United Airlines Flies Its First Commercial 787-10 Flight… Before It Was Meant To

A last minute equipment swap for United flight 25 (UA25) pushed the inaugural flight for United’s 787-10 from January 7th, 2019 to December 20, 2018. UA25 was from LAX-EWR and UA275 was the return from EWR-LAX.

United’s 787-10 offers the new Polaris seat. The Polaris cabin is comprised of 44 lie-flat seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. This is a huge improvement over some of the carrier’s 777s which are arranged in a 2-4-2 business class!

United-Polaris-Seat
The 787-10 was the first Dreamliner to use the new Polaris class business seating.

Despite the branding, however, transcontinental Polaris tickets do not grant access to United’s Polaris Lounge. It does, however, grant access to the less exciting United Clubs.

While the rollout is exciting, the typical fanfare that comes with the inaugural flight of a new aircraft wasn’t offered per reports from those on the flight.

In addition, United heavily marketed the inaugural 787-10 flight and included a MileagePlus auction in which some people bid almost 500,000 miles for a chance to try out the new Polaris seat.

UA25 and UA275 are normally flown by the smaller 787-8 series with 36 lie-flat business class seats in a 2-2-2 configuration.

United’s 787-10 also includes 21 premium economy seats branded as “Premium Plus”. Premium Plus is arranged in a 2-3-2 configuration and includes enhanced seating. Premium economy is starting to become more widely available on carriers across the globe.

united premium economy seats
The Premium Plus seats feature a plush purple leather finish

Starting in January, the 787-10 will be available on transcontinental routes to San Francisco and Los Angeles from United’s hub in Newark. From March onwards, the 787-10 will be available on routes to Dublin, Tel Aviv, Barcelona, Brussels, Paris, Frankfurt.

One-way saver awards in Business Class run for 60,000 miles one-way while the steeper redemptions cost 119,000 miles. An economy seat can be found for as low as 30,000 miles or as high as 70,000 miles. Premium economy doesn’t have a published award chart, but a quick search on United found the lowest fare at 120,000 miles.

Premium Plus redemption one-way

Are you planning on flying on United’s new 787-10? Were you on the last-minute inaugural flight? Let us know in the comments below!

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