5 amazing summer vacations you haven't thought of
It's not even Memorial Day, but summer travel is already on your brain. That's because you're a planner. (Also, you know the best spots book up super fast.) Here, five destinations worth considering this year.
A Canadian Road Trip
Block out two weeks and drive from Montreal to Banff. OK, so it's a grand total of approximately 40 hours on the road, but break it into chunks over the course of 14 days and it's worth it, given all the sights you can detour to see (like Ottawa—Canada's capital city—or Prince Albert National Park in Saskatchewan). Book a night at Hotel Le Crystal in Montreal so you get a good night's sleep as you kick off the trip, then use an app like Hotel Tonight (or Airbnb's instant book feature) to book accommodations last minute on the road.
A Western Dude Ranch
Vacation is for fresh air and wide-open spaces, which is why you can't go wrong with a getaway to Colorado, specifically Grand County (located about an hour west of Denver). The Latigo Ranch will whisk you far away from pesky annoyances like email—although Wi-Fi hot spots are available if you need it—and fix your attention instead on the land around you. Forty thousand acres of prime national forest, to be exact.
A Charming Southern City
If you haven't been to Charleston, summer is the perfect time (although preferably in June and July, before the August humidity hits). It's the perfect blend of city culture and country charm. Spend your days touring nearby plantations (FYI, Boone Hall, the spot where Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds got hitched, is open to the public) and your nights at reputable high-end restaurants like Husk or FIG. You could even detour to Kiawah Island, no more than a 45-minute drive away. Plan to stay at the Planters Inn, a chic destination right in the heart of the downtown.
A Lakeside Adventure
The ocean isn't the only option if you're looking for a family getaway where your kids can splash in the waves. Michigan's west coast offers gorgeous water views without having to worry about the tides. (FYI, we love South Haven, often referred to as the “Catskills of the Midwest.") Or, if the east side of the state is more your style, take a ferry to Mackinac Island in the middle of Lake Huron. ( The Grand Hotel is a majestic historic resort you won't want to miss.)
A Coastal Escape
Big Little Lies on the brain? Book a five-day weekend in and around Big Sur. The cliff views of the Pacific Ocean (visible from the Highway 1) alone are worth the trip, but the chance to experience the breathtaking vistas seen on your new favorite HBO show? You can't go wrong. We recommend booking a stay at the swank Monterey Plaza Hotel and Spa (delicious cocktails and epic ocean-side sunsets all included).
Around the web
Calling all AvGeeks and travelers! Here's a fun way to take your next video call….from a United Polaris seat, the cockpit or cruising altitude. We're introducing United-themed backgrounds for use on Zoom, a video conferencing tool that many people are using to stay connected.
So for your next meeting or catch up with friends and family, download the app to either your computer or mobile device to get started. If you've already downloaded Zoom you can skip ahead to updating your background image (see instructions below).
- Start here by downloading your favorite United image to your computer or mobile device. Just click "download" in the bottom left corner of the image.
- Next go to your Zoom app (you'll need to download the app to access backgrounds) and click on the arrow to the right of your video camera icon in the bottom of the screen.
- From here select, "choose virtual background" to upload your uniquely United photo.
When and where possible, we are working to repatriate travelers who are stranded abroad in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. Our teams are working closely with government officials here in the U.S. as well as in other countries where flying has been restricted to gain the necessary approvals to operate service. In regions where government actions have barred international flying, we have coordinated with the the U.S. State Department and local government officials to re-instate some flights. Additionally, we have been operating several extra flights to countries in Central America and South America as we continue to play a role in connecting people and uniting the world.
We have operated more than 56 repatriation flights from Panama City, Guatemala City, Quito, Lima, San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa and Roatan, bringing nearly 8,000 people home. We will continue working with government officials to operate extra flights to Houston from Quito, San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa and from Lima to Washington Dulles and beginning April 5, we will begin operating multiple charter flights between Delhi and San Francisco. We continue to review more opportunities for flights between the United States and other countries to bring citizens home.
Video provided by the U.S. Embassy Ecuador of Americans returning home on United.
Additionally, our Customer Solutions and Recovery team is working with customers in the following markets to rebook them on flights back to the United States as capacity allows, either on our aircraft or on one of our airline partners' planes:
- Quito, Ecuador
- Managua, Nicaragua
- Roatan, Honduras
- San Pedro Sula, Honduras
- Seoul, South Korea
- Melbourne, Australia
We also recently reinstated several international flights back into our schedule to support customers and essential businesses which depend on these routes. As a result, we will be the only airline to offer service between Newark/New York and London, San Francisco and Sydney, as well as Houston and São Paulo, Brazil.
In the midst of mobilizing our cargo operations, our teams at New York/Newark (EWR) and Jacksonville (JAX) stepped in to assist Roche Diagnostics with transporting a vital component for an instrument being used for COVID-19 testing.
The component was stuck at EWR en route to the Mayo Clinic in Florida after another airline's flights were cancelled. A Roche employee contacted us asking for help and, within a few hours, our teams had the piece loaded onto a Jacksonville-bound aircraft, with arrangements in place to deliver it to the Mayo Clinic.
The item we shipped will allow the Mayo Clinic in Florida to process hundreds of COVID-19 tests per day. Mayo Clinic Laboratories has been on the front lines of increasing testing capacity to expedite caring for patients at this critical time and working to ease the burden being felt at test processing laboratories in a growing number of areas.
Together, we are facing an unprecedented challenge. United Together, we rise to meet that challenge.