International flyers on United Airlines’ aircraft will soon get a taste of a fourth level of mid-cabin service above Economy Plus but below business class. The carrier is set to roll out their version of premium economy at the end of the month, trailing both American Airlines and Delta Air Lines to the additional cabin class.
International United Airlines flyers will have an exciting addition at the end of June 2018. Chicago Business Journal reports the carrier is launching their premium economy cabin, Premium Plus, towards the end of the month.
The Chicago-based airline announced one retrofitted Boeing 777-200 would join the fleet with the new seats but were short on details. It’s unknown which international route will be the first to debut the service, or when exactly it will begin. Early speculation suggests the flight will depart from the airline’s headquarters airline of Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD).
In January 2018, United announced the addition of Premium Plus to their international offerings, promising a middle ground between Economy Plus (which only offers more legroom) and the business-class offering, United Polaris. The premium economy seats will feature amenity kits, upgraded dining options, complimentary alcohol and bedding from Saks Fifth Avenue.
The seats will be added to the airline’s fleet of Boeing 777 aircraft, starting with retrofitting the 777-200 and installing seats on all new 777-300 aircraft prior to delivery. During the soft rollout, it’s possible elite flyers could snag upgrades to the new seats, as the airline will code them as Economy Plus until the full fare is built out.
United is the last of the legacy airlines to offer a premium economy option on international flights. Delta Air Lines announced the addition of premium economy in 2016, while American Airlines started rolling out their version of premium economy on April 2, 2017. An American spokesperson told Chicago Business Journal there were no flights out of ORD with international premium economy, but is available on select routes from Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).