The Last Official Flights Assigned With Continental Airlines Flight Numbers

As of March 3, 2012, all Continental Airlines flight departures will officially become United Airlines flight departures. Farewell, Continental Airlines.

If you are a fan of Continental Airlines, today is a bittersweet day for you.

The official Internet web site of Continental Airlines will be unavailable at approximately 2:00 in the morning Eastern Standard Time on March 3, 2012, so take your screen shots of it while you can.

Continental Airlines flight 6 from Tokyo to Houston will be the last flight officially operating as a Continental Airlines flight, as it is scheduled to land in Houston on March 3, 2012 at 12:35 in the afternoon. However, FlyerTalk member Baze wonders what would happen if the flight gets delayed or canceled — and if the delay is long enough so it does not take off until after the changeover, will its flight number change? That is a good question, although one which some FlyerTalk members would rather not find out the answer.

The last departure as an official Continental Airlines flight belongs to Continental Airlines flight 1267, scheduled to depart from Phoenix at 11:59 Mountain Standard Time later this evening to its final destination in Cleveland — and there are some FlyerTalk members who have expressed interest in being passengers on that flight.

Launched as Varney Speed Lines in the southwestern United States in 1934 and named after co-owner Walter T. Varney — who, ironically, was also a founder of United Airlines — the name of the airline was changed to Continental Air Lines on July 8, 1937. Continental Airlines, as it was later called, was acquired by Texas Air Corporation in 1981 under the leadership of Frank Lorenzo. In 1987, the OnePass frequent flier loyalty program was created, which Continental Airlines shared jointly with Eastern Airlines. I became a OnePass member a year later and had been a passenger on Eastern Airlines at first before flying frequently on Continental Airlines.

I said it here back in November, and I will say it again: Continental Airlines treated me well when I was a top-tier frequent flier for several years, and I will certainly miss that airline. I remember being in flight when Continental Airlines celebrated its emergence from its second bankruptcy in the early 1990s as complimentary champagne was served to everyone on board.

Oh, well — at least my OnePass frequent flier loyalty program number will live on as my new United Airlines MileagePlus frequent flier loyalty program number…

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Comments (Showing 4 of 4)

  • Cancerboy3 at 4:26pm March 02, 2012

    I am now 1K on UA, having spent many yrs as CO Elite OnePass. I have been “introduced” to UA over the last 14 months or so. My experience has been unremittingly awful on UA flights, including today. I will wait to see what happens, but right now, if 2012 turns out like 2011, I am gone. Trouble is, what’s the alternative? You are just changing stalls in the same toilet that is the airline industry.

  • SuperFlyBoy at 10:28pm March 03, 2012

    Well, considering that .bomb is now CO.com, I sorely miss the options we had on United!

    CO’s site consistently overpriced all my itineraries, and doesn’t show all the myriad of options that United’s site offered.

  • GRALISTAIR at 10:03am March 04, 2012

    Yes a bitter-sweet day. I have logged over 400,000 miles including award tickets with CO. My wife and youngest daughter have many tens of thousands too. My first ever visit to the USA was MAN-EWR-MSY-EWR-MAN and it was on Continental. Sigh. Just tried their website. Took me straight to United but at least I was able to log on with my OnePass number and it had my lifetime CO miles all there.

  • judyserienagy at 5:54pm March 10, 2012

    Well, I just have to counter Cancerboy’s take on UA. I was probably one of the first OnePass members and was always loyal to CO. I took 3 flights with UA staff these past months and I was cringing at the horrors I had been told about UA flight attendants. Not a single problem, the UA people were just fine. Nice service up front, friendly and professional, all were on time. I fly out of SFO or San Jose so now that I’ve found out that UA people are just as nice as their CO cousins … or siblings I guess would be more accurate … I’m quite pleased with the whole thing, as UA flies alot of places that CO did not. And I’m definitely looking forward to Prem Economy on the short-haul flights. Now could we just bring back Gordon Bethune?

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