Passengers on United Airlines, no matter the cabin, can soon use United’s mobile app to pre-order meals, snacks, and beverages onboard. The service will initially launch from Chicago this week and expand to all flights over 1,500 miles later this year.
United Airlines Pre-Order Will Allow First + Economy Class Passengers To Pre-Reserve Meals, Snacks, Drinks
Starting tomorrow on a handful of flights from Chicago, passengers on United Airlines can use the United mobile app to pre-order meals, snacks, and beverages. Those flights include Chicago to:
- Honolulu (HNL)
- Orange County (SNA)
- Sacramento (SMF)
- San Diego (SAN)
By “early fall” the program will expand to all flights over 1,500 miles.
United trialed the pre-order of meals for first class passengers prior to the pandemic and promised an expansion of that technology to most routes with meals in early 2020. Then the pandemic hit and the program was paused.
Now it returns not only for first class passengers, but all passengers onboard. Passengers in the front will be able to pre-reserve meals while those seated in economy class will be able to reserve alcoholic beverages and snacks for purchase.
Five days before your flight, you’ll see a new option when you pull up your reservation on united.com or in the mobile app to pre-order food and beverage items.
All payments will remain contactless. Once you select your desired snack and/or beverage, your form of payment will be charged. However, it will not be charged until you accept the snack or beverage onboard. If you change your mind, you are not stuck accepting what you pre-ordered.
A per-flight email will be sent as well about the service and an e-mail receipt will confirm the order.
1K Benefit Included
A United spokesperson confirmed Premier 1Ks will be able to pre-order one free snack and beverage as part of their Premier Benefits package. Passengers who are later upgraded to a premium cabins will automatically have their order cancelled. If they are re-seated in a premium cabin within the five day to 24 hour window, they’ll be able to pre-order their premium cabin meal instead.
United becomes the first U.S. airline to offer economy customers the option to pre-order snacks and beverages, a notable move. The ability to pre-order should better manage inventory and help United cultivate future menus that better take into account consumer preference.