United to Resume Nonstop Flights Between the US and Scotland in 2022

It'll be the first American carrier to revive the routes.

Dugald Stewart Monument and view over historic Edinburgh from Calton Hill, Scotland, UK
ewg3D / Getty Images

The transatlantic flight network is coming back in force. In addition to launching routes to five brand-new destinations in 2022, United Airlines just announced that it will resume daily nonstop flights to Scotland from three of its hubs in the United States next year.

Starting on March 5, United will recommence nonstop flights between Newark (EWR), which serves the New York metropolitan area, and Edinburgh (EDI). Then, on May 7, it'll reopen its routes between Edinburgh and both Chicago (ORD) and Washington, D.C. (IAD).

Flights between the U.S. and Scotland have been on pause since spring 2020, with plans to resume service repeatedly postponed due to the pandemic.

The Newark flights will operate year-round, but both Chicago and Washington, D.C., will remain seasonal, operating through the summer. Each route will be flown on Boeing 757-200 aircraft, which has the seating capacity for 169 passengers in 16 flat-bed Polaris seats in business class, 45 Economy Plus seats, and 153 economy seats.

“It’s incredibly exciting to be resuming our transatlantic services with United to allow direct travel between Scotland and the U.S.A. for the first time in two years," Gordon Dewar, Edinburgh Airport’s chief executive, said in a statement. "It will allow families to reunite, friends to reconnect, and re-open the strong tourism destinations on both sides of the Atlantic."

While the Omicron variant will likely have an impact on worldwide travel, United CEO Scott Kirby does not expect the changes to be as dramatic as earlier in the pandemic. "It's going to certainly have a near-term impact on bookings—bookings are going to be lower than they otherwise would have been," Kirby said in an interview with CNBC. "We feel confident still about the long-term. Nothing changes about where we'll be 12 months from now."