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737 Max

United to Start Flying 737 MAX Out of Denver and Houston

United to Start Flying 737 MAX Out of Denver and Houston
Joe Cortez

After the successful flight of American Airlines’ 737 MAX, United Airlines has now announced which airports will serve their airframes when they return to service. The Chicago-based airline will re-introduce their first 737 MAX-9 aircraft from their hubs in Denver and Houston.

When United Airlines re-introduces the Boeing 737 MAX to their operations, flyers out of Denver International Airport (DEN) and Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) will be the first to travel aboard the aircraft. The Colorado Sun reports the airline announced the two hubs as origin points when it comes back to service on Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021.

Boeing 737 MAX-9 Origin Airports Noted, But Destinations To Be Announced

When the 737 MAX-9 was first introduced to the United fleet in 2018, the first flight took place between Houston and Orlando International Airport (MCO). However, the fatal crashes of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 led international authorities to ground all MAX airframes for nearly two years.

After American Airlines successfully operated the first passenger-carrying 737 MAX flight over U.S. skies, United announced they would begin their re-introduction out of their western hubs in Denver and Houston. The destinations for the first flights are yet to be announced. Previous 737 MAX-9 destinations for United included Anchorage, Alaska and Austin, Texas.

Although the 737 MAX-9 never crashed – both fatal incidents involved the smaller 737 MAX-8 variant – United says they understand that flyers may still not wish to travel aboard the troubled airframe. On the webpage explaining changes made to the aircraft, United says they will rebook anyone who does not want to travel on the 737 MAX, or refund their ticket. The policy also applies to Basic Economy tickets.

“Nothing is more important to United than the safety of our customers and employees, so United’s MAX fleet won’t return to service until we have completed more than 1,000 hours of work on every aircraft, including FAA-mandated changes to the flight software, additional pilot training, multiple test flights and meticulous technical analysis to ensure the planes are ready to fly,” read a written statement from United to the Colorado Sun. “We will be fully transparent with our customers and will communicate in advance when they are booked to fly on a MAX aircraft.”  

The Chicago-based carrier also notes if an itinerary includes a 737 MAX flight aboard a partner airline, they will attempt to work with them to rebook flyers on a non-MAX flight.

Alaska and Southwest Next to Reintroduce 737 MAX Flights

Following American and United into re-integrating the 737 MAX are Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines. Alaska will add additional MAX airframes into their fleet to replace retiring Airbus A320 airframes, with the first flights scheduled for March 1, 2020. Southwest has not committed to a hard date to restart operations with the MAX, only saying it will begin flying again in the second quarter of 2021.

View Comments (9)


  1. sfcharles1

    December 31, 2020 at 5:04 am

    I love the PR ““Nothing is more important to United than the safety of our customers and employees,…” so we are going to put the most unsafe plane in the last 60 years back in service. BULLSHIT.
    If safety were the “nothing more important” thing, then they would be announcing that they will wait until Airbus A320’s are available…
    It’s just a.drag because now we have to check the aircraft every time we fly, and if they switch planes, which they often do, you’ll have to rebook on a later flight. All of the inconvenience and lack of safety first priorities we’ve come to expect from the friendly skies.

  2. edgewood49

    December 31, 2020 at 6:02 am

    Joe, hopefully soon this will be “old news” !

    Happy New Year

    Great work this year looking forward to 2021

  3. Tack

    December 31, 2020 at 9:44 am

    Sfcharles1 pretty sure it’s not going to be that hard to book around the MAX. I fly twice a month on AA. And while I don’t care if I book a MAX, I do prefer certain commuter a/c and book to fly those whenever I can. The search for my preferred RJ adds maybe 2 min to my online booking routine. Sounds really like you’ve got more issues with UA than the restart of the MAX flying. Hope things work out for you.

  4. edgewood49

    December 31, 2020 at 9:44 am

    So “sfcharles1” if I were to apply your comments to other airframes then there are several AB’s that you wouldn’t be flying either. Having served in the AF on the flying end of the business I have seen a lot and frankly among all the aircraft manufactures not one repeat not one that has not had an issue frankly more than one. None are perfect remember human beings are involved. Do you remember the AB 300 vertical stab broke off ? Carbon fiber failure, accident report also noted over use of rudder control. We all wondered what is “over use” that stabilizer should not have failed as structural testing exceeds any known amount of “human” use.

    Just saying sf, its done the plane is back in the air lets all move on.

  5. AsiaTravel2019

    December 31, 2020 at 8:41 pm

    The Max is now the safest plane in the sky and I can’t wait to fly it again. The FAA and other aviation authorities have re-certified the plane, there have been changes made, additional training..again, this is now the safest plane in the sky.

  6. Gizzabreak

    December 31, 2020 at 10:16 pm

    @ sfcharles1 … Ethiopian Airlines (formerly Ethiopian Air Lines) is a wholely State owned airline that has had 70 accidents/incidents (64 Ethiopian Airlines and 6 Ethiopian Air Lines) and 459 fatalities since 1965. Lion Air is a privately owned Indonesian budget airline based in Jakarta. A collation of incidents/accidents/fatalities eludes me at the moment … suffice to say that they have not exactly been ‘trouble free’ since commencing operations in 2000 and were probably responsible for a significant share (Lions share?) of the opinion that has generated headlines such as ‘Indonesia’s troubled airline industry’ and similar. If you’re truly concerned about the airworthiness of Boeing’s 737 Max you should also be considering whether or not the operator/s you fly with hire foreign trained aircrew … I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. Maybe you should consider checking Amtrak’s schedules.

  7. diburning

    January 1, 2021 at 5:11 am

    Psst, that stock photo isn’t of a 737 MAX 9.

  8. edgewood49

    January 1, 2021 at 2:54 pm

    Gizzabreak I was going to go down that path but took the high road with sfcharles1 however I agree with your post in the first and second world airlines no issues. We in the US have some if not the best trained pilots in the world. As for fighter pilots its a toss up between US and Israeli fighter pilots. Been there Done that.

  9. Prof_Dr_G

    January 4, 2021 at 10:35 am

    I will not fly in this airplane. It is a crowded and uncomfortable ride. I made several flights in a UA configuration before the aircraft was grounded. It was like sardines packed in a tin.

    Is it safe? In the era of fake news, only time will tell. Who do you trust? The government? Boeing? Twitter? This website? Only time will tell.

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