FORT WORTH — Traveling light? American Airlines will let your board earlier.
People carrying just a personal item that fits under the seat — no rolling suitcases — will be allowed to board before most others. American said that will speed up the process and allow flights to take off sooner.
Airlines have been seeing longer boarding times since they began charging for checked bags, along with more people fighting for limited space in overhead bins.
Passengers carrying things like a backpack or computer bag that will fit under the seat will board right after Group 1 premium passengers.
The airline will let passengers check carry-on bags at the gate at no charge. That means savvy travelers will be able to move up in the boarding order and avoid checked-bag fees — $25 for the first bag, $35 for a second on flights within the United States — though they’ll have to retrieve the bag at baggage claim after they land.