United offers self-service takeaway at Denver

Select passengers can grab food and go to their flight

United Airlines has opened a new type of club at Denver International Airport where passengers can help themselves to snacks and drinks and take them to their flight.

Called United Club Fly, it is a first-of-its-kind concept for a U.S. airline.

It’s got a self-service area for passengers to pick up snacks and drinks and a small seating area for a mere 16 passengers. 8 more can stand at a bar.

Passengers can help themselves to snacks including sandwiches, salads and wraps, yogurt, vegetables, fruit and more.

They can fill their pockets with non boozy drinks including sparkling water, soft drinks, iced tea and juices. They can also fill up their water bottles. There’s even a barista to make fresh coffee – there are also lots of coffee machines.

Snacks include sandwiches, salads and wraps, yogurt, vegetables, fruit [Image: United]

Apart from the barista it’s all self-service. Even to enter the lounge passengers just scan their boarding pass at automated entry gates.

The new club is much smaller than a traditional United Club. So no showers, Jacuzzis, massage chairs or free barbers that premium passengers have come to expect.

United came up with the quick pit stop idea following a survey of its United MileagePlus members that showed more than half of airline club and lounge visitors like to take food or drinks to-go.

Also, more than two thirds of United passengers at Denver are making connections and probably have limited time to snack at the airport.

It’s at a good location, on a highly visible corner of the new Concourse B-East expansion.

Who gets in? Passengers in premium cabins flying internationally and United Club one-time pass holders will have access to United Club Fly. Also United Club members – which costs $650 a year or 85,000 miles for most members of its frequent flyer program. It’s $550 to $600 for members with higher-tier status. Some credit cards also offer access.

Luc Bondar, United’s Marketing & Loyalty VP and MileagePlus President:

“United Club Fly is all about elevated convenience. We know there are times when our members are in a hurry and use our clubs to sneak a quick drink or snack, so we’ve created this new format to make it easy for them to do that without sacrificing an upscale club environment.

“In Denver, more than two-thirds of our customers are connecting to other places, making it the ideal city to introduce this concept.”

Internet links

United Airlines (UA)