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United Airlines Airbus A321neo Enters Service Late 2023

In the coming months, United Airlines will be putting its latest new narrow body aircraft into service. I wanted to go over the details, especially as the first routes have now been revealed.

United has 70 Airbus A321neos on order

United Airlines has a total of 70 Airbus A321neo aircraft on order, which will start to be delivered as of late 2023. The A321neo is an updated version of the A321, featuring better fuel economy and range. You can expect that United will use this plane primarily on domestic and short haul international flights, which are otherwise served by Airbus A320 or Boeing 737 family aircraft.

The A321neos are only one part of United’s domestic fleet renewal strategy, as the airline also has a total of roughly 550 Boeing 737 MAX family aircraft on order, including the MAX 8, MAX 9, and MAX 10.

These A321neos on order are separate from the 50 A321XLRs that United has on order, as this is an even longer range aircraft that will be used primarily for long haul flights. You can expect A321XLRs to feature business class and premium economy.

United has 70 Airbus A321neos on order

Details of United’s Airbus A321neo layout & seats

United Airlines’ A321neos are expected to feature 200 seats, including:

  • 20 first class seats
  • 57 extra legroom economy seats
  • 123 economy seats
Expect 200 seats on United’s Airbus A321neos

The bad news is that United is going for a really dense layout with these planes, and is really cramming in the seats. As a point of comparison, American’s A321neos feature 196, while Delta’s A321neos feature 194 seats.

The good news is that A321neos will feature United’s newest cabin concepts, as the airline is in the process of modernizing its narrow body fleet. For example, A321neos will feature the carrier’s all-new first class seats, featuring wireless charging and privacy dividers. On top of that, you can expect personal televisions, power ports, bluetooth audio, and high speed Wi-Fi, for all passengers on the plane.

United’s new domestic first class seat

United’s first Airbus A321neo routes

As reported by @IshrionA, United Airlines has just put its first Airbus A321neo routes on sale. United will initially base its A321neos in Chicago, and currently the inaugural flight is planned for December 14, 2023, to Phoenix (PHX).

While I imagine that timeline remains subject to change, it’s clear that this is currently the intent, since the inaugural flight has had its flight number changed to UA321, a clear reflection of the special occasion.

After Phoenix, United will fly its A321neos to Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Orlando (MCO), Fort Myers (RSW), and Las Vegas (LAX).

When you go to book your ticket on, you’ll see the new aircraft type reflected on eligible routes.

United Airbus A321neo routes are now on sale

Bottom line

United Airlines has 70 Airbus A321neos on order, which are expected to join the carrier’s fleet as of late 2023. United has now scheduled the inaugural flight for December 14, with the special flight number UA321.

The A321neos will be in a dense layout, though will at least have modern cabins, with United’s newest first class seats, plus personal entertainment and high-speed Wi-Fi throughout the aircraft.

What do you make of United’s Airbus A321neos?


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