United Airlines adds 100 Boeing jumbo jets in historic move


United Airlines — Denver’s largest private employer — made commercial aviation history Tuesday with an order of 100 new Boeing planes and the option to buy another 100.

The purchase of 100 Boeing 787 Dreamliners counts as the largest order by a U.S. carrier of widebody aircraft, or planes that primarily fly internationally, according to United.

United — the city’s biggest airline, with plans for 90 gates at Denver International Airport by 2023’s end — already offers more international routes than any competitor in the local market, said Matt Miller, vice president of airport operations in Denver.

The move comes as more Americans travel abroad, catching up for time lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. Trips to Europe, Mexico and Central America fed DIA’s international traffic recovery, as of June.

“United is committed to being the best airline in Denver,” he added. “Today’s purchase of new Boeing 787 Dreamliners will be a wonderful addition to our fleet for Denver, especially since we are the only U.S. airline to offer transatlantic service from our city.”

United, which celebrated its 85th anniversary in Denver this past May, flies to 17 international cities out of more than 170 destinations total. It’s also the only U.S. airline to provide daily direct service to London, Frankfurt and Munich from the Mile High City.

While New York City and San Francisco are considered United’s coastal gateways, “we’ve grown Denver’s international operations dramatically in the last few years,” said Andrew Nocella, executive vice president and chief commercial officer. “Its success in recent years globally — we’ve taken notice of it, and we look forward to expanding further.”


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