Low-cost airlines save real money by making you climb stairs to board instead of using a jet bridge

I’ve only taken one RyanAir flight (Milan to Prague), and it was weird fun. I remember the boarding (up the stairs on the tarmac) going fairly quickly. The in-flight sale of lottery tickets, watches, and perfume was amusing (those mostly Italian passengers seemed keen on it), and the fanfare they piped in when we touched down (Hurrah! We survived another flight!) was hilarious. All that was missing were a goat and a crate full of chickens.


Generally I’m fine with stairs too, but the last time I used them was to change planes on a now-defunct budget Icelandic airline trip to France. We were in Keflavik during some very nasty cold, windy and wet weather. It took some effort to keep my young son and his luggage from blowing across the tarmac.


We called them Space-A (available) when I was active duty. I think a cross-country flight was ~$30 the one time I took advantage. We had a small pressure leak and had to turn around and go the next day. The downside is that the (successful) flight was a 9 hour refueling mission from northern Maine to Dallas, by way of Colorado. Still fun, though.


I might be biased, as the last time I did this it was at Kona.




My partner has AS, which means she has issues both standing for long periods AND sitting for long periods unless she is well reclined. This makes airline travel, even under the best of circumstances, torture that often takes multiple days of bedrest to recover from.

This is doubly shitty because our systems for mobility disabilities all assume one can use a wheelchair. She cannot for any significant period of time. But 100x worse than that is any situation requiring stairs, especially if she needs to lug her carry-on items with her to do so.

Yes, I am able to help her, but the loss of personal autonomy in this situations is real. As it is now, her treatment when she is alone at an airport versus when Mr. white dude is there advocating on her behalf is already highly suspect. It’s for these reasons that we are forced to skip discount airlines.

This loophole should not exist. We should not be incentivising airlines to force those living with disabilities to suffer just to save money.


My mother who was recovering from knee surgery was loaded into the aircraft on the right side of the aircraft (where catering loads their wares) using a special purpose lift that allowed for flat tarmac loading up to the cabin door.


Dear Wife says the same, she’s got good gluts & rocking gams.


Kenan Thompson Reaction GIF by Saturday Night Live

I really don’t know how that isn’t a violation of the ADA…


I was trying to remember how JetBlue deplaned folks at Long Beach with disabilities and this is how they did it too. The 'ol scissor lift to the rescue!


Yeah, I have to have pity for that. I mean, really that poor piece of toilet paper stuck to that person like that when it could have been used for something more respectable.


Same, i used to fly more often and usually it was on Southwest and never once had to take these stairs though tbh it’s never bothered me and i dont mind though it’d be a problem for people with mobility issues.


We live in the Nordics, where the winters can be quite cold, we have a little girl, when she was a baby this was always a terrifying experience. Not only do airliners do this, the cabin crew never announces it is the case when disembarking the plane. With a newborn or small child this information is essential, as it determines the layers of clothes they need to be in.


Still one of the best scenes from the Sopranos.



Raynair doesn’t want that plane sitting on the tarmac - it needs it in the air earning money. The greasy chain would just slow everything down.

It’d be more Ryanair to add a mandatory ‘stair usage fee’ during checkout.


I think you got the better end of the deal - I got to use them at the never-not-windy-and-cold Keflavík to board a very nearly safe Boeing 737-MAX.


an experiment at a very large airport (Dulles, Washington DC).

From an architect’s point of view, jetways tend to make terminals and corridors very long. This means that the passengers are forced to hike many kilometers, which in turn makes connecting flights wait for passengers to arrive. Mobile lounges don’t have wings, therefore the gates can be packed more closely together. IIRC, the mobile lounges don’t connect to planes any longer, but deliver the passengers to a midfiield terminal, which is presumably still more space efficient than the conventional alternative.

All of these supposed efficiencies depend on making an aging experimental vehicle reliable.


I wonder if this will cut down on the 30 or so people per Florida flight who pretend to need wheelchairs just to get priority seating?

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Reagan sought to use the specter of the welfare cheat to screw over a lot of people in poverty.


I’ve been in situations in China where the plane lands, we all deplane by stairs and take a bus to the terminal, where we then have to go through security again because we were in an “unsecured area.”