6 Movies That Will Inspire You to Travel - United Hub

6 movies that will inspire you to travel

By Nick Harper

Films transport you to a different time and place as they tell their tales. Sometimes they take you to the last place on earth you'd ever want to be. But sometimes, the backdrop you're watching ends up overshadowing the leading stars. They make you pine to be right there, wherever 'there' may be, soaking up the sun or sucking up the culture.

In celebration of those moments, allow us to present six of the most awe-inspiring movie locations around the globe. Our selections may not necessarily be movies on your watch-list, but all 6 should have you reaching straight for your passport. Rest assured, you will not be disappointed.

Naples, Italy

Eat Pray Love

Julia Roberts plays just-divorced Liz Gilbert, who leaves a failed marriage behind and heads off on a journey of rediscovery, jetting off to a number of picturesque locations around the globe that include Bali in Indonesia and Pataudi Palace in India.

Perhaps the most inspirational stop-off of them all, however, saw the 'Pretty Woman' star in Naples, heading to the most important pizzeria on the planet – L'Antica Pizzeria Da Michele

Touch down in Naples and head south along the coast to the unmissable tourist hot spots of Mount Vesuvius, Pompeii and Sorrento. And if you're up for a longer vacation, the Eternal City of Rome and its limitless attractions is within easy reach, a little more than an hour north of Naples. And you'll be able to get great pizza there, too.

Best time to go: Spring and autumn are traditionally the best times to visit Naples and its coast — it's warm but not yet as stiflingly hot as you can expect in July and August. March and October are typically quieter but can still offer some warmth.

Machu Picchu in Peru

The Motorcycle Diaries

For the traveler with a serious sense of adventure, let the 2004 film of Che Guevara's legendary road trip be your inspiration. Set in 1952, eight years before the Cuban Revolution, we join Marxist revolutionary Ernesto 'Che' Guevara and boyhood amigo Alberto Granado as they travel 5,000 thousand miles into South America — from Argentina to Venezuela, heading up through Chile, Peru and Colombia.

Five-thousand miles is perhaps unrealistic, so it makes sense to cherry pick a few of the landmarks Guevara visited or passed and build your itinerary around them. Highlights are everywhere, from beautifully chaotic Buenos Aires early on, to the funicular railway at Valparaíso in Chile, and the barren but breathtaking Atacama Desert that stretches 621 miles from Chile into Peru.

Best of all, perhaps, is Machu Picchu, the legendary Inca citadel almost 8,000ft above sea level. The ascent and the altitude can be testing, but as the millions of tourists who make the pilgrimage every year will agree, it's worth every last step.

Best time to go: South America's summer is roughly November to February, its winter June to August. Peru and Machu Picchu are a year-round destination but be aware that January to March is its rainy season.

Before Sunrise takes place in Vienna, Austria

Before Sunrise/Before Sunset/Before Midnight

A handsome young Ethan Hawke (Jesse) and an attractive young Julie Delpy (Celine) meet on a train in Europe, and end up spending a single evening together in Vienna, surrounded by the culture of one of Europe's most aesthetic and educational cities.

Alas, they both know it will be their only night together. Until, nine years later, their paths cross again this time in Celine's home city of Paris, another of Europe's most essential destinations.

Eight years after that, in Before Midnight, the pair now have twin daughters and find themselves in rural Greece, still talking, analyzing and watching the sun set on their surroundings.

Richard Linklater's trilogy was rightly acclaimed for its ambition, subject and script, but the true star of each was the location. You couldn't help watch and wonder how much it would cost to head straight off to Vienna/Paris/Southern Peloponnese. If you've never made the journey, now's the time.

Best time to go: This being Europe, the weather is at its most reliable — i.e. hottest — in July and August, but the crowds and prices reflect that. Aim for slightly earlier (April, May) or slightly later (September, October) for cooler conditions and thinner crowds.

Phi Phi Leh Island near Phuket, Thailand

The Beach

Danny Boyle's movie adaptation of the gap-year classic saw a fresh-faced Leonardo DiCaprio running amok on the beaches and back tracks of an undiscovered Thailand — and reminded travelers the world over that 'The Land of Smiles' boasts many of the world's most beautiful beaches.

The location used was Maya Bay on Phi Phi Leh Island, close to Phuket — featuring a beach of pristine white sand and translucent sea, framed for the postcards by vast, impenetrable cliffs. Initially overrun with paradise-seeking tourists inspired by the movie and devastated by the 2004 tsunami, Phi Phi is back on its feet and once again insanely — but understandably — popular. It should be on the bucket list of every traveler seeking sun, sand and warm, clear waters.

However, should the crowds there prove too much, rest assured that in this part of Thailand, you're never more than a short boat ride away from another, more peaceful island and beach on which to unwind.

Best time to go: Phi Phi is a year-round destination but the best weather is from November to March, when humidity is at its lowest. September and October bring the highest chance of monsoon rain.

Barcelona, Spain

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Woody Allen's red-blooded rom-com saw Rebecca Hall (Vicky) and Scarlett Johansson (Christina) spend the summer at the Catalan hideaway of Vicky's friends, where both fall for the Latin charms of Lothario Juan Antonio, played by Javier Bardem.

But the star of the film is none of the above – the Catalan capital steals the show. A whirlwind tour of the city's most beloved landmarks help progress the plot and should inspire any traveler to pay Barcelona a visit.

Once there, should you somehow exhaust the city's myriad attractions, you could do as the plot does and head further afield, to the likes of Faro de Avilés and the Church of Santa Maria del Naranco at Calle de Enrique de Osso. You won't, of course, because by that point Barcelona will have you firmly under its spell. But you could.

Best time to go: Barcelona is busy year-round, but crowds, prices and temperatures hit a peak in July and August. Late spring and early summer are better options — the city is a touch quieter but still enjoys warm temperatures.

Skopelos, Greece

Mamma Mia!

What plot there is in the film version of the phenomenally successful stage show took second billing to the soundtrack of ABBA — the story is of a bride-to-be trying to find her real father, told using the hit tracks of the Swedish quartet. The real star of the movie though is the sun-drenched backdrop of Skopelos, a picture-postcard island that lent the movie many of its most memorable landmarks.

It was there too that the movie premiered in 2008, and the first sighting of the beautiful Agios Ioannis chapel received a louder cheer than the sight of Pierce Brosnan ripping off his shirt. “The world will see Skopelos now," chirped the mayor afterwards. “We are the Mamma Mia! Island."

The world has indeed seen Skopelos since then, with its beaches, tavernas, whitewashed villages and an altogether slower pace. Your life would be enriched by seeing and experiencing it too, at the earliest opportunity.

Best time to go: Skopelos' summers are hot and dry, its winters mild and wet. July and August are the hottest and busiest months, making the shoulder seasons of May and September a slightly quieter, mercifully cooler and generally better bet.

If you go

Visit united.com or use the United app to plan your getaway.

United Cargo moving more medical supplies and PPE

By Matt Adams, April 08, 2020

As the COVID-19 crisis has evolved, United's cargo operation has emerged as a critical conduit for getting life-saving goods where they're needed most.

Last week, we helped Flexport.org, the social impact arm of a freight forwarder based in San Francisco, import two shipments of medical and personal protective equipment (PPE) destined for New York and California. The first of those loads arrived in San Francisco from Shanghai aboard a chartered United Boeing 787-9 on Wednesday. It contained 1,000 ventilators, 70,000 goggles and 300,000 masks, all of which were donated by Alibaba cofounder and Brooklyn Nets owner Joe Tsai and his wife, Clara Wu Tsai. Those items were then put on a United 777 and flown to EWR, where they were distributed to 14 hospitals, medical centers and nursing homes in the New York City region.

The second shipment came into San Francisco the following day containing surgical gowns, hazmat suits and several million more masks for first responders in California. United employees unloaded that aircraft upon arrival and helped get the PPE onto trucks for delivery to Bay Area hospitals.

We are operating, on average, 20 cargo-only flights each day between six U.S. hubs and cities in Asia, Australia, Europe and the Middle East. In the process of doing so, we are moving thousands of pounds of medical supplies, pharmaceuticals and PPE, in addition to those mentioned above, to help stem the spread of COVID-19 and treat those afflicted.

Domestic and international schedule reductions

By The Hub team, April 07, 2020

While travel demand and government restrictions continue to impact our schedule, we know some people around the globe are displaced and still need to get home. We continue to operate dozens of repatriation flights in an effort to get customers where they need to be. This remains a fluid situation, but United continues to play a role in connecting people and uniting the world, especially in these challenging times. Learn more about what we're doing to keep customers and employees safe.

Flights continuing from now into May:

Atlantic

Operating:

  • New York/Newark – Frankfurt (Flights 960/961)
  • New York/Newark – London (Flights 16/17)
  • New York/Newark – Tel Aviv (Flights 90/91)

Pacific

Operating:

  • San Francisco – Tokyo-Narita (Flights 837/838)
  • San Francisco – Sydney (Flights 863/870
  • Select Guam routes, including daily Guam – Honolulu (Flights 200/201)

Latin America/South America

Operating:
  • Houston – Sao Paulo (1x daily)
  • Houston – Cancun (3x daily)
  • Houston – Mexico City and Monterrey (2x daily)
  • Houston – Guanajuato, Guadalajara, Puerto Vallarta and Los Cabos (1x daily)
Suspended:
  • All other hub flying to Mexico is canceled.

Caribbean

We are suspending all remaining Caribbean service: NAS (Nassau, Bahamas) through May 3, SJU (San Juan) and STT (St. Thomas) April 7 – May 3 (at the earliest).

Canada

  • All flying to Canada is suspended.

To help with the uncertainty around future travel — be it summer vacations, conferences, events and more — customers now have until April 30 to make changes to, or cancel, any travel they have booked through the end of the year without fees. This is in addition to existing waivers already in place which allow customers to change or cancel plans for travel through May 31.

Please visit united.com for more information, or reference our step-by-step guide on how to change your flight, cancel and rebook later.

Domestic schedule

We have taken every opportunity to continue offering service to as many airports as possible through other United hubs as we have reduced our domestic flying. Effective April 8, we will suspend service between the mainland and Hilo, Maui, Kona and Lihue - and we will maintain our daily service between our San Francisco hub and Honolulu, which has been reduced to one flight daily. We will continue to operate daily service between Honolulu and Guam. These suspensions will run through April 22.

We are closely monitoring demand as well as changes in state and local curfews and government restrictions across the U.S. and will adjust our schedule accordingly.

Hub city Route suspensions Remaining service
Chicago Albuquerque, NM
Asheville, NC
Bismarck/Mandan, ND
Bozeman, MT
Eugene, OR
Fresno, CA
Hilton Head, SC
Honolulu, HI
Jackson, MS
Kahului, HI
Kearney, NE
Palm Springs, CA
Panama City, FL
Reno, NV
San Jose, CA
Spokane, WA
Valparaiso, FL
Wilmington, NC
DEN, IAH
IAD
DEN
DEN
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
IAD
SFO
IAH
Market Suspension
DEN
DEN, SFO
IAH
DEN, SFO
DEN
DEN
IAH
IAD
New York/Newark Appleton, WI
Arcata/Eureka, CA
Charleston, SC
Grand Rapids, MI
Hartford, CT
Hobbs, NM
Honolulu, HI
Jacksonville, FL
Kahului, HI
Kona, HI
Lihue, HI
New York, NY (LaGuardia)
Santa Rosa, CA
Shreveport, LA
Syracuse, NY
ORD
SFO
IAD, IAH, ORD
ORD
IAD, ORD
IAH
SFO
IAD, IAH, ORD
Market Suspension
Market Suspension
Market Suspension
ORD
SFO
IAH
IAD, ORD
Houston Akron/Canton, OH
Boise, ID
Grand Rapids, MI
Hartford, CT
Honolulu, HI
Lexington, KY
New York, NY (LaGuardia)
Norfolk, VA
Ontario, CA
Palm Springs, CA
Reno, NV
Richmond, VA
San Jose, CA
St Louis, MO
ORD
DEN, ORD, SFO
ORD
IAD, ORD
SFO
IAD, ORD
ORD
DEN, IAD, ORD
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, IAD, ORD
DEN
DEN, IAD, ORD
Los Angeles Arcata/Eureka, CA
Austin, TX
Baltimore, DC
Bend/Redmond, OR
Boise, ID
Boston, MA
Bozeman, MT
Cleveland, OH
Colorado Springs, CO
Eugene, OR
Fresno, CA
Hilo, HI
Honolulu, HI
Kahului, HI
Kona, HI
Las Vegas, NV
Lihue, HI
Madison, WI
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Medford, OR
Monterey, CA
Orlando, FL
Palm Springs, CA
Phoenix, AZ
Prescott, AZ
Redding, CA
Reno, NV
Sacramento, CA
Salt Lake City, UT
San Antonio, TX
San Diego, CA
San Luis Obispo, CA
Santa Barbara, CA
Seattle, WA
St George, UT
Stockton, CA
SFO
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, SFO
DEN, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
Market Suspension
SFO
Market Suspension
Market Suspension
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
Market Suspension
DEN, ORD
Market Suspension
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN
SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN
Market Suspension
New York/Newark Akron/Canton, OH
Albany, NY
Atlanta, GA
Austin, TX
Bangor, ME
Boston, MA
Buffalo, NY
Burlington, VT
Charleston, SC
Charlotte, NC
Cincinnati, OH
Cleveland, OH
Columbus, OH
Dallas/Fort Worth, TX
Detroit, MI
Fayetteville, AR
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Fort Myers, FL
Grand Rapids, MI
Greensboro, NC
Greenville, SC
Hilton Head, SC
Honolulu, HI
Indianapolis, IN
Jacksonville, FL
Kansas City, MO
Key West, FL
Knoxville, TN
Las Vegas, NV
Louisville, KY
Madison, WI
Memphis, TN
Miami, FL
Milwaukee, WI
Minneapolis, MN
Myrtle Beach, SC
Nashville, TN
New Orleans, LA
Norfolk, VA
Omaha, NE
Orange County, CA
Orlando, FL
Phoenix, AZ
Pittsburgh, PA
Portland, ME
Portland, OR
Presque Isle, ME
Providence, RI
Raleigh/Durham, NC
Richmond, VA
Rochester, NY
Sacramento, CA
Salt Lake City, UT
San Antonio, TX
San Diego, CA
Sarasota, FL
Savannah, GA
Seattle, WA
St Louis, MO
Syracuse, NY
Tampa, FL
Washington, DC (Reagan National)
West Palm Beach, FL
ORD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
IAD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
IAD, ORD
IAD, ORD
IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
ORD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
IAD
SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
IAD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
IAD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, ORD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAD, ORD
IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
IAD, IAH, ORD
San Francisco Albuquerque, NM
Atlanta, GA
Austin, TX
Baltimore, DC
Boston, MA
Bozeman, MT
Cleveland, OH
Columbus, OH
Dallas/Fort Worth, TX
Detroit, MI
Fayetteville, AR
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Indianapolis, IN
Kahului, HI
Kansas City, MO
Kona, HI
Lihue, HI
Madison, WI
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Minneapolis, MN
Nashville, TN
New Orleans, LA
Oklahoma City, OK
Omaha, NE
Orlando, FL
Philadelphia, PA
Pittsburgh, PA
Raleigh/Durham, NC
San Antonio, TX
Spokane, WA
St Louis, MO
Tampa, FL
DEN, IAH
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
Market Suspension
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
Market Suspension
Market Suspension
DEN, ORD
Market Suspension
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
DEN
DEN, IAD, ORD
DEN, IAD, IAH, ORD
Washington-Dulles Austin, TX
Grand Rapids, MI
Honolulu, HI
New York, NY (LaGuardia)
Portland, OR
Sacramento, CA
DEN, IAH, ORD
ORD
SFO
ORD
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO
DEN, IAH, ORD, SFO

Working to bring people home – repatriation flights underway

By The Hub team, April 07, 2020

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 85 repatriation flights from Panama City, Guatemala City, Quito, Lima, San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa and Roatan, bringing nearly 12,000 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
  • Amsterdam
  • Brussels
  • Munich
  • Singapore
  • Tokyo-Haneda
  • 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.

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