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Hello and welcome to Seat 1A!

When you travel, do you ever wonder how you can be that person who is always ahead of the pack, even when things go awry? Hosts Vinod Viswalingam (@VViswalingam) and Geoff Dahl (@geoffdahl) are proud to present The Seat 1A Podcast.

Seat 1A aims to provide savvy travellers with advanced industry based knowledge to enhance the air travel experience and take off from the crowd. By arming you with an understanding of the systems, processes, rules and structures that define modern air travel, Seat 1A strives to give you the upper hand by examining real experiences from abroad.

Whether traveling in ultra-economy or first-class, with or without frequent flyer status, knowing how the operation works will keep you moving in front of the masses, especially when things don’t go as planned. Seat 1A provides tips and tricks on how to make your travel experience as smooth and efficient as possible. Our goal is that you'll be in Seat 1A all the time!

We have over 5 million miles of flying and over 10 years working for numerous airlines, enjoying all classes and cabins, and exploring airports on every continent. We're enthusiastic #avgeeks, with a keen interest in modern aviation trends and aim to share our knowledge in The Seat 1A Podcast. To learn more about who we are, check out Experience 010!

The Seat 1A Podcast also relies on feedback from listeners, offering the chance to take real experiences and analyze them, breaking them down to understand what happened, where things went well or wrong and what can be learned from it. If you have a story, question or experience that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at) or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

In the meantime please find us wherever you download your podcasts, and tell all your friends!

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Jul 18, 2020

In this experience we look at the different queues and lineups that one experiences when at an airport and how to make the best of them.

In this era of COVID-19, people have settled into a new normal of queuing up. It goes hand-in-hand with the airline and airport experience. Please note that we will be putting this in the context of how things were, and it will be years before the airport returns to how it was.

When you arrive at the airport, are you able to go directly into the terminal, or is there curbside security for passengers? Who are the masses of people? Are they actually the passenger, or are they just well wishers?

Once you're inside the airport, we approach the check-in counter. This experience has changed a lot over the last ten to fifteen years. Have you checked in online? Are you just dropping a bag? Are you going to a self-serve kiosk (and waiting to see if it will actually work?) Or are you going to the regular check-in line? Who is going to serve you? What if you need to queue up to change your ticket? And are you within the cut-off times for baggage drop-off? If you're with a group, are you all co-ordinated? If you have a cart, take it with you after checking in!

Security and immigration – are there fast-track options available to you as a passenger? Don't forget that the fast-tracking starts when you check-in online. Is there a faster moving security checkpoint? Who's ahead of you in the queue? Why do security lines move so slowly in the US? Do you need to line up for an immigration exit queue?

Now on to boarding – what's the system your airline is using and what's the best way to board with that system? On the plane – we'll have a future experience for onboard etiquette.

You land, immigration, customs, and baggage claim at a new airport awaits you. How long should you expect to wait for immigration at some airports? Is there an arrival fast-track? Sometimes business arrival lines could be much busier than economy. How much time is the airline giving you to get processed? Are you collecting a bag, is there a tight connection? What about if you have to take an airport bus?

News Items:

  • flyertalk article "WestJet Utilizes Very Canadian Solution for Weather Issues".
  • article "Southwest Airlines CEO Expects ‘Brutal Low-Fare’ Competition".

If you have a story about queuing at the airport, stories of your lining up and waiting for your flight, a question, or other experience that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at) or find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Patreon. Show notes are available online at