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Re: Pre-boarding

Active Member

@Davis94 wrote:

Similar situation yesterday. Departing from Tampa, there were 12 wheelchair passengers. Prior to the boarding process, I observed 3 of those who 'needed assistance' leave their wheelchairs in line and either go to the bathroom or go get a snack. After completion of the trip, 4 of those exited the aircraft without delay or assistance. The seniors are learning how to play the system.


Depart or arrive to Florida, Las Vegas or Phoenix are the worst one, it would take at least 10 more minutes due to this issue. One time at Phoenix airport, I saw a young woman dressed in kind of Muslim dress and a little chubby sat on the wheelchair but as soon she got in the plane she walked very fast and the same way when she got off plane. I had admitted I was very worry since why a young one like her sat on the wheelchair and was able to walk inside plane like normal person, I was worry may be she used wheelchair to hide some thing and to the point I almost attemped to discuss with flight attendant. You may think I am "racist or sterotype" but I was very scare.

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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

I'd fully support a first-on, last-off policy for pre-boarders.  And by last-off - I mean sit in the way back or anywhere behind the exit rows.  No problem with legit disabled folks sitting up front and taking extra time to board and de-plane, but this policy has now been abused to the point where you'll regularly see perfectly physically healthy millenials who just dropped out of college because they couldn't find a safe space flying home with their therapy animal and have to have a pre-board authorization. 

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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

Old post, but I'll chime in with a bit of my experience.

 

My mother would be someone that you would probably assume was abusing preboarding.  She doesn't have a walker, she doesn't have a cane, but she does have a medicalert and a kneebrace.  Her medical condition sometimes makes it hard for her to board and get settled into a seat easily so while she doesn't need a ton of help getting on (when I fly with her, my assistance is usually enough), she does need that extra time before the mad rush and can't stand in a long line to board which is why on rare occasions she asks for preboard.  During the flight, she is able to rest, take her medicine, and usually is doing better by the end so she doesn't need help off.  A bystander would see this as "abuse" whereas I know she really needed that preboard help.

 

On another note, just a short time ago I injured my ankle (I now know it was a hairline fracture, but at the time I didn't realize this) the day before I flew.  Since I had to fly, I asked the counter people if it was possible for me to preboard because I couldn't put much weight on my ankle.  Even though I had my ankle clearly wrapped and was standing on the other leg holding onto the counter for support, they actually denied me because I didn't have a disability and didn't need assistance getting on.  To try to make it easier on me though, they put me with the family boarding/A-list preferred to hopefully get me through the line faster.  I still had to wait on the jetway and use my suitcase for a crutch.  Southwest did stick by their policy of only allowing people with disabilities to preboard and for the honest among us, we generally don't get preboard privileges for any little thing.

 

So I guess the moral of the story is that in my experience Southwest sticks by their preboard policy for people with disabilities needing assistance only and rarely gives it to the average person.  If someone is abusing it with their "disability", there is little Southwest can do to change this and I personally would rather them let someone without need on early than deny someone with a true need for preboard.

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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

I am A-List Preferred and a companion pass holder so tired of this (and the fake service animals pre-boarding) that I am looking at other options The number of pre-boards on other carriers pales in comparision because the incentive isn't there for it - i.e. taking the best seats. Monetizing the boarding order and then allowing scammers/seat savers and so on to take advantage of your loyal high fare customers is inexcusable.

I think it is time this is news worthy .

Southwest needs to at least change the policy where pre  board first to the back of the plane.

It is out of control!

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Re: Pre-boarding

Top Contributor

As has been said, many, many times already -- Southwest cannot change anything about their policy. It's the law.

 

The only change that would fix the preboarding issue is assigned seating.

 

 

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Re: Pre-boarding

Active Member

So funny to me how many people get upset by this.  When boarding, I'm more excited/happy that I have a seat on a plane that can get me to my destination in 2.5 hours instead of 20+ hour drive it would take in a car.  

 

First world problems for sure.  If you don't like the policies that SW has had in place for many years, move on. Stop the complaining and rethink how you look at life. There will always be rule breakers in this world because people feel they are entitled (for whatever reason). Smile and be thankful you are about to get on a plane that allows you to attend your meeting/vacation/time with loved ones, etc. quicker than if you were driving. 

 

I fly SW because they always have cheaper flights for where I'm going than any other airline. For that, I'll take any seat on the plane I can get. Who knows, you just might make a new friend or meet the love of your life. Embrace it and make the most of it.

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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

They should require a doctor’s statement in letter head that confirms the specific condition. That is legal. 

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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

Perhaps not allowing a pre-board to sit in the forward half of the plane will discourage those that are gaming the system and still allow those that need it to have it.

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Re: Pre-boarding

Top Contributor

I think most of the pre-boarders who are doing so due to mobility issues need the front section instead of walking to the back of the plane, certainly not with any carry-ons.

Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.
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Re: Pre-boarding

New Arrival

My solution.

 

All pre-boarders must sit in the back of the plane, behind the exit rows, preferrably all the way back.  They can get on first, but must exit last.  They will have 2 bathrooms close, 2 attendants close, and still have their pick of seats.