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United Airlines to Add Flight on San Francisco-Hong Kong Route

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United Continental Holdings has changed its name to United Airlines Holdings Inc (UAL - Free Report) with immediate effect.

The company’s subsidiary United Airlines will be launching a second daily nonstop flight between San Francisco and Hong Kong beginning Oct 26. The carrier will operate twice daily on the route using a Boeing 777-200ER aircraft.

This apart, the Chicago, IL-based airline has carried out several international route expansions from San Francisco this year. While it initiated nonstop seasonal service from San Francisco to Amsterdam, it extended the services connecting the former with Auckland, New Zealand and Tahiti, French Polynesia to year-round. The carrier also added a second daily flight between San Francisco and Seoul, South Korea. It also introduced a twice-daily service from San Francisco to Toronto, Canada. Come October, United Airlines is set to start a seasonal nonstop service to Melbourne, Australia while it will also initiate a seasonal service to New Delhi in December, both from San Francisco.

With the commencement of the new services, United Airlines will cover a total of 29 international destinations from San Francisco, serving eight cities across Europe, India and the Middle East; seven in North America; and 14 in Asia and Oceania.

Boeing 737 MAX Grounding Period Stretched Further

It looks like the Boeing 737 MAX groundings are here to stay for a while now to haunt the airlines. Per the latest update from the Federal Aviation Administration, a new issue has cropped up with the aircraft, which unless resolved can’t certify the aircraft to fly again.

Following this new hurdle, United Airlines stated that it will suspend all flights expected to occur on the MAX aircraft from its schedule through Sep 3. Consequently, nearly 60 flights will be cancelled each day in August. (Read more: United Airlines Extends 737 MAX Flight Cancellation Period)

Meanwhile, Southwest Airlines (LUV - Free Report) has announced that it is extending the MAX grounding period until Oct 1. Previously, the MAX grounding related flight cancellation period was estimated through Sep 2.

Zacks Rank & Other Key Picks

United Airlines carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Some other top-ranked stocks in the broader Transportation sector are Air China Ltd. (AIRYY - Free Report) and Fly Leasing Limited (FLY - Free Report) , both sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Shares of Air China and Fly Leasing have rallied more than 15% and 64%, respectively, so far this year.

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