Southwest airlines to allow higher-paying customers boarding priority

Justin covered Southwest Airlines‘ boarding procedures as the company tooled around with changes (here and here). But as the boarding rules changed, one thing remained constant: all citizens were equal on Southwest flights. Here, the economy-class commoners mingled with business-class budgeters. There was no “class warfare” on Southwest, as there were no classes. It was all economy, all the way. No special boarding, and no special treatment.

But although Southwest is maintaining the illusion of a perfect democracy, those with more money will soon be able to board first and get their pick of seats. The airline isn’t adding a First or Business class, and presumably it’s still in the budget-airline category. But it is beginning to cater to business travelers by selling last-minute and more expensive tickets to “business select” travelers. Customers who buy these tickets are automatically placed in the “A” boarding group, which gets to board first. “Business select” travelers even get a complimentary cocktail!

Sounds like a new class has emerged at Southwest after all.

Read the full article here.

Remember Kyla Ebbert, the Southwest Airlines “Skirtgate” girl? Click here to check out her shameless MySpace photos.