easyJet is introducing a new facility that will
give passengers greater choice over their seating arrangements onboard the aircraft.‘Speedy Boarding’ allows up to 20 passengers per flight the opportunity to be
amongst the first to board and have the greatest choice of seats.
easyJet operates a free seating policy, whereby the first 30 people to check in
(followed by the next 31-60, 61-90 etc) are the first to board the aircraft and have
the widest choice of seats. As it is quicker to board and unload an aircraft with
unallocated seating, this enables fast turnaround times, which are at the heart of
the low-cost airline business model; increasing the usage of the aircraft; making
the operation more efficient; reducing costs and keeping fares low.
Over the years free seating has given people the ability to sit where they want and
next to whoever they want, enabling passengers to develop new friendships and
relationships - many even ending in marriage! As a result of its popularity and
operational benefits free seating will continue, however following feedback from
some customers that they would be prepared to pay a little more to have a wider
choice of seats, either to get that extra legroom or be in a position to get off the
aircraft first, the airline has developed speedy boarding.
Speedy Boarding can be booked online as part of the normal flight booking process,
this is noted on the confirmation email and passengers are assigned to the special
pre-boarding group when the boarding card is issued. The passengers must then
present themselves at the gate 30 minutes prior to departure, and will be boarded
before all of the other passengers (with exception of those with wheelchairs).
Combined with online check in this means passengers automatically go straight to
security and be amongst the first to board.