A United Airlines Holdings Inc. Bombardier CRJ-550 aircraft sits at a gate at O’Hare International Airport (ORD) in Chicago, Illinois.
Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images
United Airlines adds more than two dozen non-stop routes from the Midwest to coastal towns popular with vacationers for the summer season, a bet travelers will continue to care about the outdoors.
The Chicago-based airline announced Thursday that its overall May flight schedule will be 52% of May 2019 airfare, which will fly the most in more than a year, when the pandemic Shops and most air travel are closing. Last May, it flew 14% of its capacity in May 2019. The domestic schedule for May will be 58% of its capacity for May 2019.
The plans show the airline is focusing on local vacationers for another summer, usually the most lucrative airline season. Has air travel steadily climbed With more people vaccinated in the last month, business travel and international travel are still falling sharply compared to domestic vacation spots.
“We wanted to base our assets on demand,” said Ankit Gupta, United’s vice president of network and scheduling. He said the airline’s capacity to Florida was almost back to 2019 levels.
Starting May 27, United is planning new nonstop flights from Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee and Indianapolis. Destinations and frequencies vary two to four times per week depending on the market and include Portland, Maine, Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and Pensacola, Florida.
Most of the service is performed on his 50-seat CRJ-550 jet.
Other new nonstops are Houston to Kalispell, Montana, Washington to Bozeman, Montana and Chicago to Nantucket, Massachusetts
Other airlines are also looking for customers who really want to get outside. Delta Airlines A number of summer services were announced last week for destinations such as Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Glacier Park, Montana.
Leisure-oriented budget carriers like Spirit Airlines also plan to grow this summer while low-cost carriers Southwest Airlines Steps onto United’s lawn by entering hubs at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago and George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.
“There will be significant competition for all US customers,” said Gupta. “We believe we have the right ingredients.”
International travel continues to lag behind domestic travel due to persistent travel restrictions and weak demand. United’s international flight schedule for May accounts for 46% of the May 2019 flight schedule, although flying in Latin America and the Caribbean will surpass May 2019 levels as travelers seek vacations and visit friends and family.