December 11, 2023

A United Airlines Boeing 777-200 lands at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco, California.

Luis Nastro | Reuters

united airlines Plans to expand its service to Australia and New Zealand later this year are the airline’s latest bet that travelers will keep booking international travel.

The airline said Tuesday that it is increasing its weekly flights between the United States and the two countries to 66, a 40% increase from last year. Those countries also equate to about a 75% increase in seat capacity compared to the same period in 2019, United said.

The new schedule includes nonstop flights between San Francisco and Christchurch, New Zealand, using the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner starting December 1, and nonstop flights between Los Angeles and Auckland, New Zealand, using the Boeing 787-9 starting October 28 . established services from San Francisco and Los Angeles to Brisbane, Australia, and it is using its largest aircraft to fly between San Francisco and Melbourne, Australia.

Airline executives have been optimistic about demand for international travel and have been expanding flight schedules in response to the rebound.

delta airlines It forecast second-quarter results last week that topped analysts’ expectations and highlighted the particular strength of international travel.

“In international markets, we’re excited about the momentum we’re seeing and expect record revenue and profitability for the summer travel season,” Delta Air Lines President Glenn Hornstein said on Thursday’s earnings call.

The airline increased its international seats by 20% in the quarter ended June and has locked in about 75% of its bookings, he added.

United Airlines is due to report first-quarter results after the market close on Tuesday and will provide another demand forecast ahead of the peak summer travel season.

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