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trick to getting boarding position A?

E-ticketi-liz
New Arrival

For the 3rd flight in a row, I checked in EXACTLY 24 hours in advance and still got a "B" boarding pass. Are there really that many EBCI or A-Listers flying at 6:55 on a Sunday from MCO? I realize that if MCO is my home airport, I'm in a premium location, but this all seems a bit much. On my more suspicious and cynical days, I feel as if Southwest doesn't distribute boarding passes truly in order of check-in. I'm just wondering if there's a better way to get a better chance at an "A" pass. The last 2 flights, I used the app on my phone to check in. The one before that was online using my desktop. Same result--check in exactly 24 hours ahead of the flight, and get a B. This time, at least it was a high B for me & my son!

 

Thank you in advance for any advice or suggestions you have!

 

E-ticket-lizabeth

MCO home, occasional visits to MCI, occasional travel elsewhere, and I ALWAYS use Southwest when it's available!

10 REPLIES 10

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

chgoflyer
Top Contributor

Southwest earned $400 million on EBCI fees alone in 2017.  Smiley Wink

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

Anita_Skadra
New Arrival

And they won’t give me travels funds.  My grand kids have funds that I paid for. They can’t travel more than once in awhile. Not right ya think

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

dfwskier
Rising Star

Not sure what that comment has to do about getting an A boarding position.

 

But to your point, I suspect you are talking about Wanna Get Away travel that was cancelled and travel funds in your grandchildren's names.

 

Southwest is completely transparent about travel funds. They must be used within a year of original purchase and be used by the person whose name was on the original ticket. YOU agreed to those rules when you bought the tickets.

 

If you didn't want to agree with those rules, then you should not have bought the tickets.

 

 

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

Anita_Skadra
New Arrival

yes i know this...but some times there are situations that need special assistance.

life is strange you know..

and we are suppose to help each other.

 

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

dfwskier
Rising Star

Southwest flies more people domestically than any other airline. Lots of 'em fly a lot and earn A List, and lots more buy EBCI.

 

The easiest way to get an "A" boarding position is to be A List, but you have to fly at least 25 times a year to get it. I don't know it for a fact, but I suspect that Southwest give it's A Listers their boarding positions first and then gives them to EBCIers next.

 

I mention that because becasue some EBCIers complain that they don't get A boarding positions either.

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

chgoflyer
Top Contributor

A-Listers are assigned positions ahead of EBCI.

 

Depending on market, the bulk of A (when not available at t-24) will either be filled with A-lister's (lots of business, like intra-California) or EBCI (lots of leisure, like MCO).

 

Boarding order is:

 

-- Preboards

-- A1-15: Business Select (based on order of check-in) followed by Upgraded Boarding (based on order of purchase, otherwise empty)

-- A-List Preferred & A-List (ranked using a secret formula known only to Southwest)

-- Serendipitous Early Boarding* (possibly, no guarantee)

-- EBCI (ranked based on order of purchase, with those who bought Anytime fares ahead of those who bought Wanna Get Away)

-- Family Boarding, Military, A-Listers who don't have an A position, those needing extra time (between the A and B groups)

-- Online check-in at t-24 (in order of check-in*, follows EBCI, may occur in A or B, depending on the number of EBCI's sold)

-- Everyone else

 

*Southwest re-issues the positions of passengers who are checked in but then cancel their flight prior to departure. These are often A-Listers with low positions, and the next person(s) to check in get those positions. The means that someone checking in manually at t-24 or later can receive a great position, one that is ahead of those who bought EBCI. In some forums this is known as "Serendipitous Early Boarding."

 

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

DancingDavidE
Top Contributor

@dfwskier wrote:

 

The easiest way to get an "A" boarding position is to be A List, but you have to fly at least 25 times a year to get it. 


This is the "only" way without buying the business select fares - all over this communty we hear about EBCI getting B-positions a lot of the time, and as an A-list member myself I have been getting anywhere between A16 and A30's depending on the flight. 

 


@dfwskier wrote:

I don't know it for a fact, but I suspect that Southwest give it's A Listers their boarding positions first and then gives them to EBCIers next.

 


They absolutely do this, A-list preferred, A-list, and then EBCI all are assigned at 36 hours in that order. Among EBCI the order is based on when you added EBCI. Among the A-list and A-list preferred I'm not sure what the algorithm is but I suspect order of purchase and not "most senior" points or flights, although maybe it's some hybrid of these. It doesn't seem to only be seniority based on when I chat with my neighbors in the queue.

 

 

Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

chgoflyer
Top Contributor

@DancingDavidE wrote:

@dfwskier wrote:

 

The easiest way to get an "A" boarding position is to be A List, but you have to fly at least 25 times a year to get it. 


This is the "only" way without buying the business select fares...


 

Note that you can purchase Upgraded Boarding at the gate, (when available, but almost always available in my experience), guaranteeing you an A position that's ahead of all A-Listers, for $30-$50, should that be worth it to you.

 

 

Re: trick to getting boarding position A?

DancingDavidE
Top Contributor

@E-ticketi-liz wrote:

 Are there really that many EBCI or A-Listers flying at 6:55 on a Sunday from MCO? I realize that if MCO is my home airport, I'm in a premium location, but this all seems a bit much. 

 

 


I think Orlando is a unique place - you have a lot of business and convention activity, so there is some high traffic among A-listers visiting your city. Then there is also a fairly robust consulting industry there so A-listers are flying from MCO.

 

Then it is also a popular tourist area for when all these out of town business people want to take the family to see the mouse (like myself). Then also quite a few people that fly infrequently also flying to do the same thing without A-list, some of these go for EBCI.

 

Anyway, to make a long story short, my experience as an A-lister is that there are a lot of other A-listers coming and going to MCO. The one less-traveled scenario is leaving Orlando late evening which seems to be less busy, maybe due to people not traveling late with kids and business people paying for midday flights in general.

 

 

 

 

 

Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.