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Premium Transcon Service SFO/LAX<>EWR flights - Questions and Experiences

Old Oct 23, 2015, 6:29 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: sonyeoshin
Update 2017: United p.s. is now called Transcontinental Service. This service is available on flights between EWR<>LAX, EWR<>SFO, and BOS<>SFO.
Cross Country Comfort: Introducing United Airlines New Transcontinental Service

Originally Posted by United POLARIS FAQ
How does the switch to United Polaris affect United p.s. Premium Service transcontinental flights?
On December 1, 2016, BusinessFirst service on p.s. transcontinental routes became United Business, and now features our custom Saks Fifth Avenue pillow and duvet. Previous p.s. features did not change other than the new bedding.
The first PS flights to/from EWR started 25 Oct 2015
United offers transcontinental travelers the features and comfort of long-haul international flights. Customers enjoy modern aircraft interiors with all-new seats, inflight Wi-Fi, free personal on-demand entertainment at every seat, in-seat power and USB ports.

United also provides:
* Premier Access check-in, security screening, boarding and baggage handling;
* United Club access;
* up to 6 feet, 4 inches of sleeping space in a 180-degree flat-bed seat; and
* pre-departure beverages, hot towel service, multi-course meals and a pre-arrival snack.
E+ passengers -- hot meals and drinks included
Travelers in Economy Plus on our premium transcontinental flights now enjoy more than just extra legroom theyll also receive a complimentary hot entre, fruit and dessert, as well as their choice of free alcoholic beverages, including our featured cocktail and more.
Note: free meals in E+ have been discontinued since COVID.

Aircraft 757-200
Original config 28 lieflat BF / 42 E+ / 72 E- (retired)
Everything You Want to Know About Where to Sit on a 757-200 (pmUA Domestic and p.s.)

Re-purposed TATL config 16 lieflat J / 42 E+ / 118 E-
Consolidated "Seats on International 757"

other lie-flat aircraft will be used on the route, such as
Everything You Wanted to Know About Where to Sit on 777-200 HD (28J,102E+,234E-)
Everything You Want to Know About Where to Sit on a 777-200 Polaris/PremPlus seats
Everything You Want to Know about Where to Sit on 787-9 true Polaris and PP version
Everything you want to know about where to sit on the 787-10

FAQs
Are all flights on these routes lie-flat, etc?
Yes -- all non-stop flights from SFO/LAX to/from EWR and SFO<>BOS are configured as such regardless of aircraft used. All scheduled aircraft have a lie-flat premium cabin. Do be aware of the potential unscheduled swap to a domestic non lie flat aircraft, such as a 737 or 753.

Are these CPU-eligible flights?
No -- no CPU on these flights. It will take RPU/GPU/mileage+copays to upgrade. Generally, these are "hard" upgrades.

Are TODs / Cash upgrades offered?
Yes, $298 cash OW upgrades are regularly offered.

Archive: Premium Transcon Service SFO-EWR/BOS, LAX-EWR flights-Questions&Experiences {Archive}
Cross Country Comfort: Introducing United Airlines New Transcontinental Service
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Premium Transcon Service SFO/LAX<>EWR flights - Questions and Experiences

Old Jun 8, 2024, 9:41 am
  #451  
 
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Originally Posted by EmberEnigma
I've had the pleasure of experiencing the Premium Transcon service on the SFO to EWR route a couple of times. The seats are incredibly comfortable, and the service is top-notch. I especially enjoyed the in-flight dining options the meals were delicious and definitely a step above standard airline fare. Has anyone else noticed the difference in cabin ambiance compared to other transcontinental flights? It feels more luxurious and peaceful to me. Curious to hear others' experiences!
Glad you enjoyed your trips.

Which cabin were you in? And which aircraft? Given the range of equipment used it can affect your experience. AA and JetBlue have more consistent configurations.

Having flown in business on both UA as well as AA and JetBlue. If you can get a true Polaris configured plane on UA, then Id say the seats had a slight edge. If not Polaris, then AA and JetBlue have about the same if not better seats.

For the soft product like meals, AA and JetBlue are much better. And AA also has a better lounge at LAX and JFK. SFO, lounges are about the same.
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Old Jun 9, 2024, 7:35 am
  #452  
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Originally Posted by EmberEnigma
Has anyone else noticed the difference in cabin ambiance compared to other transcontinental flights? It feels more luxurious and peaceful to me.
Yes, much more peaceful since you're not being pestered by FAs asking if you'd like anything all flight.
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Old Jun 20, 2024, 1:57 pm
  #453  
 
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UA running dorm-style J on EWR-SFO

Anyone else notice that UA has shifted a majority of their EWR-SFO route to the pre-refurbishment 777-200's with the ancient 2-4-2 J product? Finding it harder and harder to find true Polaris seats on this route, which is a real shame. Embarrassing that they are running this outdated seat on their flagship transcon, no? Just a summer thing I hope?
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Old Jun 20, 2024, 2:16 pm
  #454  
 
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What dorm? :)

Originally Posted by latenightlaundry
Anyone else notice that UA has shifted a majority of their EWR-SFO route to the pre-refurbishment 777-200's with the ancient 2-4-2 J product? Finding it harder and harder to find true Polaris seats on this route, which is a real shame. Embarrassing that they are running this outdated seat on their flagship transcon, no? Just a summer thing I hope?
United needs the nicer planes on international routes. Yes, it is a summer thing.
Students are out of schools now. They will be very happy to have dorm rooms on planes. Hope that their parents can offer the tickets.
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Old Jun 20, 2024, 2:30 pm
  #455  
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UA is currently selling those seats for $3580 on many flights. On many days, J sells out completely several days in advance. So I suspect UA doesn't believe it needs to change anything. And the evidence would suggest they are correct.
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Old Jun 20, 2024, 2:33 pm
  #456  
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Despite having the largest fleet of widebodies amongst the US Big 3s, UA is still short on aircrafts to serve its international network.
I don't know if the current Boeing quality issues have impact on the 787 delivery, but I noted UA was only on schedule to take five 787s this year (IIRC, happy to be corrected).
The aging 772 and 763 fleet also face mechanical issues and longer maintenance period, and may also have impacted plane rotation and management.

Whether there is a negative impact on having the ghetto 772HDs flown the premium transcon routes remain to be seen, but B6, DL and AA do compete with better products.

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Old Jun 21, 2024, 8:45 am
  #457  
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Interesting that they've replaced the HDs on IAD-SFO with real Polaris and put the HDs on a "premium" transcon route instead. Any sense of the thinking there? AFAIK the fares on EWR J are higher
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 8:48 am
  #458  
 
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Originally Posted by Doppy
Interesting that they've replaced the HDs on IAD-SFO with real Polaris and put the HDs on a "premium" transcon route instead. Any sense of the thinking there? AFAIK the fares on EWR J are higher
Aircraft rotation is probably the reason. Also, nobody will complain if one gets CPU for IAD-SFO when switching from HD to Polaris B777.
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 8:49 am
  #459  
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Originally Posted by Doppy
Interesting that they've replaced the HDs on IAD-SFO with real Polaris and put the HDs on a "premium" transcon route instead. Any sense of the thinking there? AFAIK the fares on EWR J are higher
Ive noticed that its been easier recently to get a Polaris-friendly aircraft from LAX to IAD rather than to EWR. The only reason that I can think of is the sheer number of passengers that the high density B772 can handle compared to other aircraft.
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 9:46 am
  #460  
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Originally Posted by Doppy
Interesting that they've replaced the HDs on IAD-SFO with real Polaris and put the HDs on a "premium" transcon route instead. Any sense of the thinking there? AFAIK the fares on EWR J are higher
IAD-SFO is only a widebody at all for rotation/planning reasons between using that widebody on other flights. The p.s. fleet is dedicated to the mission for the most part.
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 10:54 am
  #461  
 
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Originally Posted by findark
IAD-SFO is only a widebody at all for rotation/planning reasons between using that widebody on other flights. The p.s. fleet is dedicated to the mission for the most part.
What p.s. fleet?
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 10:59 am
  #462  
 
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Originally Posted by findark
IAD-SFO is only a widebody at all for rotation/planning reasons between using that widebody on other flights. The p.s. fleet is dedicated to the mission for the most part.
The brand "p.s." was shelved a number of years ago -- during COVID as I recall. It's now "Premium Transcontinental Service," and no longer includes BOS<>SFO as "p.s." did.
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 11:10 am
  #463  
 
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Originally Posted by findark
IAD-SFO is only a widebody at all for rotation/planning reasons between using that widebody on other flights. The p.s. fleet is dedicated to the mission for the most part.
There is no "p.s." (doesn't exist anymore) fleet. It's a mix of 752s, HD 777s, and the occasional Polaris-equipped 777 or 787. Each of those planes can be and are used on a number of other routes.
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 11:20 am
  #464  
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I think everyone here knows what findark was referring to with "p.s." which I find to be a pretty sensible abbreviation for "Premium Transcontinental Service." Or would you really prefer PTS?
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Old Jun 21, 2024, 11:21 am
  #465  
 
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Originally Posted by wxguy
The brand "p.s." was shelved a number of years ago -- during COVID as I recall. It's now "Premium Transcontinental Service," and no longer includes BOS<>SFO as "p.s." did.
I think Boston was added later and wasnt part of the original SFO/LAX-JFK routes.
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