April 25, 2014

AIRPLANE BOARDING: WE’RE DOING IT WRONG. “From a data-driven perspective, this is nothing short of maddening. There are many ways to board a plane, with ‘back-to-front’—the chosen boarding process of most U.S. carriers—the slowest. It is so ineffective that timed research shows that simple random boarding ends up being faster. One possibility is that airlines have no incentive to improve the process. As long as it remains terrible, they can sell early boarding privileges. Southwest, for example, charges $40 to be among the first 15 to board. Consider the indignity: The stress of boarding is so bad that people are willing to pay money to wait in the plane, rather than outside it—and they pay money to the very company causing that stress.”

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