What to Expect When it Comes to the Winter Travel Season - United Hub

What to expect when it comes to the winter travel season

By The Hub team, March 08, 2018

As the temperature drops, the holidays are over, and the winter season is officially underway, air travel sometimes takes on a new dimension. Whether you're a frequent flyer or an occasional traveler, knowing how to prepare for your trip and what to do at the airport before your flight can improve your overall travel experience. Below are some helpful tips to prepare for the winter travel season.

Planes at the gate during the winter

Preparing for weather

The first step in not letting the weather hinder your travel plans is to understand that weather changes constantly and can impact air travel at your departure city, your destination or anywhere in between. Flights could be delayed or canceled during heavy winter months, especially in cities frequently impacted by winter weather conditions like Chicago, Denver, and in the Northeast. When weather impacts our operations, we often issue travel waivers to help you make changes to your existing plans. Having an alternative plan will help you to be prepared with options if disruptions occur.

Flight delays and cancellations

Keeping up-to-date with current flight information on the day of travel is important. Be sure to have your reservation saved in the United app, which gives up-to-date information on your flight status. We encourage you to provide your phone number or email during flight check-in, so we can let you know if there are any changes to your trip. In the rare occasion that your flight is cancelled, knowing your options is an important step to getting your travel plans back on track.

While at the airport

Plan to give yourself a little extra time by arriving early at the airport. During peak travel times lines tend to be longer. By arriving early you'll be able to check bags, navigate TSA and grab snacks or coffee well before your departure time. Checking in online or on the United app prior to your arrival will save time as well. Before arriving at the airport, hop online to locate your gate along with eateries and amenities. Our new interactive airport maps, which can be accessed through the United app, will help you navigate every step of the way.

What to pack during winter travel

Packing during winter trips can be challenging, mostly because bulky coats and clothing can occupy most of your baggage space. Consider using space-saving techniques like vacuum-sealed bags to increase baggage space. Then, instead of wearing your biggest coat to the airport, wear multiple layers that can be removed if it gets too warm on the plane and there is limited space to store your coat. Finally, don't forget to pack essential items in your carry-on in case you experience a delay.

Winter travel is manageable. By preparing ahead of time and knowing some tricks, you can arrive to the airport confident and ready to navigate weather delays. A little extra time and effort this winter travel season can go a long way. Safe travels.

Making our app more accessible for people with disabilities

By The Hub team, October 28, 2020

We're proud to launch a redesigned version of our United app to make it easier for customers with visual disabilities to manage all aspects of day-of travel, including check-in, viewing reservation details and flight status, bag tracking and more.

This latest version of our app is now available to both Android and iOS users, and it offers increased color contrast and more space between graphics. Furthermore, we have reorganized how information is displayed and announced to better integrate with screen reader technologies like VoiceOver and TalkBack, which are built into most handheld devices. By restructuring the way the information is organized on the app, screen readers are better able to convert text to audio in the proper, logical sequence, allowing customers to better understand and navigate the app.

United Zoom backgrounds for AvGeeks

By The Hub team, October 27, 2020

Calling all AvGeeks and travelers! Take your next video call from a United Polaris® seat, the cockpit or cruising altitude with United-themed backgrounds for use on Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

Newly added to our collection is a background encouraging our employees and customers to vote. Our mission is to connect people and unite the world — and one of the most important ways to do that is to engage in the democratic process. No matter which party you support, we know our democracy will be stronger if you make your voice heard and vote.

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.

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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