The Travel Guide for Celebrating Pride - United Hub

The best places for celebrating Pride in 2018

By Benét J. Wilson, June 09, 2018

Cities across the globe are celebrating LGBTQ Pride all-month long. Below are seven global cities that have stepped up their game when it comes to celebrating everyone's right to self-identify.

Chicago

View of the Chicago skyline from lincoln park

The Windy City became one of the first in the U.S. to hold a gay pride parade — hosting theirs on June 27, 1970, a year after the Stonewall riots in New York City, a key moment in the LGBT social movement. Chicago was named to Expedia's 2018 list of the 18 most LGBTQ-friendly cities around the world, based on history of activism, protection laws, LGBTQ-friendly establishments, neighborhoods, business practices and its ability to throw a rocking good (and open) party. While you're there, see some of the places recommended by Visit Chicago's LGBTQ+ itinerary. The Chicago pride calendar includes both the Chicago Pride Fest, which will be held June 16-17, and the Chicago Pride Parade on June 24.

Mexico City

The country's capital city is celebrating the 40th anniversary of its first pride parade this year. Mexico City has an active and growing LGBT population that enjoys the gay nightlife district of the centrally located Zona Rosa, home to great restaurants and popular nightclubs. This year's Pride March will be held on Saturday, June 23, 2018, starting at the Angel of Independence and passing through iconic spots in the city including the Monument to Cuauhtémoc, the Palace of Fine Arts then ending in the Zócalo, Mexico City's main square.

New York Skyline at Sunset

New York City

The Stonewall Riots of 1969 in this city kicked off the beginning of the modern gay rights movement. New York-based nonprofit Heritage of Pride plans and produces the city's official LGBT pride events every year. This year, the festivities kick off June 14 with the Human Rights Conference, a gathering of activists, artists, educators, journalists, policymakers, students and others engaged in LGBTQIA+ human rights around the world to discuss human rights through performances, presentations, politics and policies. Other events include OutCinema, Cosplay & Pride and Youth Pride, culminating with the March — featuring grand marshal Billie Jean King — on Saturday, June 24. The NYCGo.com website has an entire section that includes itineraries, the latest events and the scoop on great nightlife, dining, shopping and entertainment for LGBTQ visitors.

Denver

Aerial view of downtown Denver at sunset.

Denver also made the Expedia list for several reasons, including the fact that the city's first gay bar, The Pit, opened in 1939. This year's annual Denver PrideFest, to be held on June 16-17, is one of the biggest parades in the country. While you're there, Visit Denver has built the perfectthree-day weekend itinerary for those who want to go beyond the pride festivities, with stops in places like historic Capitol Hill, the Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre and the Denver Art Museum.

Houston

Pride Houston, celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2018, is pulling out all the stops this year with 10 Days of Pride events from June 14-24. Things kick off with a Grand Marshal Reception where parade leaders will be honored. Other events include the finals of the Pride Superstar singing contest, artist Jumper Maybach's Gallery Show, the Salvation pool party and the Rainbow on the Green drag show. It culminates in the 40th annual Pride parade on June 23, with 700,000 participants from around the world expected to attend and ends with a Pride after-party. Check out the favorite spots of LGBTQ locals you may want to visit.

London

Great Britain's capital city will be celebrating its LGBTQ community from June 9 through July 7. The annual Pride Festival, which has doubled in size since 2015, will offer a wide variety of entertaining, thought-provoking, social and engaging events with performances to be held at venues around London. They include comedy improv, a binge-watch film evening, a Great Gatsby-themed party, cabaret, theatre, music, business networking, fitness boot camps, a self-defense workshop, bowling, museum events, talks, walks and more. But the main event is the Pride in London Parade, which will be held on July 7. Last year's event had more than one million attendees, and those numbers are expected to rise this year. Visit London offers tips on where to go, what to do and where to stay before, during and after the parade.

Los Angeles

Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles, California.

The Expedia list cited Los Angeles for its decades of being a gay haven and also being home to the incorporated city of West Hollywood, one of the most gay-friendly cities in the world. Christopher Street West (CSW), a non-profit organizatoin, created the world's first permitted parade advocating for gay rights on June 28, 1970, and has produced the LA Pride Parade and Festival every June in West Hollywood. Pride events began on May 22, and include concerts, LGBT Night at the L.A. Dodgers baseball game, a Youth Pride dance and LGBT Night at Universal Studios Hollywood. This year's parade will be held on Saturday, June 9from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. And while you're there, take recommendations from Discover Los Angeles and check out activities like Reel to Real: Portrayals and Perceptions of LGBTs in Hollywood at Hollywood Museum. You can also help the city celebrate LGBTQ Heritage Month in June by touring the city through the lens of L.A.'s pioneering LGBT history.

Dublin

Ireland's capital city goes all out with its pride festivities via the Dublin LGBTQ Pride Festival, held from June 21-30, which culminates with a parade on Saturday, June 30. Dublin hosts one of Europe's biggest parades, with more than 30,000 attendees and more than 60 floats in 2017. But if you're staying before or after Pride, the Visit Dublin Center offers information on city and day tours that show off the best of the city and Ireland.

San Francisco

The City by the Bay holds a two-day bash to accommodate those coming from around the world to the LGBTQ-friendly city. But before experiencing the pride festivities, you may want to take a tour of the city. One recommended by San Francisco Travel is The Fabulous Foodie, which highlights the city's rich culinary history. On Saturday, June 23, and Sunday, June 24, the city held a celebration and rally with events, including concerts, performers, exhibitions and food that culminate with the San Francisco Pride parade on Sunday.

Buenos Aires

Aerial view of the capital city of Argentina.

The Paris of South America held its first pride march in 1992, with 300 people who wore masks to protect their identities. Skip ahead 26 years, and the city hosts one of the most popular Marchas del Orgullo (Pride Parade), with more than 100,000 people from around the world in attendance on Saturday, November 10. But before you jump into the festivities, you can visit gay-friendly Buenos Aires neighborhoods including Recoleta, Palermo and San Telmo, known for shopping, food and art. You can also go shopping in the Buenos Aires Market. A pre-parade party kicks off the celebration in the afternoon at 2:00 p.m. in Plaza de Mayo, where participants arrive in costume for photos ops with stars and LGBT activists. Then, watch the 11-block-long parade that starts at 6:00 p.m.

Sao Paulo

Sao Paulo, Brazil's largest city also has one of the biggest and most diversified population in the world, including a substantial LGBTQ community. Visitors can enjoy global and Brazilian cuisine in restaurants like the famous Mocotó in a city known as the Latin American capital of gastronomy. The city is close to beaches and has a vibrant network of gay nightclubs. The largest gay pride parade in the world will be held in Sao Paulo on June 17 and is expected to draw nearly four million people.

Washington Monument in the Spring

Washington D.C.

The history of the Capital Pride celebration goes back to 1975, when it started as a one-day community block party. This year's festivities start on Thursday, June 7, when the Capital Pride Alliance hosts the Capital Pride Heroes Award at a gala event. There's an opening party on June 8, a pride brunch and festival on June 9 that culminates with the Capital Pride Parade at 4:30. The celebration ends on Sunday, June 10 with the Capital Pride Festival that will offer a day of entertainment, music, food, drink, education and celebration.

If you go

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

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Looking back at a landmark year with Special Olympics

By Ryan Wilks, October 19, 2020

Earlier this summer, we shone a light on our flagship partnership with Special Olympics and our commitment to the Inclusion Revolution. In that same story, we introduced you to our four Special Olympics Service Ambassadors, Daniel, Kyle, Lauren and Zinyra (Z), who, this month, celebrate one year working at Chicago O'Hare International Airport as part of the United family.

This groundbreaking, inclusive employment program took off as a part of our ongoing partnership with Special Olympics, a community relationship that employees across the company hold close to heart. The original 'UA4' (as they call themselves) have become an integral part of the United team serving customers at O'Hare Airport. Even from behind their masks, their wide smiles and effervescent spirit exude and bring life to the service culture of excellence we strive towards every day.

"The UA4 are more than just customer service ambassadors. They are shining examples of how inclusion, accessibility and equity can have monumental impacts on the culture and service of a business and community," said Customer Service Managing Director Jonna McGrath. "They have forever changed who we are as a company. While they often talk about how United and this opportunity has changed their lives, they have changed ours in more ways than we can count."

In the two years of partnership with Special Olympics, United employees have volunteered over 10,500 hours of service at events around the world and donated over $1.2 million worth of travel to the organization.

"This inclusive employment program is what community partnerships, like ours with Special Olympics, are all about: collaborating to identify areas where the needs of the community intersect with the cultural and business opportunity, then creating the infrastructure and programming to bring the two together," said Global Community Engagement Managing Director Suzi Cabo. "Through this program, our goal is to show other companies that when you put a committed effort and focus towards inclusion and breaking down barriers, you transform lives. I challenge other business around the world to follow our lead in joining the Inclusion Revolution."

Check out the video below to hear from our Special Olympics Service Ambassadors firsthand.

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Spotlighting our own during Hispanic Heritage Month

By The Hub team, October 13, 2020

We celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 th through October 15th and take the time to recognize the important contributions of our colleagues of Hispanic descent in the United family.

This year, we hosted virtual events organized by our multicultural business resource group UNITE to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, covering topics ranging from immigration reform to Hispanic leadership. We're also taking a moment to highlight Latinx employees nominated by their peers for their contributions both at and outside of work.

These nominees have demonstrated leadership in their position and through their character. Take a moment to read their own words about how their background and heritage plays a role in the way they interact with customers, in how they support their colleagues and why it brings valuable perspective to their work.

Vania Wit – VP & Deputy Counsel

Photo of Vania Wit, VP & Deputy Counsel for United Airlines

"I am the Vice President and Deputy General Counsel in the legal department. I am an attorney and have worked in the legal department for over 21 years and am currently responsible for a number of different legal areas – such as litigation, international, commercial and government contracts, labor, employment and benefits, antitrust. I have the privilege of working with a tremendous team of attorneys who are directly leading and managing these areas. One of the things I like most about my job is simply getting to know the backgrounds and personal stories that everyone has about their paths to United or their passion for the industry. Being the daughter of immigrants from South America and growing up in a family who relies heavily on air travel to connect us to our close family and friends is an integral part of my story and what drew me to this industry and this company."

Kayra Martinez – International Flight Attendant, FRA

Photo of Kayra Martinez on board an aircraft

"I love that my work as a flight attendant brings me all over the world and allows me to connect with diverse people across the globe. Because of my Spanish heritage, I've been able to use my language as a way to connect with passengers, crew members and people from every nationality. In addition, my heritage gives me a very close connection to family, creating community and using inclusion as a way to bring people together. After transferring to Europe, I was able to study German, more Spanish, Italian and Arabic. Outside of work, I'm the director and founder of a nonprofit organization that empowers refugees through art. Hundreds of children and adults fleeing war-torn countries have found healing through my art workshops. These refugees are currently displaced in Greece. Their stunning paintings are then sold in art galleries and communities around the world, raising awareness and putting income directly into the hands of refugee artists."

Adriana Carmona – Program Manager, AO Regulatory Compliance

Photo of Adriana standing in front of a plane engine

"I've been incredibly lucky to have amazing leaders during my time at United who have challenged me from day one to think outside the box, step out of my comfort zone and trusted me to own and deliver on the tasks assigned. I think this sense of ownership is largely shaped by my Latino background, which values responsibility, respect and accountability and taking full charge of what's in your control to be able to deliver accordingly."

Harry Cabrera – Assistant Manager, AO Customer Service, IAH

Photo of Harry Cabrera

"My desire to help people is what drove me to start my career in Customer Service over two decades ago. Currently I provide support to our coworkers and customers at IAH , the gateway to Latin America and the Caribbean. As a Colombian native celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, I'm proud to see the strength that my fellow Latinos forge every day at United Airlines. Family values are a cornerstone of the Latin community; I consider my coworkers to be part of my extended family. Mentor support throughout the years gave me the opportunity to grow professionally. The desire to do better and help others succeed is part of that heritage. I collaborate with our Latin American operations and create ways to improve performance. No matter what language you speak, the passion for what you do and being approachable makes the difference in any interaction."

Juciaria Meadows – Assistant Regional Manager, Cargo Sales

Photo of Juciaria Meadows in a Cargo hold

"During my 28-year career, I've worked across the system in various frontline and leadership roles in Reservations, Customer Service and Passenger Sales in Brazil. I moved to the U.S. in 2012 to work as an Account Executive for Cargo. It did not take too long for me to learn that boxes and containers have as much a voice as a passenger sitting in our aircraft. My job is to foster relationships with shippers, freight forwarders, cosignees, etc. and build strong partnerships in fair, trustworthy and caring ways where United Cargo will be their carrier of choice. That's where my background growing up in a Latino family plays an important role in my day-to-day interactions. I've done many wonderful sales trainings provided by United and my academic background , but none of them taught me more than watching my parents running their wholesale food warehouse. Developing exceptional relationships with their customers, they always treated them with trust and respect. They were successful business people with a big heart, creative, always adding a personal touch to their business relationships and I find myself doing the same. It's a lesson that is deep in my heart."

Shanell Arevalo – Customer Service Representative, DEN

Photo of Shanell Arevalo at work

"I am Belizean and Salvadoran. At a young age my family moved to California from Belize. Although I grew up in the United States , one thing my parents taught me was to never forget the culture, values and principles I was raised on. This includes showing love, compassion, and respect to all people. We learned to put our best foot forward for any situation and always put our heart and mind into everything we do. In my position as a customer service agent, it's the difference of showing the love, compassion and respect to our passengers to show that this is not just a job but rather a passion of genuinely caring for our people. Being Latina, we are raised to always take care of our family, and the way I take care of passengers is the way I would take care of my family. If there's one way I know I can make a difference with our Spanish speaking passengers, it's being able to speak the language. The glow that comes over a passenger's face when they realize there's someone who can speak Spanish is absolutely an indescribable feeling. With that glow comes comfort and joy. The small comfort they get from knowing someone can connect with them makes all the difference in their experience."

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United Cargo responds to COVID-19 challenges, prepares for what's next

By The Hub team, September 30, 2020

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, United Cargo has supported a variety of customers within the healthcare industry for over 10 years. Three key solutions – TempControl, LifeGuard and QuickPak – protect the integrity of vital shipments such as precision medicine, pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical equipment and vaccines. By utilizing processes like temperature monitoring, thermodynamic management, and priority boarding and handling, United Cargo gives customers the peace of mind that their shipments will be protected throughout their journey.

With the global demand for tailored pharmaceutical solutions at an all-time high, we've made investments to help ensure we provide the most reliable air cargo options for cold chain shipping. In April this year, we became the first U.S. carrier to lease temperature-controlled shipping containers manufactured by DoKaSch Temperature Solutions. We continue to partner with state-of-the-art container providers to ensure we have options that meet our customers' ever-changing needs.

"Providing safe air cargo transport for essential shipments has been a top priority since the pandemic began. While the entire air cargo industry has had its challenges, I'm proud of how United Cargo has adapted and thrived despite a significant reduction in network capacity and supply," said United Cargo President Jan Krems. "We remain committed to helping our customers make it through the pandemic, as well as to doing everything we can to be prepared for the COVID-19 vaccine distribution when the time comes."

Our entire team continues to prioritize moving critical shipments as part of our commitment to supporting the global supply chain. We've assembled a COVID readiness task team to ensure we have the right people in place and are preparing our airports as we get ready for the industry-wide effort that comes next.

In cooperation with our partners all over the world, United Cargo has helped transport nearly 145 million pounds of medical supplies to aid in the fight against COVID-19, using a combination of cargo-only flights and passenger flig­hts. To date, United Cargo has operated more than 6,300 cargo-only flights and has transported more than 213 million pounds of cargo worldwide.

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