United Announces 2020 Financial Results: 2021 Will Focus On Transition To Recovery; Expects To Exceed 2019 Adjusted EBITDA Margin By 2023* - United Hub

United Announces 2020 Financial Results: 2021 Will Focus On Transition To Recovery; Expects To Exceed 2019 Adjusted EBITDA Margin By 2023*

Company continues to improve core cash burn in the face of continued COVID-19 headwinds; sharpens focus to prepare for recovery
January 20, 2021

CHICAGO, Jan. 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines (UAL) today announced fourth-quarter and full-year 2020 financial results. The company continues its efforts to lead the industry as it manages the most disruptive crisis in aviation history.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, United has raised over $26 billion in liquidity and made important progress in reducing core cash burn (see detailed chart below) to ensure the company's survival. Over the last three quarters, the company has identified $1.4 billion of annual cost savings and has a path to achieve at least $2.0 billion in structural reductions moving forward. United ended 2020 with $19.7 billion in available liquidity1, including an undrawn revolver capacity and funds available under the CARES Act loan program from the U.S. Treasury.

Having stabilized its financial foundation, the company expects 2021 to be a transition year that's focused on preparing for a recovery. United has resumed heavy maintenance and engine overhauls, investments that are essential to recovery when demand returns. The combination of structural cost reduction and timely investments will help set up United to exceed its 2019 adjusted Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA) margin in 2023. The company expressed high confidence that it would achieve this target by 2023 – and said its ongoing recovery planning would help ensure the company was equipped to reach this level even sooner, if demand returns more quickly.

"Aggressively managing the challenges of 2020 depended on our innovation and fast-paced decision making. But, the truth is that COVID-19 has changed United Airlines forever," said United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby. "The passion, teamwork and perseverance that the United team showed in 2020 is exactly what will help us build a new United Airlines that's better, stronger and more profitable than ever. I could not be prouder of – and more grateful to – this team, which is going to lead us there."

_____________________________________________________________________

* Adjusted EBITDA margin is a non-GAAP financial measure calculated as Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA), excluding special charges and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, divided by total operating revenue. We are not providing a target or a reconciliation to profit margin (net income/total operating revenue), the most directly comparable GAAP measure, because we are unable to predict certain items contained in the GAAP measure without unreasonable efforts. Adjusted EBITDA margin does not reflect certain items, including special charges and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, which may be significant. For a reconciliation of adjusted EBITDA to net income for the years ended December 31, 2020 and 2019, please see the accompanying tables to this release.

Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year 2020 Financial Results

  • Reported fourth-quarter net loss of $1.9 billion, $7.1 billion for the full-year 2020.
  • Reported fourth-quarter adjusted net loss2 of $2.1 billion, $7.7 billion for the full-year 2020.
  • Reported fourth-quarter total operating revenue of $3.4 billion, down 69% versus fourth-quarter 2019.
  • Reported fourth-quarter operating expenses down 45% versus fourth-quarter 2019, down 42% excluding special charges3.

Core Cash Burn

  • Reported fourth-quarter daily cash burn4 of $23 million, plus $10 million of average debt principal payments and severance payments per day.
  • Reported fourth-quarter core cash burn4 of $19 million per day, an improvement of an average of $5 million per day versus the third-quarter 2020.
  • Core cash burn captures underlying operational performance of the company throughout the pandemic; a reconciliation with cash burn4 is provided below.

$M/day


2Q20


3Q20


4Q20








Cash burn4


$(40)


$(25)


$(33)

Debt principal and severance payments


(3)


(4)


(10)

Timing of certain payments5


2


1


(2)

Investments in the recovery6



(1)


(2)

Capital expenditures, net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns



4


(1)

Core cash burn4


$(38)


$(24)


$(19)

First Quarter 2021 Outlook

  • Based on current trends, the company expects first quarter 2021 total operating revenue to be down 65 percent to 70 percent versus the first quarter 2019. Accelerated distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine may lead to faster improvement, however, the company is not including this potential improvement in its first quarter 2021 revenue outlook.
  • Expects first quarter 2021 capacity to be down at least 51 percent versus the first quarter of 2019.
  • Expects first quarter 2021 ending available liquidity to be similar to year-end 2020 available liquidity of around $19.7 billion1.

Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year Highlights

  • Completed $3 billion Enhanced Equipment Trust Certificate (EETC) transaction; the largest deal of this type in aviation history.
  • First U.S. airline to leverage its loyalty program, MileagePlus®, as collateral for a $6.8B loan.
  • Received $968 million in net proceeds from the sale of 20.8 million shares in the ATM program in the fourth quarter 2020. For the full year 2020, total net proceeds were $989 million from the sale of 21.4 million shares through the ATM program.
  • Only airline to partner with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) and Air Mobility Command (AMC) to study how effectively the unique airflow configuration on board an aircraft can prevent the spread of aerosolized particles among passengers and crew.
  • First airline to safely transport the first delivery of Pfizer and BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine into the U.S.
  • First among U.S. global airlines to permanently eliminate change fees on all standard economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S., and starting January 1, 2021, any United customer can fly standby for free on a flight departing the day of their travel regardless of the type of ticket or class of service.
  • Announced bold environmental commitment unmatched by any airline; pledging 100% green by reducing greenhouse gas emissions 100% by 2050.
  • First U.S. airline to implement schedule reductions due to sharp travel demand drop.
  • Increased cargo revenue by an industry-leading 77 percent in the fourth quarter by leveraging international flying and deploying strategic international cargo-only missions.
  • Launched the world's first free transatlantic COVID-19 testing pilot for customers.
  • First U.S. airline to launch a COVID-19 testing program for customers traveling on United from San Francisco International Airport to Hawaii.
  • Since COVID-19 began, first major U.S. airline to require masks onboard. In the third quarter, extended mask requirements to airport terminals.
  • One of the first U.S. airlines to enforce policy banning customers for refusing to follow mask requirements.
  • First major U.S. airline to ask all passengers to complete a health self-assessment during their check-in process based on recommendations from the Cleveland Clinic.
  • First airline to contact customers when flights are more than 70% full to give them the opportunity to change their plans for free.
  • First U.S. airline to introduce a tool like the Destination Travel Guide, a new interactive map tool on united.com and the United mobile app that allows customers to filter and view destinations' COVID-19 related travel restrictions.
  • First U.S. airline to introduce an interactive map feature for customers on united.com, powered by Google Flight Search Enterprise Technology, to easily compare and shop for flights based on departure city, budget, and location type. Customers can simultaneously compare travel to various destinations in a single search.
  • First U.S. airline whose CEO took a 100% salary cut.

Taking Care of Our Customers

  • Launched United CleanPlusSM to reinforce the company's commitment to putting health and safety at the forefront of the entire customer experience, with the goal of delivering an industry-leading standard of cleanliness, including partnerships with Clorox and experts from the Cleveland Clinic.
  • First and only airline to maximize ventilation systems by running the auxiliary power on mainline aircraft during the entire boarding and deplaning process, so customers and crew get the important safety benefits provided by high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filtration systems.
  • Electrostatic spraying aircraft interiors on all U.S. flights.
  • Began using new Clorox® Electrostatic Sprayers to disinfect airport terminals.
  • Introduced customer COVID-19 testing from Houston to Latin American and Caribbean destinations.
  • Began working with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on the first contact tracing initiative for all international and domestic flights.
  • Added Zoono Microbe Shield, an EPA-registered antimicrobial coating that forms a long-lasting bond with surfaces and inhibits the growth of microbes, to the airline's already rigorous safety and cleaning procedures.
  • Launched an automated assistant chat function that gives customers a contactless option to receive immediate access to information about cleaning and safety procedures put in place due to COVID-19.
  • Began cleaning pilot flight decks with Ultraviolet C (UVC) lighting technology on most aircraft at hub airports to disinfect the flight deck interior and continue providing pilots with a sanitary work environment.
  • Expanded touchless check-in capabilities to kiosks at more than 215 airports.
  • Launched free COVID-19 testing to all employees and checks their temperatures before they begin work at all U.S. airports.
  • In May, started providing individually wrapped hand wipes and snack bag with pretzels, Stroopwafel and water to reduce touchpoints.
  • Redesigned United's Mobile App to be more accessible for people with visual disabilities.
  • Announced changes to the MileagePlus Premier® program that will make it easier to earn status in 2021 for the 2022 program year.
  • Launched virtual, on-demand customer service at the airport.
  • Announced plan to continue installing United Polaris® Business Class on Boeing 787 fleet.

Reimagining the Route Network

  • In 2020, started 43 domestic routes and 10 international routes, with 15 more international routes planned to launch in 2021.
  • In 4Q, responded to Thanksgiving travel demand by adding over 1,400 domestic flights to the November schedule.
  • In 4Q, expanded service to India with 4 daily flights including the addition of O'Hare to Delhi; United remains the only U.S. carrier to serve India.
  • Compared to September, United had nonstop service in 23 more domestic and 8 more international routes in October, 37 more domestic and 32 more international routes in November, and 95 more domestic and 53 more international routes in December.
  • Announced plans to return service to New York/JFK after a five-year absence, with two daily round-trips to both San Francisco and Los Angeles starting in February 2021.

Assisting the Communities We Serve

  • Through a combination of cargo-only flights and passenger flights, United has transported more than 401 million pounds of freight, which includes 87 million pounds of vital shipments, such as COVID-19 vaccines, medical kits, PPE, pharmaceuticals, and medical equipment, and more than 3.4 million pounds of military mail and packages.
  • Booked over 2,900 free flights for medical professionals to support COVID-19 response in New Jersey/New York and California.
  • Using crowdsourcing platform - Miles on a Mission - donated more than 11 million miles for charities like the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, College to Congress, and Compass to Care.
  • More than 19.2 million miles were donated by MileagePlus members and 7.6 million miles were matched by United to help organizations providing relief during COVID-19.
  • Donated nearly 1.2 million pounds of food from United Polaris lounges, United Club locations, and catering kitchens to local food banks and charities.
  • Over 7,500 face masks were made from upcycled unused employee uniforms.
  • More than 800 gallons of hand sanitizer produced by United employees in San Francisco for use by United employees.
  • Donated 15,000 pillows, 2,800 amenity kits, and 5,000 self-care products to charities and homeless shelters.
  • More than 2.2 million pounds of food and household goods were processed by United employees at the Houston Food Bank.
  • More than 2,500 United employees worldwide have volunteered, with over 36,800 hours served.

Additional Noteworthy Accomplishments

  • For the ninth consecutive year received a perfect score of 100% on the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a premier benchmarking survey and report on corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ+ workplace equality, administered by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation.
  • Honored by DiversityInc with their "DiversityInc Top 50" designation, lauding the airline's leadership in promoting diversity through a diversity-focused talent pipeline and talent development, leadership accountability and a top supplier diversity program.
  • 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).
  • Teamed up with Peerspace to bundle flights with work and meeting spaces for remotely distanced companies.
  • Named best overall airline in the world by Global Traveler Readers.
  • Selected by the Commission on Presidential Debates as the official airline for the 2020 Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates.
  • Announced signing of The Board Challenge and committed to adding a second Black board member to the Board of Directors.

_________________________________________________________________________

1 Total available liquidity includes cash and cash equivalents, short-term investments and $1 billion available under our undrawn revolving credit facility, as well as $7 billion available under the CARES Act loan program.

2 Excludes operating and non-operating special charges, and unrealized gains and losses on investments. Reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measures are included in the tables accompanying this release.

3 Reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measures are included in the tables accompanying this release.

4 Cash burn, as previously guided, is defined as: Net cash from operations, less investing and financing activities. Proceeds from the issuance of new debt (excluding expected aircraft financing), government grants associated with the Payroll Support Program of the CARES Act, issuance of new stock, net proceeds from the sale of short-term and other investments and changes in certain restricted cash balances are not included in this figure. Core cash burn is defined as: Cash burn, as further adjusted to exclude: debt principal payments, timing of certain payments, capital expenditures (net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns), investments in the recovery and severance payments. Amounts may not add due to rounding. See the tables accompanying this release for further information.

5 Timing of certain payments refers to exclusion of payments in the quarter that had been deferred from prior periods or additions of payments that were deferred to a future period to maximize cash preservation.

6 Investments in the recovery primarily include, but are not limited to, spending on engine and airframe maintenance to prepare for the efficient operations ramp up as air travel demand returns.

Earnings Call

UAL will hold a conference call to discuss fourth-quarter and full-year 2020 financial results as well as its financial and operational outlook for the first quarter 2021, on Thursday, January 21, 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 webcast will be available for replay within 24 hours of the conference call and then archived on the website for three months.

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".

Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Certain statements in this release, including statements regarding our outlook for the first quarter 2021, our 2023 adjusted EBITDA margin target and our cost savings plans related to preparing for a recovery, are forward-looking and thus reflect our current expectations and beliefs with respect to certain current and future events and anticipated financial and operating performance. Such forward-looking statements are and will be subject to many risks and uncertainties relating to our operations and business environment that may cause actual results to differ materially from any future results expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements. Words such as "expects," "will," "plans," "anticipates," "indicates," "remains," "believes," "estimates," "forecast," "guidance," "outlook," "goals," "targets" and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Additionally, forward-looking statements include statements that do not relate solely to historical facts, such as statements which identify uncertainties or trends, discuss the possible future effects of current known trends or uncertainties, or which indicate that the future effects of known trends or uncertainties cannot be predicted, guaranteed or assured. All forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to us on the date of this release. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events, changed circumstances or otherwise, except as required by applicable law. Our actual results could differ materially from these forward-looking statements due to numerous factors including, without limitation, the following: the duration and spread of the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic and the outbreak of any other disease or similar public health threat and the impact on our business, results of operations and financial condition; the lenders' ability to accelerate the MileagePlus indebtedness, foreclose upon the collateral securing the MileagePlus indebtedness or exercise other remedies if we are not able to comply with the covenants in the MileagePlus financing agreements; the effects of borrowing pursuant to the Loan Program under the CARES Act and the effects of the grant and promissory note through the Payroll Support Program under the CARES Act; the costs and availability of financing; our significant amount of financial leverage from fixed obligations and ability to seek additional liquidity and maintain adequate liquidity; our ability to comply with the terms of our various financing arrangements; our ability to utilize our net operating losses to offset future taxable income; the material disruption of our strategic operating plan as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and our ability to execute our strategic operating plans in the long term; general economic conditions (including interest rates, foreign currency exchange rates, investment or credit market conditions, crude oil prices, costs of aircraft fuel and energy refining capacity in relevant markets); risks of doing business globally, including instability and political developments that may impact our operations in certain countries; demand for travel and the impact that global economic and political conditions have on customer travel patterns; our capacity decisions and the capacity decisions of our competitors; competitive pressures on pricing and on demand; changes in aircraft fuel prices; disruptions in our supply of aircraft fuel; our ability to cost-effectively hedge against increases in the price of aircraft fuel, if we decide to do so; the effects of any technology failures or cybersecurity or significant data breaches; disruptions to services provided by third-party service providers; potential reputational or other impact from adverse events involving our aircraft or operations, the aircraft or operations of our regional carriers or our code share partners or the aircraft or operations of another airline; our ability to attract and retain customers; the effects of any terrorist attacks, international hostilities or other security events, or the fear of such events; the mandatory grounding of aircraft in our fleet; disruptions to our regional network, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic or otherwise; the impact of regulatory, investigative and legal proceedings and legal compliance risks; the success of our investments in other airlines, including in other parts of the world, which involve significant challenges and risks, particularly given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic; industry consolidation or changes in airline alliances; the ability of other air carriers with whom we have alliances or partnerships to provide the services contemplated by the respective arrangements with such carriers; costs associated with any modification or termination of our aircraft orders; disruptions in the availability of aircraft, parts or support from our suppliers; our ability to maintain satisfactory labor relations and the results of any collective bargaining agreement process with our union groups; any disruptions to operations due to any potential actions by our labor groups; labor costs; the impact of any management changes; extended interruptions or disruptions in service at major airports where we operate; U.S. or foreign governmental legislation, regulation and other actions (including Open Skies agreements, environmental regulations and the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union); the seasonality of the airline industry; weather conditions; the costs and availability of aviation and other insurance; our ability to realize the full value of our intangible assets and long-lived assets; any impact to our reputation or brand image; and other risks and uncertainties set forth under Part I, Item 1A., "Risk Factors," of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, as updated by our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2020 and our Current Report on Form 8-K filed on the date hereof, as well as other risks and uncertainties set forth from time to time in the reports we file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

-tables attached-

UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

STATEMENTS OF CONSOLIDATED OPERATIONS (UNAUDITED)



Three Months Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/



Year Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/

(In millions, except per share data)

2020


2019


(Decrease)



2020


2019


(Decrease)

Operating revenue:













Passenger

$

2,410



$

9,933



(75.7)




$

11,805



$

39,625



(70.2)


Cargo

560



316



77.2




1,648



1,179



39.8


Other operating revenue

442



639



(30.8)




1,902



2,455



(22.5)


Total operating revenue

3,412



10,888



(68.7)




15,355



43,259



(64.5)















Operating expense:













Salaries and related costs

2,168



3,078



(29.6)




9,522



12,071



(21.1)


Aircraft fuel

679



2,249



(69.8)




3,153



8,953



(64.8)


Regional capacity purchase

489



725



(32.6)




2,039



2,849



(28.4)


Landing fees and other rent

575



650



(11.5)




2,127



2,543



(16.4)


Depreciation and amortization

629



606



3.8




2,488



2,288



8.7


Aircraft maintenance materials and outside repairs

199



475



(58.1)




858



1,794



(52.2)


Distribution expenses

80



417



(80.8)




459



1,651



(72.2)


Aircraft rent

51



67



(23.9)




198



288



(31.3)


Special charges (credits)

(149)



130



NM




(2,616)



246



NM


Other operating expenses

826



1,630



(49.3)




3,486



6,275



(44.4)


Total operating expense

5,547



10,027



(44.7)




21,714



38,958



(44.3)















Operating income (loss)

(2,135)



861



NM




(6,359)



4,301



NM















Nonoperating income (expense):













Interest expense

(351)



(161)



118.0




(1,063)



(731)



45.4


Interest capitalized

17



20



(15.0)




71



85



(16.5)


Interest income

5



30



(83.3)




50



133



(62.4)


Unrealized gains (losses) on investments, net

101



81



24.7




(194)



153



NM


Miscellaneous, net

(10)



13



NM




(1,327)



(27)



NM


Total nonoperating expense

(238)



(17)



NM




(2,463)



(387)



NM















Income (loss) before income taxes

(2,373)



844



NM




(8,822)



3,914



NM















Income tax expense (benefit)

(476)



203



NM




(1,753)



905



NM


Net income (loss)

$

(1,897)



$

641



NM




$

(7,069)



$

3,009



NM















Diluted earnings (loss) per share

$

(6.39)



$

2.53



NM




$

(25.30)



$

11.58



NM


Diluted weighted average shares

297.0



253.4



17.2




279.4



259.9



7.5















NM Not meaningful













UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

PASSENGER REVENUE INFORMATION AND STATISTICS


Passenger revenue information is as follows (in millions, except for percentage changes):



4Q 2020

Passenger

Revenue


Passenger

Revenue

vs.

4Q 2019


PRASM vs.

4Q 2019


Yield vs.

4Q 2019


Available

Seat Miles

vs.

4Q 2019


4Q 2020

Available

Seat Miles


4Q 2020

Revenue

Passenger

Miles

Domestic

$

1,797



(71.6%)


(39.9%)


(22.2%)


(52.8%)


19,166



12,417
















Atlantic

199



(87.7%)


(71.5%)


(32.0%)


(56.8%)


5,467



1,877


Pacific

100



(90.8%)


(47.2%)


78.4%


(82.6%)


1,935



446


Latin America

314



(64.8%)


(42.9%)


(16.0%)


(38.3%)


4,123



2,331


International

613



(82.9%)


(55.0%)


(9.9%)


(62.1%)


11,525



4,654
















Consolidated

$

2,410



(75.7%)


(43.8%)


(16.6%)


(56.8%)


30,691



17,071
















Select operating statistics are as follows:



Three Months Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/



Year Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/



2020


2019


(Decrease)



2020


2019


(Decrease)

Passengers (thousands)

14,850



40,306



(63.2)




57,761



162,443



(64.4)



Revenue passenger miles (millions)

17,071



58,633



(70.9)




73,883



239,360



(69.1)



Available seat miles (millions)

30,691



71,038



(56.8)




122,804



284,999



(56.9)



Passenger load factor:














Consolidated

55.6

%


82.5

%


(26.9)


pts.


60.2

%


84.0

%


(23.8)


pts.

Domestic

64.8

%


83.8

%


(19.0)


pts.


63.2

%


85.2

%


(22.0)


pts.

International

40.4

%


80.8

%


(40.4)


pts.


55.1

%


82.4

%


(27.3)


pts.

Passenger revenue per available seat mile (cents)

7.85



13.98



(43.8)




9.61



13.90



(30.9)



Total revenue per available seat mile (cents)

11.12



15.33



(27.5)




12.50



15.18



(17.7)



Average yield per revenue passenger mile (cents)

14.12



16.94



(16.6)




15.98



16.55



(3.4)



Cargo ton miles (millions)

835



889



(6.1)




2,711



3,329



(18.6)



Aircraft in fleet at end of period

1,287



1,372



(6.2)




1,287



1,372



(6.2)



Average stage length (miles)

1,292



1,446



(10.7)




1,307



1,460



(10.5)



Employee headcount (in thousands)

74.4



95.9



(22.4)




74.4



95.9



(22.4)



Average aircraft fuel price per gallon

$

1.35



$

2.10



(35.7)




$

1.57



$

2.09



(24.9)



Fuel gallons consumed (millions)

503



1,071



(53.0)




2,004



4,292



(53.3)




Note: See Part II, Item 6, Selected Financial Data, of UAL's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, for definitions of these statistics.

Cash burn: The company's management views "cash burn" as an important measure in monitoring liquidity in order to assess the company's cash needs without the impact of certain extraordinary actions or events, and the company believes this provides useful information to investors about the company's liquidity position. In light of the transition to recovery in 2021, the company is now presenting "core cash burn", which the company believes better reflects the core operational performance of the company's business.


Three Months Ended

June 30, 2020


Three Months Ended

September 30, 2020

Three Months Ended

December 31, 2020

Net cash used by operating activities

$

(130)



$

(1,889)


$

(2,137)


Cash flows provided by investing activities

812



770



Cash flows provided by financing activities

2,382



7,905


481



3,064



6,786


(1,656)







Adjusted to remove:





CARES Act Payroll Support Program ("PSP") grant

3,154



447



PSP Note

1,309



192



Equity issuances

1,135




968


Net proceeds from sale of short-term and other investments

838



406


137


Secured debt (net of discount and fees)

250



7,376


250


Increase in certain restricted cash balances

1



99


11


CARES Act secured loan



520



Total adjustments

6,687



9,040


1,366


Adjusted Cash Burn

$

(3,623)



$

(2,254)


$

(3,022)


Days in the period

91



92


92


Average daily cash burn

$

(40)



$

(25)


$

(33)


Further adjusted to remove:





Debt principal and severance payments (a)

(288)



(348)


(886)


Timing of certain payments

160



60


(148)


Capital expenditures, net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns

(39)



368


(137)


Investments in the recovery



(81)


(139)


Total additional adjustments

(167)



(1)


(1,310)


Core cash burn

$

(3,456)



$

(2,253)


$

(1,712)


Days in the period

91



92


92


Average daily core cash burn

$

(38)



$

(24)


$

(19)



(a) Fourth quarter amounts include interest payments on extinguished debt

UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.
NON-GAAP FINANCIAL RECONCILIATION

UAL evaluates its financial performance utilizing various accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (GAAP) and Non-GAAP financial measures, including adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (adjusted EBITDA), adjusted operating income (loss), adjusted operating margin, adjusted pre-tax income (loss), adjusted pre-tax margin, adjusted net income (loss), adjusted diluted earnings (loss) per share and CASM, excluding special charges, third-party business expenses, fuel, and profit sharing, among others. UAL believes that adjusting for special charges and for nonoperating credit losses and nonoperating special termination benefits and settlement losses is useful to investors because these items are not indicative of UAL's ongoing performance. UAL believes that adjusting for unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net is useful to investors because those unrealized gains or losses may not ultimately be realized on a cash basis. UAL believes that adjusting for interest expense related to finance leases of Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft is useful to investors because of the accelerated recognition of interest expense.

CASM is a common metric used in the airline industry to measure an airline's cost structure and efficiency. UAL reports CASM excluding special charges, third-party business expenses, fuel and profit sharing. UAL believes that adjusting for special charges is useful to investors because special charges are not indicative of UAL's ongoing performance. UAL also believes that excluding third-party business expenses, such as maintenance, ground handling and catering services for third parties, provides more meaningful disclosure because these expenses are not directly related to UAL's core business. UAL also believes that excluding fuel costs from certain measures is useful to investors because it provides an additional measure of management's performance excluding the effects of a significant cost item over which management has limited influence. UAL excludes profit sharing because this exclusion allows investors to better understand and analyze our operating cost performance and provides a more meaningful comparison of our core operating costs to the airline industry.

Reconciliations of reported non-GAAP financial measures to the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures are included below.


Three Months Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/

(Decrease)


Year Ended

December 31,


%

Increase/

(Decrease)


2020


2019



2020


2019


CASM (cents)












Cost per available seat mile (CASM) (GAAP)

18.07



14.11



28.1



17.68



13.67



29.3


Special charges

(0.49)



0.18



NM


(2.13)



0.09



NM

Third-party business expenses

0.07



0.07





0.11



0.06



83.3


Fuel expense

2.21



3.16



(30.1)



2.57



3.14



(18.2)


Profit sharing



0.17



(100.0)





0.17



(100.0)


CASM, excluding special charges, third-party business expenses, fuel, and profit sharing (Non-GAAP)

16.28



10.53



54.6



17.13



10.21



67.8



NM Not Meaningful

Adjusted EBITDA

Year Ended

December 31,


2020


2019

Net income (loss)

$

(7,069)



$

3,009


Adjusted for:




Depreciation and amortization

2,488



2,288


Interest expense

1,063



731


Interest capitalized

(71)



(85)


Interest income

(50)



(133)


Income tax expense (benefit)

(1,753)



905


Special charges (credit) and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net

(1,038)



93


Adjusted EBITDA, excluding special charges and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net

$

(6,430)



$

6,808


Adjusted EBITDA margin

(41.9)

%


15.7

%

UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.
NON-GAAP FINANCIAL RECONCILIATION (Continued)

UAL believes that adjusting capital expenditures for assets acquired through the issuance of debt, finance leases and other financial liabilities is useful to investors in order to appropriately reflect the total amounts spent on capital expenditures. UAL also believes that adjusting net cash provided by (used in) operating activities for capital expenditures, adjusted capital expenditures, and aircraft operating lease additions is useful to allow investors to evaluate the company's ability to generate cash that is available for debt service or general corporate initiatives.


Three Months Ended

December 31,


Year Ended

December 31,

Capital Expenditures (in millions)

2020


2019


2020


2019

Capital expenditures, net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns (GAAP)

$

137



$

1,192



$

1,767



$

4,528


Property and equipment acquired through the issuance of debt and other

263



187



773



493


Property and equipment acquired through finance leases



14



30



22


Property and equipment acquired through other financial liabilities

192





1,165




Adjustment to property and equipment acquired through other financial liabilities (a)

(61)





(246)




Adjusted capital expenditures (Non-GAAP)

$

531



$

1,393



$

3,489



$

5,043










Free Cash Flow (in millions)








Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities (GAAP)

$

(2,137)



$

1,181



$

(4,093)



$

6,909


Less capital expenditures, net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns

137



1,192



1,767



4,528


Free cash flow, net of financings (Non-GAAP)

$

(2,274)



$

(11)



$

(5,860)



$

2,381










Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities (GAAP)

$

(2,137)



$

1,181



$

(4,093)



$

6,909


Less adjusted capital expenditures (Non-GAAP)

531



1,393



3,489



5,043


Less aircraft operating lease additions

131



8



171



56


Free cash flow (Non-GAAP)

$

(2,799)



$

(220)



$

(7,753)



$

1,810










(a) In 2020, United entered into agreements with third parties to finance through sale and leaseback transactions new Boeing model 787-9 aircraft and Boeing model 737 MAX aircraft subject to purchase agreements between United and Boeing. In connection with the delivery of each aircraft from Boeing, United assigned its right to purchase such aircraft to the buyer, and simultaneous with the buyer's purchase from Boeing, United entered into a long-term lease for such aircraft with the buyer as lessor. Fifteen Boeing model aircraft were delivered in 2020 under these transactions (and each is presently subject to a long-term lease to United). Upon delivery, the company accounted for the aircraft which have a repurchase option at a price other than fair value as part of Flight equipment on the company's balance sheet and the related obligation as Other current liabilities and Other financial liabilities from sale-leasebacks (noncurrent) since they do not qualify for sale recognition. If the repurchase option is not exercised, these aircraft will be accounted for as leased assets at the time of the option expiration and the related assets and liabilities will be adjusted to the present value of the remaining lease payments at that time. This adjustment reflects the difference between the recorded amounts and the present value of future lease payments at inception. The remaining aircraft in this transaction that qualify for sale recognition are recorded as Operating lease right-of-use assets and lease liabilities on the company's balance sheet after recognition of related gains or losses on such sale.

UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

NON-GAAP FINANCIAL RECONCILIATION (Continued)



Three Months Ended

December 31,


Increase/

(Decrease)


%

Increase/

(Decrease)


Year Ended

December 31,


Increase/


%

Increase/

(in millions)

2020


2019




2020


2019


(Decrease)


(Decrease)

Operating expenses (GAAP)

$

5,547



$

10,027



$

(4,480)



(44.7)



$

21,714



$

38,958



$

(17,244)



(44.3)


Special charges (credit)

(149)



130



(279)



NM



(2,616)



246



(2,862)



NM


Operating expenses, excluding special charges

5,696



9,897



(4,201)



(42.4)



24,330



38,712



(14,382)



(37.2)


Adjusted to exclude:
















Third-party business expenses

22



48



(26)



(54.2)



137



168



(31)



(18.5)


Fuel expense

679



2,249



(1,570)



(69.8)



3,153



8,953



(5,800)



(64.8)


Profit sharing, including taxes



123



(123)



(100.0)





491



(491)



(100.0)


Adjusted operating expenses (Non-GAAP)

$

4,995



$

7,477



$

(2,482)



(33.2)



$

21,040



$

29,100



$

(8,060)



(27.7)


















Operating income (loss) (GAAP)

$

(2,135)



$

861



$

(2,996)



NM



$

(6,359)



$

4,301



$

(10,660)



NM


Adjusted to exclude:
















Special charges (credits)

(149)



130



(279)



NM



(2,616)



246



(2,862)



NM


Adjusted operating income (Non-GAAP)

$

(2,284)



$

991



$

(3,275)



NM



$

(8,975)



$

4,547



$

(13,522)



NM


















Operating margin

(62.6)

%


7.9

%


(70.5)



pts.



(41.4)

%


9.9

%


(51.3)



pts.


Adjusted operating margin (Non-GAAP)

(66.9)

%


9.1

%


(76.0)



pts.



(58.5)

%


10.5

%


(69.0)



pts.


















Pre-tax income (loss) (GAAP)

$

(2,373)



$

844



$

(3,217)



NM



$

(8,822)



$

3,914



$

(12,736)



NM


Adjusted to exclude:
















Special charges (credit)

(149)



130



(279)



NM



(2,616)



246



(2,862)



NM


Termination benefits and settlement losses

41





41



NM



687





687



NM


Unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net

(101)



(81)



(20)



NM



194



(153)



347



NM


Loss on BRW term loan and guarantee







NM



697





697



NM


Interest expense on ERJ 145 finance leases



(4)



4



NM





64



(64)



NM


Adjusted pre-tax income (loss) (Non-GAAP)

$

(2,582)



$

889



$

(3,471)



NM



$

(9,860)



$

4,071



$

(13,931)



NM


















Pre-tax margin

(69.5)

%


7.8

%


(77.3)



pts.



(57.5)

%


9.0

%


(66.5)



pts.


Adjusted pre-tax margin (Non-GAAP)

(75.7)

%


8.2

%


(83.9)



pts.



(64.2)

%


9.4

%


(73.6)



pts.


















Net income (loss) (GAAP)

$

(1,897)



$

641



$

(2,538)



NM



$

(7,069)



$

3,009



$

(10,078)



NM


Adjusted to exclude:
















Special charges (credit)

(149)



130



(279)



NM



(2,616)



246



(2,862)



NM


Termination benefits and settlement losses

41





41



NM



687





687



NM


Unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net

(101)



(81)



(20)



NM



194



(153)



347



NM


Loss on BRW term loan and guarantee







NM



697





697



NM


Interest expense on ERJ 145 finance leases



(4)



4



NM





64



(64)



NM


Income tax expense (benefit) related to adjustments above, net of valuation allowance

29



(10)



39



NM



404



(35)



439



NM


Adjusted net income (loss) (Non-GAAP)

$

(2,077)



$

676



$

(2,753)



NM



$

(7,703)



$

3,131



$

(10,834)



NM


















Diluted earnings (loss) per share (GAAP)

$

(6.39)



$

2.53



$

(8.92)



NM



$

(25.30)



$

11.58



$

(36.88)



NM


Adjusted to exclude:
















Special charges (credit)

(0.50)



0.52



(1.02)



NM



(9.36)



0.95



(10.31)



NM


Termination benefits and settlement losses

0.13





0.13



NM



2.46





2.46



NM


Unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net

(0.34)



(0.32)



(0.02)



NM



0.69



(0.59)



1.28



NM


Loss on BRW term loan and guarantee







NM



2.49





2.49



NM


Interest expense on ERJ 145 finance leases



(0.02)



0.02



NM





0.25



(0.25)



NM


Income tax expense (benefit) related to adjustments, net of valuation allowance

0.10



(0.04)



0.14



NM



1.45



(0.14)



1.59



NM


Adjusted diluted earnings (loss) per share (Non-GAAP)

$

(7.00)



$

2.67



$

(9.67)



NM



$

(27.57)



$

12.05



$

(39.62)



NM



NM Not Meaningful

UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (UNAUDITED)


(In millions)

December 31, 2020


December 31, 2019

ASSETS




Current assets:




Cash and cash equivalents

$

11,269



$

2,762


Short-term investments

414



2,182


Restricted cash

255




Receivables, less allowance for credit losses (2020—$78; 2019—$9)

1,295



1,364


Aircraft fuel, spare parts and supplies, less obsolescence allowance (2020—$478; 2019—$425)

932



1,072


Prepaid expenses and other

635



814


Total current assets

14,800



8,194






Total operating property and equipment, net

31,466



30,170


Operating lease right-of-use assets

4,537



4,758






Other assets:




Goodwill

4,527



4,523


Intangibles, less accumulated amortization (2020—$1,495; 2019—$1,440)

2,838



3,009


Restricted cash

218



106


Notes receivable, less allowance for credit losses (2020—$522)

31



671


Deferred income taxes

131




Investments in affiliates and other, net

1,000



1,180


Total other assets

8,745



9,489


Total assets

$

59,548



$

52,611






LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY




Current liabilities:




Advance ticket sales

$

4,833



$

4,819


Accounts payable

1,595



2,703


Frequent flyer deferred revenue

908



2,440


Accrued salaries and benefits

1,960



2,271


Current maturities of long-term debt

1,911



1,407


Current maturities of finance leases

182



46


Current maturities of operating leases

612



686


Other

724



566


Total current liabilities

12,725



14,938






Long-term liabilities and deferred credits:




Long-term debt

24,836



13,145


Long-term obligations under finance leases

224



220


Long-term obligations under operating leases

4,986



4,946


Frequent flyer deferred revenue

5,067



2,836


Postretirement benefit liability

994



789


Pension liability

2,460



1,446


Deferred income taxes



1,736


Other financial liabilities from sale-leasebacks

1,140




Other

1,156



1,024


Total long-term liabilities and deferred credits

40,863



26,142


Total stockholders' equity

5,960



11,531


Total liabilities and stockholders' equity

$

59,548



$

52,611


UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

CONDENSED STATEMENTS OF CONSOLIDATED CASH FLOWS (UNAUDITED)


(In millions)

Year Ended

December 31,


2020


2019

Cash Flows from Operating Activities:




Net cash provided by (used in) operating activities

$

(4,093)



$

6,909






Cash Flows from Investing Activities:




Capital expenditures, net of flight equipment purchase deposit returns

(1,767)



(4,528)


Purchases of short-term and other investments

(552)



(2,897)


Proceeds from sale of short-term and other investments

2,319



2,996


Loans made to others



(174)


Investment in affiliates



(36)


Other, net

10



79


Net cash provided by (used in) investing activities

10



(4,560)






Cash Flows from Financing Activities:




Repurchases of common stock

(353)



(1,645)


Proceeds from issuance of debt

16,044



1,847


Proceeds from equity issuance

2,103




Payments of long-term debt

(4,383)



(1,240)


Principal payments under finance leases

(66)



(151)


Capitalized financing costs

(368)



(61)


Other, net

(20)



(30)


Net cash provided by (used in) financing activities

12,957



(1,280)


Net increase in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash

8,874



1,069


Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash at beginning of year

2,868



1,799


Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash at end of year

$

11,742



$

2,868






Investing and Financing Activities Not Affecting Cash:




Property and equipment acquired through the issuance of debt, finance leases and other

$

1,968



$

515


Right-of-use assets acquired through operating leases

198



498


Lease modifications and lease conversions

527



(2)


Capacity purchase agreement liability converted to debt

33




UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS, INC.

NOTES (UNAUDITED)


Special charges (credit) and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net include the following:



Three Months Ended

December 31,


Year Ended

December 31,

(In millions)

2020


2019


2020


2019

Operating:








CARES Act grant

$

(453)



$



$

(3,536)



$


Severance and benefit costs

162



2



575



16


Impairment of assets

137



102



318



171


(Gains) losses on sale of assets and other special charges

5



26



27



59


Total operating special charges (credit)

(149)



130



(2,616)



246










Nonoperating unrealized (gains) losses on investments

(101)



(81)



194



(153)


Nonoperating special termination benefits and settlement losses

41





687




Nonoperating credit loss on BRW Aviation Holding LLC and BRW Aviation LLC ("BRW") term loan and related guarantee





697




Total nonoperating special charges and unrealized (gains) losses on investments

(60)



(81)



1,578



(153)


Total operating and nonoperating special charges (credit) and unrealized (gains) losses on investments

(209)



49



(1,038)



93


Income tax expense (benefit), net of valuation allowance

29



(11)



404



(21)


Total operating and non-operating special charges (credit) and unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net of income taxes

$

(180)



$

38



$

(634)



$

72


CARES Act grant. During the year ended December 31, 2020, the company received approximately $5.1 billion in funding pursuant to the Payroll Support Program under the CARES Act, which consisted of $3.6 billion of grants and $1.5 billion of an unsecured loan. The company also recorded $66 million for warrants issued to the U.S. Treasury Department, within stockholders' equity, as an offset to the grant income. We recognized the grant as a credit to Special charges (credit) as the salaries and wages the grant was intended to offset were incurred.

Severance and benefit costs: As announced in July 2020, the company started the involuntary furlough process earlier this summer when issuing WARN Act notices to 36,000 of its employees. Since then, the company worked to further reduce the total number of furloughs to approximately 13,000 employees by working closely with its union partners, introducing new voluntary options selected by approximately 9,000 employees and proposing creative solutions that would save jobs. This workforce reduction is part of the company's strategic realignment of its business and new organizational structure as a result of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the company's operations and cost structure. The company recorded $162 million and $575 million during the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2020, respectively, related to the workforce reduction and voluntary plans for employee severance, pay continuance from voluntary retirements, and benefits-related costs (and additional costs associated with special termination benefits and settlement losses discussed below).

During the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded $2 million and $14 million, respectively, of management severance. During the twelve months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded $2 million of severance and benefit costs related to a voluntary early-out program for its technicians and related employees represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. In the first quarter of 2017, approximately 1,000 technicians and related employees elected to voluntarily separate from the company and received a severance payment, with a maximum value of $100,000 per participant, based on years of service, with retirement dates through early 2019.

Impairment of assets: During the three months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded $94 million of impairments related to 11 of its Boeing 757-200 aircraft and the related engines and spare parts. In the fourth quarter, United determined that those aircraft would be permanently grounded. The company also recorded $43 million of impairments related to various cancelled facility, aircraft induction, and information technology capital projects. The decisions driving these impairments were the result of the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on our operations. For the year ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded $56 million of charges for the cancellation of capital projects.

During the year ended December 31, 2020, in addition to the impairments described above, the company recorded impairment charges of $130 million for its China routes. The company conducted impairment reviews of certain intangible assets throughout 2020, which consisted of a comparison of the book value of those assets to their fair value calculated using the discounted cash flow method. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent suspension of flights to China, the company determined that the value of its China routes had been impaired.

Also during the year ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded an impairment of $38 million of the right-of-use asset associated with the embedded aircraft lease in one of our CPA agreements. We review flight equipment and other long-lived assets used in operations for impairment losses when events and circumstances indicate the assets may be impaired. We measure cash flows at the contract level with our CPA partners. The factors that led to this impairment included the impact to cash flows from the pandemic and the relatively short remaining term under the CPA agreement. Also, during the twelve months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded $13 million of charges for the cancellation of certain capital projects.

During the three months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded an impairment charge of $90 million associated with its Hong Kong routes. The company conducted its annual impairment review of intangible assets in the fourth quarter of 2019, which consisted of a comparison of the book value of specific assets to the fair value of those assets calculated using the discounted cash flow method. Due to a decrease in demand for the Hong Kong market and the resulting decrease in unit revenue, the company determined that the value of its Hong Kong routes had been fully impaired.

During the year ended December 31, 2019, in addition to the impairments described above, the company recorded a $43 million impairment primarily for surplus Boeing 767 aircraft engines removed from operations, an $18 million charge primarily for the write-off of unexercised aircraft purchase options and $20 million in other aircraft impairments.

(Gains) losses on sale of assets and other special charges: During the three months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded a net $5 million of charges for legal reserves offset by gains on certain aircraft sale-leaseback transactions. During the year ended December 31, 2020, in addition to the items described above, the company recorded several charges for sales and disposals of individual aircraft and aircraft-related parts.

During the three months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded charges of $14 million for costs related to the transition of fleet types within a regional carrier contract, $10 million for contract terminations and $2 million in other charges. During the twelve months ended December 31, 2019, in addition to the amounts described above, the company recorded charges of $18 million for the settlement of certain legal matters and $15 million related to contract terminations.

Nonoperating special termination benefits and settlement losses: During the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded $41 million and $687 million, respectively, of settlement losses related to the company's primary defined benefit pension plan covering certain U.S. non-pilot employees, and special termination benefits offered, under furlough and voluntary separation programs.

Nonoperating unrealized (gains) losses on investments, net: During the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded gains of $101 million and losses of $170 million, respectively. primarily for changes in the market value of its investment in Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras S.A. ("Azul"). During the twelve months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded a loss of $24 million for the decrease in fair value of the Avianca Holdings S.A.'s ("AVH") share call options, AVH share appreciation rights, and AVH share-based upside sharing agreement (collectively, the "AVH Derivative Assets") that United obtained as part of the BRW term loan agreement and related agreements with Kingsland Holdings Limited.

During the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded gains of $63 million and $140 million, respectively, for the change in market value of certain of its equity investments, primarily Azul. Also, during the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2019, the company recorded gains of $18 million and $13 million, respectively, for the change in fair value of the AVH Derivative Assets.

Nonoperating credit loss on BRW term loan and related guarantee: During the twelve months ended December 31, 2020, the company recorded a $697 million expected credit loss allowance for the BRW term loan and related guarantee. AVH is currently in bankruptcy.

Interest expense related to finance leases of Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft

During the third quarter of 2018, United entered into an agreement with the lessor of 54 Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft to purchase those aircraft in 2019. The provisions of the new lease agreement resulted in a change in accounting classification of these new leases from operating leases to finance leases up until the purchase date. As a result of the change, the company recognized a $4 million reduction in interest expense, and $64 million of additional interest expense, respectively, in the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2019.

Effective tax rate

The company's effective tax rates for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2020 were 20.1% and 19.9%, respectively. The effective tax rates for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2019 were 24.1% and 23.1%, respectively. The provision for income taxes is based on the estimated annual effective tax rate which represents a blend of federal, state and foreign taxes and includes the impact of certain nondeductible items and the impact of a change in the company's mix of domestic and foreign earnings (losses). The effective tax rates for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2020 were impacted by $28 million and $185 million, respectively, of valuation allowance related to capital losses.

SOURCE United Airlines

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

United Plans Largest Transatlantic Expansion in its History, Including 10 New Flights and Five New Destinations Debuting Summer 2022

Airline sets course to destinations not served by any other North American carrier in Amman, Jordan; Azores, Portugal; Bergen, Norway; Palma de Mallorca, Spain and Tenerife, Spain
October 14, 2021

CHICAGO, Oct. 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United today announced the largest transatlantic expansion in its history, including 10 new flights and five new, vogue destinations – Amman, Jordan; Bergen, Norway; Azores, Portugal; Palma de Mallorca, Spain and Tenerife in the Spanish Canary Islands. All of the new routes – which are set to begin in Spring 2022 – are not served by any other North American carrier. Additionally, next year, United will add new flights to five popular European destinations: Berlin, Dublin, Milan, Munich and Rome. Lastly, United will launch seven routes that were interrupted due to the pandemic to Bangalore, Frankfurt, Tokyo's Haneda Airport, Nice and Zurich. Flights are subject to government approval.

"Given our big expectations for a rebound in travel to Europe for summer, this is the right time to leverage our leading global network in new, exciting ways," said Patrick Quayle, senior vice president of international network and alliances at United. "Our expansion offers the widest range of destinations to discover – introducing new, trendy locales that our customers will love, as well as adding more flights to iconic, popular cities."

Amman, Jordan

United will begin new capital to capital service between Washington, D.C. and Amman, Jordan starting May 5. Customers will be able to explore the numerous historical sites in and around Amman, as well as visit Jordan's other top destinations including Petra, the Dead Sea and the Wadi Rum desert. United will be the only North American carrier flying direct to Amman with service three times weekly with a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner.

Ponta Delgada, Azores, Portugal

United will add a third Portuguese destination to its global network with brand new flights between New York/Newark and Ponta Delgada in the Azores beginning May 13. The carrier will offer the most flights between the U.S. and Portugal of any North American airline and will be the only airline to fly to the Azores from the New York metro area. This daily service joins United's existing flights to Porto, which will return in March, and Lisbon, which the airline is currently operating from New York/Newark and will resume from Washington, D.C. next summer. United will fly a brand-new Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft featuring United's new signature interior with enhanced seat back entertainment with Bluetooth connectivity and overhead bin space for every customer.

Bergen, Norway

Beginning May 20, United will become the only U.S. carrier to fly to Norway with flights launching between New York/Newark and Bergen. United will offer three times weekly service on a Boeing 757-200, allowing customers to experience Bergen's surrounding mountainous landscape and breathtaking fjords. United will be the only carrier to fly to Bergen from the U.S.

Palma de Mallorca, Balearic Islands, Spain

United is expanding its Spanish beach getaway destinations with three times weekly flights between New York/Newark and Palma de Mallorca in the Balearic Islands, launching June 2 with a Boeing 767-300ER. This will be the first and only flight between the U.S. and Mallorca and will add to United's existing service to Madrid and Barcelona.

Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

Travelers looking for an additional new beach destination can enjoy the stunning black and white sand beaches of Spain's Canary Islands with United's new flight from New York/Newark to Tenerife. United will be the only airline to fly direct between the Canary Islands and North America with three-times weekly service launching June 9 with a Boeing 757-200. Along with the new service to Palma de Mallorca, United will fly to more Spanish destinations from North America than any other airline.

Expanded European Service

United is also adding flights to some of Europe's most iconic cities in anticipation of a resurgence in visitors. Next spring United will add:

  • New daily flights between Denver and Munich – joining existing service from Denver to Frankfurt and London which is expected to resume in March. United is the only U.S. airline to offer transatlantic service from Denver.
  • New daily flights between Chicago and Milan, joining existing seasonal flights between Chicago and Rome. United will be the only airline to offer a direct flight between Chicago and Milan, adding to its existing service between New York/Newark and Milan.
  • New daily capital to capital service between Washington, D.C. and Berlin, joining our other service to Berlin from New York/Newark. United is the only U.S. airline with direct flights to Berlin.
  • An additional daily flight from New York/Newark to Dublin and Rome.

In addition to these new routes, United will begin seven routes that were interrupted by the pandemic:

  • Daily flights between San Francisco and Bangalore beginning May 26
  • Daily flights between New York/Newark and Nice beginning April 29
  • A second daily flight between New York/Newark and Frankfurt beginning April 23
  • Daily flights between Chicago and Zurich beginning April 23
  • Flights from Washington, D.C., Los Angeles and New York/Newark to Tokyo's Haneda airport by March 26

Committed to Ensuring a Safe Journey

United is committed to putting health and safety at the forefront of every customer's journey, with the goal of delivering an industry-leading standard of cleanliness through its United CleanPlusSM program. United has teamed up with Clorox and Cleveland Clinic to redefine cleaning and health safety procedures from check-in to landing and has implemented more than a dozen new policies, protocols and innovations designed with the safety of customers and employees in mind. To manage entry requirements in different destinations, and find places to get tests, customer can visit United's Travel Ready Center.

United Next

United is more focused than ever on its commitment to customers and employees. In addition to today's announcement, United has recently:

  • Launched an ambitious plan to transform the United customer experience by adding and upgrading hundreds of aircraft as well as investing in features like larger overhead bins, seatback entertainment in every seat and the industry's fastest available Wi-Fi.
  • Announced a goal to create 25,000 unionized jobs by 2026 that includes careers as pilots, flight attendants, agents, technicians, and dispatchers.
  • Announced that United will train at least 5,000 pilots by 2030 through the United Aviate Academy, with the plan of at least half being women and people of color.
  • Required all U.S. employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination's travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website. 
  • Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
  • Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing 100% of our greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets, including a recent agreement to  purchase one and a half times the amount of all of the rest of the world's airlines' publicly announced Sustainable Aviation Fuel commitments combined.
  • Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.  For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. United Airlines Holdings, Inc. is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".

SOURCE United Airlines

For further information: United Airlines Worldwide Media Relations, 872.825.8640, media.relations@united.com

United Announces Promotions and Leadership Changes in Network Planning and Procurement

United promotes Ankit Gupta to SVP of Domestic Planning and United Express, Patrick Quayle to SVP International Network and Alliances
October 11, 2021

CHICAGO, Oct. 11, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines today announced the promotion of Ankit Gupta to Senior Vice President of Domestic Planning and United Express, and Patrick Quayle to Senior Vice President International Network and Alliances. Both Gupta and Quayle will continue to report directly to Andrew Nocella, United's Chief Commercial Officer.

In addition to these promotions, United also named former United Express Senior Vice President Sarah Murphy to lead the airline's new Global Sourcing organization as Senior Vice President of Global Sourcing and Chief Procurement Officer. Murphy will now report to Gerry Laderman, United's Chief Financial Officer.

Ankit Gupta

"As we work to deliver the best customer experience in North America with a dramatic increase in premium seats, Ankit's leadership in developing the United Next vision has us poised to exceed our customers' expectations as we meet the resurgence in air travel," said Nocella. "He has helped us execute network strategies that would ordinarily take years to develop in a matter of months. And as we play an ongoing and key role in the U.S. economic recovery, we will continue to shape our domestic network with a fleet that spans the CRJ-550 to cutting-edge mainline narrowbody aircraft."

Gupta, formerly Vice President of Network Planning and Scheduling, will now assume responsibility for the operation and strategy of the United Express network in addition to leading the domestic planning team. By linking the United Express operation more closely with the airline's domestic planning team, United expects to better optimize its network and deliver a better, more consistent experience with the products and services it offers.

Patrick Quayle

"Patrick continues to be instrumental in enhancing the alliances that benefit both United and our partners by helping us reach destinations each carrier is unable to serve with its fleet alone," said Nocella. "He led the design and interior configuration for more than 1,000 of our aircraft, including United Polaris, United Premium Plus and our high-premium Boeing 767-300ER aircraft and continues to reshape our network in the midst of a radically different demand environment, making the most of rapidly changing economic and passenger trends."

Quayle, also a former Vice President on United's network planning team, played a key role for the airline through the pandemic, leading the airline from just 10 daily international flights in early 2020 to now becoming the flag carrier of the U.S. as the largest international carrier in the country, with the largest trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific networks, as well as holding the position as the number one carrier to Central America.

Sarah Murphy

As the new leader of the Global Sourcing team, Murphy will leverage her experience leading teams in United's finance and operating groups and will build upon the procurement team's track record of success in driving efficiencies among the airline's vendors and suppliers to deliver for United's employees, customers and the communities it serves.

"With Sarah's extensive operating and capital budget expertise, and her deep knowledge of our operations, she is uniquely positioned to enhance our ability to source the goods and services we need in order to transform the customer experience and change the way people think about United while protecting the company's bottom line," said Laderman.

United Next

United is more focused than ever on its commitment to customers and employees. In addition to today's announcement, United has recently:

  • Launched an ambitious plan to transform the United customer experience by adding and upgrading hundreds of aircraft as well as investing in features like larger overhead bins, seatback entertainment in every seat and the industry's fastest available Wi-Fi.
  • Announced a goal to create 25,000 unionized jobs by 2026 that includes careers as pilots, flight attendants, agents, technicians, and dispatchers.
  • Announced that United will train at least 5,000 pilots by 2030 through the United Aviate Academy, with the plan of at least half being women and people of color.
  • Required all U.S. employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination's travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website. 
  • Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
  • Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing 100% of our greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets, including a recent agreement to  purchase one and a half times the amount of all of the rest of the world's airlines' publicly announced Sustainable Aviation Fuel commitments combined.
  • Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.  For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. 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 Plans Largest Domestic Schedule Since March 2020

December schedule includes new connections between the Midwest and warm weather cities like Las Vegas and Orlando as well as nearly 70 daily flights to ski destinations, including new service between Orange County and Aspen
October 07, 2021

CHICAGO, Oct. 7, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United today announced that it will fly its biggest domestic schedule since the start of the pandemic to meet an expected surge in holiday travel, with an emphasis on connecting the Midwest to warm weather cities like Las Vegas and Orlando as well as offering nearly 70 daily flights to ski destinations, including new service between Orange County and Aspen.

According to United, holiday travel flight searches on united.com and the airline's app are up 16%, compared to 2019. The airline expects the busiest travel days for the Thanksgiving holiday will be Wednesday, November 24 and Sunday, November 28, while popular days for winter holiday travel are expected to be Thursday, December 23 and Sunday, January 2.

The airline plans to offer more than 3,500 daily domestic flights in December, representing 91% of its domestic capacity compared to 2019.

"We're seeing a lot of pent-up demand in our data and are offering a December schedule that centers on the two things people want most for the holidays: warm sunshine and fresh snow," said Ankit Gupta, vice president of network planning and scheduling at United. "We know families and friends are eager to reunite this holiday season, which is why we're thrilled to add new flights that will help them connect and celebrate together."

In December, United will begin new direct flights to Las Vegas and Phoenix from Cleveland, and to Orlando from Indianapolis. The carrier also will resume eight popular direct flights from Midwest cities, including routes to Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Orlando and Tampa, offering the most mainline departures the airline has flown from Cleveland since 2014 including direct service to Nassau and Cancun. United will offer up to 195 daily flights to 12 destinations in Florida this winter, the most flights to the Sunshine State in company history. United is also resuming direct flights from Columbus, Indianapolis, Milwaukee and Pittsburgh to Fort Myers – which were some of the airline's most popular point-to-point flights last winter.

Customers who prefer fresh powder can enjoy more flights to ski destinations with United than any other carrier. The airline offers 66 daily flights to over a dozen ski destinations across the U.S., including brand new service beginning this December between Orange County and Aspen. This winter season, United will have flights to Aspen/Snowmass, Bishop/Mammoth, Bozeman/Big Sky, Eagle/Vail, Kalispell, Gunnison/Crested Butte, Hayden/Steamboat Springs, Jackson Hole, Montrose/Telluride, Reno/Tahoe, Sun Valley from its hub airports.

Earlier this year, United announced that it will add 150 flights to warm-weather destinations this winter season. All of these flights and more are available now on united.com and United's mobile app.

Committed to Ensuring a Safe Journey

United is committed to putting health and safety at the forefront of every customer's journey, with the goal of delivering an industry-leading standard of cleanliness through its United CleanPlus℠ program. United has teamed up with Clorox and Cleveland Clinic to redefine cleaning and health safety procedures from check-in to landing and has implemented more than a dozen new policies, protocols and innovations designed with the safety of customers and employees in mind. Customers can review COVID-19 entry requirements, find local testing options and upload any required testing and vaccination records for domestic and international travel, all in United's Travel Ready Center. United was the first airline to integrate all these features into its mobile app and website.

United Next

United is more focused than ever on its commitment to customers and employees. In addition to today's announcement, United has recently:

  • Launched an ambitious plan to transform the United customer experience by adding and upgrading hundreds of aircraft as well as investing in features like larger overhead bins, seatback entertainment in every seat and the industry's fastest available Wi-Fi.
  • Announced a goal to create 25,000 unionized jobs by 2026 that includes careers as pilots, flight attendants, agents, technicians, and dispatchers.
  • Announced that United will train at least 5,000 pilots by 2030 through the United Aviate Academy, with the plan of at least half being women and people of color.
  • Required all U.S. employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination's travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website.
  • Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
  • Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing 100% of our greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets, including a recent agreement to purchase one and a half times the amount of all of the rest of the world's airlines' publicly announced Sustainable Aviation Fuel commitments combined.
  • Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. 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 Becomes First Airline to Introduce PayPal QR Codes as Inflight Payment Option

Latest touch-free payment offering lets customers buy snacks, drinks, and other inflight purchases while on board by just scanning a QR code - with or without Wi-Fi

October 06, 2021

CHICAGO, Oct. 6, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United and PayPal today announced a new way to make touch-free inflight purchases, even in areas without Wi-Fi. Starting next month, United customers on select flights can simply show a flight attendant the PayPal QR Code in the PayPal app and use it to buy snacks, drinks and other inflight purchases while onboard.

United is the first airline to offer PayPal QR Codes, and this partnership is part of United's easy-to-use, industry-leading suite of contactless payment tools. United was the first airline to give customers in economy cabins the option to pre-order snacks and beverages from the airline's app and website, and also offers customers the ability to easily store payment information in a digital wallet.

PayPal QR Codes can be used on select flights departing from Chicago O' Hare International Airport in November and before the end of the year, will extend to all flights across the entire network where contactless payment is available.

"Our contactless payment offering is built on simplicity and choice and it's another way we're improving the overall experience of flying United," said Toby Enqvist, chief customer officer for United. "PayPal is a terrific partner and this technology gives our customers another easy way to make purchases, even when they're not online. We expect to introduce even more new and innovative options for our customers in the future through our collaboration with PayPal."

How It Works

  • If you haven't already, download the PayPal app and set your preferred payment method for QR code payments, prior to leaving the gate
  • To make an inflight purchase, Click the 'Pay with QR codes' button
  • Then click the 'In-flight Purchase' button
  • Show the QR code to the flight attendant to scan
  • Look for an emailed confirmation receipt upon landing

"We're excited to be partnering with United to introduce our new offline QR code functionality, adding more ways for customers to check out with PayPal in more places, especially in offline or low connectivity areas," said Frank Keller, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Segment Solutions and Digital Commerce at PayPal. "Bringing PayPal QR Codes inflight reinforces our commitment to offering customers choice and provides a new level of touch-free convenience for consumers when making in-flight purchases, within the PayPal app they know and trust."

United's New Buy-On-Board Menu

Customers can pay using PayPal QR Codes to enjoy one of many new food and beverage offerings United launched this year. In June, United unveiled its refreshed buy-on-board menu, which includes:

  • Three New Snack Boxes: A Tapas snack box with European-inspired offerings; a Takeoff snack box with high-protein options; a Recline snack box with movie theater themed treats.
  • New A la Carte Snack Options: Including sweet potato "tortilla" chips with roasted pepper salsa, trail mix and chocolate-covered dried fruit.
  • New Adult Beverage Options: Mango White Claw®; red, white and sparkling wine, and new beer options such as Breckenridge Brewery Juice Drop Hazy IPA and Michelob ULTRA®.
  • New Fresh Options: Last month, United also added five new fresh retail offerings to its buy-on-board menu including:
    • Morning Menu:
      • Beatrix Market Chia Seed Pudding: Beatrix Market's signature Chia Seed Pudding with fresh mango and toasted coconut
      • Bacon, Egg and Cheese Spiral Croissant: Shoulder bacon, fried egg patty with black pepper and cheddar cheese on a butter spiral croissant
    • Afternoon/Evening Menu:
      • Beatrix Market Mediterranean Grain Bowl: Protein-packed grain bowl features bulgur, a black lentil and carrot salad, roasted zucchini and bell peppers and is served with a bright lemon vinaigrette
      • Classic Beef Butter Burger with Cheddar: Old fashioned cheeseburger with cheddar and pickles on a buttered brioche bun
      • Kindred Creamery Selection Cheese Tray: Cheddar cheese, gouda cheese, Colby jack cheese, Monterey jack cheese, along with crackers and dried cherry and almond mix

New Domestic Premium Cabin Menu Items

United also introduced brand-new meal offerings to customers seated in domestic premium cabins on flights over 1,500 miles and hub-to-hub flights over 800 miles.

  • The enhanced meal service includes a choice of entrees – including fresher options like egg scramble with plant-based chorizo and grilled chicken breast with orzo and lemon basil pesto – sides and dessert.
  • United has also teamed with Eli's Cheesecake to create a uniquely United chocolate pie flavor called "Pie in the Sky."
  • The meals will be served on one tray, with items individually wrapped, to limit person-to-person contact and further the safety of our employees and customers.

For information on food and beverage options available, United's contactless payment technology and FAQs, visit United.com/snacktime.

United Next

United is more focused than ever on its commitment to customers and employees. In addition to today's announcement, United has recently:

  • Launched an ambitious plan to transform the United customer experience by adding and upgrading hundreds of aircraft as well as investing in features like larger overhead bins, seatback entertainment in every seat and the industry's fastest available Wi-Fi.
  • Announced a goal to create 25,000 unionized jobs by 2026 that includes careers as pilots, flight attendants, agents, technicians, and dispatchers.
  • Announced that United will train at least 5,000 pilots by 2030 through the United Aviate Academy, with the plan of at least half being women and people of color.
  • Required all U.S. employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination's travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website.
  • Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
  • Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing 100% of our greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets, including a recent agreement to purchase one and a half times the amount of all of the rest of the world's airlines' publicly announced Sustainable Aviation Fuel commitments combined.
  • Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. United Airlines Holdings, Inc. is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".

About PayPal

PayPal has remained at the forefront of the digital payment revolution for more than 20 years. By leveraging technology to make financial services and commerce more convenient, affordable, and secure, the PayPal platform is empowering more than 400 million consumers and merchants in more than 200 markets to join and thrive in the global economy. For more information, visit paypal.com.

SOURCE United Airlines

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

United to Hold Webcast of Third-Quarter 2021 Financial Results

October 01, 2021

CHICAGO, Oct. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- United will hold a conference call to discuss third-quarter 2021 financial results on Wednesday, October 20 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 third-quarter financial results after market close on Tuesday, October 19.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. 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 and Airlink Announce Commercial Agreement to Help Customers Explore Southern Africa

New partnership provides customers with easy travel to more than 40 destinations in Southern Africa and ability to earn or redeem miles on Airlink flights
September 28, 2021

CHICAGO, Sept. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, United Airlines and Airlink, a South African airline, announced a new codeshare agreement that will offer customers more connections between the U.S. and Southern Africa than any other airline alliance. The new agreement, which is subject to government approval, will offer one stop connections from the U.S. to more than 40 destinations in Southern Africa. Additionally, United will be the first airline to connect its loyalty program with Airlink, allowing MileagePlus members to earn and redeem miles when they travel on Airlink flights. This new cooperation will be in addition to United's existing partnership with Star Alliance member South African Airways.

"United continues to demonstrate our commitment to Africa, starting three brand new flights to the continent this year alone including new service to Accra, Ghana; Lagos, Nigeria and Johannesburg, South Africa," said Patrick Quayle, vice president of international network and alliances at United. "And now through our codeshare agreement with Airlink - which is the most expansive partnership in Southern Africa - customers will be able to easily explore more bucket list destinations across the continent including easy connections to Zambia, Zimbabwe and more."

United has continued to expand its footprint into Africa, with direct service to four African destinations. Earlier this month, United announced flights between Washington, D.C. and Lagos Nigeria will begin November 29, subject to government approval. Earlier this year, United launched new service between New York/Newark and Johannesburg, South Africa and between Washington, D.C. and Accra, Ghana, which is expected to operate daily this December and January. United's popular service between New York/Newark and Cape Town, South Africa will also resume on December 1.

"North America is an important source market for our destinations. This codeshare will make it easy for our North American customers to reach the Okavango Delta, Chobe, the Kruger National Park and adjacent private game lodges, Cape Town, the Garden Route, Swakopmund and the Copperbelt, among others," said Airlink CEO and Managing Director, Rodger Foster. "Similarly, the codeshare means that our customers in the 12 African countries we currently serve, will have fast and seamless access to all of United's network."

This new codeshare will be implemented upon final government approvals

Committed to Ensuring a Safe Journey

United is committed to putting health and safety at the forefront of every customer's journey, with the goal of delivering an industry-leading standard of cleanliness through its United CleanPlus SM  program. United has teamed up with Clorox and Cleveland Clinic to redefine cleaning and health safety procedures from check-in to landing and has implemented more than a dozen new policies, protocols and innovations designed with the safety of customers and employees in mind. To manage entry requirements in different destinations, and find places to get tests, customer can visit United's Travel Ready Center.

United Next

United is more focused than ever on its commitment to customers and employees. In addition to today's announcement, United has recently:

  • Launched an ambitious plan to transform the United customer experience by adding and upgrading hundreds of aircraft as well as investing in features like larger overhead bins, seatback entertainment in every seat and the industry's fastest available Wi-Fi.
  • Announced a goal to create 25,000 unionized jobs by 2026 that includes careers as pilots, flight attendants, agents, technicians, and dispatchers.
  • Announced that United will train at least 5,000 pilots by 2030 through the United Aviate Academy, with the plan of at least half being women and people of color.
  • Required all U.S. employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Became the first airline to offer customers the ability to check their destination's travel requirements, schedule COVID-19 tests and more on its mobile app and website. 
  • Invested in emerging technologies that are designed to decarbonize air travel, like an agreement to work with urban air mobility company Archer, an investment in aircraft startup Heart Aerospace and a purchase agreement with Boom Supersonic.
  • Committed to going 100% green by 2050 by reducing 100% of our greenhouse gas emissions without relying on traditional carbon offsets, including a recent agreement to  purchase one and a half times the amount of all of the rest of the world's airlines' publicly announced Sustainable Aviation Fuel commitments combined.
  • Eliminated change fees for all economy and premium cabin tickets for travel within the U.S.

About United

United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." In 2019, United and United Express® carriers operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 162 million customers. United has the most comprehensive route network among North American carriers, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.  For more about how to join the United team, please visit united.com/careers and more information about the company is at united.com. United Airlines Holdings, Inc. is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".

About Airlink

Airlink was established in 1992 and is an independent, privately-owned, full-service premium airline.  Choice and reliability are Airlink hallmarks, with the airline serving more than 45 destinations in 12 countries throughout Southern Africa, Madagascar and St Helena Island.  Airlink is ranked as South Africa's most punctual airline, with its fleet of more than 50 modern jetliners achieving a 97.70% average on-time performance for the year to date.  Airlink is an International Air Transport Association (IATA) member and accredited under its safety audit program.

 

SOURCE United Airlines

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