Nonstop to U.K. gets OK
DIA’s new seasonal service to London will start in March.
United Airlines marked 80 years of serving the Denver market on Wednesday by announcing a new nonstop flight to London’s Heathrow Airport aboard Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner planes.
The new seasonal service, which starts in March, steps up the competition for travelers heading to the United Kingdom.
British Airways since 1998 had been the only airline providing nonstop service to London Heathrow. In April, Norwegian Airlines said it would begin flying between Denver and London Gatwick.
Before Norwegian and United announced their new service, Denver was one of the largest markets without competitive service to London, said Laura Jackson, Denver International Airport’s vice president of air service development.
Europe is DIA’s biggest international market. Adding more international flights — including discount carrier Norwegian’s debut in Denver — has helped the airport erase some of its transatlantic service deficit, Jackson said.
“Each of these airlines can compete here,” Jackson said. “While British Airways offers a connection to London, they also connect to hubs across the Middle East and Europe. Norwegian and United offer something different. There will be different types of passengers taking each airline.”
United’s new London service is DIA’s 26th nonstop international flight. Earlier this month, Norwegian announced the airport’s first nonstop flights to Paris and Swissair subsidiary Edelweiss Air announced seasonal service to Zurich.
United spokesman Jonathan Guerin said adding the new flight in Denver is part of United’s goal to strengthen its DIA presence and “further strengthens our industry-leading international network.
“We’re confident our business-leisure customers will find United’s service between DEN and LHR to be their best choice,” he said in an emailed statement.
The new seasonal service runs daily March 24 to Oct. 26, 2018. The fights depart DIA at 5:35 p.m. and land about 10 hours later, at 9:40 a.m. London time. Return flights depart Heathrow at 11:40 a.m. and arrive in Denver at 2:30 p.m.
The United Dreamliner can carry 219 passengers. Each flight will have 36 flatbed seats for United’s Polaris Business Class as well as 70 economy-plus seats and 113 economy seats.
United Airlines will begin a new nonstop flight to London in March as it competes with Norwegian Airlines.