United Airlines

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6.0

Overall Score

232 User Reviews

17 days ago

United Airlines

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United Airlines is one of the oldest airlines in the United States, with some of its predecessors going back to the late 1920s. Originally, United Airlines was known as "The Boeing Company," and, in some ways, they still are the Boeing Company since this is the primary plane found in their fleet. United has nine airline hubs throughout the world. Its largest hub is in Houston and handles 16.6 million passengers every year, with 45,413 people getting on United flights every day. Chicago O'Hare is the company's largest hub in terms of departures. United flies Boeing 747s, 767s, 777s, and 787s. They also fly narrowbody Airbus 319s, 320s, Boeing 737s, and Boeing 757s, as well as various Embraer and Bombardier jets for its regional carriers. For its regional flights, United usually uses third-party carriers (such as ExpressJet) to get customers to and from smaller airports when traversing between mainline destinations. United Airlines is also a pretty safe airline. In the past twenty years, there have been 3 fatal flights, including two flights that crashed on 9/11, and one minor incident where some passengers and crewmembers were hurt on takeoff (though there was no structural damage to the aircraft).

 

The Good

  • Ticket prices
  • Boarding
  • Check-in
  • Destinations
  • In-flight services
  • Time in business

United Airlines has a low price guarantee on their tickets. They have some of the lowest ticket prices for both domestic and international flights. Their prices were often the exact same being offered by other large airlines (such as American Airlines or Delta). Because they are such a large airline, they have the ability to offer many different options for ticket times and connections. With their low prices and flexibility, many customers would be able to choose the flight that best suits them while using United. United also offers different discounts and promotions on their website and for reward club members. Customers can become a part of the MilagePlus program and earn different discounts with their miles. Customers can also have United email them specific discounts or promotions that are being offered.

United Airlines has a similar boarding process to many other airlines. Seats are chosen when purchasing tickets and can be changed or upgraded at the check-in time depending on availability. Boarding times vary depending on the flight locations and specific airports being used. United offers a few different methods of check-in including:

• Mobile check-in
• Online check-in
• Airport kiosks
• Airport check-in counters

Using the United mobile app, passengers can check-in for their flight 24 hours before departure and receive a mobile boarding pass. This speeds up the time at the airport and eliminates the need to keep track of a paper boarding pass. Passengers can also check-in 24 hours before departure on the online check-in and can also ask to receive a mobile boarding pass. If a passenger chooses to check-in at the airport, they have the choice of self-service kiosks (which are always open for use) or check-in counters which have specific hours of operation depending upon the airport.

United Airlines serves 374 different destinations, both domestic and international. This is a large number of destinations for an airline and makes United one of the larger airlines available. Some of their top destinations include:

• Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo
• Ft. Lauderdale from New York/Newark
• In and around California
• New York
• Chicago
• Las Vegas

United flies to Asia, the Americas, Europe, Oceania, and Africa. With all of their destinations, United would be able to serve many passengers on their flights. They would be able to provide a number of different options and because they offer more destinations than many other airlines, they would have more flight choices for passengers to choose from. United Airlines partners with a number of different airlines so that they are able to provide as many destinations as possible. They also continue to grow and their destinations are constantly changing and expanding.

United Airlines offers many of the customary in-flight services that are expected from passengers. Some of the details include:

• Dining: For economy flights, United offers a snack shop as well as an onboard bistro for their domestic flights. For international flights, they offer a complimentary meal. Often this is a three-course meal with a light snack and beverage options. They provide an option of beer, wine, and water. United also gives passengers the opportunity to order a special meal in advance for any dietary restrictions.
• Entertainment: There are a number of different options for entertainment on United Flights. Some of their planes offer personal devices. The passengers can use a personal device provided that it is already uploaded with a number of games, movies, and TV shows. Other planes offer screens on the back of the seats for passengers to view the entertainment options. And some of the United fleet has main screen entertainment. There is a screen at the front of the cabin for passengers to view the entertainment. The type of entertainment viewing option available for each flight can be found on the United website. They also offer magazines and packages of different DirecTV programs for purchase.
• Shopping: On international flights, United offers tax-free shopping for different items such as fragrances, cosmetics, and jewelry similar to many other airline shopping offers.
• Wi-Fi: United is in the process of making all of their planes have the option of Wi-Fi. Currently, 700 of their aircraft's do offer in-flight Wi-Fi for purchase. The prices vary depending on the specific flight and are not posted to view without specific flight information. Wi-Fi is also not permitted to be used to make any video calls on flights.

United Airlines has been in business for 89 years. They have become one of the oldest airlines, opening their company on April 6, 1926. Since they opened they have been committed to becoming the airline that customers want to fly with. They are currently offering the following to become that airline:

• Most extensive network: United flies 150 customers every year on close to 5,800 flights
• Most flat-bed seats: United offers the most flat-bed seats of any airline
• More overhead space: Passengers enjoy 66% more room
• More leg room in economy: Economy seating on United enjoys extra leg room for their seat

United Airlines also recently received their 5th consecutive perfect score on leading LGBT Equality Index for the Best Places to Work.

The Bad

  • Baggage
  • Flight statistics

United Airlines does not allow any checked baggage to be free for most of their flights. In comparison, a number of airlines do allow at least one piece of free checked baggage. A few international flights are free for one checked bag but generally the first checked bag costs $25, the second $35 or $100 for trans-Atlantic, and the third costs $150. Any additional baggage will cost $200 a piece. Additional baggage is also only accepted if the aircraft has room. While the cost is relatively low, it is still a cost while other airlines offer it for free.

The maximum exterior dimension (length + width + height) of standard checked baggage is 62 inches (158 cm), including handles and wheels. Having excess baggage weight or size will come at a fee to be determined by the specific weights and size of the baggage. However, there are restrictions including any baggage weighing over 100lbs will not be accepted (with the exception of assistive devices and musical instruments). Any baggage whose total outside dimensions are larger than 115 inches will not be accepted.

United Airlines flies close to 5,800 flights a year. When examining the daily flights that United flies to the most frequently, they did not have as high of performances when compared to other top airlines. Other airlines close to their size (such as Southwest and Delta) have slightly better statistics of daily flights than United does (as per Flightstats.com). Overall, United had roughly an 82% on time rate, a 7% late, 2% very late, 5% excessive and 1% of canceled flights according to Flightstats.com. Many other airlines have 0% canceled flights, unlike United. When looking at their most active routes, they received ratings lower than average for top airlines. Their top three routes include:

• Washington to San Francisco (3.5 stars, 91% on time)
• Los Angeles to Chicago (3.5 stars, 90% on time)
• Los Angeles to Houston (3.4 stars, 89% on time)

When compared to other airlines that have many high four-star ratings and some five-star ratings, United's 3.5 stars are low. United's most active routes are all domestic routes so it is hard to say how they compare with other airlines on international flights. Their lowest rated flight was the route of Houston to Newark with only 1.9 stars and 78% on-time according to Flightstats.com.

The Bottom Line

We recommend United Airlines as a top airline company. They offer very low prices and tons of flights that consistently leave and arrive on-time. They also are improving their in-flight service to ultimately enhance the overall user experience.

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User Reviews

2.4

232 Reviews

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Sarah
August 2nd, 2018 Fairfax, VA

I like United and they often have good rates and good service. I don't like how intense they are at their paying seat option (won't let you switch seats mid flight even if they are emtpy) and offer tickets that don't include luggage. Overall their service is good but I feel like they try to nickel and dime you more than other airlines.

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Sarah
August 1st, 2018 Portland, OR DETAILS
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Friendly staff, but they should try to keep family's together.

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Maria
August 1st, 2018 Spring, TX DETAILS
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I like that Houston is a Hub for United so they have good option of flights

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Tamara
August 1st, 2018 DETAILS
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The aircraft maintenance has been an issue in leaving on time and connections missed. The fleet is older than it is new, aircraft-wise.

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Sara Jane
July 26th, 2018 Crestwood, KY

Inexpensive city hops. The flight staff is courteous and helpful. The plane is clean. Nothing above and beyond here, but you won't have a complaint.

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Anne Kimball
July 23rd, 2018 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS
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I flew on United Airlines to Amsterdam from the US this year and it was so cheap! Less than $500 cheap! The flight was great. It was a little hard coming back because they used a local airline called Swiss Airlines so I had to download the Swiss Airlines app to get my boarding pass, which was a little annoying, but other than that it was a really great experience.

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Spencer Hodgson
July 17th, 2018 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS
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United made me feel comfortable flying with them when I went to Argentina. They took care of every need I had.

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Kaleb Herbert
July 9th, 2018 Gilbert, AZ DETAILS
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I flew United from Phoenix to Reno. I love being able to save my seat for 24 hours in case I changed my mind. It was not the best price, doable. Service was good, plane was clean. My luggage arrived undamaged and with the plane.

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Hunter Kasprzyk
July 2nd, 2018 Gilbert, AZ DETAILS
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Although they have had a lot of controversy the employees I have come in contact with were very polite. They were concerned about my well being.

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Anonymous
June 12th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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The last time I flew United airlines I felt like they had made the seats actually smaller .

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Madge Easton
June 7th, 2018 Orem, UT

I flew with United a few years ago to Kentucky. The seats were comfortable and there was plenty of leg room. The lay over was not that great but bearable. They didn't charge for carry on luggage back then like they do now.

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Anonymous
June 6th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT

This airline is the middle of the road for me, not too bad, but also not the greatest. A good middle of the road airline.

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Amy Crawley
June 5th, 2018 Draper, UT DETAILS
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Complicated alliance structure. I don't feel like the partners have the same quality planes and experience as United.

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Martha Sensiba
June 5th, 2018 Pinetop-Lakeside, AZ DETAILS
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We've flown on United several times and have always had a great experience. Their customer service is great.

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Nana Asiata
June 4th, 2018 Herriman, UT DETAILS
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They have great customer service, the staff is friendly, and the seats on the plane are comfortable.

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Amelia Gibson
June 4th, 2018 South Jordan, UT

I like this company, they have good service.

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CAROLE SCOVILLE
May 29th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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Great service - never had any problems. Easy peasy!

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Avery Fowler
May 29th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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I'm not too impressed with the way they are trying to lure you in to buying their plane tickets with a cheaper price, but it doesn't include a carry on bag. That is in addition to the cheaper priced ticket. So in the long run their flight prices are the same as other airlines.

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Ashley
May 25th, 2018 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS
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The Last time I flew on United my luggage was lost but they were very accommodating in getting my bags to me.

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Sheena
May 18th, 2018 Eureka, MT DETAILS
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We were bumped from first class when traveling home from Disney and my husband had to fight them to get reimbursed for the difference. Luckily it all worked out or I would have given a lower score

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Jade V
May 16th, 2018 Redlands, CA DETAILS
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Every time I’ve flown with United Airlines I’ve had a positive experience. They have been especially helpful every time I travel alone with my 4 little kids.

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Vinson Ousley
May 16th, 2018 Mission, TX DETAILS
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We recently traveled from South Texas to Nashville via United. All flights were managed well and staff was pleasant and accommodating.

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Larry Hawker
April 24th, 2018 Las Vegas, NV DETAILS
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I had to travel from Las Vegas to Santa Barbara. I had a very pleasant experience travelling even though we had a layover at LAX. Great airline and service. Thank you.

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Jeffrey Foutz
April 23rd, 2018 American Fork, UT DETAILS
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Everything was wonderful. Facilities were clean. Flight was on time. Staff was very attentive.

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Nik Anderson
April 23rd, 2018 South Jordan, UT DETAILS
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I do not like United Airlines. I've flown with them maybe a few times, but each time I have been mega disappointed. Boo. Their planes feel old and ugly. The customer service is meh. Nope. I will never fly with them as long as I have any other options.

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Alaina Gull
April 18th, 2018 Falmouth, ME DETAILS
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I was a United Mileage Plus member for several years and 6 times out of 7 in one year, they stranded me overnight. I fly from Maine to the West Coast several times a year and I got tired of not reaching my destination until the next day so I switched to another airline who has not stranded me overnight once. I've been delayed, but not until the next day, like with United. Chicago is the weak link. Whenever I connect in Chicago, I usually miss the connecting flight.

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Maryayb
April 16th, 2018 Draper, UT DETAILS
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This airline has the best routes to Central America. Lots of flight options! Not always a he cheapest though.

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Andrea S
April 16th, 2018 Idaho Falls, ID DETAILS
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We have had several occassions to fly on United and it has become an increasingly unpleasant experience. The flights are overbooked, often cancelled, and the staff unhelpful. We have had luggage issues and broken planes more often than not. I don't recommend United if you have another choice of carrier.

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Michelle Hawker
April 16th, 2018 Las Vegas, NV DETAILS
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I know many don't like the baggage fees etc. But all that aside, I cannot say enough about my positive experience with United. We were in a stressful situation, flying overseas for the second time in weeks to adopt a baby. Once they realized our situation, we were upgraded to 1st class. On our trip home with the baby, the off duty flight attendants helped with my baby. I will forever love United.

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Madi Thompson
April 16th, 2018 Ogden, UT

I've had decent experiences with flying on United Airlines. I do, however, wish that there was more room for economy seats. I took a flight to Canada from Utah and I didn't have as much room as I would've liked for that long of a flight. Also, the food they serve is mediocre.

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Hayden Danger Barton
April 16th, 2018 Layton, UT

Great airliner no problems at all from them

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Nathan
April 9th, 2018 Layton, UT DETAILS
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They seemed very nice on our flight from SLC to Chicago. I would totally fly with them again.

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Dan Morris
March 13th, 2018 Fort Lauderdale, FL DETAILS
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I decided that I would give United a chance after not flying with them for a long time. I went to the gate and asked if there was any potential of getting a better seat and moving up in the plane. The gate agent said a flat “no” but you could upgrade to a better seat for an extra $300+. I was stunned but said okay. A woman went to the other gate agent and asked the same question if she could move to a better seat, and the agent said Yes, and there was no additional fee for her. I inquired to the other gate agent if that was a basic economy seat, and she replied yes. Why was the gate agent I originally spoke with intentially trying to make me pay over $300+ for an upgrade when she could have easily moved me to the free seat that was available?!?

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Stephanie Lewis
March 12th, 2018 West Chester, PA DETAILS
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Overall, I was not impressed by United airlines. I had a connection with my flights so ended up on 4 flights. Every flight ran out if overhead space.. how does that even happen? My first leg of my return flight was coming from international. When I landed my flight still said on time, so I rechecked my bag and headed to my gate. Flight got canceled 5 minutes before boarding after being assured we were taking off. Then they closed baggage reclaim and I could not get my bag back. It went home a day before me because they did not have any flights the next day. Then it was a nightmare trying to get the receipt for my hotel that I booked through them. Like every airline they're playing that stupid game of economy and economy plus.

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Bryan Thompson
March 9th, 2018 DETAILS
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My wife and I booked flights and were looking forward to a lovely time in S America. Then suddenly my aging mother took a nosedive in her health and is clearly days away from passing. To be received with compassion and kindness rather than suspicion (about our request to cancel flights) was an amazing touch we needed today. Thank you, United Airlines!

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Ashley
March 9th, 2018 Manchester, NH DETAILS
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Honestly I voiced my problem seems we didn’t get anywhere besides telling me they where sorry and the way I was left feeling is still inexcusable just hope no one else has to go thru what I did.honestly going to try and stray away from this airline as much as possible been flying with delta for years and never had any problems.

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Ahmi Thitayan
March 9th, 2018 DETAILS
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As a MileagePlus member, United is truly the airline of the Friendly Skies. Every flight I’ve been on has been on time, and the customer support has been efficient and helping.

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Dale Ash
December 20th, 2017 Sandy, UT DETAILS
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Years ago I had a very negative experience with United. They were arrogant and not customer focused at all. I vowed never to fly them again. So during over 20 years of extensive business travel, they lost my business.

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Chris Wootton
December 18th, 2017 Ogden, UT DETAILS
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They have been ok to fly with, have not had any issues.

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Suzanna Wootton
December 13th, 2017 Springville, UT DETAILS
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My experience has never been bad! Theyre always very kind!

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