Currently I see two problems with service cars which even made me get rid of all remote stands:
If you connect a service car stop to more than one stand and a car is waiting at the stop, other cars might line up behind it. Ramp agents can’t get on because the car is not at the service car stop yet and additionally the cars are blocking the roads.
The bigger problem: Service cars only wait at the stop for a limited time and then leave towards the stand, no matter whether ramp agents are in the car already or not. As the game likes to assign ramp agents who are furthest away from the stands, it happens quite often that they arrive at the service car stop after the car has already left. No other car will pick them up anymore and they’ll wait indefinitely (or until you dismiss the aircraft which is not being serviced).
To solve these issues, I’d like to change the system to one I’ve seen at some airports (for example Beijing Capital Airport is using it): Service car shuttle routes.
Service cars won’t automatically be assigned to a flight and its corresponding service car stop anymore. Instead, the player can define a route containing any number of service car stops and remote stands. Additionally, you can define how many cars should service the shuttle route.
The cars will then just indefinitely circle along the route. At every stop/stand they will drop off / pick up waiting ramp agents just as they pass by. If a car is full, the remaining ramp agents have to wait for the next car on that route.
This way you wouldn’t even have to attach a service car stop to a stand anymore. Just make sure there’s any route servicing the stand and at least one service car stop; the pathfinding algorithm will then detect which stop it can use to get to the stand.
Although the system is pretty simple, we’d need a new screen to manage the service car shuttle routes (add, edit, delete).
At some point the game might introduce different sizes of service cars making it more interesting for the shuttle routes.
Players who still like to have a 1:1 connection between service car stop and stand can do it: Just define a route between a single stand and a single service car stop, serviced by one car.