What to expect when you fly

What to expect when you fly

What to expect when you fly

We know travel looks a little different these days, but rest assured that we’re here for you every step of the way. Throughout your journey, we’re putting safety and cleanliness at the forefront of your travel experience through our United CleanPlus℠ program and by teaming up with Clorox. We’re also working closely with the experts at Cleveland Clinic to advise us on enhancing safety measures.

In addition to our enhanced safety and cleanliness standards, new research shows our aircraft cabins to be among the safest of public indoor environments. A U.S. Department of Defense study shows the risk of COVID-19 exposure on a plane is "virtually non-existent" due to the unique qualities of the air filtering system. Results show that only 0.003% of infected air particles could enter the breathing zone of seated, masked passengers, even when every seat is occupied. View video

Taking care of you throughout your travels

  • 1Requiring customers to complete a "Ready-to-fly" checklist at check-in
  • 2Encouraging customers to download the United app for contactless travel assistance and more
  • 3Created an automated assistant to help answer questions about safety, cleaning, face coverings and more. Text "Clean" to FLYUA (35982) to get started
  • 4Permanently got rid of change fees for most Economy and premium cabin tickets for flights within the U.S., or between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean
  • 5Notifying customers when we can if their flight is fairly full and giving them the option to change it
  • 6Sending customers an email to remind them about required face coverings, new policies and more
  • 7Offering customers the convenience of paying for checked bags and signing up for bag delivery online
  • 8Providing partner airline guidelines and destination-specific travel restrictions
  • 1Implemented temperature checks for employees and flight attendants working at hub and line stations
  • 2Installed sneeze guards at check-in and gate podiums
  • 3Promoting social distancing with floor decals to help customers stand 6 feet apart
  • 4Rolled out a touchless check-in process at select airports for customers with bags
  • 5Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering in the airport and providing disposable face coverings for customers who need them
  • 1Disinfecting high-touch areas such as charging stations, counters and seats
  • 2Providing hand sanitizer stations
  • 3Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering in the airport and providing disposable face coverings for customers who need them
  • 4Allowing customers to self-scan boarding passes
  • 5Boarding fewer customers at a time and, after pre-boarding, boarding from the back of the plane to the front to promote social distancing
  • 6Rolling out Clorox Total 360 Electrostatic Sprayers to disinfect in select airports and United Club℠ locations
  • 7Bringing health and safety to the forefront of the United Club experience by promoting social distancing, enhancing our cleaning procedures and more
  • 1Providing individual hand sanitizer wipes for customers
  • 2Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering on board
  • 3Providing onboard items like pillows and blankets upon request
  • 4Disinfecting high-touch areas, like tray tables and armrests, before boarding
  • 5Reducing contact between flight attendants and customers during snack and beverage service
  • 6Ensuring aircraft cleaning standards meet or exceed CDC guidelines
  • 7De-planing in groups of five rows at a time to reduce crowding
  • 8Using electrostatic spraying to disinfect most aircraft before departure
  • 9Using state-of-the-art, hospital-grade, high-efficiency (HEPA) filters during the entire flight to circulate air and remove 99.97% of airborne particles
  • 10Using Ultraviolet C (UVC) lighting wands to disinfect sensitive components like switches and touchscreen displays in our pilot flight decks
  • 11Rolling out antimicrobial technology on all of our aircraft to add an additional layer of disinfectant on board
  • 1Delivering bags from the airport to the customer’s destination with Bags VIP
  • 2Encouraging customers to track their bags on the United app
  • 3Included airport maps in the United app to make connections easier

Taking care of you throughout your travels

    • 1 Requiring customers to complete a "Ready-to-fly" checklist at check-in
    • 2 Encouraging customers to download the United app for contactless travel assistance and more
    • 3 Created an automated assistant to help answer questions about safety, cleaning, face coverings and more. Text "Clean" to FLYUA (35982) to get started
    • 4Permanently got rid of change fees for most Economy and premium cabin tickets for flights within the U.S., or between the U.S. and Mexico or the Caribbean
    • 5 Notifying customers when we can if their flight is fairly full and giving them the option to change it
    • 6 Sending customers an email to remind them about required face coverings, new policies and more
    • 7 Offering customers the convenience of paying for checked bags and signing up for bag delivery online
    • 8 Providing partner airline guidelines and destination-specific travel restrictions
    • 1 Implemented temperature checks for employees and flight attendants working at hub and line stations
    • 2 Installed sneeze guards at check-in and gate podiums
    • 3 Promoting social distancing with floor decals to help customers stand 6 feet apart
    • 4 Rolled out a touchless check-in process at select airports for customers with bags
    • 5 Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering in the airport and providing disposable face coverings for customers who need them
    • 1 Disinfecting high-touch areas such as charging stations, counters and seats
    • 2 Providing hand sanitizer stations
    • 3 Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering in the airport and providing disposable face coverings for customers who need them
    • 4 Allowing customers to self-scan boarding passes
    • 5 Boarding fewer customers at a time and, after pre-boarding, boarding from the back of the plane to the front to promote social distancing
    • 6 Rolling out Clorox Total 360 Electrostatic Sprayers to disinfect in select airports and United Club℠ locations
    • 7 Bringing health and safety to the forefront of the United Club experience by promoting social distancing, enhancing our cleaning procedures and more
    • 1 Providing individual hand sanitizer wipes for customers
    • 2 Requiring all customers and employees to wear a face covering on board
    • 3 Providing onboard items like pillows and blankets upon request
    • 4 Disinfecting high-touch areas, like tray tables and armrests, before boarding
    • 5 Reducing contact between flight attendants and customers during snack and beverage service
    • 6 Ensuring aircraft cleaning standards meet or exceed CDC guidelines
    • 7 De-planing in groups of five rows at a time to reduce crowding
    • 8 Using electrostatic spraying to disinfect most aircraft before departure
    • 9 Using state-of-the-art, hospital-grade, high-efficiency (HEPA) filters during the entire flight to circulate air and remove 99.97% of airborne particles
    • 10 Using Ultraviolet C (UVC) lighting wands to disinfect sensitive components like switches and touchscreen displays in our pilot flight decks
    • 11 Rolling out antimicrobial technology on all of our aircraft to add an additional layer of disinfectant on board
    • 1 Delivering bags from the airport to the customer’s destination with Bags VIP
    • 2 Encouraging customers to track their bags on the United app
    • 3 Included airport maps in the United app to make connections easier

Some enhancements may not be available at all airports or on all flights.

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Download the United app to take advantage of touchless support throughout your journey.

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Download the United app to take advantage of touchless support throughout your journey.

Download United app

To learn more about safety, cleanliness, face coverings and more, you can chat with our automated assistant by texting “CLEAN” to FLYUA (35982).

Frequently asked questions

  • Every flight is different. For regularly scheduled flights that are expected to be fairly full, we’ll let you change your flight with no change fee or receive a travel credit for your trip. We'll do our best to contact you about 24 hours before your departure time so you can decide before you arrive at the airport.

  • All travelers are required to wear face coverings during their entire flight. We’re also requiring travelers to wear face coverings in the airport, including at United customer service counters and kiosks, United Club℠ locations, our gates and our baggage claim areas. We’ll require face coverings in the airport and on board until further notice.

  • All travelers are required to wear a face covering with no vents or openings that fully covers their nose and mouth. A face shield alone does not count as a face covering.

  • If you refuse to follow United's face covering policy while in the airport or on board a United flight, you may be refused transport and could also lose your travel privileges on United for a certain period of time that will be determined when we review the incident. If a United representative or flight attendant notices or is informed of a traveler who is not wearing a face covering, they will proactively inform the customer that for the health and safety of everyone, face coverings are mandatory for all customers and employees in the airport and on board. They'll also offer to provide a mask if needed. If the customer continues to not wear their face covering, the United representative or flight attendant will report the incident so it can be reviewed. After the flight has reached its destination, the security team will investigate the incident and take the necessary action regarding the customer's travel on future United flights.

  • While you can remove your face covering briefly to eat or drink, you must immediately put it back on afterward. And in the event of decompression, travelers will need to remove face coverings prior to donning an oxygen mask. Otherwise, travelers are expected to wear their face coverings for their entire flight and while in the airport.

  • We encourage you to bring and use your own face covering. However, if you don't have a face covering, our customer service agents will be able to provide a face covering at no cost.

  • Children younger than 2 years old are exempt and will not be required to wear a face covering in the airport or on board.

  • United has teamed up with GoHealth Urgent Care and Color to make COVID-19 testing more accessible for travelers. These testing options will only be available to travelers from San Francisco (SFO) to Hawaii beginning October 15, 2020.

    Travelers can choose to take a rapid test at the airport with GoHealth on the same day as their flight or do a drive-up test 48-72 hours before their flight with Color. Both tests meet the state requirements for Hawaii, so customers who return a negative result are not required to quarantine.

    For more information about the rapid test at the airport, visit the Dignity Health-GoHealth Urgent Care website. Travelers from SFO to Hawaii who’ve opted in to our email notifications will receive information about both tests, including purchase and registration information, one week before their flight. Only one test is needed for travel, and customers can also choose to independently arrange for COVID-19 testing using a provider that’s approved by the state of Hawaii.

    Check our Important Notices page to learn more about what you need for your trip to Hawaii.

  • It depends on the airport — some airports may have reduced dining options and shopping right now, so you may want to check the website of the airport you’re traveling through or ensure you pack what you need in your carry-on bag.

  • If you’re traveling with a partner airline, we recommend reviewing their travel guidelines, including any policies on face coverings, to ensure you have a smooth trip. Before you fly, be sure to check travel waivers and your flight status, just in case things have changed. Some destinations may also require you to provide new entry forms or self-quarantine upon arrival, so check our Important Notices page to see if there are requirements for your trip.

  • Please visit our United Club and Lounge Locations page to check and see if a particular location is open. As you plan your next visit, learn how we're putting your health and safety at the forefront of your United Club experience.

  • Visit our United CleanPlus℠ page to learn more about this program and our partnerships with Clorox and Cleveland Clinic. You can also chat with our automated assistant by texting “Clean” to FLYUA (35982) to learn how we’re making your journey safer.

More information

Cleveland Clinic logo

Visit Cleveland Clinic’s website to learn more about COVID-19.