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

Star Rating

3.1
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490 Reviews

Review Breakdown

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3 star
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1 star
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Amy Boren

October 3rd, 2019 American Fork, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have never has any problem but nothing special with this airline. They are average with their customer service and I really didn't receive any perks. They were on time but not great leg room.

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Miles Strother

September 30th, 2019 American Fork, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United Airlines is nothing special, but the fact that it's not memorable is probably a good thing. I've only used them a handful of times, but the flights were always pretty comfortable, relatively cheap, and on time.

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Madison Scott

September 16th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United Airlines has always come through with good service and on time flights. We will most definitely fly United again.

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Ron Durfey

September 9th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I try to avoid United whenever possible. I do not like their service and I do not feel safe on their flights. It seems like every time I have flown into Chicago on United that I am late. If possible select another airline.

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Mazi Marcel Womack

August 1st, 2019 Cedar City, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have loved every time I have flown with United Airlines. They always have had great prices and service.

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Jespy

July 24th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Recent experience with group travel did not go well. Not well organized awith our departure being at risk due to lack of coverage to handle size of group.

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Eleonora Bolivar

July 23rd, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Terrible service. You can't ven breathe, always packed. Bathroom too small and they charge for everything.

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RICHARD PERRIN

July 23rd, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Miserable experience. Seats are too small and I'm a small person

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Brian Wiggins

July 23rd, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Have had bad experience with United in addition to those that got media attention

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Chloe Adams

July 1st, 2019 Morgan, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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My trip with united airlines was wonderful. I had some difficulty with seating and a friendly person over the phone and on computer were helpful. Billing fee charges on my card where also minimal.

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Rosann Stanko

June 27th, 2019 Logan, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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We like to travel on United. Our only concern is that there isn’t enough leg space for us and it’s difficult to get comfortable. The flight attendants always accommodated me when I needed help getting on and off the plane, plus I was able to board early so that I had extra time to get to my seat.

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Jason

June 24th, 2019 Draper, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I liked flying with United Airlines because they were efficient at getting everyone to their destination quickly and safely.

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Jennifer

June 20th, 2019 Gilbert, AZ DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I phone with United up on several occasions and have always had a pleasant experience. Your customer service has been great their planes have been clean and I’ve never had a flight delayed or late. I would recommend anybody flying with United airlines.

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Sierra Beck

June 19th, 2019 Herriman, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Check in smooth and pleasant people at the SLC airport. And just as expected, I got to where I needed to go but a lot faster. Thank you United

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Jennifer Smith

June 11th, 2019 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have flown on United Airlines a number of times with my family. Overall I feel that they have provided a good flight service. The last time that we flew on United the air conditioning worked very well, the attendants were very attentive to our needs, and I never felt overly claustrophobic. This is typically an issue for me so it was nice to not worry about that. I would recommend this airline if you are looking to save a little bit of money.

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Hunter Hambrick

June 11th, 2019 Provo, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Terrible service. Flights always seemed to be delayed or cancelled. Unfortunately have to use this company for flights to my home airport. Otherwise I would use a different company

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Hannah Francis

June 11th, 2019 Provo, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I love United Airlines. This airline company has great customer service, decently priced flights, and takes care of you. I only fly United.

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Jimmy Monroe

June 3rd, 2019 Provo, UT

United breaks guitars. So that's super duper lame. And they're expensive. Just look at YouTube and google their problems. Lots. Yikes.

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Dale L Farmer

June 3rd, 2019 Littleton, CO DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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They were not as helpful when booking but they were nice while I was in the air.

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Liana

May 28th, 2019 Colorado Springs, CO DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United is usually the airline I prefer to fly with when I have a choice. I haven't had troubles with them when it comes to flying on time.

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Jacob Shaner

May 28th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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They came across as an inexpensive airline, but have a lot of extra charges. I prefer to just pay more for the ticket upfront and have a normal flight.

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Anne Sainsbury

May 28th, 2019 Payson, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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After traveling in London for a couple of months a few years back I returned home to the United States flying on United Airlines. I like this Airline. I feel like the plane was clean, the people were nice, and everything seemed to go according to plan. The flight from London was not a short one, so being on a plane where I felt comfortable was awesome! I would recommend this airline to everyone who is looking for great quality!

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Flip

May 22nd, 2019 Aurora, CO DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Finally got to take a trip with my son to Playa del Carmen & Riviera Maya for a week. Flight hone was cancelled after 3+ hrs sitting on tarmack due to too many flight hours for the pilots. We got put up in hotel over night & told all ci stoners would get a reimbursements for cancelled flights. I missed my business meeting the next day because of this. 2 yrs later and I'm still fighting for them to honor this.

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Rosie Hansen

May 20th, 2019 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Hands down the best airline in the business!! They have so many flights going in and out of anywhere and their flight attendants are literally the sweetest!! I must also mention that flying their first class (Polaris Business) is the way to go, especially if you're flying international!!

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Elisa Vakapuna

May 20th, 2019 Salt Lake City, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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UNITED IS GOOS AND BAD. They service can be good and bad depending on the day and time your travel b

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BLF

May 16th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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We fly on United to a trip to New York and it was a nice flight. The service was acceptable and the seating was ok. I don't like that they are starting to charge for luggage like all the other airlines.

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Reese

May 14th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have flown on United Airlines many times in the past and they have great customer service. They have space for the seats and that is important to me and I think that their fleet or airplanes is newer and well maintained. They give me access to many international flights and the people that work there were very helpful to me.

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Dean

May 14th, 2019 Ogden, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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If I could give them zero stars I would!!! Every time I have flown United there has been a major issue. They have lost my bags on multiple occasions and flight delays and cancellations seem to be routine. I will never fly with them again even if it means paying a considerable amount more for another flight!

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Ashley

May 10th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I just love how the name alone "United". That's how I feel that way when I fly with this company. The service is professional and the feeling being connected. I love to ask the flight attendants where their favorite place to eat or to go see if they have visited that city often. We have enjoyed our experience with United.

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Karen

April 22nd, 2019 Berwick, ME DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Terrible customer service. I would not fly United Airlines.

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Jeff D

March 20th, 2019 Scottsdale, AZ DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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What can I say... I’ve been a loyal customer for 20+ years. With over 3m flown miles, I qualify for most of the perks which makes UA a whole lot easier to tolerate. I’m very happy the Smisek era is behind them, they have improved notably since. I do a lot of long haul and moved all of my international flights on other star alliance carriers. It’s so nice to have nearly all the flight crew come by to say hi and thanks for flying. Food and service is generally a notch or two better than even the new Polaris class. A lot has to do with staff remembering who is the customer and there are a ton of choices out there. What I done much care for is the nickel and dime strategy they’ve deployed with seats, bags, changes to flights, etc. at least coke and pretzels are free once again. What I tell younger road warriors, you need to pick your alliance and stick with it. Domestically you may be largely trapped, but international, the choices are very good and prices often cheaper. If I can’t fly UA domestically, I’ll fly a regional carrier like Alaskan or Jet Blue where you get much better treatment on the ground and in the air. I was in Phoenix in Jan, trying to make a connection in SFO to a flight to Singapore. Bad weather in SFO canceled my original flight and was seriously delaying the earlier one I’d managed to get on. When the gate agent asked if anyone had an ongoing international flight, I raised my hand. I was told that since I booked the over water flight with SQ, it didn’t count and I should have booked the flight code share via United. To that, my reply was to tell the gate agent it was precisely due to that attitude I book over water with another alliance partner. He didn’t get it. I called SQ, they got me onto another flight to SFO, changed my over water booking and I ended up arriving to HK 6 hours earlier, at no extra expense. And the gate agent didn’t get it... yeah, right. UA has gotten better the past couple years, so I’ll likely stick with them. But no one is kidding anyone by saying it’s world class service.

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Tim Berrett

February 13th, 2019 American Fork, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Similar to Delta, United is a large airline that makes you feel like you are just another #. They struggle to personalize the experience for me and do little to help me feel like a valuable customer. At the same time, they do well with their processes, airplane comfort, features, etc. Its good, but could be so much better.

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Jen Paxman

February 13th, 2019 Lehi, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I will never fly United again. With our credit card, United flights are one of the airlines companies that we can exchange points for miles. I have been so disappointed in their customer service, flight cancellations and delays, baggage transfers, etc. I would much rather pay an extra amount of money and fly with a different airline then to fly for free with United.

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wayne sanders

February 12th, 2019 Valley Center, CA DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United has always been one of the airlines that I use rather frequently. I have found that there is generally a flight at a pretty good price for when I need one. To date I have had a good experience on every United flight that I have taken.

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P Crawley

February 12th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I don't like that United doesn't have screens behind the seats for movies, you have to use your own device. I didn't have my iPad with me so I ended up watching a movie on my phone which is too small to really enjoy. And to keep my phone from dying I had to plug it in but the only place to do that is under the seats and they're impossible to find and reach. It would be much more convenient if the plug was actually somewhere I could reach.

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Brennan

February 12th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have had a number of bad experiences with United and it seems like they are the only Airline that I have those experiences with. They have lost my bag a number of times and flights seem to get cancelled regularly. They are often overpriced as well. Use a different airline if at all possible.

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Erika

February 11th, 2019 American Fork, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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We use United sometimes when flying. Every time I have flown with them I have had a good experience. The prices are always comparable to other airlines. Rarely have they been more expensive then the other airlines we have been comparing with. I would recommend United

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Brody B

February 7th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Do not fly United!!! I have had a horrible experience time and time again. Lost baggage, cancelled flights and delays are just to name a few. Use another airline at all costs!

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Cindy Bailey

February 5th, 2019 Lehi, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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They seem fine. No big troubles or problems with them. If the price is good I will use them.

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Lindsey B

February 5th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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If I could give 0 stars I would! Horrible experiences flying with United! It wasn't a single experience but multiple times I have been disappointed with service from United. Lost baggage, cancelled flights, horrible customer service! Where do I start? If at all possible fly on another airline even if it is more expensive!

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Evelyn Chidester

February 5th, 2019 Riverton, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have flown with United airlines a couple of times and each time was great. The flight attendants were very efficient in making sure passengers were comfortable and answered any questions. Flying United airlines was a good experience.

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August Moulton

February 5th, 2019 Lehi, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United was the first airline I ever flew on and I was impressed with their product. But more so with their service representatives. I still remember the agent who helped me make my flight round trip for only 14.00 and saving me a 10 hour bus ride home. Great customer service!

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Lindsey A Brown

February 4th, 2019 Lehi, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Overall pretty good experiences so far with United Airlines. I've flown several times with them and no real complaints. Happy flight attendants and good snacks in flight. I guess the only downfall that I have seen would be that the airplanes are a bit on the small side so a little crowded but nothing that would stop me from flying with them. Overall good in my book.

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Kathy Jo Jorgensen

February 4th, 2019 Orem, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I will only fly on United if there is not another flight available. The last flight I took with them, about 3 years ago was a disaster. The plane was late and the staff was awful. They didn't even offer to help my 70 year old mother who had a broken ankle up the stairs to the plane, even when asked. I has to assist her and carry both of our carry ons. Worst flight experience ever!

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janalee sanders

February 4th, 2019 Valley Center, CA DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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United has always been one of the airlines that we frequently use. the boarding process has always gone smoothly. the aircraft is usually pretty clean and the staff has always been pleasant. they generally have pretty competitive pricing as well.

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nathan brewer

February 1st, 2019 Lehi, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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I have only traveled with United a few times but I love the way they are organized and board people the right way to save time waiting in the isle.

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anonymous

January 30th, 2019 Pleasant Grove, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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We have experienced some delayed flights and missing connecting flights a few times. The wi-fi on the plane didn't work some times. The customer service at the airport and the one over the phone gave me different suggestions as far as getting on the next flight when I missed a connecting flight, and it was confusing.

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Jency Torres

January 30th, 2019 DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Gate attendees- pwm they attendees are the worst I have ever encountered. My family traveled frequently & pwm united gate attendees are by far the rudest & least helpful from any airport

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Sarah

January 16th, 2019 Provo, UT DETAILS arrow_drop_down
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Always a comfortable flight with United. I really appreciate their customer service as their flight attendance are always searching for anyone in need. They always walk the aisles with their free snacks and drinks and willing to answer any questions that you have!

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Alain

January 16th, 2019 Orem, UT

United airlines is great with family, super respectful, food was great, customer service was great as well. Over all a great experience when traveling with family in coach.