Tue. Feb 27th, 2024
alert-–-furious-united-airlines-passengers-slam-new-window-seat-boarding-policy-–-and-say-they’re-going-to-lose-out-on-overhead-luggage-spaceAlert – Furious United Airlines passengers slam new window-seat boarding policy – and say they’re going to lose out on overhead luggage space

Airline passengers are raging over United Airlines’ decision to bring back its controversial WILMA boarding policy, a move meant to speed up the process. 

According to an internal memo, economy passengers with window seats will board in Group 3 first, followed by the middle seats in Group 4 and the aisle seats in Group 5, who will board last. 

The changes are expected to take effect on October 26 and are intended to cut two minutes off of each flight’s boarding process.

But the possibility of a shortened boarding time has not been enough to justify the change for a majority of passengers. Many have criticized the decision and complained about airlines charging for checked-in baggage, which they feel is a more pressing issue than seat boarding structure. 

The process will allow economy passengers with window seats to board before middle and aisle seats

One X (formerly Twitter) user wrote: ‘United Airlines is trying a new boarding procedures to save time Here’s a thought….. DO NOT CHARGE TO CHECK BAGS!’

Another one chimed in and wrote: ‘@united don’t like your new boarding policy according to if you pick an aisle, middle, or window seat, if aisle seats board last charge less for that seat.’

Multiple users also wondered what would happen to families with young children traveling together.

‘@united I’m confused, with this new boarding system, if I am traveling with my nine-year-old son, he has to go first with his window seat and then I go on later? That seems ridiculous,’ said one X user. 

Another wrote: ‘So what happens when you have two adults and one child or one adult and two children? The kids are supposed to board alone?’

One user responded to United’s announcement post and wrote: ‘Your new Window then Center then Aisle boarding process will be a disaster! What if you are traveling with family & kids?’ 

Some users also predicted chaos and arguments with one posting: ‘With this approach, window seat passengers will have first dibs on overhead bins. Unless the gate personnel strictly enforce the two item rule, I predict some interesting dialogue and disruptions to occur during boarding.’

While concerns over infighting over luggage space and additional charges have not yet been addressed, United has told TODAY that entire families can board together under the new policy. 

Loyal flyers may recall that United had this boarding process before 2017.

However, introducing its carry-on restricted Basic Economy product six years ago led to a significant change primarily caused by outdated technology.

The computer systems in use at that time limited the airline to a five-group boarding structure, forcing the airline to condense people with middle and aisle seats into Group 4.

Now, technical advancements allow for more boarding groups.

Pre-boarding through Group 3 will also remain the same.

This group includes people who may need more time getting on the plane, like those with disabilities and families traveling with children two years old and younger, as well as unaccompanied minors and active-duty military.

It is hoped the change will reduce boarding times by two minutes

Multiple customers on the same economy reservation will also be allowed to board together. 

First-class and business-class passengers can also breathe a sigh of relief, as there is no change in seating passengers in those classes. 

Last month, United Airlines came under fire when it was revealed that fake parts were being used in some planes after London-based distributor AOG Technics deceived the airline.

Dubious parts were found in two aircraft engines, including a plane that was already undergoing routine maintenance.

These engines were replaced before the planes returned to the skies.

The conspiracy came to light when a routine inspection of the world’s best-selling jet engine – the CFM56, which is used in planes like Airbus A320 models and the Boeing 737.

The carrier has been testing this new method at four domestic locations to ensure that it will reduce time 

 Economy passengers with window seats will board in Group 3, followed by passengers with middle seats in Group 4 and passengers in aisle seats in Group 5, according to an internal memo

In June, engineers at TAP Air Portugal’s maintenance subsidiary noticed that one of the ‘new’  spare parts for a CFM56 engine appeared older than what the paperwork indicated.

The alleged mastermind behind the scheme was unmasked as 35-year-old Jose Alejandro Zamora Yrala, the founder of the AOG Technics – which used stock images of staffers on its website.

Yrala was once a budding techno DJ and music producer who performed under the name ‘Santa Militia,’ before finding himself at the heart of one of the airline industry’s biggest scandals.

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