United Airlines adds 4 new routes from California airports
United Airlines is returning to Santa Maria on California's Central Coast and will expand in Milwaukee this June, as it continues to grow its domestic route network.
The Star Alliance carrier will return to Santa Maria (SMX) with service to Denver (DEN), Los Angeles (LAX) and San Francisco (SFO) on June 4, United spokesman Jonathan Guerin told TPG. All three routes will operate daily on 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200 jets.
United previously served Santa Maria, which is about halfway between Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, until 2016, according to Cirium schedules. The airport is the closest to Vandenberg Air Force Base, which is home to numerous satellite launches including by Elon Musk's SpaceX.
Prior to ending service, the airline had served Santa Maria continuously since at least 1987.
United will also add seasonal service between Milwaukee (MKE) and San Francisco on June 4. The route will operate daily on Airbus A319 aircraft through Sept. 7.
The new routes come as United continues to grow rapidly with capacity forecast to increase 4-6% year-over-year in 2020. Other planned additions include a new shuttle-like service between Newark Liberty (EWR) and Washington's Reagan National (DCA), and four new flights to Tokyo Haneda (HND).
United gave a preview of some of its future growth earlier this week. The airline plans to grow its Denver hub to more than 700 departures by 2025, executives said in a Denver City Council committee hearing on Wednesday. It is seeking 24 additional gates at the airport to support those plans.
Allegiant Air is the only carrier serving Santa Maria currently with flights to Las Vegas (LAS).
Southwest Airlines flies seasonally between San Francisco and Milwaukee, according to Cirium.
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