Originally Posted by Salukipilot4590
As a commuter...asking to board with the crew works maybe 50-60% of the time.
Saves me a lot of hassle especially when I've got the whole kit with me.
That's my point. Just get on first and you're fine...if you can get on first. In my experience, boarding with the crew works if you get there when they do, and even then only about 25% of the time(for me, anyway. If only I looked like your avatar Sauki...). Next, on rare occasions you get great flight attendants (commuters/non-pilot haters) who will help stash your bags in some of their secret hidey holes or a flight crew who doesn't mind stashing your bags up front in the cockpit. Only works if you're NOT commuting on an RJ or 737 and even then, only about another 25% of the time. So that leaves roughly 50% of the time when you are the last guy on, with a middle seat either in the back or in the cockpit and a trip to baggage claim in your future.
To get back to the original topic, this is why all other things being equal (full flights, same jumpseat chances, no ramp access, etc.), I would almost prefer the RJ over a mainline aircraft simply because I can gate check my bag and pick it up in the jetway like a normal schmoe. Easy peasey.