I echo other comments that I was pleased to hear of the initial boarding changes. Adding the numbers seemed like it would eliminate the need to go sit on the floor an hour and a half before a flight. A welcome change. And I was happy to hear of the change in family pre-boarding. Families can plan ahead just like the rest of us and print our boarding passes 24 hours in advance and get in the A group. Everyone seems to take a long time getting into their seats and stands out in the aisle, so I don't see much difference for families (if we all tried to either move to the back or step into the row and let people pass, that would sure help things though!).
But the change in offering priority boarding to those who paid more does not sit well with me at all. One of the things I despise about the other airlines is the "class system" they have. First class, Priority Class, etc. Its ridiculous. Southwest has always been different and it feels great to feel equal to everyone on the flight. Now that all changes. I don't have an equal chance to get the good seats (I'm a fearful flier and seating is a big deal for me) or the opportunity to get on ahead of the crowd unless I pay more. I work for a non-profit so when I fly on business its not ethical to pay more for this privelege. And I work for a non-profit, so I don't make enough to be able to just pay for priveleges I want when I'm on personal trips. I'm not willing to say I'm done with Southwest, but I will definitely explore more options than I have in the past as they become more like all the other airlines.
I'm very disappointed to see Southwest, the airline that really seemed to be the people's airline, suddenly implementing a class system. A very sad day...
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