Here’s Why It Takes So Long To Get Off A Plane After It Lands

Everyone knows that the time between touchdown and actually getting off the plane can feel almost as long as the fight. But why does there always seem to be such a delay between landing and disembarking?

It turns out that a lot of things have to happen in order for passengers to be allowed off an aircraft. First of all, the gate agent must be informed that the plane has landed. Next, airport crew must get the jet bridge out and aligned with the plane door before the ground crew open the aircraft and let the cabin crew know that they can safely evacuate the passengers.

Plenty of things can draw out the time between touchdown and stepping off the plane. The jetway could have mechanical issues, or multiple planes could arrive at the same time and overwhelm the ground crew. The plane could have difficulty lining up with the jetway, or simple miscommunication could mean that it takes a few extra minutes for the gate agent to realize the plane has landed.

Even though it feels like it should be a simple matter of opening the doors and letting everyone pass, deplaning is actually more complicated than it seems. When it comes to air travel, patience is always a virtue.