United Extends Mask Requirements to Airports - United Hub

United Extends Mask Requirements to Airports

July 22, 2020

CHICAGO, July 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced that customers will be required to wear a face covering in the more than 360 airports where the airline operates around the world. This includes United customer service counters and kiosks, United Club locations, United's gates and baggage claim areas. If customers refuse to comply, they may be refused travel and banned from flying United at least while the mask requirement is in place. This will be effective for all customers traveling on and after July 24 regardless of when their ticket was purchased. United also will strengthen its mask exemption policy by only excluding children under the age of two. If a passenger believes that there are extraordinary circumstances that warrant an exception, they should contact United or speak to a representative at the airport.

In early May, United was the first major U.S. airline to require flight attendants to wear a face covering and later extended that policy to all customers. And in June, the airline was among the first U.S. carriers to say it would suspend flight benefits of passengers who refused to comply while onboard.

"The most important thing any of us can do to slow the spread of the coronavirus is to simply wear a mask when we're around other people," said United's Chief Executive Officer, Scott Kirby. "A mask is about protecting the safety of others, and I'm proud of the aggressive and proactive steps United Airlines has taken to ensure people are wearing a face covering in the airports where we operate and onboard the aircraft we fly."

United will post signage throughout the airport to reinforce this new policy and employees will first give a customer a verbal reminder and offer a free mask to any customer who is not wearing one. If the customer refuses to comply, United employees will offer the customer a reminder card that outlines the company's face covering policy. Continued non-compliance could result in a refusal to transport and the customer could also be banned from flying United at a minimum while the mask requirement is in place.

United's face covering policy was created under the guidance of United's on-staff corporate medical team, public health officials and experts at Cleveland Clinic.

"United's extended face mask policy adds another layer of protection for travelers, even before they board an aircraft," said Dr. James Merlino, Chief Clinical Transformation Officer at Cleveland Clinic. "Wearing a face mask is an incredibly simple measure that we all can take to help slow the spread of COVID-19. They act as a barrier to keep respiratory droplets from entering the air, where someone else could breathe them in and possibly become infected. The more people that wear masks, the less risk there is of others being exposed to the virus."

United will inform customers of its updated face covering policy at numerous points in the travel journey including:

  • Online and in the United app when a customer books a ticket.
  • At check in as part of United's "Ready to Fly" checklist, which asks customers to certify that they have not been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, have not exhibited symptoms and are willing to comply with the company's face covering policy. Customers who cannot or do not meet these requirements will be given the option to rebook their travel.
  • New airport signage in terminal and gate areas.

Onboard, customers are expected to wear a face covering for the duration of the flight, except when eating or drinking. Customers who refuse to comply with the onboard policy could be refused travel and banned from flying United at least while the mask requirement is in place.

This new policy is part of the airline's United CleanPlus program, an effort to put health and safety at the forefront of the entire customer experience, that includes a mandatory mask policy, electrostatic spraying, touchless check-in capabilities and a first-of-its kind, pre-boarding health self-assessment for passengers.

Limiting Number of Passengers on Board

The airline is also taking steps to limit the overall number of people on board and separate customers wherever possible. United switched to a larger plane 66 times a day in May and June, for a total of more than 4,000 flights during those months, creating more space onboard. As a result, the airline's consolidated average seat factor – or the percentage of occupied seats including customers and non-revenue passengers – was 38% in May; 57% in June and is expected to be about 45% in July, with less than 15% of flights operating with more than 70% seats filled.

When United flights are less full, the airline's advanced automated seating tool assigns seats in a way that maximizes the space on board – and the distance between customers. And since May, United has been contacting customers via email and through the United app – as much as 24 hours in advance – if their flight is expected to be more than 70% full and gives them options to switch to different, less full flights for no additional fees. Customers also have the option to cancel their flight and receive a credit for future travel. To date, the overwhelming majority of customers choose to keep their travel plans the same.

United is focused on delivering a new level of cleanliness on the ground and in the air. In addition to the vital initiatives mentioned above, several of the airline's precautionary measures to further ensure a cleaner environment include:

At Check-In

  • Implementing temperature checks for employees and flight attendants working at hubs and other airports throughout the airline's system
  • Installing sneeze guards at check-in and gate podiums
  • Promoting social distancing with floor decals to help customers stand six feet apart
  • Becoming the first airline in the world to roll out touchless check-in capabilities for customers with bags

At the Gate

  • Disinfecting high-touch areas such as door handles, handrails, elevator buttons, telephones and computers
  • Providing hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes
  • Rolling out Clorox Total 360 Electrostatic Sprayers in select markets to disinfect gate areas at United's hub airports
  • Enabling customers to self-scan boarding passes
  • Boarding fewer customers at a time and, after pre-boarding, boarding from the back of the plane to the front
  • Introduced real-time seat assignment update text and email notifications to further United's touchless airport experience

On Board

  • Using electrostatic spraying to disinfect most aircraft prior to flight
  • Disinfecting high-touch areas – such as tray tables and armrests – prior to boarding
  • Reducing contact between flight attendants and customers during snack and beverage service
  • Deplaning in groups of five rows at a time to reduce crowding
  • Providing onboard items including pillows and blankets upon request

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." For more information, visit united.com, follow @United on Twitter and Instagram or connect on Facebook. The common stock of United's parent, United Airlines Holdings, Inc., is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".

SOURCE United Airlines

For further information: United Airlines Worldwide Media Relations, +1-872-825-8640, media.relations@united.com

United Airlines Plans to Resume Service on More Than 25 International Routes in September

July 31, 2020

CHICAGO, July 31, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced it plans to resume service on nearly 30 international routes in September, including flights to Asia, India, Australia, Israel and Latin America and to continue to add ways to visit popular vacation destinations in the Caribbean, Hawaii and Mexico. The airline intends to fly 37% of its overall schedule in September as compared to the same period last year and is a 4% increase in capacity compared to what is planned for August 2020. United is also extending its waiver of change fees and award redeposit fees for reservations through August 31.

Passengers Can Now Text Cleaning and Safety Questions Directly to United Airlines

July 30, 2020

CHICAGO, July 30, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today launched a new chat function – the United Automated Assistant – to give customers a contactless option to receive immediate access to information about cleaning and safety procedures put in place due to COVID-19. Customers can text "Clean" to FLYUA (35982) and get answers to questions about masks, boarding procedures, touchless check-in options and more, without having to call, search online or wait in a line for an answer. The United Automated Assistant is one of many recent innovations that have been developed to modernize the airline's service and create a more seamless experience for our customers. This launch follows another recently announced digital product that allows United customers on standby and upgrade lists to receive text notifications once they have been cleared and assigned a seat, saving them time and further limiting person-to-person interactions.


United Airlines Names Sasha Johnson Vice President Corporate Safety

July 24, 2020

CHICAGO, July 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced that Sasha Johnson will become the company's Vice President of Corporate Safety following Michael Quiello's retirement from United, effective October 1. Johnson, who currently serves as United's managing director of International Regulatory and Policy, will report to United's Chief Operations Officer Jon Roitman.

In her new role, Johnson will manage all aspects of worldwide aviation safety, ground safety, quality assurance, medical, workers compensation, managed care, business continuity, family assistance and emergency operations for United.

"Sasha is a highly respected and well-established leader with a proven track record of navigating some of the most challenging safety and regulatory issues in our industry," said Scott Kirby, United's chief executive officer. "Her unparalleled capacity for collaboration, teamwork and creative solutions will be a tremendous asset to our corporate safety team during one of the most challenging periods our industry has ever faced. We wish Mike well and appreciate his efforts over the past decade to not only lead United's safety programs but also take on a mentorship role for young people interested in aviation."

During Quiello's 11 years with United, the Corporate Safety team accomplished some tremendous milestones, including the highly complex process that resulted in United's single operating certificate after the merger with Continental Airlines. Quiello championed the company's active participation in the OSHA Voluntary Protection Program, and under his leadership, the United team's data visualization program won the National Safety Council's highest award.

Before joining United in 2015, Johnson worked for more than a decade at the Federal Aviation Administration and with the Department of Transportation in various roles including chief of staff at the FAA; assistant to the secretary and director of public affairs, and press secretary at the DOT. In these roles, she developed a comprehensive understanding of the issues critical to aviation safety, honed by her work in crisis management with the FAA administrator and the DOT secretary. 

Prior to that, Johnson spent more than a decade in broadcast journalism at CNN, including covering campaigns and elections as a senior producer.

Johnson holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." For more information, visit united.com, follow @United on Twitter and Instagram or connect on Facebook. The common stock of United's parent, United Airlines Holdings, Inc., is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".

SOURCE United Airlines

For further information: United Airlines Worldwide Media Relations, +1-872-825-8640, media.relations@united.com

United Airlines Took Industry-Leading Steps to Manage Historic Impact of COVID-19 in Q2

July 21, 2020

CHICAGO, July 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines (UAL) today announced second quarter 2020 financial results, the most difficult financial quarter in its 94-year history, with a net loss of $1.6 billion, and an adjusted net loss¹ of $2.6 billion. Total operating revenues were down 87.1% year-over-year, on an 87.8 percent decrease in capacity year-over-year. The company's total liquidity as of the close of business on Monday, July 20, 2020 was approximately $15.2 billion. United now expects liquidity at the end of the third quarter to be over $18 billion.

United Airlines to Maximize Ventilation System During Boarding and Deplaning

July 20, 2020

CHICAGO, July 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced that the carrier will now maximize air flow volume for all mainline aircraft high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration systems during the entire boarding and deplaning process, helping further reduce the spread of COVID-19. In combination with the HEPA filters, the air conditioning and pressurization system onboard United's mainline aircraft recirculates the air every 2-3 minutes and removes 99.97% of particles – including viruses and bacteria during both ground and air operations – making the air onboard a plane significantly cleaner than what people typically experience in restaurants, grocery stores, schools or even some hospitals. United pilots and ground staff are working to implement this new procedure for mainline aircraft beginning July 27.

United Airlines Named a Top Company for Disability Inclusion for Fifth Consecutive Year

July 15, 2020

CHICAGO, July 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines was recognized for the fifth consecutive year as a top-scoring company and best place to work for disability inclusion with a perfect score of 100 on the 2020 Disability Equality Index (DEI). The 2020 DEI measured United's inclusion criteria including: culture & leadership; enterprise-wide access; employment practices; community engagement and supplier diversity.

United Airlines to Hold Webcast of Second-Quarter 2020 Financial Results

July 07, 2020

CHICAGO, July 7, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines will hold a conference call to discuss second-quarter 2020 financial results on Wednesday, July 22, at 9:30 a.m. CT/10:30 a.m. ET. A live, listen-only webcast of the conference call will be available at ir.united.com. The company will issue its second-quarter earnings release and third-quarter investor update after market close on Tuesday, July 21.

United Airlines Further Expands International Schedule: Adds New Service Between Chicago and Tel Aviv

July 07, 2020

Chicago, July 6, 2020 – United Airlines today announced it is further expanding its international schedule in September with new nonstop service three days a week between Chicago O'Hare and Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport. United also announced it is reinstating service between Chicago and Hong Kong as well as between Los Angeles and Sydney.

United Announces Completion of MileagePlus Senior Secured Notes Offering

July 02, 2020

CHICAGO, July 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, United Airlines, Inc. ("United") announced the completion of the private offering by Mileage Plus Holdings, LLC, a direct wholly-owned subsidiary of United that operates the MileagePlus program ("MPH"), and Mileage Plus Intellectual Property Assets, Ltd., an indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of MPH ("MIPA" and, together with MPH, the "MileagePlus Subsidiaries") of an aggregate of $3.8 billion in principal amount of 6.50% senior secured notes due 2027 (the "Notes"). Concurrently with the issuance of the Notes, the MileagePlus Subsidiaries entered into a credit agreement providing for a term loan facility ("Term Loan Facility") in an aggregate amount of $3.0 billion. Borrowings under the Term Loan Facility will bear interest at a variable rate equal to LIBOR (but not less than 1.0% per annum) plus 5.25% per annum. The MileagePlus Subsidiaries intend to loan the net proceeds from the offering of the Notes and borrowings under the Term Loan Facility to United, after depositing a portion of such proceeds in reserve accounts for the Notes and the Term Loan Facility.

United Airlines Adds Nearly 25,000 Flights in August

July 01, 2020

CHICAGO, July 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced it is tripling the size of its August schedule compared to its June 2020 schedule, adding nearly 25,000 domestic and international flights compared to July 2020, and plans to fly 40% of its overall schedule in August, as compared to August 2019. While travel demand remains a fraction of what it was at the end of 2019, customers are slowly returning to flying with a preference for leisure destinations, trips to reunite with friends and family, and getaways to places that encourage social distancing. According to TSA, more than 600,000 passengers passed through airport security checkpoints on Monday, June 29, the first time since March 19 that those numbers exceeded 25% of pre-COVID levels.

United Airlines Resuming Service Between San Francisco and Shanghai

June 26, 2020

CHICAGO, June 26, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines announced today it will resume service to China with twice-weekly flights between San Francisco and Shanghai's Pudong International Airport via Seoul's Incheon International Airport beginning July 8, 2020. United will operate service with Boeing 777-300ER aircraft from San Francisco to Shanghai on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Customers traveling from Shanghai will return to San Francisco on Thursdays and Sundays.

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