I strongly favor SWA leaving the open seating policy unchanged. I travel SWA frequently, often with my wife as her designated companion, and often on my own. My attitude toward open seating has morphed considerably over the years (I disliked it initially). Now I am a strong advocate of it. I am convinced that open seating allows a quicker turnaround of planes, and greatly reduces the 'idiot' factor as travelers peer and clog aisles looking for their seats. On recent trips to China and Alaska on other carriers the seats my wife and I were given (we fought and lost partly because we fly these carriers infrequently), were dreadful, so dreadful that I am resolved not to fly either carrier again unless, as may occur, I have no other choice. With SWA's open seating, I (and if traveling with my wife: we) arrive early, get coffee, sit down in the line and return to work. We're almost always among the first several to board and thereby gain a few additional productive minutes before we shut down our computers for take-off. Time is precious and the current SWA open seaing adds a few extra minutes. -- By the way, although SWA does not appear to be polling for this: The thought that flights may someday be packed with cellphones users sharing their business in a packed plane is as distrasteful to contemplate as is the current reality of having to listen to such rudeness in other public places. I vote for SWA to favor leaving all cellphones firmly off while in flight if/when the FAA moves to address the issue further.
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