Hot meals returned to United First Class

United Airlines has just announced plans to reinstate hot meal service on more domestic first class flights, which I consider great news.

United First Class Meal Upgrades Effective June 15

As of June 15, 2021, United Airlines will restore hot plate service on more domestic flights. Meals will consist of a main course, side dish and dessert, and will be served individually wrapped and on a platter.

United Airlines will serve first class meals on:

  • Domestic flights over 1,500 miles
  • Hub-to-hub routes over 800 miles

While no photos of the new dishes are available yet, here’s what we can expect to see on the menu:

  • For breakfast, expect an egg scramble with vegetable chorizo ​​or a Belgian waffle with bourbon berry compote, served with a side of a peach Greek yogurt parfait.
  • For lunch and dinner, expect a grilled chicken breast with orzo and lemon basil pesto or a chili verde enchilada, served with a side of Spanish rice, plus a chocolate pie flavored cheesecake.

This is a huge improvement over what United are currently serving on these routes which is choosing an absolutely disgusting snack box or sandwich which I think is almost unsuitable for human consumption.

United Airlines’ Current First Class Snack Box


United Airlines’ Current First Class Hot Sandwich

Will other airlines in the United States follow suit?

United Airlines is leading the way among the “Big Three” carriers in the United States in terms of restoring first class in-flight service.

For comparison, Delta currently serves first-class snacks for passengers.

Delta Air Lines Current First Class Snack Box

Delta has revealed plans to restore more in-flight services starting this summer, though details remain limited:

  • Starting in early June, Delta One and First Class passengers on select domestic and coast-to-coast flights will see the return of hot food.
  • In early July, first-class passengers on other key routes in the United States can expect fresh boxed meals.

It looks like hot food won’t return to transcon markets until June, and then from July we can expect boxed meals on more first class flights, but not hot meals.

Meanwhile, American Airlines is taking a completely different approach. American currently offers passengers the choice of a sandwich or cheese plate on most routes.

American Airlines Current First Class Snack

On flights over 2,200 miles, the airline offers a “Fresh Bites” box.


American Airlines Fresh Bites Box


American Airlines Fresh Bites Box

However, American has made it clear that it never plans to offer the same meal service as before. Instead, Americans will restore meal service in a way that “has a premium feel, but is different and more modern.” The airline sees the pandemic as a way to “reset” meal service.

At the end of the line

United will restore first-class hot meal service from June 15, 2021. The airline will initially offer meals on flights over 1,500 miles, as well as on hub-hub flights over 800 miles.

United is leading the way here when it comes to catering first-class meal service, and I’m curious to see if that prompts American and / or Delta to follow suit.

What do you think of United restoring domestic first class hot food service?

(Hat tip for Zach griff)


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