Southwest Airlines addresses a key boarding problem

The budget carrier's democratic boarding method was purposeful. Southwest offers open seating instead of seat assignments.

Ticket buyers get a seat, not a specific seat. Instead, students obtain an A, B, or C boarding group with a number (1-60). Not everyone gets an early boarding slot

Southwest Airlines (LUV) - Get Free Report boards have a special system at the airport. It boards "pre-board" customers, 

The Southwest boarding system confuses many passengers, who look for a seat once on the plane. In actuality, all seats are first-come, first-served

Unfortunately, some early boarders strive to save seats for later boarders. The airline doesn't ban saving seats, even though it's supposed 

Southwest Airlines' flight attendants would be forced to implement a seat-saving ban, which is impossible. That would slow boarding and cause conflict.

Southwest's biggest boarding difficulty disappoints consumers, but seat saving is often acceptable.

Southwest usually announces that the flight is full during boarding, so expect someone to take the middle seat in your row. 

Late boarders are encouraged to find a seat other than the one next to them by various passengers. That may be putting a bag on an open seat

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