Aug. 1, 2005 United Airlines will add an additional flight per week from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport to St. Thomas and two more from Washington, D.C.'s Dulles International Airport to St. Thomas.
"We're excited about the opportunity to welcome additional travelers from around the world who now have more options for traveling to the U.S. Virgin Islands via two of the nation's largest international gateways," Tourism Commissioner Pamela Richards said in a news release issued Monday.
The flights begin Dec. 17 and will continue throughout the year.
United will then fly Saturday, Sunday and Thursday between Chicago and St. Thomas and Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday between Washington and St. Thomas.
United currently flies Saturday and Sunday from both Chicago and Washington.
Rik Blyth, general manager at Caneel Bay Resort on St. John, said the expanded number of flights from Chicago and Washington will spur marketing efforts in those areas.
"We'll take a closer look at those markets," he said.
He also said that the added flights mean that visitors can come for short breaks rather than longer stays.
The Chicago flights leave O'Hare at 8:20 a.m., arriving on St. Thomas at 3:03 p.m. The return flights depart St. Thomas at 2:04 p.m. and arrive in Chicago at 7:03 p.m.
On Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday, flights are scheduled to depart Dulles at 8:25 a.m., with arrival on St. Thomas at 1:15 p.m. The return flights depart St. Thomas at 3:59 p.m. and arrive in Washington at 8:43 p.m. The Thursday flight leaves Washington at 9:20 a.m. and arrives in St. Thomas at 2:10 p.m. The return flight from St. Thomas departs at 3:20 p.m. and arrives in Washington at 7:50 p.m.
For the routes, United will fly an Airbus A-320 aircraft, which has a dozen first-class and 126 coach-class seats.
United operates more than 3,400 flights a day on United, United Express and Ted to more than 200 U.S. domestic and international destinations from its hubs in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, Chicago, and Washington.
With key global air rights in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and Latin America, United is one of the largest international carriers based in the United States.
United is also a founding member of Star Alliance, which provides connections for its customers to nearly 800 destinations in 139 countries worldwide.
Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.