United May Have Just Delayed The Restart Of Its Service To Delhi…..Again

a large airplane parked at an airport

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Back in April United Airlines suspended its service between Newark and Delhi for an initial period of two weeks as the airline struggled to balance the closure of Pakistani airspace and strong headwinds (both of which significantly increased flying time) with the number of hours a cabin crew is allowed to work without a break.

A couple of days before flights were expected to resume United edited the text which originally announced the extension to show that the route was now not expected to reopen until the beginning of July:

Due to seasonal winds and the continued closure of Pakistani airspace, we’re currently unable to operate our flights between New York/Newark (EWR) and New Delhi (DEL) while meeting crew flying time requirements. Beginning April 5, in order to minimize the inconveniences for our customers, we will suspend the service until July 2 for eastbound flights and July 3 for westbound flights. We’ll continue to closely monitor this situation and remain in contact with U.S. government authorities and our international partners. We’re also reaching out directly to our customers booked on these flights to provide alternative travel options, including rebooking on other airlines or offering full refunds. We will continue to operate our nonstop flights from New York/Newark to Mumbai (BOM).

Well, although there has been no update from United it looks as if the route suspension is being extended once again.

Routes Online has noted that a recent schedule update has seen United close reservations on its Newark – Delhi route through to the end of July.

The screenshot (below) from FlightAware shows how the Newark – Delhi flight was having to avoid Pakistani airspace in the month leading up to the suspension…

a map of europe with a green line

…and the recent announcement by Pakistani authorities that the airspace on its eastern border with India will now remain closed into the middle of June probably has a lot to do with United’s apparent decision to extend its route suspension.

Bottom Line

If you’re booked to fly between Newark and Delhi on United in July you should contact the airline asap to give yourself the best chance of a satisfactory resolution.

During the route suspension so far, United has been offering to rebook passengers on to other Star Alliance airlines and has been offering full refunds to passengers no longer wishing to travel so, hopefully, everyone should be able to find a solution that works for them.