Preboarding with young kids

by Laura on May 25, 2012

Boarding a plane early with young kids can be a lifesaver if you really need the extra time to get situated.  It is so nice to take a few extra moments without the entire plane waiting for you to move.

We have been flying a lot lately, and I have really noticed airlines’ differing stances of boarding a plane early.  When we flew back from Kauai, we asked about it, and American told us they really don’t do preboarding anymore for young kids as almost every family has young kids.   When we flew Spirit airlines last weekend, they announced “If anyone needs additional time to board, you are welcome to board the plane at this time.”  Our kids always seem to be really slow, so we decided to take them up on that.  When we approached the gate, the attendant said that they really only reserve it for 2 and under and told us we would have to wait.  I understand that we don’t have one that young anymore, but if they really only want 2 and under, they should say that!

When I came to this article, “United no longer lets coach fliers with young kids board before general boarding,” I found it very interesting how any airlines have changed their positions and which ones do or do not allow preboarding.  This article highlights several airlines–United, American, JetBlue, Delta, Virgin America, and US Airways.

Any preboarding experiences lately here?  I’m interested to know some real life experiences out there.


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Alison June 11, 2012 at 6:29 pm

I guess they have experience with it, but here’s my experience: I have three kids who are now 9, 6, and 3. I have had to install up to two car seats at a time. Each one, depending on the layout of the seatbelt, the Wheatiness of my breakfast, and the alignment of the stars, can take up to 30 minutes (really not exaggerating… it’s awful, although seatbelt extenders help). Meanwhile, my kids are milling about the plane getting in other people’s way. Now, let me board with that last boarding group. Our departure is delayed and my kids are bothering people. Just freaking let me board first.


Laura June 12, 2012 at 12:10 am

Love your post. I agree 100%!


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