Optimal Aircraft Boarding Strategy

To increase profit, airlines seek to minimize turnaround time. Turnaround time is attributed to multiple factors, disembarkation, baggage unloading, refueling, cargo unloading, aircraft maintenance, cargo and baggage loading and passenger boarding. A group in the Science and Engineering Faculty at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia completed a project using AnyLogic software to investigate the turnaround time for aircraft passenger boarding using AnyLogic simulation software.

The recently published paper studied seven common boarding strategies and two new suggested strategies to find the optimal boarding methods for a Boeing 777 and Airbus 380. They considered behavior of groups traveling together, and individuals storing luggage as part of the simulation model.

Results from the simulation demonstrates the Reverse Pyramid method is the best boarding method for Boeing 777, and the Steffen method is the best boarding method for Airbus 380. For the new suggested boarding methods, aisle first boarding method is the best boarding strategy for Boeing 777 and row arrangement method is the best boarding strategy for Airbus 380. Overall best boarding strategy is aisle first boarding method for Boeing 777 and Steffen method for Airbus 380 (www.researchgate.net, 2017).

Find out more about the boarding methods and results in S. Iyigunly, C. Fookes, P. Yarlagadda’s published paper on Research Gate.