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United Airlines launches nonstop service from Edinburgh to Chicago

Gordon Dewar, Chief Executive Edinburgh Airport; Nicola Sturgeon MSP, Deputy First Minister of Scotland; Jake Cefolia, United Airlines Vice President Atlantic & Pacific Sales; and Bob Schumacher, United Airlines Managing Director Sales, United Kingdom & Ireland.
United Airlines has launched a nonstop service between Edinburgh and its Chicago hub, O’Hare International Airport.  It is the first scheduled nonstop service between the two cities and will operate during the period May 23 to Oct. 6, 2014 (both dates westbound). The frequency of the service is five times weekly during the period May 23 to Jun. 12, daily between Jun. 13 and Sep. 2 and four times weekly between Sep. 3 and Oct. 6 (all dates westbound).

Jake Cefolia, United’s Vice President Atlantic and Pacific Sales, was joined by Nicola Sturgeon MSP, Scotland’s Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment and Cities, and Gordon Dewar, Chief Executive of Edinburgh Airport, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Edinburgh Airport to inaugurate the first flight.

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “I’m delighted to mark the launch of this direct service between Edinburgh and Chicago, a link that highlights the strong relationship between Scotland and the United States.  This service will provide real benefits to Scotland’s economy, encouraging more tourism, trade and investment by reducing the need for travellers to make connecting flights via London or the continent.  By cutting rates of Air Passenger Duty (APD) – a move which is widely backed by the aviation industry, but something we don’t currently have the power to do -- we could attract more direct flights like this to Scotland.  I look forward to welcoming visitors from the U.S. for Scotland’s exciting programme of events in 2014 which includes the Commonwealth Games, a second Year of Homecoming and of course the Ryder Cup, where Gleneagles looks to follow in the footsteps of Medinah and play host to another hugely successful sporting showpiece.”

United’s Jake Cefolia said: “We’re pleased to expand our Scotland schedule with this seasonal nonstop service from the capital to Chicago, United’s home town.  We are proud to have served Scotland for almost 16 years and this new route will offer our Scottish customers not only direct service to Chicago, one of the most popular business and tourism destinations in the U.S., but also increased access to other destinations across the Americas.”

Edinburgh Airport’s Gordon Dewar said: "Today's launch of United Airlines' new direct service to Chicago marks a significant step in achieving better connectivity between Edinburgh and North America.  This new service will give Scottish passengers the opportunity to visit one of America's most exciting and vibrant cities and take full advantage of the onward travel options to many other U.S. destinations. We're delighted to continue our good relationship with United and celebrate this new route's inaugural flight.”  Dewar added: “It's something we've been looking forward to for some time.  We've a phenomenal summer ahead with the Ryder Cup and our world-famous festivals just a few months away.  We're excited to share our wonderful city with our American passengers and give them the very best experience when they arrive in Edinburgh."

VisitScotland Chairman Mike Cantlay said: “2014 is a massive year for Scotland and the eyes of the world are on our country like never before.  Huge global events including the Ryder Cup, the Commonwealth Games and Homecoming Scotland ensure that this year represents a great opportunity for not only tourism businesses but the whole of the Scottish economy.  Maintaining and indeed strengthening our position through new links from our largest overseas market is imperative as we strive for what is undoubtedly a once in a generation opportunity for tourism.”

Flight Schedule
Flight UA119 departs Edinburgh at 10:25 a.m., arriving in Chicago at 1:00 p.m. the same day. The return flight, UA118, departs Chicago at 6:00 p.m., arriving in Edinburgh at 7:45 a.m. the following day (all times local).  Flight times are eight hours 35 minutes westbound and seven hours 45 minutes eastbound.

United is operating the service with Boeing 757-200 aircraft with a total of 169 seats – 16 flat-bed seats in United BusinessFirst and 153 in United Economy, including 45 Economy Plus seats with added legroom and increased personal space.

Pictured from left to right: Gordon Dewar, Chief Executive Edinburgh Airport; Nicola Sturgeon MSP, Deputy First Minister of Scotland; Jake Cefolia, United Airlines Vice President Atlantic & Pacific Sales; and Bob Schumacher, United Airlines Managing Director Sales, United Kingdom & Ireland.

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