United upgrades 14 outdoor-focused routes for the summer

Apr 12, 2021

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

If outdoor-focused travel is on your radar, United Airlines likely has a flight for you.

Over the weekend, the Chicago-based carrier filed a significant schedule adjustment for 14 routes, primarily aimed at bringing vacationers to national parks and other outdoor destinations in the West. The full list of changes is below, per Cirium timetables, from June through August.

Origin Destination Change
Chicago (ORD) Bozeman, Montana (BZN) from 1x daily to 15x weekly
Chicago (ORD) Cody-Yellowstone Regional, Wyoming (COD) Saturday-only service resumes on July 3
Chicago (ORD) Jackson Hole (JAC) From 1x daily to 2x daily
Denver (DEN) Aspen (ASE) From 4x to 7x daily
Denver (DEN) Vail/Eagle (EGE) From 2x to 3x daily
Denver (DEN) Bozeman, Montana (BZN) From 4x to 6x daily
Denver (DEN) Cody-Yellowstone Regional, Wyoming (COD) from 2x to 4x daily
Denver (DEN) Gunnison–Crested Butte, Colorado (GUC) From 1x to 2x daily
Denver (DEN) Jackson Hole (JAC) From 3x to 5x daily
Denver (DEN) Kalispell/Glacier National Park (FCA) From 3x to 5x daily
Denver (DEN) West Yellowstone, Montana (WYS) From daily to 12x weekly
Houston (IAH) Jackson Hole (JAC) From 1x daily to 8x weekly
Houston (IAH) Key West (EYW) Daily service extended to Sept. 7, from June 30
Los Angeles (LAX) Aspen (ASE) From 1x to 2x daily

 

The biggest winner is Yellowstone National Park, which is seeing service boosts to every major gateway airport, including Bozeman, Montana; Cody, Wyoming; and West Yellowstone, Montana. United is increasing the frequency of flights from its hubs in Chicago and Denver to these destinations, giving travelers around the U.S. more one-stop options to one of America’s most popular national parks.

Stay up-to-date on airline and aviation news by signing up for our brand-new aviation newsletter.

Ski resorts that usually fare best in the winter are feeling the summer love. Flights to Aspen and Vail are getting big boosts from across the United network. Though the snow will have melted, those looking to hike, fish, golf or relax outdoors will find plenty of things to do in the Rocky Mountains.

Note that United has suspended its summer service to Vail from Chicago (ORD) and Houston (IAH), though American Airlines has swooped in, adding its own daily Chicago-Vail flight from June 3 to Sept. 7.

Though United is only adding two daily flights from Denver (DEN) to Kalispell, Montana (FCA), this northern Montana airport has become one of the most popular with the major U.S airlines. Both JetBlue and Sun Country are starting new service there this summer, while American, Alaska and Delta are all adding routes or increasing frequencies on existing ones.

Kalispell’s appeal for most travelers is its proximity to Glacier National Park.

Related: TPG’s guide to the best national parks in the United States

The renewed focus on outdoor-friendly destinations comes as leisure travel is rebounding. The vaccine rollout is well underway, and as more travelers get inoculated, many are returning to the skies. The TSA is screening over 1.5 million flyers each day, and analysts are predicting a meaningful uptick in travel this summer.

With business travel still largely suspended, airlines have plenty of spare planes to repurpose for leisure flying.

United’s spacious CRJ-550 (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

United is adding 26 new point-to-point routes from the Midwest and East Coast to a variety of leisure spots, like Hilton Head, South Carolina, and Portland, Maine, this summer. The airline is using its 50-seat CRJ-550, a plane originally retrofitted in a spacious configuration to appeal to business travelers, to support all the new flying.

Now, the CRJ-500, one of the most comfortable regional jets in the sky, will be primarily deployed on vacation routes, as the airline’s short-term focus moves to the leisure segment.

Featured photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy

The All-New United Quest℠ Card

WELCOME OFFER: Up to 100,000 bonus miles

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,040

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 3X miles on United® purchases

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 80K bonus miles after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus, an additional 20K bonus miles after you spend $10,000 in the first 6 months
  • $250 Annual Fee
  • Earn 3X miles on United® purchases, 2X miles at restaurants, on select streaming services & all other travel, 1X on all other purchases
  • Earn 3X miles on United Airlines purchases
  • Earn 2X miles at restaurants and on select streaming services
  • Earn 2X miles on all other travel
  • Earn 1X mile on all other purchases
  • Each year, receive a $125 credit on United® purchases and two 5k-mile anniversary award flight credits. Terms apply.
Regular APR
16.49% to 23.49% Variable
Annual Fee
$250
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent, Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.