Business News

United provides some worldwide flights for September, however stays cautious

A United Airlines aircraft is on the tarmac of San Francisco International Airport.

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

United Airlines announced on Friday that it would add certain flights as early as September, with the coronavirus pandemic continuing to depress demand for travel.

The Chicago-based airline's September capacity will be 37% year-on-year and 4 percentage points higher than in August 2020.

United is one of the most conservative airlines when it comes to restoring flights. As demand began to recover in late spring, it stagnated following an increase in US coronavirus cases, and states such as New York and New Jersey placed quarantine orders for incoming travelers.

"We continue to be realistic about our approach to rebuilding our international and national flight plans by closely monitoring customer demand and flying where people want," said Patrick Quayle, vice president of international networks and alliances at United, in a press release.

United plans to fly 30% of its international flight schedule a year ago in September. Flights abroad were particularly hard hit by the pandemic as airlines struggle with dozens of travel restrictions around the world to prevent the spread of the disease.

The routes include Chicago to Tel Aviv, Chicago to Hong Kong and Houston to Amsterdam. It's also about vacationers with service to Cabo San Lucas and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and to San Jose and Liberia, Costa Rica.

Domestic flights will account for 40% of the September 2019 flight schedule.

United announced on Thursday that it would consolidate its short-haul Embraer E145 flights with only one regional partner, CommutAir, which will drop ExpressJet.

"We have been announcing for several months that we will be a smaller airline in response to the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our business," United said in a statement. "In February, we took our first step to simplify our partner landscape and consolidate our E145 flight. We continue to explore ways to improve the United Express product."

United's CEO Scott Kirby earlier this month told CNBC that he expects sales without a coronavirus vaccine to be below half of the 2019 level.

Related Articles