Today, after checking in my luggage, I arrived at the boarding gate 5 minutes after the planned take off. The woman at the gate refused to let me board even though the airplane was still there and I was standing there like an idiot watching them take out the luggage (which took additional 30 minutes). Why not stop looking for my luggage and just let me in, which would be faster?

(I had an argument with the same person at the check in where she wanted me to pay for 20 kilos excess when I had only 10 kg more than allowed)

Flight from Munich Airport to Tunis Airport with the airline Tunisair.

  • As a reference, you can find the excess baggage rate mentioned by pnuts here.
    – drat
    Feb 26, 2015 at 4:55
  • Even though the plane had not yet pushed back, might the cabin crew not have closed/locked the doors, and performed the crosschecks/armed them?
    – CGCampbell
    Feb 26, 2015 at 17:37

1 Answer 1


Most every airline has a "you must be on the plane XX minutes before departure" rule and you obviously did not make that deadline.

Just because the plane is at the gate still means nothing. There are reports, head counts, etc that need to be done before the plane backs away from the gate to depart. To board you after the fact means all of these items need to be redone, thus delaying the flight further (and further inconveniencing your fellow passengers).

Airlines provide you with suggested times (sometimes mandatory times) to check your bags ZZ minutes before departure, to be at the gate YY minutes before departure, to be on the plane XX minutes before departure. If they were to allow passengers to stroll up five minutes, ten minutes 15 minutes late, their planes would never be on time.

  • 9
    A good answer to the actual question in the OP's post (most of which sounds like a rant).
    – DCTLib
    Feb 25, 2015 at 13:58
  • 8
    @pnuts - not sure where you fly (or what class, as first class can be counted without looking like they are counting), but I see head counts regularly.
    – user13044
    Feb 25, 2015 at 14:39
  • (+1) Also note that everything else being equal (same airline, same luggage) Germans can be sticklers for the rules whereas you could get away with something that's technically over some limit or threshold elsewhere (within reason, of course).
    – Relaxed
    Feb 25, 2015 at 14:44
  • @pnuts: In various of the cheaper German airlines, I have seen flight attendants walk through the aisles and use clicker counters to count passengers before every departure. On other airlines, I often get the impression some counting is happening, too, but it's most noticeable when crew use such devices and not just mentally counting in their heads. Feb 26, 2015 at 12:30
  • @pnuts: Unfortunately, I do not have any reference for that, but I first noticed those clicker counters about 5 years ago. Since then, they seem to have been constantly spreading to an increasing number of airlines. But, indeed, the communication you are referring to does happen, as well. Feb 26, 2015 at 12:48

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .