Chasing waterfalls in Laos - United Hub

Chasing waterfalls in Laos

By The Hub team, March 30, 2016

Sculptures in the Quirky Buddha Park Travel story and photos by: HNL City Ticket Office Agent, Dusty Loffarelli

I traveled to Laos back in October of 2006 and instantly fell in love with it! The food and people are awesome, the infrastructure is good and it's a small country so you will not get lost. I did a lot of awesome outdoor activities that did not require anything hard core, yet were very rewarding.

Luang Prabang (LPQ) is the best place to fly into or, alternatively, out of Laos. It is located in the top of the country, so everything else is south.

Luang Prabang is also located near the so-called "golden triangle," where Myanmar (formerly Burma), China and Laos all meet. You can usually travel in this area to have a taste of all three countries without a visa. However, it is rather touristy so prices and treatment may be likewise. The city is also the cultural capital of Laos and is easily the most visited.

South of Luang Prabang is a town called Vang Vieng. This is where the outdoor action really comes alive. You'll hear about a lot of trips down the famous Mekong River, but in Vang Vieng there is a tributary of it called the Nam Xong (pronounced "song"), which has some great water sports like rafting, tubing and rapids or tours, if you prefer. Also, this is where the Kaeng Nyui Waterfall is - which is awesome. It is really large and spread out all over a park-like setting. You can swim in many places here. I even climbed to the top, which takes several hours. In Vang Vieng you can also explore many caves located right off the river.

The south of Laos is also good but a bit farther out. It's great to explore if you continue on to Cambodia or Vietnam (which requires advance visa) or if you are doing a full Mekong River journey (I have done parts of the Mekong by boat, but I don't recommend the longer journeys unless you are on a high speed boat). Alternatively I've done some great bike trips along the Mekong to complement being on the water.

Overall, my experience was culturally beautiful and visually amazing. I never take for granted that our travel benefits are a privilege. For this, I am forever thankful.

*Travel tip for this trip: You can fly United into HKG (Hong Kong) and travel with Thai Airways, our Star Alliance partner, from HKG to LPQ.

United Cargo operates more than 11,000 cargo-only flights in one year

By The Hub team, March 19, 2021

On March 19, 2020, United operated its first flight carrying cargo without passengers on board. While the passenger cabin was empty, its cargo hold was completely full, carrying more than 29,000 pounds of commodities from Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) to Frankfurt Airport (FRA).

A year later, United Cargo has operated more than 11,000 cargo-only flights carrying more than 570 million pounds of freight. To support the COVID-19 pandemic recovery efforts, United Cargo has also transported more than 113 million pounds of medical and pharmaceutical products on both cargo-only and passenger flights as well as approximately 10 million COVID-19 vaccines, providing global communities access to the items they have needed most.

10 tips for spring travel

By The Hub team, February 24, 2021

Whether you haven't flown with us for a while or just need a quick refresher before your spring trip, read this list of tips to know before your flight and arrive at the airport travel-ready:

1. Download the United app for contactless bag check, travel assistance and more

Before your flight, download the United app to view your flight status, check in, sign up for flight notifications, locate departure gates, access our free personal device entertainment when available and more. We've also updated our app with new features that can make your trip a little safer, including contactless bag check.

Don't forget to use Agent on Demand for help with any and all questions you may have before your flight. This new capability is available at all our U.S. hub airports and allows you to use your own mobile device to contact a customer service agent via phone, video or chat to help with day-of-travel questions while you're at the airport. Learn more about Agent on Demand here.

United joins UNICEF COVAX initiative

By The Hub team, February 19, 2021

This week, we were honored to become the first U.S. airline to join the UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative to combat the COVID-19 pandemic by transporting the vaccine and other critically needed supplies to underserved areas of the globe.

"We are committed to helping the global community in any way we can, and we all must work together to do our part to bring this health and humanitarian crisis to an end," said Director of Cargo Specialty Products Manu Jacobs.

We will leverage our expertise to transport these critical pharmaceutical and healthcare shipments around the world safely, efficiently and expediently. We are proud to partner with the United Nations to support this global effort and provide equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

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