United Adds New Transcon Route and Improves Amenities

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United is bringing a slew of changes to its transcon business, including a new premium transcon route, and improving amenities in Business class and Economy Plus. In its press release, United confirmed that the Summer of 2017 will add the Boston to San Francisco route as a premium service route. The flights will now resemble an international flight with lie-flat beds in Business Class, and complimentary hot meals in Economy Plus.

United P.S. 757 Takeoff

New Business Class Amenities

United will be expanding on the current amenities offered in Business class which include Premium meals, and Saks Fifth Avenue bedding. Now passengers will also benefit from:

  • Pre-arrival hot towel service
  • Pre-arrival snacks and nibbles, including MadiK’s almonds and Boulder Canyon Potato Chips
  • New desserts that are inspired by the United Polaris menu
  • A Moscow Mule Cocktail by Crafthouse Cocktails

United P.S. Business Seat

New Economy Plus Amenities

The changes to the Economy Plus service will be starting July 1, 2017, and will be implemented across the airline’s three premium transcontinental routes. Passengers will receive the following complimentary amenities:

  • Hot entrée, dessert, and fruit
  • Alcoholic beverages and pre-arrival snacks

United aims that “Customers traveling in Economy Plus will receive the industry's best economy cabin dining experience,” according to Mark Krolick, United's vice president of marketing.

How the Changes Shape Up

The changes are good and bad for some passengers. The new Premium service means that United Elites will no longer be eligible for complimentary upgrades to Business class; which is normal on domestic routes but not on Premium routes.

In terms of dining, it is great that United is offering hot meals in Economy in an attempt to keep up with Delta and American who have also started serving free meals on some transcon flights. Although interestingly Delta and American serve meals to all Economy passengers, while United have restricted it to Economy Plus passengers, although the meals are supposedly of a higher standard, and include complimentary alcohol.

Our Take

At first glance, the improvements seem like great news, but depending on your travel plans you could have mixed feelings. The improvements to Business class are not exactly earth-shattering, however, elites have now lost complimentary upgrades. On the other hand, the changes to Economy Plus are very positive, although it is likely that United will consider restricting complimentary upgrades to Economy Plus for Elites. Overall only time will tell whether these changes are great news or not.

Source: United

United Adds New Transcon Route and Improves Amenities
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Comments

  • finally some good news from UA

  • i think united needs more of these improvements to get their travelers back…

  • Trying to catch up with the international carriers…United has a long way to go. I don’t think we will ever see Asian quality service on a United flight.

    On domestic First and Biz we don’t get flight attendants we get a sky waitress who is always in a rush.

    On Asian First and biz we get true flight attendants.

    • Even European or Middle Eastern ones. Basically anything but American carriers have good service. I have some united miles to burn so I’ll have to fly their business class one of these days because their partner awards are ridiculous

  • It’s not much, but for UA these days it’s baby steps, which is at least positive, not negative.

  • Would be great to have a post listing all of these special, interesting transcon routes by airline…

  • It is funny how they initially tried to scrap everything they could and ruined their image and now desperate to improve their service again!

  • Nice that they are at least trying to improve

  • Small steps but still lagging behind the main competition…

  • Pre arrival hot towel service. Is that really news and the first thing that gets highlighted?

  • Wish this was out of New York and Chicago too. Chicago is a hub – we need more attention!

  • They could have one upped Delta & American by introducing meals for the entire economy cabin; with enhanced meals for Economy Plus.

  • After lot of bad news on United they have decided to offer some new amenities.
    They also announced a lot of new routes to/from Hawaii.

  • I always like when things are added. I am looking to travel on United more, which I’ve heard could be a bad idea but well we will see ;o) lol! I have also heard they are increasing the amount of flights to Hawaii? I don’t know if you all have heard anything about that?

    I cannot wait to see some of these changes and hopefully more coming!

  • For regular economy, the last time I flew United, they downgraded snacks to a packet of “Savory Snacks”, pretzels with a few sesame snacks mixed in.

  • Good to see improvements but loss of upgrades is a troubling thing.

  • Alice Chen says:

    Finally!

  • They should improve amenities on domestic routes also. On regular Economy, no free TV channels and the only snack option being “savory snacks”, the packet of pretzels and sesame snacks is really the bare minimum.

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