United unveils another new long-haul route for the summer

United Airlines is expanding its long-haul network once again with the addition of a new international route from its Chicago hub to Athens, Greece. This new service will operate daily nonstop flights to the Greek capital from May 23 to August 12.

The airline will utilize a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner for this route, which features 28 Polaris business-class lie-flat pods, 21 Premium Plus recliners, 36 Economy Plus seats, and 158 standard economy seats. Tickets for the new route are already available for purchase on United’s website.

With the addition of Chicago service, United will connect Athens with three hubs this summer, including Newark and Washington, D.C. This represents a 25% increase in the airline’s flying to Athens compared to the previous year. United plans to resume its seasonal service from Newark to Athens on March 30, followed by flights from Washington on April 24.

United’s Chicago hub at O’Hare International Airport (ORD) will offer a total of 15 nonstop European destinations this summer. This expansion of service provides travelers with more options and convenience when traveling to Europe from the Midwest.

American Airlines, United’s major competitor in Chicago, previously had a monopoly on the Chicago-to-Athens route since 2019. However, with United’s entry into the market, there will be increased competition, which may lead to adjustments in fares to attract customers.

This announcement comes as the second new route United has announced since its preliminary summer schedule release. In October, the airline unveiled its transatlantic network update, which included one new destination and three new flights. Since then, United has added a new route from San Francisco to Barcelona, set to launch on May 23. This indicates that United is not concerned about softening demand in the transatlantic market for the upcoming summer season.

Patrick Quayle, United’s senior vice president of global network planning and alliances, expressed confidence in the airline’s offerings for customers looking to travel to Europe this summer. He stated, “With nonstop service to destinations no other U.S. carriers serve, earlier starts to our most popular seasonal routes, and even more transatlantic flights for our customers across the country, United is the clear choice for customers looking to travel to Europe this summer.”

In conclusion, United Airlines’ expansion of its long-haul network with the addition of a new international route from Chicago to Athens provides travelers with more options and convenience. The increased competition may lead to adjustments in fares, benefiting customers. United’s confidence in the transatlantic market for the upcoming summer season is evident through its new route announcements.

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