Best Holiday Parades of the Season - United Hub

Best holiday parades of the season

By Bob Cooper

Held around the world, Christmas and New Year's parades are traditional events that are sometimes over the top, but always festive. Here's where to go to watch floats, bands and much more to celebrate the holidays.

Pasadena, California

The parade in Pasadena is famous, massive, lengthy (with a 5.5-mile route) and most of all, dripping with tradition. The 128th Rose Parade, also known as the Tournament of Roses, fills the streets of this Los Angeles-area city on January 2, hours before the Rose Bowl football game that matches local favorite USC against Penn State. Colorful doesn't even begin to describe the parade, which features 25 marching bands, 20 equestrian units and 41 floats festooned with some 500,000 roses (about one for each spectator).

London, England

An estimated half-million spectators crowd London's streets for its annual New Year's Day Parade. Along the route, which winds past Parliament Square, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus, are 8,000 parade participants, including a Berlin dance company, the Royal Airs Drum & Bugle Corps, Jurassic World dinosaurs and floats sponsored by various London boroughs. Visiting London is less expensive now than it's been in decades, so building a trip around the parade is newly affordable.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The names of award categories at the 10,000-participant Mummers Parade should give you an idea of the satirical tone of this zany, 116-year-old New Year's Day tradition: Comics, String Bands, Wench Brigades, Fancies and Fancy Brigades. The Fancy Brigades serve double duty by marching in the morning parade along Broad Street from City Hill and then performing for two ticketed theatre shows at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in the afternoon. The “mummers," who practice for the parade all year, are colorful, silly and utterly unique.

San Diego, California

The Port of San Diego Holiday Bowl Parade on December 27 features America's biggest procession of gigantic helium balloons along San Diego's downtown waterfront route, which is lined with 100,000-plus spectators. The nationally telecast parade also shows off floats, bands and drill teams. It's preceded by a big 5K run on the parade route and followed by a Battle of the Bands and the National Funding Holiday Bowl (Washington State vs. Minnesota).

New Orleans, Louisiana

The Allstate Sugar Bowl New Year's Eve Parade is the perfect excuse for being in the French Quarter to celebrate the dawn of 2017. The 3:30 p.m. parade concludes just in time to enjoy dinner in the Quarter followed by the countdown to midnight at the bars. The parade, which will showcase bands and Mardi Gras-style floats that end at the Sugar Bowl Fan Fest, kicks off two days of festivities leading up to the Sugar Bowl, pitting Auburn against Oklahoma.

Anaheim, California

Got kids? The perfect parade for families is Disneyland's traditional Christmas Fantasy Parade. It's short and sweet, lasting 40 minutes, but stars all of the Disney characters and creatures that cause a young child's eyes to widen with wonder. Riding floats along the parade route that stretches the length of Disneyland are Mickey, Minnie and the gang, plus prancing reindeer, dancing gingerbread cookies, and of course, Santa. It happens twice daily through January 8, and is just one of several holiday-related events in America's original theme park.

If you go

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

How to change your flight, or cancel and rebook later

By The Hub team , April 04, 2020

We know people are taking a second look at their travel plans right now. If you're scheduled to travel March 10 – May 31, 2020 and would like to change your plans, there is no fee to do so, regardless of when you purchased your ticket or where you're traveling. This is in addition to our previous waiver, which waives all change fees – domestic and international – for tickets purchased March 3 – April 30, 2020. This is available for any of United's published nonrefundable fares. If you decide to cancel your flight, you can retain the value of your ticket to be applied to a new ticket without a fee. These electronic travel certificates are now valid for 24 months from the date they were issued. This includes all currently valid electronic certificates and all new ones issued on or after April 1, 2020. You might not see this policy change reflected everywhere right away – we appreciate your patience as we work to make that happen.

Eligible travelers on domestic flights and international tickets can request a refund on united.com or may call our contact centers if their flights have been severely adjusted or service to their destination suspended either due to government mandates or United schedule reductions related to COVID-19.

Certain tickets cannot be changed on united.com or the mobile app, including tickets booked through another airline (if the ticket receipt does not begin with 016). Please contact the original ticketing airline for changes.

Follow the steps below to stay up to date, change or cancel your flight.

Change your current flight:

  1. On the united.com homepage, select "My Trips" and enter your flight information to retrieve your flight.
  2. Select "Change flight" and then "Edit" to make the following changes:
    • Date of travel or destination
    • Add a flight
    • Remove a flight
  3. Select "Continue" and choose a new flight option
  4. Continue through booking to confirm your new flight

Note: The change fee will display as waived, but any difference in fare may apply.

Cancel your flight and rebook later:

  1. On the united.com homepage, select "My Trips" and enter your reservation information to retrieve your flight
  2. Select "Cancel flight"
  3. Confirm flight cancellation
  4. If you have future flight credit, when you return to the reservation, select "Use Future Flight Credit" to shop for new flights and apply the credit towards a new flight.

Canceling or changing an award flight:

When you select "Cancel flight," you will have the option to cancel your award reservation and redeposit the miles or to cancel your award reservation and use those miles for another trip in the future.

*We're currently experiencing heavy traffic to united.com. If you experience an error while trying to change or cancel your flight, please try again later.

Click through the slideshow below for more detailed instructions:

​Start on the United homepage: ​

User can select 'My Trips' on the homepage widget to find and retrieve their reservation.

  • If you're not signed in or you're a guest user, enter your confirmation number and last name.
  • If you are signed in, you can select a trip from your current trips or select the 'Find another trip' link.

Working to bring people home – repatriation flights underway

By The Hub team , April 03, 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 68 repatriation flights from Panama City, Guatemala City, Quito, Lima, San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa and Roatan, bringing nearly 9,200 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.

United Zoom backgrounds for AvGeeks

By The Hub team , April 02, 2020

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).

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. From here select, "choose virtual background" to upload your uniquely United photo.







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