United adds some international flights for September, but remains cautious

A United Airlines plane sits on the Tarmac at San Francisco International Airport.

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

United Airlines said on Friday that it plans to add smaller amounts of flights in September, as demand for travel remains high due to the coronovirus epidemic.

The Chicago-based airline’s September capacity will increase by 37% year-ago levels and 4 percent from the August 2020 schedule.

United has been one of the most conservative airlines when it comes to restoring flights. Recovery increased as demand for coronovirus cases increased in the US, and states such as New York and New Jersey issued quarantine orders for incoming travelers.

“We remain realistic in building our international and domestic schedules by closely monitoring customer demand and flight,” Patrick Quelle, United Nations vice president for international networks and alliances, said in a release.

International capacity, which is among the toughest of world wide travel restrictions, will be 30% of United’s September 2019 schedule, with routes being added via the airline from Chicago to Tel Aviv, Chicago to Hong Kong and Houston to Amsterdam. other.

Domestic flights will be 40% in the September 2019 schedule.

United said on Thursday that it would use its Embraer E145 flights for shorter routes, leaving only one regional partner, Commuter, the airline ExpressJet.

“We have been communicating for several months that we expect to be a small airline in response to the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on our business,” United said in a statement. “In February, we took our first steps to ease our partner landscape and strengthen our E145 flight. We continue to evaluate further opportunities to improve the United Express product.”

United CEO Scott Kirby told CNBC earlier this month that it expects revenue to reach more than half of 2019 without the coronavirus vaccine.