United adds bigger aircraft, more options for key summer flights

May 17, 2021

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This July, United Airlines will operate 80% of its U.S. schedule compared with the same period in 2019 — a big boost to near-pre-pandemic levels, at least when it comes to domestic flights.

As part of its latest update, United will adjust the timing of flights to, from and through its hubs at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) and Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD), in an effort to make connections more convenient for flyers.

“By adjusting our bank structures at two key hub airports, we’re able to offer our customers easy connections to destinations across the U.S. so they can start their vacations at times convenient for them,” United’s vice president of domestic network planning and scheduling, Ankit Gupta, explained.

At ORD and IAD, United will operate more than 480 and 220 daily departures, respectively. Overall, the airline’s July schedule represents a 17% jump over June.

Select international routes are getting a bump as well. The airline’s new nonstop flight between Newark (EWR) and Dubrovnik, Croatia (DBV) will actually kick off earlier than expected, with the inaugural now scheduled for July 1, instead of July 8.

Newark-Athens will get an upgrade in July, including a 24-seat Premium Plus cabin. (Photo by Brendan Dorsey/The Points Guy)

Meanwhile, United’s seasonal service between Newark and Athens, Greece (ATH) will be operated by a Boeing 777-200ER beginning in July, replacing the 767-300ER previously assigned. That aircraft change brings 20 more lie-flat business-class seats, an additional 18 economy seats and a 24-seat Premium Plus cabin.

Also on the Europe front, the airline will be adding a second daily flight between IAD and Frankfurt, Germany (FRA), and United plans to resume service between EWR and Barcelona (BCN) and Madrid (MAD) in Spain, and Lisbon (LIS) in Portugal, assuming those countries reopen to vaccinated travelers.

If you already have a United reservation for travel in July, be sure to take a look at your booking — if the new flight times don’t work for your schedule, you can call United reservations at 1-800-864-8331 to move to new flights or, if eligible, request a refund to your original form of payment.

Featured photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy

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