What To Do in Sydney - United Hub
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What to do in Sydney

By The Hub team

Passion Passport is a community-based website that tells meaningful travel stories and facilitates global connections. Our team hails from across the United States and Canada and is always up for an adventure. To learn more about where we're going and what we're doing, visit our website: PassionPassport.com

Between its sparkling beaches, gorgeous vistas, and plentiful outdoor adventures, Sydney is a paradise that often feels a million miles away. On a recent trip, we explored the best of this coastal city, and we want to help you do the same. In that light, here are a few of our favorites activities in the Land Down Under.

Get to know the city

Sydney is known around the world for its friendly atmosphere and welcoming hospitality. In addition, its sunny disposition, good weather, unique architecture, vibrant gardens, and hidden gems merit a place at the top of any bucket list.Whether your stay in this Australian city is short or extensive, your first stop should be Sydney's most recognizable structures: the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Their iconic designs helped put Sydney on the map, and their location on the waterfront makes them all the more beautiful.If you're jetlagged and are in need of some downtime, spend an afternoon relaxing in the city's multiple green spaces. From the unique, sunken plots of Paddington Reservoir Gardens (built on land that used to supply water to the city) to the thriving flower beds of Wendy's Secret Garden (established by a local in the 1990s), you'll have your pick of parks and nature reserves. Commit to an afternoon in your chosen locale, and if you're so inclined, bring along a picnic lunch, a camera, or a sketchbook.

Sunrise over three sisters, Blue Mountains, Australia

Explore the great outdoors

No trip to Australia would be complete without exploring the country's beaches and peaks.

The Blue Mountains are the best option for those looking to escape the bustle of Sydney without the long haul of a multi-day journey. This stunning range is part of a national park, which lies just 60 miles (100 kilometers) outside of Sydney proper. The mountains themselves offer plenty of outdoor activities, such as hiking, canyoning, and mountain biking — so be sure to pack your walking shoes!

During your time in Sydney, don't pass up Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, which is home to pristine shorelines and sparkling blue waters. No matter the season, this national park will stun you with its abundance of wildlife and cultural legacies. While you're at the park, keep an eye out for brightly colored birds, and stretch your legs with a trek on the Aboriginal Heritage walk, where you can see handprints and rock carvings from the area's aboriginal people. No one's quite sure how long these artifacts have been there, but archaeologists estimate that the carvings are more than 7,000 years old.

Finally, get up close and personal with Australia's most famous animals at Featherdale Wildlife Park. If you've always wanted to cuddle a koala, pet a dingo, or hold a baby crocodile, this is your chance. The park is run by a team of animal specialists, who love to teach visitors all about the animals and their ecosystems, and they'll gladly snap a photo of you interacting with these uniquely Australian species!

Bondi Beach, Sydney Australia

Spend some time on the water

Water enthusiasts rejoice! Sydney is home to some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet, and the sandy shorelines certainly live up to the hype.

Make Sydney Harbour your first stop and venture into the water for activities such as kayaking and whale-watching. Or, if you'd prefer to stay on dry land, you can always explore Barangaroo, a dynamic precinct that bustles with attractions, including restaurants, boutiques, gardens, and art installations. Although Barangaroo's development is still ongoing, this creative hub will be the centerpiece of the waterfront for years to come.

For beautiful views of the harbor, take a stroll down Circle Walk. If you do, remember to wear sneakers — after all, the trail is 37 miles (60 kilometers) long! You can either traverse a small portion of the walk or you can commit to taking several days to complete the entire route. Regardless of which option you choose, the scenery makes this trek a must-see.

Lastly, whether you consider yourself a beach enthusiast or not, Bondi Beach has something for everyone. While water-lovers take to the crystal-clear water to swim or surf, other visitors can traverse the coastal cliff tops, shop at the area's many markets, or grab a bite at one of Bondi's famous eateries. Whatever you choose to do, enjoy this area's iconic offerings!

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Jessica Kimbrough named Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer

By The Hub team, July 10, 2020

Jessica Kimbrough, currently Labor Relations and Legal Strategy Managing Director, will take on the new role of Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer Managing Director.

Jessica assumes this new and expanded position to focus on global inclusion and equity as part of our enhanced commitment to ensure best practices across the business to strengthen our culture.

In this role, Jessica will be responsible for helping United redefine our efforts on diversity, equity and inclusion – ensuring that our programs and approach are strategic, integrated and outcome-oriented, while we continue to build a culture that reflects our core values. She will report to Human Resources and Labor Relations EVP Kate Gebo.

"Jessica's appointment to this role is another critical step our executive team is taking to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion remains a top priority at United," said CEO Scott Kirby. "Given her drive, experience and commitment to champion collaboration and allyship among our employee business resource groups, she is uniquely qualified to take on this position and I look forward to working closely with her."

As Labor Relations and Legal Strategy Managing Director, Jessica worked closely with senior management to create and maintain positive labor relations among our unionized workforce, providing counsel on labor litigation, negotiations, contract administration, organizing issues and managing attorneys who represent United in labor relations. Previously, she served as Labor and Employment Counsel in our legal department.

Jessica has a passion for creating a pipeline of diverse lawyers and leaders, and was honored as one of Chicago Defender's "Women of Excellence" for excellence in her career and civic engagement in 2017. She currently serves as President of uIMPACT, our women's employee business resource group.

Jessica's new role is effective immediately.

United Cargo and logistics partners keep critical medical shipments moving

By The Hub team, July 02, 2020

By working together and strengthening partnerships during these unprecedented times, our global community has overcome challenges and created solutions to keep the global supply chain moving. As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the shipping landscape, United and our industry partners have increasingly demonstrated our commitment to the mission of delivering critical medical supplies across the world.

United Cargo has partnered with DSV Air and Sea, a leading global logistics company, to transport important pharmaceutical materials to places all over the world. One of the items most critical during the current crisis is blood plasma.

Plasma is a fragile product that requires very careful handling. Frozen blood plasma must be kept at a very low, stable temperature of negative 20 degrees Celsius or less – no easy task considering it must be transported between trucks, warehouses and airplanes, all while moving through the climates of different countries. Fortunately, along with our well-developed operational procedures and oversight, temperature-controlled shipping containers from partners like va-Q-tec can help protect these sensitive blood plasma shipments from temperature changes.

A single TWINx shipping container from va-Q-tec can accommodate over 1,750 pounds of temperature-sensitive cargo. Every week, DSV delivers 20 TWINx containers, each one filled to capacity with human blood plasma, for loading onto a Boeing 787-9 for transport. The joint effort to move thousands of pounds of blood plasma demonstrates that despite the distance, challenges in moving temperature-sensitive cargo and COVID-19 obstacles, we continue to find creative solutions with the help of our strong partnerships.

United Cargo is proud to keep the commercial air bridges open between the U.S. and the rest of the world. Since March 19, we have operated over 3,200 cargo-only flights between six U.S. hubs and over 20 cities in Asia, Australia, Europe, South America, India, the Caribbean and the Middle East.

Celebrating Juneteenth

By United Airlines, June 18, 2020

A message from UNITE, United Airlines Multicultural Business Resource Group

Fellow United team members –

Hello from the UNITE leadership team. While we communicate frequently with our 3,500 UNITE members, our platform doesn't typically extend to the entire United family, and we are grateful for the opportunity to share some of our thoughts with all of you.

Tomorrow is June 19. On this day in 1865, shortened long ago to "Juneteenth," Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, to announce that the Civil War had ended and all enslaved individuals were free. For many in the African-American community, particularly in the South, it is recognized as the official date slavery ended in the United States.

Still, despite the end of slavery, the Constitutional promise that "All men are created equal" would overlook the nation's Black citizens for decades to come. It wasn't until nearly a century later that the Civil Rights Act (1964) ended legal segregation and the Voting Rights Act (1965) protected voting rights for Black Americans. But while the nation has made progress, the killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd have made it undeniably clear that we still have a lot of work to do to achieve racial parity and inclusion.

Two weeks ago, Scott and Brett hosted a virtual town hall and set an important example by taking a minute, as Brett said, "to lower my guard, take off my armor, and just talk to you. And talk to you straight from the heart."

Difficult conversations about race and equity are easy to avoid. But everyone needs to have these conversations – speaking honestly, listening patiently and understanding that others' experiences may be different from your own while still a valid reflection of some part of the American experience.

To support you as you consider these conversations, we wanted to share some resources from one of United's partners, The National Museum of African American History and Culture. The museum will host an all-day Virtual Juneteenth Celebration to recognize Juneteenth through presentations, stories, photographs and recipes. The museum also has a portal that United employees can access called Talking About Race, which provides tools and guidance for everyone to navigate conversations about race.

Our mission at UNITE is to foster an inclusive working environment for all of our employees. While we are hopeful and even encouraged by the widespread and diverse show of support for African Americans around the country – and at United - we encourage everyone to spend some time on Juneteenth reflecting on racial disparities that remain in our society and dedicating ourselves to the work that still must be done to fight systemic racism. By honoring how far we've come and honestly acknowledging how far we still must go, we believe United – and the incredible people who are the heart and soul of this airline - can play an important role in building a more fair and just world.

Thank you,

UNITE (United Airlines Multicultural Business Resource Group)

Leadership Team

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