United Goes On A Spree With Added Summer 2022 Domestic Routes

United Airlines filed schedules this weekend, adding a host of routes to its summer 2022 schedules, including notable outdoor leisure route resumptions. The new routes are mainly from core United hubs in Denver, Chicago, San Francisco, and Houston. The routes will be operated by a mix of aircraft, including mainline and regional aircraft. Here is what the airline has in store.

United E175
United Airlines has filed some schedule updates for summer 2022 with a strong focus on outdoor leisure destinations. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Denver gets eight route resumptions

According to schedules from Cirium, Denver International Airport (DEN) will see eight routes return in 2022. Next summer, United has added the following services:

  1. Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) with two flights per week on the weekends using an Embraer E175 (route resumption, inaugurated summer 2021) from March 2022
  2. Pensacola International Airport (PNS) with two flights per week on the weekends using an Embraer E175 (route resumption, inaugurated in summer 2019 and last operated in summer 2021) from March 2022
  3. Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) with daily flights using an Airbus A319 (route extension into year-round service) from March 2022
  4. Burlington International Airport (BTV) with daily flights using an Airbus A319 (route inaugurated in summer 2019, last operated in summer 2021) from May 2022
  5. Southwest Oregon Regional Airport (OTH) with two weekly flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  6. Portland International Jetport (PWM) with daily flights using a Boeing 737 MAX 9 (route launched in summer 2019, last operated in summer 2021) from June 2022
  7. Friedman Memorial Airport (SUN) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  8. Cherry Capital Airport (TVC) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
United Goes On A Spree With Added Summer 2022 Domestic Routes
The routes are now filed to return in summer 2022 from Denver. Photo: Great Circle Mapper

These eight routes are part of United’s expanding Denver hub. A primarily domestic-focused hub, these routes will cover connecting traffic between the East Coast and West Coast, offering some of the best one-stop itineraries from the Western United States to some of these popular summer seasonal destinations.

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Growth from Chicago and San Francisco

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) will also get some added seasonal outdoor leisure routes. The following are being added to the network:

  1. Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (ANC) with daily flights using a Boeing 737-800 (seasonal summer service returns) from March 2022
  2. Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) with daily flights using an Airbus A319 (seasonal summer growth returns) from June 2022
  3. Missoula Montana Airport (MSO) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  4. Montrose Regional Airport (MTJ) with two weekly flights in June, growing to daily in July using an Embraer E175 (schedule extension) from June 2022

These four routes are leisure-oriented, covering outdoor destinations that typically receive a lot of attention from summer travelers. Given Chicago’s strength as a connecting hub, this will augment the airline’s operations to these destinations.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) will also see four additional routes in the summer schedule:

  1. Aspen/Pitkin County Airport (ASE) with daily flights using a CRJ700 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  2. Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (summer resumption) from June 2022
  3. Missoula Montana Airport (MSO) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service resumption) from June 2022
  4. Friedman Memorial Airport (SUN) with two weekly flights in June, growing to daily in July using an Embraer E175 (summer service resumption) from June 2022
United Goes On A Spree With Added Summer 2022 Domestic Routes
The Embraer E175 is a relatively low-risk aircraft to put on these routes. Photo: Jay Singh | Simple Flying

Five routes from Houston and two from Dulles

Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) will receive five additional destinations next summer:

  1. Aspen/Pitkin County Airport (ASE) with two daily flights on a CRJ700 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  2. Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  3. Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022 (route first launched in summer 2021)
  4. Gunnison-Crested Butte Regional Airport (GUC) with two weekly flights in June, growing to daily in July using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022
  5. Montrose Regional Airport (MTJ) with daily flights using an Embraer E175 (seasonal summer service returns) from June 2022

Washington D.C.’s Dulles International Airport (IAD) will get two added routes. Greenbrier Valley Regional Airport (LWB) will see five weekly flights resume using a CRJ200 from March 2022, growing to daily services from May 2022. Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) will get daily Embraer E175 flights from June 2022. Seasonal summer service on this route first launched in 2021.

CRJ200
The CRJ200 is still an essential part of United’s fleet for connecting some of the smallest communities in the US to the rest of the world. Photo: Jay Singh | Simple Flying

A continued bet on outdoor leisure destinations

United Airlines is adding more leisure-focused routes to its schedule next year. This continued trend accelerated during the pandemic, but most of these routes have historically operated and are now returning for the summer season. It is not uncommon for airlines to return some routes to the schedule later than others and likely has to do with United focusing on ensuring it has the aircraft and crew to operate these flights.

Many of these destinations are also seeing boosts from other United hubs. From Denver, the latest schedule update sees United more than doubling its previously filed flight operations. Bozeman, Missoula, and Glacier Park also see similar increases. Denver has historically been the primary gateway for traffic to the Mountain West. Adding more gateways means more opportunities to open new connecting itineraries. While some international customers will take advantage of these opportunities, much of this is focused on domestic travelers looking to visit the outdoors next year.

United Goes On A Spree With Added Summer 2022 Domestic Routes
United is showing where it bets demand will be strong in 2022. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

With some of the latest news around the global health crisis, international travel may be further depressed next year. The addition of these routes and frequency increases now is probably unrelated to the recent announcement, given that United’s team likely did not have the time to reason their way through the data and make new route and frequency decisions like this in time for the schedule updates.

The Mountain West is getting the majority of new services, which is unsurprising. While leisure travelers paid a lot of attention to these destinations in 2020 and 2021, there is demonstrated return pull for leisure travelers to come back and visit. The addition to the schedule of these routes certainly has to do with continued strong demand or interest for these destinations.

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