Is United Airlines Adding a More Luxurious Polaris Plus Flight Experience?

by Anthony Losanno
United Polaris Plus

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A post on FlyerTalk details a recent survey that a member received querying whether they would spend more money to upgrade from United Polaris® (Business Class on flights to Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Middle East, and South America) to a new seating option and experience termed “Polaris Plus.” This is a random survey and airlines test the water all the time with similar questions, but could United be looking at trying to score additional revenue from an even more exclusive flying experience?

United Polars Plus Survey

Flyertalk user @docbert shared the survey that they completed by request of United Airlines. It mentions a “limited number of new seats.” Could this be a different seat in the bulkhead or scattered throughout the cabin like JetBlue offers with its Mint Studio?

Polaris Plus Bundles

The survey goes on to delineate several other possible perks and benefits, including:

  • Access to an exclusive, secluded check-in area
  • Skip the waitlist for à la carte dining within Polaris lounge
  • Pre-board with Global Services
  • First-class style amenity kit
  • Better quality Polaris pajamas
  • Guaranteed mattress pad available
  • Additional course during meal or access to exclusive pre-order menu
  • Every dish hand-delivered
  • Specialty gift at seat
  • “Press for Champagne” button at seat

Let’s break these possibilities down. I’d guess the Global Services lobbies at most hubs would be the “secluded check-in area.” Skipping the wait for a table in the lounge is nice. Pre-boarding with Global Services members dilutes that benefit for them. A First Class-style amenity kit and better pajamas should be offered to all passengers and not just those paying more. Mattress pads should also be provisioned for every Polaris® seat. An additional course during the meal or access to other dishes is laughable unless quality greatly improves. Who wants to eat what they offer now? I can’t imagine flight attendants complying with delivering each dish by hand. Specialty gifts at the seat could be anything. And, the last benefit is truly laughable. It’s often hard enough to get a beverage refill let alone Champagne at the press of a button. I also wonder if United would serve a Champagne that people would actually want to drink.

This survey is being used to provide feedback to United management, but I wouldn’t bank on seeing Polaris Plus anytime soon. United would need to train staff and refit cabins. That does not seem aligned with its priorities given what is going on with the FAA oversight (more here).

Anthony’s Take: United got rid of its Global First (which I used to like) back in 2018. This is inching towards that in some ways, but I don’t see it happening.

(Image Credits: @docbert and @txaggiemiles via FlyerTalk.)

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1 comment

Christian April 12, 2024 - 7:58 pm

Sounds a lot like they’re trying to re-create first class as basically first class lite.


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