For years, United Airlines has traditionally offered “Fantasy Flights” to the “North Pole” for children in need in December. This year, United had to improvise due to the pandemic and and Team SFO really thought outside the box.
United Airlines Fantasy Flights In The Midst Of Pandemic
As United describes it:
Around this time of year, hundreds of employees and retiree volunteers gear up for what are some of the most exciting events of the year – Fantasy Flights. 16 of our airport locations across the globe will bring holiday cheer to children in need by taking them on a very special trip to the “North Pole.”
The children, many of them terminally ill or suffering from serious medical conditions, are treated to a day filled with joy, gifts food, entertainment and most importantly a lot of love.
But 2020 was different. Due to COVID-19, United’s traditional Fantasy Flights were cancelled. Nevertheless, stations across the network improvised, with may finding ways to still touch the hearts of young people in need.
One United employee at SFO shared with Live and Let’s Fly some pictures from the San Francisco event.
Instead of boarding a flight bound for the North Pole, about 50 children and their families arrived for a “Fantasy Flight” drive-through parade. These children were from four local hospitals. The “drive-through magical winter wonderland” featured visits from Santa’s Elves, the fire department, and Santa and Mrs. Clause themselves. The children and their families remained inside their vehicles, which were escorted by a “Safety Elf” (a United flight attendant) with Santa loading gifts that had been donated by employees into their trunks at the end of the parade.
What a beautiful gesture. Kudos to the United employees at SFO for finding a way to continue a lovely tradition even in the midst of a pandemic.