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Re: Military Boarding Policy

Acabral33
New Arrival

I have been flying YEARS with southwest. NOT. IN. UNIFORM. Ever. Today I was told by  the boarding agent she was “doing me a favor” by letting me on and not being in uniform after showing her my ID. I had boarded another flight previously that day in Tampa and WAS allowed to board between groups A and B. If you’re going to give me an attitude and roll you eyes... not to mention YELL down the walkway to me about your favor continued by several “your welcome”’s, then by all means, keep your policy to yourself. Disgusting that you’re yelling “you’re welcome” to military personnel. Just disgusting. I think it’s time we stop using southwest. Period.

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Re: Military Boarding Policy

rtbarron
Active Member

Thank you for your service to the United States and sorry for the problem that you had today. Whether or not you are in uniform, you are entitled to a basic level of respect as a Customer and you did not get that today. That particular Operations Agent was rude and unprofessional and is not indicative of all Southwest People. I suggest you contact Southwest Airlines Customer Relations at 855-234-4654 or email them by clicking on the contact us link at the bottom of the southwest homepage. I hear Twitter also works.


Re: Military Boarding Policy

sbattle02
New Arrival

I understand and appreciate the kind gesture of early boarding for active duty military. As stated by many on this thread, mostnservice members refrain from wearing uniforms when traveling commercial. Today,  I was told by the gate agent (with an added eye roll) that I had to be in uniform as I stood in line with the family boarders in preparation for boarding the aircraft. On my previous flight, the gate agent accepted my ID card as verification of military status. So, I went ahead and paid $30 for early boarding since this policy seems to varies by gate agent. I can only assume that some gate agents have served in the military and have an appreciation for those who currently serve and sacrifice more than other agents. Please  consider a policy change that allows active duty military to board early with valid ID regardless of attire. 

Re: Military Boarding Policy

PizarroJM
New Arrival

 

Military at BWI

 

I got to the airport 3 hours early and observed three departing Southwest Airlines flights call for only military in uniform and 0 service members were in uniform.  However, many service members were boarding these flights and I that a lot of them traveling were traveling on orders.  I recalled that other airlines asked the military to board early with no excuses such as been in uniform. In my opinion, this is a poor excuse since a smaller number of them traveled uniform and not all military on official travel will be uniform when traveling. However, the other airlines do n’t use this an excuse. This airline is only pretending to be nice to the military.  

 

Southwest needs to update their military boarding policy if they sincerely support the military.

 

Re: Military Boarding Policy

Ohmelas
New Arrival

I have this same issue this AM in Charlotte. If we get technical appropriate civilian attire is an authorized part of uniform.

Re: Military Boarding Policy

tpegan1
New Arrival

Do other airlines have open seating like Southwest?  Probably not.  Boarding early is a far bigger deal on Southwest than on an airline that has assigned seating.

Re: Military Boarding Policy

Kerrid04
New Arrival

Thank you for this post as active duty Coast Guard I experienced being turned away with military Id and official orders,  very disappointing treatment of service members. 

Re: Military Boarding Policy

voltron
New Arrival

I was just VERY rudely turned away at Reagan in DC because I was not in uniform. I am an intelligence officer and it is not smart to travel in uniform as you make yourself a target. This is the only airport I have experienced this disparity. All other SW airports allow me as an active duty service member to pre-board without being in uniform which I very much appreciate. SW needs do standardize this. 

 

MAJ S

Re: Military Boarding Policy

chgoflyer
Top Contributor

@voltron wrote:

I was just VERY rudely turned away at Reagan in DC because I was not in uniform. I am an intelligence officer and it is not smart to travel in uniform as you make yourself a target. This is the only airport I have experienced this disparity. All other SW airports allow me as an active duty service member to pre-board without being in uniform which I very much appreciate. SW needs do standardize this. 

 

MAJ S


 

While I disagree with the official policy and it's uneven implementation, technically military do not preboard, they board between the A and B groups. You've been apparently very lucky.

Re: Military Boarding Policy

krafty81
Active Member

I am retired military. I did not expect special treatment nor did I accept it. I appreciate that SWA has military discounts for active duty when calling to make reservations, especially when they are short-notice. If you are travelling on the government dime you do not rate special perks. We serve this nation - just sign up 24 hours prior and you will get your nice seat.  You get to keep your miles even though you did not pay for the ticket. I am disappointed that some here feel that they should board prior to families with small children or anyone else.