‘Pay least, board last’: Global airline comes up with controversial new policy

British Airways planes are parked at Heathrow Terminal 5 in London, Britain May 27, 2017. REUTERS/Neil Hall TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY - RTX37W6D

According to the carrier the new system will speed up the checking in process and is being followed by several other aviation companies

A new flight boarding policy by British Airways is creating a lot of controversy with a section of people terming it as discriminatory.

According to the new ‘pay least, board last’ policy that will come into effect on December 12, passengers will be allowed to board an aircraft based on the money they spend on their tickets. In other words, this would mean that passengers with the cheapest ticket will now be allowed to board only after all others have hopped in.

As per a report in The Telegraph, passengers flying within Europe will be divided into five groups at the check-in counter. Group one will have first-class ticket holders and Gold members of the British Airways Executive Club. They will be the first to board into the aircraft. They will be followed by group two and three consisting of silver and bronze status holders followed by group four that comprises of economy class passengers.

And lastly, group five i.e. those who have opted for the cheapest hand-luggage only fares will follow. This would mean that they will have to wait until the end to board the aircraft.

According to the carrier, this will speed up the checking-in process and is being followed by several other aviation companies.

Lodging protest, a section of people have voiced their disagreements against the new system.

One netizen termed the decision as discriminatory and tweeted “Nothing quite like a British class system to let you know your place!”

Another person criticised the move by saying that the carrier is degrading its own value by adopting the policy. “Think BA has lost the plot. Instead of competing with the Aldi and Lidl of the airline world they should have stuck to offering more and costing more. This is a race to the bottom. #britishairways #Lowcost #dignity,” he tweeted.

However, there were also others who did not mind the new policy and could not understand why it was being made an issue of. “I thought airlines have always done this? If people are prepared to pay way more for a seat that is essentially the same that’s on them. Equally, how sad do you have to be as a person to find your worth in an airline seat?!,” read one tweet.

While the carrier is going to move ahead with the new policy that may bring a slight improvement on overall boarding time, it is very unlikely that this will bring big improvements on the time needed to check-in or prompt passengers to take an expensive ticket.

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