You might think getting on a plane would be simple. A uniform procedure, in fact.
But you'd be wrong. It seems like every airline has a different boarding system, its own convoluted arrangement of groups and priorities, its own method of reducing queuing and rewarding customers. But not all are created equal. There are two ends of the scale, in terms of efficiency and joy, that I've experienced.
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The first is EasyJet, back before , when boarding the plane was an absolute free-for-all. No seats were assigned.
No groups were made. You just got a boarding pass that allowed you entry to the plane. From there, where you sat was up to you.
Ryanair had the same system. That resulted in mad rushes from the gate to the plane, in which people pushed and shoved and ran on the tarmac. It also resulted in the inevitable sale of plenty of "queue jump" passes — so many, in fact, that the whole thing was rendered pointless because almost everyone had one.
Back to the pushing and shoving. That was the worst boarding procedure I've experienced. Jetstar briefly did it in Australia, too, but it was wildly unpopular. Easyjet and Ryanair both scrapped it earlier this decade. You can't just let people fight it out for the good seats once they get on board.
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On the opposite end of the scale: On the Japanese carrier's domestic flights, those sitting at the back of the plane, and — crucially — those sitting in window seats, board the plane first or at least, after the priority passengers. Then, those sitting towards the front and those in aisle seats get on board. Such a simple but brilliant idea. Obviously, people in window seats should get on first, to avoid others having to get up and let you in and slow down the whole procedure.
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And, just as obviously, those in the aisle seats should get on last, so they can just slip into their spots and away we go. Couple that with the politeness and adherence to queueing etiquette that you always find in Japan and you have one of the slickest boarding procedures around. In fact, I can't think of a better one. Carry-on baggage allowance Carry-on baggage may not exceed one piece of 7kg. H56 cm x L36 cm x W32 cm. Not exceeding cm in dimension. Carry-on baggage allowance If you have carry-on baggage only, and you have your boarding pass, please proceed directly to the boarding gate.
Armed police escort man off evacuated easyJet flight - after he got on with the wrong boarding pass
Carry-on baggage may not exceed one piece of 7kg. H56 cm x L36 cm x W32 cm and may not exceed cm in dimension. Boarding gates close 15 minutes before Departure.