Here is another new development in airlines attempting to improve boarding times. American Airlines announced this week they plan to introduce a new boarding policy allowing passengers with only small carry on items that can fit under the seat to board first. Most of us who decide not to check luggage will be standing on the side lines as families board with only backpacks and duffel bags. The obvious loop hole here will be those who will simply plane side check their luggage to avoid fees and then get priority boarding. Interestingly enough, American was the first airline to introduce checked luggage fees back in 2008. Other airlines quickly followed. Leaving the question of whether others will now implement this new policy as well.
You can read more on this topic on other travel related blogs including TripAdvisor and ExpertFlyer.com. Both have interesting insights to the consequences of this loop hole and the impact it may have to the professional traveler. After all, those of us who fly weekly are pretty efficient at boarding and often have a good 30 minutes to wrap up some work while the families struggle to find their seats and get settled in. Who will be the big losers in this set up? Once again, unfortunately it will be us. The good news is that Southwest, United, and Delta all have stated they do not plan to introduce such a policy.