United Airlines is resuming their Denver to London flights. The airline last flew the route in 2010. United will be competing with British Airways on the flight, who operates the route with a 747. The airline will fly the route with a 787. The once daily flight will be summer seasonal and will begin on March 24, 2018.
What to Expect:
United’s 787-8 have a total of 36 flat bed seats, as well as 70 Economy Plus and 113 economy seats. Business class will offer United’s great Polaris Business class soft product. United is going through a strong effort to improve their business class product. The airline has improved amenities, food and bedding for their Polaris Business Class.
Denver Double Down
I find the announcement of this route very well calculated. Frontier Airlines recently announced the largest expansion of its history, and many of these routes originate in Denver. United’s President Scott Kirby challenged Frontier. Since both airlines operate major hubs in Denver, it is a sign of competition. United will be strengthening its presence in Denver in order to out compete and force Frontier to scale back. United currently flies transpacific flights to Tokyo Narita. With this new London flight will connect Europe and Asia via Denver.
I believe that the flights to London will soon become too frequent to keep them profitable. Besides British Airways’ flight, United will need to compete with Norwegian. They will fly from London Gatwick to Denver starting during September. With three airlines flying the route, it would be very difficult to keep consistently high load factors.
I love competition, and I like seeing United expanding. Denver is usually an overlooked hub for United (just as Salt Lake City is for Delta). Hopefully the competition will drive prices down and allow more people to travel, that way maintaining their healthy load factors. Only time will tell if there really is the market for three flights to London. Until then, I look forward to United’s new service.
What do you think? Will United’s London flight be profitable enough to survive? Will BA or Norwegian back out because of the United flight launch? Let us know!
Hat Tip to Denver Business Journal
All images from Wikipedia.