United Airlines Returns To JFK With Two Inaugural California Routes

United Airlines is today flying into New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) for the first time in over five years, running two roundtrip routes from Los Angeles and San Francisco to JFK out of Terminal 7.

Not unlike other carriers, United is seizing the opportunity amid a pandemic-prompted lull in air traffic to snag some space at the formerly congested airport—the largest in the Northeast and the nation’s sixth-busiest overall, according to CNBC.

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Nearly six years ago, United exited the scene at JFK and decided to consolidate all of its New York-area operations at its hub at New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) and New York’s LaGuardia Airport (LGA).

United’s CEO Scott Kirby, who took up the post in May 2020, has called the October 2015 relinquishment of United’s spot at JFK a mistake, since it resulted in the loss of some major corporate accounts to American Airlines; and has previously expressed an eagerness for United to resume operations at the major New York City airport.

Finally, today, the airline resumes its JFK service with a 7:30 a.m. PT flight from Los Angeles International Airport and a flight at 9:30 a.m. PT from its San Francisco International Airport hub. Today’s return flight to San Francisco departs at 5:10 p.m. ET and the one bound for Los Angeles takes off at 7 p.m. ET.

Evening traffic at New York City's John F. Kennedy International Airport, JFK
Evening traffic at New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. (photo via XavierMarchant/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Both routes are being flown aboard United’s premium “high-J” Boeing 767-300, which features 46 Polaris business class seats (as compared to the 30 typically available on this aircraft model), 22 Premium Plus seats, 43 Economy Plus seats and 56 regular economy seats.

According to a report from The Points Guy, United will initially fly both California routes five times weekly, increasing its flight frequency in May to twice-daily service.

For more information, visit united.com.

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