United Airlines Adding Flights To Amsterdam, Naples, And Prague

Yesterday United hinted at launching three new international routes. They did this by providing three anagrams with the names of the cities, saying that the routes would officially be announced today.

Sure enough, United has just announced three new international routes. Let’s look at the details.

New year-round San Francisco to Amsterdam flight

The first route is probably the most exciting, because it’s both daily and year-round. United will operate a new daily, year-round flight between San Francisco and Amsterdam as of March 30, 2019. The schedule will be as follows:

UA968 San Francisco to Amsterdam departing 2:55PM arriving 10:20AM (+1 day)
UA969 Amsterdam to San Francisco departing 2:50PM arriving 4:50PM

United will use the 787-9 for the route, which doesn’t feature United’s new Polaris seats as of now, so you can expect United’s old business class product.

Seasonal Newark to Naples flight

Next, United will operate a new daily seasonal flight between Newark and Naples, between May 22 and October 4, 2019. The schedule will be as follows:

UA964 Newark to Naples departing 5:25PM arriving 8:05AM (+1 day)
UA965 Naples to Newark departing 10:10AM arriving 2:05PM

United will use a 767-300 for the route. The seatmap for this flight shows United’s old business class product, though there’s a chance the planes will be reconfigured between now and then. However, I imagine a seasonal leisure route isn’t necessarily a top priority for getting the new seats.

Seasonal Newark to Prague flight

Lastly, United will operate a new daily seasonal flight between Newark and Prague, between June 6 and October 4, 2019. The schedule will be as follows:

UA188 Newark to Prague departing 6:05PM arriving 8:25AM (+1 day)
UA187 Prague to Newark departing 10:10AM arriving 1:30PM

United will use a 767-300 for the route, and the story with Polaris seats is the same as it is for Naples.

Bottom line

It’s great to see US airlines expanding beyond traditional business markets and trying something new, as we’ve also seen this from both American and Delta in recent days. The above three United routes are all on sale already, though as of now there’s no saver level award availability. I imagine that this will change over time.

What do you make of United’s new flights to Amsterdam, Naples, and Prague?

Comments

  1. Great guesses, Lucky.

    Perhaps those who know aircraft scheduling and utilization have an idea but I never understood why the airlines schedule arrivals/departures such that there is such a long time in between them at the outposts. It looks like the 787 will sit in Amsterdam for 4.5 hours. Do they do this for connecting traffic purposes? It is not like Amsterdam is a big Star Alliance hub. Is it because of slot restrictions?

  2. How did you guess from those words?

    I think you were cheating. You already knew, had an idea or something. Or tell us your thought process so we can learn.

  3. @Debit – it’s child’s play. Just look at the words and rearrange letters to find “City A to City B”…

  4. I’ve noticed Air Canada in recent years has opened up a lot more seasonal (summer) routes to smaller cities in Europe too… most recently Shannon, Bucharest, Zagreb and Porto.

  5. Did none of you bother trying to solve the anagrams? You just had to find which United hub it was, then work the remaining letters into cities. Not hard.

  6. Naples is the gateway to Capri, Ischia, Amalfi Coast, Sorrento, Pompeii, etc…
    Plus lots of New Yorkers have some relatives in or near Naples!

    This is great news!!

  7. The 4.5 hour sit in AMS is interesting but most likely due to congestion at either AMS or SFO.

    EWR is a much bigger hub than PHL or JFK for AA/DL which should make it easier to fill planes to these smaller European cities as well

  8. @ Debit @ Red — Did you ever do the Jumble in the newspaper? Like @ Jordan says, it’s a matter of putting together the letters into city names.

    So for the first one, the hint was:
    aircraftmen coasts nomads

    Everybody solves these things differently, but one way is to write out all the letters in alphabetical order so you know what you have to work with:
    a a a a c c d e f i m m n n o r r s s s t

    Then think about United’s U.S. hubs: Newark (no ‘w’ or ‘k’), Denver (no ‘v’), Chicago (no ‘g’ or ‘h’), Dulles (no ‘l’ or ‘u’), Houston (no ‘h’ or ‘u’) — so it has to be San Francisco.

    Take out the letters for San Francisco, and you have:
    a a d e m m r s t

    What international city can you spell with all those letters?

    Then rinse and repeat for the other two 🙂

  9. @Mark – PHL is American’s major European hub, with more options than any other airport. You’re funneling a lot of connecting traffic through there.

  10. So what service is being cut to enable these new routes? The airlines somehow always seem to neglect that part during the big announcements.

  11. As one living in Amsterdam, I actually really like the timing for the AMS-SFO leg, that’s awesome. Allows me to get a solid half day of work + lunch in, before heading to the airport.

    While the other option of early morning flight and landing pre-lunch is fine, at that point you’re 9hrs behind on the time zones and shot from a mental standpoint. Good stuff.

  12. Tiffany – How on Earth you don’t recognise the name “Debit” by now I have no idea! They are clearly being sarcastic and I’m sure they’re fully aware what an anagram is.

  13. “So what service is being cut to enable these new routes? The airlines somehow always seem to neglect that part during the big announcements”

    Nothing (yet announced). UA is taking delivery of eight to ten new long haul aircraft between now and June (787-10, and one 777W) plus three used 767s from Hawaiian. They have plenty of fleet coverage. All they have to do is play musical airplanes on a few routes.

    As to whether the PRG and NAP routes will get Polaris, I’d say the chances are slim. They’ll be well into their second tranche of 767 mods but other major routes will likely take priority. They won’t get the crappy 3-class planes though as they’ll be all converted to Polaris by the end of this year. So most likely they’ll get the ex-CO seats up front (2-1-2). And those planes are fine in Economy with Sky interior and full AVOD.

  14. @ Red — I didn’t take it as an insult, hopefully it didn’t come across that way! I just figure if one person is asking, several probably have the question, so was worth explaining 🙂

  15. Just to add that SFO-AMS (year round daily) is a big one. Anyone still holding onto the outdated thought that UA runs away from competition should take note. Flying from the west coast into a major competitor’s mega hub (hub for both KL and DL). It’s not their first foray against competitors (the SIN routes disrupted SQ) but a very significant one.

    Btw, I tried the anagram game yesterday and came unstuck because of the “to”. I was looking for just the city pairs. Once Flyertalkers had deciphered “Newark to Naples/Prague”, AMS was easy.

  16. Can you please list all the west coast flights from Italy main hubs? Why this is not a matter to the US airlines?

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