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Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

KT_travels
New Arrival

I am A-list preferred, but due to my travel see no reason to go companion as you have to designate a person and that doesn't work for me.  In addition, also fly 100% business select.  As some were also quite aggressive I also have a son who is permanently disabled, not in ways that you can see however, but he would be a pre-board.

 

On my last flight a man who pre-boarded had back surgery and needed some extra time, then there are the obvious cases and as I stand in line, do not think anyone has an issue with that.  

 

On one flight a young man, his dad and brother were in front of me.  I typically am A-1 so was behind them.  When they got to the bottom of the ramp, the boy jumped up and his brother said he wanted to do it on the next flight.  

 

On another, a young couple took the front row (where I like to sit for leg room and bathroom convenience) and overheard them talking about how they are doing this all the time now since it doesn't matter what boarding group they are in as they get on first.  

 

I think there are far more abuses than one may realize, but trying to determine who is real and not, unless we can do a lie detector test does present problems.  Especially for those of us paying a lot for our tickets.  

 

I had one flight attendant tell me that with the low fares, they are seeing more and more folks who might otherwise not fly and would take a bus, do so and with it lack the manners and common sense that once existed on many flights.

 

When I couple that with the drink coupons that are a waste, the wifi that gets slower and slower, the companion that I could go get, but don't see a reason to do so (in my case at least) it does cause one to pause and consider other options.  

 

Perhaps a few assigned seats to companion level, business class, A-list and preferred.   Perhaps a tag to allow our luggage to be offloaded first.  Perhaps lifting the companion level and allowing anyone to travel, and for goodness sake, please get the wifi working so it  does not resemble dial up speeds.  A gesture from Southwest would be very much appreciated.  

 

 

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

gsking
Rising Star

You make some interesting points about ways to reward very good customers.   Yeah,  more flexibility in CP would be nice. 

 

But,  to the rest of your concerns about seating and preboarding... it won't affect that.   It's federally regulated.  I can't think of a way for you to get a better seat than someone disabled (or lying about it) than being disabled (or lying about it).  Assigning seats isn't the SWA way. 

 

So my only suggestion...preboard if and when you can.... fairly.   The rest of the time,  enjoy your BS benefits of being ahead of the pack and getting good reward points.  Ignore the people ahead of you and be glad you're not them.  Because they're either disabled or dishonest.

 

And remember that if you're checking a bag,  getting off the plane sooner or later won't make a difference.   Relax and watch the foolish be foolish. 

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

spacecoastbill
Active Member

Simple solution.  When you get onboard, if you want to sit there... sit there.

If they say the seat is saved.... just sit there.

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

bwallet
Active Member

How is that going to work? In 3.5 years of flying Southwest (and over 300 flights), I've saved seats once. I was flying with my wife and then 6 year old daughter, and I saved a seat for them.

 

What would you have done? Tell me that you can seat in any open seat? Sorry, but this seat is taken. Sit down anyway? I'm not getting up to let you in. Push past me? I'm pressing charges for assault. 

 

It just doesn't work like that.

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

spacecoastbill
Active Member

*******What would you have done? Tell me that you can seat in any open seat?

Thats exactly what you would be told.  By myself and the FAs as well.  Exactly what has happened before.  If you want to be that inconsiderate, then board with them.

******Sorry, but this seat is taken.

No, it isnt, its available.

******Sit down anyway? I'm not getting up to let you in. Push past me? I'm pressing charges for assault. 

Does not work that way.  Cause a problem and its YOU getting thrown off the plane.  You might want to read up on criminal codes and the elements needed.   What you think is assault is in reality YOU committing criminal disorderly conduct.


Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

DisabledALister
New Arrival

I was so frustrated at these posts.  I made an account.  With a similarly obvious name.  Im copying my other response here.  Please consider how some of us feel being judged by someone who doesnt have to think about everything they do, everything they eat, every step they take, just to get through a day.  That guy on crutches will probably be like new in a few months.  Its might be uncomfortable to walk that far, but it likely has little to no impact on the rest if his week.  

 

I look perfectly fine.  But those 100 extra feet add up for me, and do impact my day, and my week.  It might impact me enough to be visible that moment, it might not.   It two months, I wont be any better, but I'll likely still look perfrctly fine.  Now, who "deserves" preboarding. 

 

Anyway, I don't begrudge people who don't know any better, but now you do.  Here's my other response.

 

 

As a long term A-Lister myself, who is quite young, and looks very healthy.  Who can walk and stand short periods.  Who fatigues so easily that overdoing it can cause me to be laid up for days.  Who uses a wheelchair or a walker, but I dont have to sit in it 100% of the time.  

 

To you, I look like a preboarding jerk.  

 

In reality, I earned A-List status when I was fully "abled".

 

I never judged or was angry at preboarders, but I didnt stop friends lighthearted jesting about them and their miracles.

 

My life has been turned upside down.  I preboard because I have to.  I preboard because that extra walking isnt about convenience, or laziness, or cheating the system.  It is about my ability to manage to function more than a teensy percent of the day.  It is because a little extra walking that day could cause gasping and shortness of breath and a skyrocjeting heart rate.  Id be miserable, but at least you'd feel better about boarding sooner and 5 seats earlier.  

 

If I am not fortunate enough to have help at arrival somewhere, I might miraculously have to manage my own luggage, and probably look perfectly fine doing it.  

 

Should I stay seated in my wheelchair at all times to make you feel better?  Should I wrap myself in bandages unecessarily so that my disibility can be visible to you?

 

I am not trying to be mean, but I assure you, a week in my shoes would have you singing a different tune.

 

I preboarded recently on a trip with my kids and ex husband.  They preboarded with me because I needed his help.  Should I have left my kids at the gate with us on the plane?  And we got looks, let me tell you.  

 

The kicker - our boarding passes were A2-5.  I wasnt sure how preboarding would work, it was my first time, so I paid extra to upgrade to ensure we'd be early on the plane.  If I hadn't upgraded, we'd have been in the A20s due to status. 

 

Im sure some people abuse.  But I know many young people in my groups who are not willing to use accommodations available to them because they fear judgment of others.  They do things that actually cause them net harm by expending unecessary energy because they dont want to be judged by abled people.  Many of us have internalized "ableism".  

 

I even wear joking shorts implying or pointing out I have an invisible illness because I hate the disappoving stares.  Im ok with curiosity.  Ill even tell you if you ask.  But disapproving looks are more of a reflection of that person, than me.  

 

I carefuly planned and managed my energy all week to be able to make that flight.  I gave up a lot of things to make it.  It was hard, but just because Im not healthy anymore doesnt mean I cant enjoy a vacation.

 

P.s.  despite significany health challenges, I work.  Not my old job, I cant.  But from home.  I never went on disability.  I wanted to keep working, it was hard, but I did it.

 

I qualify for and need preboarding, I dont look like it.  Not a bit.  But I would gladly never preboarding again to have my health, and my life back.

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

DisabledALister
New Arrival

P.S.  feel free to say something to me next flight.  If you do it kindly, I just might explain it to you.  

 

To be honest, travelling is very difficult for me.  It requires a lot of planning, asking for help which I hate, and Im probably as tired abd cranky as you are.  So....I apologize in advance if I respond in kind and tell you to sick your A List somewhere the sun doesnt shine.

 

But on behalf of all those with invisible illness, please know that my cranky response is NOT proof that we are cheating the system.  Simply proof that we are also human, we got an unfair lot in life, and sometimes, it's frustrating.  Especially when we have to convince a stranger, again, that just because we look perfectly healthy doesn't mean we are.  Because often, only we know the daily struggle, the months of rehab, the dozens of daily pills, to difficult choices, the tears, required to be functional in that brief moment.  That brief moment you judged us.  Where we look normal, but the struggle to look normal yet be far from it is a difficult one that never ends.  Never.  

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

floridaguy
Active Member

I just love the opportunity to preboard.  Thanks Southwest!

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

sethisaballer
New Arrival

You legally cannot ask many people their medical reason for needing Pre-Board.  Against HIPPA...so this will always be a tricky one to solve for.  

Re: PRE BOARD NONSENSE

floridaguy
Active Member

it isn't "HIPPA", its "HIPAA".  And, its not against the law to ask on the basis of HIPAA since Southwest is not a covered entity and does not have "protected health information" or "PHI".

 

Please refrain from making comments on items that are not known to you.