Home Airlines United Airlines Returns To New York JFK (Transcon Awards Wide Open)

United Airlines Returns To New York JFK (Transcon Awards Wide Open)


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United Airlines has announced that it will be returning to New York JFK early next year as it looks to offer customers more transcontinental flights to Los Angeles and San Francisco. At the time of writing, United.com is showing a plethora of Business Class awards priced at 35,000 miles one-way.

Starting on 1 February 2021 United Airlines will start to offer non-stop service from New York JFK to Los Angeles and San Francisco. Both routes will be served twice daily out of JFK Terminal 7 and will be operated by United’s Boeing 767-300 aircraft which offer an all-aisle access Business Class cabin with lie-flat Polaris Business Class seating.

Polaris 767-300 Business Class – Image United

The flight timings are as follows:

Los Angeles Route

UA515 JFK 09:00 – 12:29 LAX (Daily)
UA517 JFK 19:00 – 22:29 LAX (Daily)

UA514 LAX 07:30 – 15:50 JFK (Daily)
UA516 LAX 14:30 – 22:50 JFK (Daily)

San Francisco Route

UA521 JFK 08:00 – 11:37 SFO (Daily)
UA523 JFK 17:10 – 20:47 SFO (Daily)

UA520 SFO 09:10 – 17:40 JFK (Daily)
UA522 SFO 13:30 – 22:00 JFK (Daily)

The 767-300 aircraft that United will be operating on these routes are, as the airline describes them, “reconfigured” and offer customers “an extended premium cabin featuring 16 additional United Business class seats”.

In total these aircraft offer 46 Business Class, 22 Premium Plus seats, 47 Economy Plus seats, and 52 regular Economy Class seats.

Award Availability

At the time of writing it looks like someone at United has forgotten to limit award space on both of the new routes (and on the SFO-EWR route too) as Business Class awards are plentiful.

Here’s a screenshot showing non-stop award availability between New York and Los Angeles for February and March 2021:

Click to enlarge

Here’s a screenshot showing non-stop award availability between San Francisco and New York for February and March 2021:

Click to enlarge

And if you drill down to see what flights are available (from SFO, for example), you’ll find that not only are there awards available on both JFK flights on most days

Click to enlarge

…bu that there’s also an incredible amount of availability on flights to Newark too:

Click to enlarge

Also, a by-product of all of this transcon award availability appears to be greater Business Class award availability between the West Coast and Europe.

United’s award availability calendar isn’t a particularly useful tool to use to show you the awards that are available between the West Coast and Europe as it included mixed-cabin awards and these make it appear as if there are more Business Class award available than there really are. However, if you search for LAX-LHR or SFO-LHR, for example, you’ll currently find a lot more award availability that I’ve seen in years (search from February onwards).

Related: United Airlines Is Selling Miles At 1.89 Cents Each

Bottom Line

After a 5-year break, United Airlines is bringing back transcontinental service to New York JFK. From 1 February 2021, the airline will operate two daily flights between JFK and LAX and a further two daily flights between JFK and San Francisco. As an added bonus, Business Class awards are currently available in abundance on both new routes.

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