for the bulkhead seat"?
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Old Feb 26, 18, 3:26 pm
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A very simple thing to do would be to instruct the FAs to close the bin above the first row until the 1st row folk appear. I've actually had a couple times when the FA does this on their own accord. Many pax then just go past as a closed bin is generally a sign that it is full, but in this case it can be quickly opened when a seat occupant appears.
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