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You Can Save 30 Minutes at the Airport With This Simple Change, According to a United Executive

You Can Save 30 Minutes at the Airport With This Simple Change, According to a United Executive

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United Airlines recently revealed a prediction that this will be their busiest Fourth of July weekend ever, as more than 5 million people will fly with over 4,400 flights per day.

In order to make things run smoothly for the millions of passengers, United’s Chief Customer Officer Linda Jojo has been hard at work. The executive, who has been at United nearly a decade with previous roles leading Digital and Technology, recently spoke with Travel + Leisure about the airline’s busiest season so far, and tips for travelers. 

The busiest locations that United will be flying to include Orlando (MCO), London (LHR), Seattle (SEA), Honolulu (HNL), and Boston (BOS). The busiest travel days for United over the holiday week are June 29, 2024 and July 7, 2024.

For travelers still looking for a last-minute deal this Fourth of July weekend, T+L spotted discounted flights from United’s Newark hub to Boston for $337, Nashville for $364, and Austin for $490. Travelers can also fly from  Chicago to Philly for $296. 

With millions of travelers packing planes and airports, Jojo shared some of her top tips to make travel smooth and efficient: 

Update Your App and Use Live Activities

While many expert travelers always download an airline’s app, Jojo shared some tips to help make the experience even better. 

“If there is some type of a disruption, we’ve had all kinds of thunderstorms this past weekend, you really want to have the app, and you want to have the latest version. And, you want to enable Live Activities. If you’ve got an Apple iPhone, this puts a dynamic island right on your screen,” Jojo says. The live activities feature a countdown clock until the boarding time, seat, and gate information in a real-time view. 

The airline recently updated their app to include new features such as turn-by-turn navigation inside of the airport to get travelers through the airport sooner. Jojo shared that the technology team at United has become energized to find ways to make the app help minimize anytime a passenger spends in the airport, and that the app saves travelers 30 minutes per airport trip versus non-app users. One example: the airline estimates people can save 5-7 minutes if they use baggage shortcut instead of waiting in the normal checked bag line.

Start Checking The Weather 2 Days In Advance, Monitor Any Traffic or Construction Delays

The airline says they are doing everything it can to keep passengers moving with things they can control, there are several things that aren’t so easy to control which can snarl travel plans – such as weather and traffic. 

Jojo encourages all passengers to closely monitor the weather several days in advance of a flight’s departure, and also any changes in road conditions or traffic closures. Many airports received $1 billion for critical infrastructure upgrades in 2023, and those projects are kicking off construction or underway, which could delay traffic in and around the airport. For example, Seattle’s SeaTac airport currently has `120 projects underway and has shared that travelers may see traffic jams or delays during peak times. 

“If you haven’t been to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) for a while, be prepared to see things you haven’t seen before. Construction is noticeable with 120 projects underway as part of Upgrade SEA, which is investing $5 billion over the next five years,” the Port of Seattle shared in a release

Be On The Lookout for “Line Busters”

United will also increase the amount of “line busting,” where United staff members will quickly go through the line to see if they can help troubleshoot customer problems before they even get to a counter, to make lines move quickly. Jojo revealed that many of the customer problems can be quickly solved in the app without seeing an agent. 

“We actually line bust – we go in the line and ask you why you are there, and often times they don’t realize that the information is in the app, we show them, and off they go,” Jojo shared about the experience. 

For Jojo, she’ll be spending the Fourth of July in the Adirondacks region in Upstate New York. The executive says she’ll be flying United, and allowing for plenty of time to make her flight. 



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