Good news for anyone who loves New York (who doesn’t?) – United Airlines have announced that their nonstop service between Newcastle and New York, which ran throughout this summer, will return in summer 2016. Further good news is they’ll increase in frequency to six times per week. To find out more we had a quick chat with Bob Schumacher, United’s Managing Director of Sales for the UK and Ireland.
So what’s going to be different next year?
We’re upping our frequency next summer. Whilst we’re running a fairly similar calendar schedule we’re going up to six flights a week and that was by popular demand, which is a good story for us. Customers realised there were holes in the schedule, as in there were days when they’d have to come back via another way, and of course the feature of this flight is you shouldn’t have to come back via another way, you can come into your local airport, so we’re now up to six days a week, which is terrific.
Has there been much interest from Americans in coming over here?
We’ve watched during the course of this summer the increase in interest on the US side and steadily the number of passengers on board and the accents of the passengers on board have changed to more American. We’ve also seen, fantastically for us, that more and more customers are going beyond New York or coming from beyond New York, because of course we connect onto 300 different points in North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.
Will you continue promoting the region to Americans next year?
Absolutely. It’s almost like a brass rubbing in that it’s much easier to go and buff up something that’s been shined before. It’s just a case of reminding them as we go back into the booking season that Newcastle's back on the map and being served even more frequently for 2016.
It’s a bit greedy, we know, but is there any chance you’ll start doing a winter service?
We would hope for that over time, and it will be over time. The view is, at the moment, that we pick up the summer schedule, because we know that market and it’s worked well for us not only in Newcastle but in other markets where we go, for instance just up the road in Edinburgh where we have a seasonal Chicago service. You need a stronger thrust of business to build it up over what typically in the northern hemisphere is a tough winter and our ambition over time would be of course to build on that calendar, but we have to have the proof in the numbers before we enter into that, and that’s for another time.
So we all need to get online and buy tickets for next summer?
You couldn’t say it better! Absolutely. The proof of the pudding is in the eating, and we can build on that, and we’re delighted to be back for a second season.
The flights will operate six times per week between 26th May 2016 to 6th September 2016, departing daily except Wednesdays at 9.10am, arriving at Newark Airport at 12pm the same day. The return flight will depart Newark daily except Tuesdays at 7.20pm, arriving in Newcastle at 7.30am the following day.
The plane will have 16 flat-bed seats in United BusinessFirst and 153 seats in United Economy, of which 45 are Economy Plus, with added legroom and space.
For more information and to book flights visit www.united.com or call 0845 6076760.