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United Airlines 'biggest step in aviation history' in Australia and New Zealand

The airline will increase flights by 40% between the United States and Australia and New Zealand as part of what it calls the "largest South Pacific expansion in airline history."

Blog / News / 2023 August 01, 2023

American airline United Airlines is taking a big step forward.

Next summer, the airline will increase flights by 40% between the United States and Australia and New Zealand as part of what it calls the "largest South Pacific expansion in airline history."

United Airlines said the move would make it the largest airline between the United States and Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

Increased flights to San Francisco (starting October 28) and new non-stop flights to Los Angeles (starting November 29) mean the company will have the capacity to carry almost triple the number of passengers between Brisbane and the U.S. last year.

And starting Oct. 28, United will also increase the number of flights between San Francisco and Sydney, meaning it will offer "more flights from the United States to Sydney than any other airline."

While the carrier said it already became the largest airline between the US and Melbourne last summer, it will increase capacity there too.

There won’t be new flights but the Melbourne to San Francisco route will use the airline’s largest planes – the 777-300ER – from October 28 to add nearly 100 daily seats to each departure.

Across the ditch, United will have the first direct San Francisco-Christchurch service from December 1, making it the only airline to offer direct flights between the US and New Zealand’s South Island.

There will also be new flights between Auckland and Los Angeles.

When news.com.au asked United what prompted the expansion, the company said: “We made this expansion decision based on expected enough traffic demand on those routes and strong partnership with Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand.”

In a statement announcing the expansion, Patrick Quayle, United Airlines senior vice president of global network planning and alliances, referred to the move as a “historic expansion across five destinations in New Zealand and Australia”.

"This winter, United expanded its network (in the US) to become the largest airline in the South Pacific," he said.

“Now that the (U.S.) winter is here, we plan to expand further.”



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