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United Introduces 3 New Free Snacks For Economy Passengers

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In a race to become America’s number one airline amid strong competition in the post-pandemic scene, United is improving the quality of services and ensuring customer satisfaction is at an all-time high. It may not have launched complimentary Wi-Fi yet, but foodies will be thrilled to learn they can now help themselves to three new free snacks flying with the carrier.

United airlines plane

More Chocolate Crisps And Fruity Bars

There was a time inflight amenities came at a cost, especially when flying Economy. Internet was never readily available unless it was purchased, and any food, with the exception of meals on long-haul flights, had to be ordered. These policies are now changing as competition tightens and airlines are influenced to enhance catering.

United has offered free munchies in Economy for some time now on domestic and Caribbean flights and ‘most of Latin America’. These have traditionally been limited to cookies, pretzels, or a ‘snack mix’, while drinks featured juices, tea, and ‘freshly brewed’ illy coffee. Traveling to Asia, Europe, the Middle East, the South Pacific, and select LatAm destinations, Economy passengers also enjoy:

Smiling Passenger Being Served Food During Flight, Unspecified Airline
  • Free ‘house beer’ and wine
  • Soft drinks
  • A three-course meal
  • Mid-flight snack (normally a sandwich and candy)*
*Only on flights longer than 12 hours

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View of the inside of a United Airlines

This is great already, but passengers flying domestically are the ones who are truly spoiled for choice. Beginning in the coming weeks, in the lead-up to the highly-anticipated Spring Break, set to be the busiest period for air travel in months, they will have an additional three snack options to pick from – and those with dietary restrictions have not been forgotten, either.

They will be able to reach inside the snack basket for some:

  • Dark chocolate + sea salt crisps by Undercover Snacks (from March 1)
  • Apple and mango fruit bars by That’s it. (from April 1)
  • Savory snack mix by Summer Harvest (from April 1)
Lunch in airplane. Inflight economy class meal on tray

As stated above, passengers who must follow a particular diet, such as those on a Kosher diet, or who may have certain allergies or require gluten-free meals have not been excluded. The Undercover Snacks chocolate crisps, as well as the apple and mango fruit bars by That’s it. carry a Kosher certificate and are allergen-free.

Naturally, customers are still advised to check the nutrition label ahead of consumption.

United Is Stepping Up Its Game

Tail Of United Airlines Aircraft In The Air Midflight

The best part is these new tasty nibbles will be available to all in United Economy, even at the entry-level Basic Economy fare, and there are plenty to go around. According to United itself, the airline distributes up to 12 million snacks every month, enhancing the inflight experience and keeping customers happy. After all, the snack cart is ‘often the highlight of the flight’:

As stated by Aaron McMillan, managing director of Hospitality and Planning, getting the snack cart ‘right’ is very important to the company: ‘With the addition of long-time favorites Undercover Snacks, That’s it. Fruit bars and a classic Savory Snack Mix, we’re confident there’s something for everyone’.

Interior Shot Of An United Airlines Aircraft With Passengers In Their Seats

These are certainly welcome additions, but there’s no denying United had been falling short of expectations regarding the food it provided on long-haul routes during the peak of COVID. Some of the menus had not been revamped for months, and the much-criticized pandemic-era food service had yet to be addressed.

‘Pandemic-mode' catering is defined as a bog standard meal that either lacks flavor or a better presentation. Twitter user @ThePhoenixMD1 is quoted saying ‘Their Polaris product is one of my favs [sic] on domestic carriers, but the food seems stuck in pandemic mode. I wish they’d step it back up – their competitors already have. I’ve definitely booked AA* over United just for the sundae before!

*American Airlines
united airlines aircraft take off

United is aware of these issues and has vowed to update their carte without further delays, starting with the United Polaris ‘full dessert trolley’, which includes a create-your-own sundae bar (with as many as six toppings), cheese plates, and other sweets.

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