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United Adjusts London Flights: Which Routes Are Changing This Winter?

Months after announcing the end of its Boston-London route, United is axing more flights across the pond

by Lauren Smith

August 23, 2023

London on a foggy Winter's day / Photo: Kobus Saayman/Shutterstock

United is trimming its flights to London Heathrow (LHR) this winter, with Newark seeing the steepest departure cuts. However, the carrier will continue operating multiple flights to the U.K. daily from many of its hubs.

United currently operates 21 daily flights to Heathrow from its seven U.S. hubs—Chicago (ORD), Denver (DEN), Houston (IAH), Los Angeles (LAX), Newark (EWR), San Francisco (SFO), Washington D.C. (IAD)—and Boston (BOS).

Photo: United Airlines, Boeing 777-300ER. Courtesy of Ramapasha Laksono / Unsplash

But from October 2023 until March 2024, frequencies from some locations will fall as the carrier reevaluates its winter schedule.

United announced it would permanently end its Boston (BOS) to Heathrow flights on October 27. The route was launched in April 2022, during the post-pandemic boom in travel and amid fierce competition with JetBlue for dominance at the Boston Logan International Airport. United didn’t disclose why it was culling the route, its only non-hub international departures.

Now, the carrier is axing other departures to Heathrow.

Newark will see the most significant cuts in its London roster. Currently, United operates seven daily flights from the New York City area airport to Heathrow. The cuts will begin on October 28, when just five flights depart for London.

Photo: United Airlines. Courtesy of Denver International Airport.

Throughout November, United will cut one flight each way on its Newark-London route, or 60 flights in total and 5,010 seats in each direction. Still, transatlantic travelers will have the choice of six daily departures between the cities on most days or 58,784 seats on 176 flights in November.

United will operate 97 fewer flights on the route in December, but the steepest cuts will be seen in January when 124 fewer flights will run between New York and London than last year, an amount of nearly a third (29%).

Washington Dulles International Airport will also see around 60 flights to and from Heathrow cut each month between November and April.

United is also trimming flights between Chicago O’Hare and Heathrow. The cuts will peak in November, with 25 flights withdrawn.

Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco will see more minimal cuts to their London schedules through the winter.

Photo: London. Courtesy of Karl Hendon / Moment / Getty Images

United hasn’t disclosed the reason for reducing flights to London. However, industry watchers suggest the carrier was overly ambitious in planning its winter schedule, basing its plans on the robust demand seen last winter. The post-pandemic boom in transatlantic travel has cooled slightly as pent-up demand has been spent.

However, the tens of thousands of travelers wanting to jump the pond will still be spoiled for choice. Despite the cuts, United will still operate 6,266 flights to and from London this winter.