United Continental Holdings announced plans to launch year-round and seasonal service on several new routes to begin in the summer of 2012.
“We continue to capitalize on the combined resources of United and Continental to create a network that gives our customers more flights to the places they want to go,” said James Starnes, United’s director of domestic planning. “The flexibility of our fleet allows us to put the right aircraft in the right markets to serve new communities and to add additional flights to communities we already serve.”
Daily Service between Washington/Dulles and Honolulu
United will begin daily year-round service between Washington/Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Honolulu (HNL) on June 7, 2012, the only nonstop service between the two points. The flights will operate using Boeing 767-400 aircraft.
United, the largest carrier between the mainland U.S. and Hawaii, connects the Aloha State with eight mainland cities, as well as Tokyo, Guam and Majuro, offering nonstop service in 23 city pairs.
From its Dulles hub, United also offers more domestic and international service from the nation’s capital than any other airline.
New Summer Seasonal Flights from Denver, Houston and San Francisco
The airline will also add seasonal service to several popular summer travel destinations.
Alaska: New daily service between Denver (DEN) and Fairbanks, Alaska (FAI), will operate from June 7, 2012 through Aug. 27, 2012, using Boeing 737-800 aircraft. Fairbanks offers access to Denali National Park, one of Alaska’s most visited destinations. The flights complement United’s existing Alaska service to Anchorage from hubs in Denver, Chicago, Houston and San Francisco, as well as Seattle.
South Dakota: United Express will offer daily seasonal service between Houston’s Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) and Rapid City, S.D. (RAP), gateway to the Black Hills, Mount Rushmore and the Badlands National Park, from June 7, 2012, to Aug. 27, 2012. ExpressJet will operate the flights using Embraer ERJ-145 aircraft. United currently serves Rapid City from its Denver and Chicago hubs.
Wyoming: The airline will also add summer-season flights between its Houston and San Francisco (SFO) hubs and Jackson Hole, Wyo. (JAC), which attracts millions of summer visitors to nearby Yellowstone National Park and the Grand Tetons. The Houston flights will operate twice-weekly from June 8, 2012, through Aug. 27, 2012, using Boeing 757 aircraft. The San Francisco flights will operate daily from July 1, 2012, through Aug. 27, 2012, as United Express, with Bombardier CR7 aircraft flown by SkyWest Airlines. These flights are in addition to United’s existing service to Jackson Hole from hubs in Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles.
With these new route additions, United will remain within the previously announced capacity guidance.
Since the October 2010 merger of United and Continental, the larger combined fleet has given the company flexibility to better meet market demand. United has added new routes from its hubs to international destinations such as Lagos, Nigeria; Guadalajara, Mexico; Montreal, Canada; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; Shanghai, China, and Stuttgart, Germany, along with new intra-Asia routes between the Tokyo hub and Hong Kong and between the Guam hub and Okinawa, Japan.
The merger also enabled the company to add a number of new domestic routes by using a mix of mainline and regional aircraft from both carriers more efficiently.
In addition, previously announced new service between New York/Newark and Buenos Aires, and between Washington/Dulles and Manchester, U.K. and Washington/Dulles and Dublin, Ireland, will begin this spring.