Last week for my adventures in Ohio and Indiana, I flew Southwest (WN) for the first time in several years. I was surprised to see the got rid of the cattle-chute boarding process. Now, when you check in they give you a letter and number. When it's time to board the plane you line up in your letter group in numerical order.
So we've been upgraded. WN no longer treats us like live stock. They treat all the passengers like 6-year-olds. Considering many of the adults I've seen on flights, that actually sounds like a good decision.
The boarding process was surprisingly smooth so they must be doing something right. I still prefer Alaska Airlines, but my WN experience was positive.
I also flew through Midway in Chicago for the first time. When I go to or through Chicago, I normally go through O'hare.
Midway wasn't bad, though. It was actually a decent, smaller airport. There were plenty of food options, and things seemed to move fairly easily through the airport.
I was surprised at the condition of the tarmac at the WN gates, though. There was a surprising amount of litter near the aircraft and jet bridges -- papers, water bottles, and assorted trash were scattered about the ground around most of the gates.
I suppose it's unlikely this stuff would damage an aircraft, but it seems other airports/airlines take litter around the planes more seriously.
Travel out to the industrial midwest was a lot less painful than I expected. Sometimes low expectations pay off.