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Well it's almost a rhetorical question as in why on earth would you not put the departure gate on the boarding pass however not all airlines/airports do this which can ...
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  1. #1
    Established Member ozbeachbabe's Avatar
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    Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Well it's almost a rhetorical question as in why on earth would you not put the departure gate on the boarding pass however not all airlines/airports do this which can cause chaos if the flight is ready to depart but there are fail to board pax who may be at the wrong gate.

    One major cause of this appears to be that some airlines will show a sequence number eg 46 which indicates that that pax was the 46th person to checkin for that flight but so often this is mistaken for the gate number if the word "gate" appears on a boarding pass but with no number underneath it.

    The real trouble is when a sequence number coincides with a gate number that may actually be the departure gate of a different airline altogether. It doesn't help matters when the word "gate" appears directly below "sequence" on a boarding pass making it all too easy for pax to assume that that SEQ 46 means they should go to gate 46.

    This can have dire consequences if the pax's unique sequence number happens to be an actual boarding gate with another airline as passengers will be down that end of the terminal out of earshot of PA announcements from the airline they are travelling on so they don't hear either boarding calls or when they are paged by name often resulting in flight delays while they're bags are located and offloaded from the flight.

    Has this happened to you?
    Last edited by ozbeachbabe; 6th September 2012 at 02:55 AM.

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  3. #2
    Mal
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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Interesting question.

    I pretty much think it should be something like "check FID" ("Check Flight Information Display" is unfortunately too long, "Check monitors" is too confusing - perhaps they need someone paid a lot of money to decide the right wording) as gate changes do happen frequently and customers don't always check.

    Perhaps Seq Number needs to be changed as well, but manually boarding a flight using numbers would be so much easier than boarding using A-Z, AA-AZ, BA-BZ etc.

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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    I have mistaken Seq for Gate once (on Tiger as well) where both are in equally as prominent letters.
    There is no need for the Seq number to be that big...

    In the US I would recommend a SEE BOARDS print given the high likelihood of gate changes. In Aust have had far less gate changes despite far more flights

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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Personally (and selfishly) I'd lean toward NOT having a gate number on boarding passes and if possible, have nothing more than a seat number and FF #

    Reason being is that it would force passengers to check the FIDs screens for the most up-to-date info such as their gates and new departure times if delayed.
    I'm not a fan of having a gate number printed on a boarding pass if there is a reasonable probability that it's going to change.

    I've lost count the number of times I've had to send little old ladies back to the QF Terminal because they misread a number on their boarding pass.

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    NM
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    When I received my BP for a recent long haul international flight, I initially saw the big 11A and thought the upgrade gods had done their stuff, moving me into a J window seat. Then I noticed it was Gate 11A and the reality of 15 hours in Y returned.
    beardoc and stomplad like this.

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    Established Member Major's Avatar
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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Why print sequence numbers at all ? I don't care how many people checked in before me. The airline staff usually check the bar code, flight and seat number,name but surely not the SEQ number
    simongr and Oneworldplus2 like this.

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    Mal
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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Major View Post
    Why print sequence numbers at all ? I don't care how many people checked in before me. The airline staff usually check the bar code, flight and seat number,name but surely not the SEQ number
    Can be used to quickly board someone if the scanner isn't working. Is used for manual boarding situations (ie computers down). Has it's uses.

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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Some times I have had the check in agent write in pen on my BP the gate number.

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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

    Isn't the issue more about the design and usability of the boarding pass? They should look at not having data is can be mistaken so close to each other. The situation can be made worse if the printer is slightly off and the fields don't match up to the values.

    Given the sequence number is used on an exception basis, most boarding passes already have them small and printed at the bottom or on a corner.

    To me, the important fields are:

    - Passenger name
    - Route
    - Flight number
    - Boarding time (not departure time)
    - Gate number
    - Seat number

    Everything else can be organised around these fields.

    The worst offenders for printing rubbish on boarding passes are US airlines. Then to be helpful, sometimes the agents write/highlight on top on it, making it pretty much incomprehensible...

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    Re: Should airlines put gate numbers on boarding passes?

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    I number of times I've changed gates suggests to me that is why they don't do it. Unless the plane is actually pulled up, often you just won't know for sure, especially at larger airports.

    More concerning to me is finding passengers who have gone AWOL, and those who are lost. New mobile phone tech should hopefully make this a thing of the past. NFC for checkin, Samsung and Nokia (amongst others) collaborating on the development of wifi & bluetooth powered indoor mapping for the passenger, and airline staff finding their wayward passenger I believe should all make bringing gate and passenger in a fluid environment easier.

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