It might be the single most inexplicable human behavior while flying. A gate agent announces that a flight’s about to board, and every single person rushes the gate like the last person onboard gets eaten by a hyena — no matter that they have reserved seats, and that those seats are considerably less comfortable than the ones in the airport boarding lounge. The masses are getting on that plane as early as humanly possible, common sense and logic be damned.
But why? Is it a general dislike of airport terminals? Are passengers afraid somehow that if they are not in line right when their group is called, they’ll miss their flight? Do they just enjoy standing in lines like everyone who eats cronuts? We talked to a travel expert and a behavioral psychologist, and they offered some thoughts as to why the hell people crowd airport gates.