Major U.S. airline makes popular way to fly harder for passengers

People touring by air have completely different preferences and tolerance ranges for various levels of uncertainty through the reserving and boarding course of.

For instance, when flying with Southwest Airlines  (LUV) , passengers haven’t any assigned seats. Instead they’re assigned a boarding order primarily based on a couple of standards after which they select whichever seat they like as soon as they’re on the plane.

Related: Southwest Airlines provides boarding choice many passengers love

This course of fits some folks’s tastes simply effective. Others favor a extra refined sense of order whereas touring.

These folks may be higher suited to a flying expertise that includes extra inflexible guidelines, together with realizing their seat assignments earlier than arriving on the airport.

Reasons for these private preferences could be a easy particular person inclination, or maybe a want by a bunch to make sure it’s seated collectively.

But there’s one other stage of uncertainty that may be thrown into the combo: not realizing if you’ll be on the flight you might be ready for in any respect.

The execs and cons of standby journey

One choice out there to passengers is to fly standby, the place vacationers haven’t any reservation on a selected flight.

That sounds demanding sufficient to many, however American Airlines  (AAL)  has managed to make the apply harder than it was once.

Standby vacationers select to attend on the airport, hoping a seat turns into out there in some unspecified time in the future throughout a given day or some specific window of time through the day.

Some folks select to journey utilizing the standby apply as a result of it usually includes discounted charges, as airways usually fill empty seats on the final minute for decrease costs.

Flying standby works for budget-conscious vacationers who even have a substantial amount of flexibility by way of the period of time they need to fly.

But flights are crammed to capability greater than they was once, so it may be tougher to get on a flight this manner. And many airways do not even supply standby journey as a typical choice.

Also, there’s by no means a assure — so ready for a seat to open up could be unsure and demanding.

Passengers are seen touring on an airplane. American Airlines has added two new restrictions for patrons who want to journey by standby.


American Airlines provides limitations to flying standby

At current, American Airlines permits same-day standby journey to all prospects.

But that modifications shortly. On March 1, two new restrictions might be added, in keeping with Ben Schlappig of One Mile At a Time. He writes the next:

  1. “In order to be eligible for standby, you’ll need to be an AAdvantage member.”
  2. “You’ll only be able to request standby via and via the American Airlines app, so it’s not something that a human can help with anymore.”

First, it is price noting that American is already going to nice lengths to advertise its AAdvantage program, so Schlappig doesn’t appear shocked that the service is utilizing standby journey as one other incentive to encourage folks to enroll.

It’s the requirement that passenger requests for standby journey should be made digitally that Schlappig is annoyed with.

“The second change is perhaps more problematic,” Schlappig wrote. “Airport agents will no longer be able to add you to the standby list, so you’ll have to make that request yourself, or it’s not happening.”

“I’ve certainly had situations where there were tech issues preventing requesting standby, so I find that to be quite a frustrating policy change,” he added. “Hopefully agents will have some discretion there.”

At the time of publication, American Airlines had not responded to a request for remark.

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