boarding by zone

Mar 3rd, 2011, 06:42 AM
  #1  
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boarding by zone

I'm really and truly not complaining, just curious. Why do passengers gather around the boarding line before their boarding zone or whatever it's called is announced? I don't think it's because of the lack of overhead bin space, because we always saw this even before the new luggage restrictions. Their seat is assigned, so that can't be it. The plane will not leave until all passengers have boarded. We sit until we're called because I'd rather sit than stand. I'm OK with it, just wonder why it's done.
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 08:36 AM
  #2  
 
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I think there are always people who are anxious to get to where they are supposed to be - even if it is only to be crammed into a flying tin can.

But I think the current gate lice situation (as coined over at Flyertalk) does have to do with lack of overhead bin space. My regular carryon is a small-ish on the shoulder style bag that I never had problems storing in overhead bin space prior to the airlines imposing fees for checked bags.

I always have an aisle seat and with United and that is the last boarding zone called. (I really need to work on flying enough to get status so I can board first). With all of the 22 inch mini suitcases that people are storing in the overhead bins, it is always a challenge by the time I get on the aircraft to find a small space to wedge my carryon into.

And don't get me started on the gate agents turning a blind eye to people bringing more than their allotted amount of carryons on board.

So while I am not hanging around the gate when zone 1 is called, I do try to make sure I'm one of the first of zone 4 to board when it is called. Otherwise I'm having to put my carryon under the seat in front of me and I'm not a happy camper about that.
chepar is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 01:31 PM
  #3  
 
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Can't wait to watch DirecTV in my seat, like I did this morning on a CO 739.
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 02:00 PM
  #4  
 
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What channels do they offer, rk? We have DirecTV at home, so I have my favorites.
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 02:51 PM
  #5  
 
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"Why do passengers gather around the boarding line before their boarding zone or whatever it's called is announced?"

I can't say I've heard this for certain, but I'm almost positive there is an announcement: "We are now boarding seating area 1. Will those in areas 2,3,4,and 5 please block the gate."

Exactly right, chepar, about the luggage allowance, although I think that's improved.
CubFanAlways is offline  
Mar 3rd, 2011, 05:12 PM
  #6  
 
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simpsonc - 95 channels of live TV, plus a few movies and recorded stuff. Notably missing - ABC network.

http://www.continental.com/CMS/en-US...nelLineup.aspx

Preview available as soon as you get on, till about 15 minutes in the air (at least for this morning). And if you've paid, available all the day until you get off the plane. Since I paid with a CO credit card, it's $4, $2 off.
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 05:37 PM
  #7  
 
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Wow! Quite a line up of channels. And it includes some of my favorites!

I hope UA gets it soon. I have a long BKK flight on April and again in July or August.

Carol
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 05:38 PM
  #8  
 
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In regards to the boarding by zone, I believe it does have to do with the space in the overhead bins. However, I am a 1K with UA and I board in the first group, over the red carpet. I have had to contend with crew bags in the overhead bin over my seat! That bugs me!
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 06:07 PM
  #9  
 
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simpsonc - DirecTV only on domestic aircraft and within about 200 miles of the contagious 48 states. You lose it even when flying to Hawaii. (Vancouver, BC is fine).
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Mar 3rd, 2011, 06:49 PM
  #10  
 
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Duh... I should have figured that one out! Haha... thanks, rk. My mistake...
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Mar 4th, 2011, 06:33 AM
  #11  
 
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My flight with Continental from Maui to LAX had no television screens or DirecTV. It was a long flight.

Air New Zealand boarded the plane with the window seats first and then the isle seats. This made a lot of sense unless you had a middle seat.
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Mar 4th, 2011, 07:39 AM
  #12  
pdx
 
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I prefer to stand in line early because I want two seats together so I can sit next to my husband. And he prefers a window so that's also a reason.
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Mar 4th, 2011, 08:24 AM
  #13  
 
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wally - Most of CO's domestic fleet have DirecTV now, with notable exceptions of the newest aircraft with borrowed seats due to issues with the original seat supplier, Koito.

But even if you get one with DirecTV, for HI flights, you won't get live TV programming half a hour west of the mainland coast. You will only get the pre-taped programming.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 07:35 AM
  #14  
 
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pdx, are you flying without a specific seat assignment? I think we are talking about having a specific seat...? But I could be wrong here. If you are without a specific seat, yes, you would want to stand in line. I completely understand this situation.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 10:05 AM
  #15  
 
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pdx is probably flying Southwest.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 04:51 PM
  #16  
pdx
 
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Yes, Southwest. That was my last flight and the zone boarding that came to mind.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 05:24 PM
  #17  
 
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I've never flown on Southwest. Do you board by zones? I guess I pictured a long line of passengers waiting in line to get any available seat (or two seats for a couple)... is this not the way it works? What sort of zones does Southwest use? Just curious.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 05:55 PM
  #18  
pdx
 
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They call for boarding zone A, B, or C and it's a free for all after that. You can sit anywhere on the plane there is a seat available.
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Mar 5th, 2011, 06:03 PM
  #19  
 
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Southwest used to be just zones A, B or C. But now, it's a more complicated, as you get a specific boarding number and you'll line up as groups of 5 within each zone.

If you aren't at your specific spot when your zone is called, you lose your position; it may mean middle seat or separated from your traveling partner if you have a tight connection or a flat tire and get to the gate late.
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