Analysis of airplane boarding times

Eitan Bachmat, Daniel Berend, Luba Sapir, Steven Skiena, Natan Stolyarov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


We model and analyze the process of passengers boarding an airplane. We show how the model yields closed-form estimates for the expected boarding time in many cases of interest. Comparison of our computations with previous work, based on discrete-event simulations, shows a high degree of agreement. Analysis of the model reveals a clear link between the efficiency of various airline boarding policies and a congestion parameter that is related to interior airplane design parameters, such as distance between rows. In particular, as congestion increases, random boarding becomes more attractive among row-based policies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-513
Number of pages15
JournalOperations Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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