Review of United flight Washington Houston in Domestic First

Airline United
Flight UA2058
Seat 6A
Aircraft Boeing 787-8
Flight time 03:25
Take-off 05 Feb 24, 08:20
Arrival at 05 Feb 24, 10:45
UA   #74 out of 96 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 379 reviews
shivpilot14
By GOLD 331
Published on 5th February 2024

preface


I was planning on flying this flight in Economy, as I was connecting in Houston through Mobile, and wanted to fly on the 787-8 in “Premium Plus” given that I get access to economy plus seating at booking with my Premier Status; however, my upgrade cleared, and looked like I would be flying in the Polaris seat today!

I was looking forward to giving another review of domestic service in Premium Plus on a short haul flight, given that my last flight from LAX-IAD was not so great, but I won’t deny an upgrade to a lie-flat business class seat!


check in and security


I arrived at IAD at around 7:00 a.m., about 80 minutes prior to my 8:20 a.m. departure time.

All airlines check in at the same terminal at IAD. United uses the very last check zone at the end. Towards the entrance of the Terminal is the Economy class check in and Premier Access Check In. Towards the back of the terminal is the Polaris and Premier 1K check in (though a lot of people don’t know that Polaris and 1K is in the back, so that check in area is empty a lot of the time.)

I quickly printed my boarding passes, and was on my way to security. The East security checkpoint is located just next to the United counters.

The PreCheck lane is located a bit further down from there, just past the Air Canada and Turkish Airlines Check In counters.

There’s a separate lane for Precheck and Clear and Precheck. I have clear, and used the clear lane, so I was through in a few minutes.

United uses concourse C/D at IAD, so depending upon which concourse you need to get to, follow the signs and proceed to either the “moon buggy” to take you to D, or the train to take you to C.

Today, I was flying out of C, so I took the train.


the lounge: United club- c7


I typically enjoy a longer lounge visit prior to my flights out of IAD, but today, I didn’t really have a lot of time. So, I quickly popped into the United Club at C7, which I’ve reviewed previously here. I was only in the club for about 5 minutes, just to take a seat and grab some water, then I headed to my gate.


boarding


My flight today was operating out of gate C2, which was about a 5 minute walk from the Club at C7.

Gate C2 doesn't offer any decent views of the ramp outside, so there was no real way to get a picture of the aircraft today.

When I arrived at the gate, boarding began right on schedule right at 7:30 a.m.
We boarded through door L2, and I was greeted by a friendly female flight attendant as I boarded, who offered me a Clean Plus wipe, and was directed to the right to my seat, 6A.


the seat


The 787-8 has only 28 Polaris seats, split into two cabins: One larger cabin with 5 rows of 4 seats across, for a total of 2 seats (Rows 1-5), and one smaller cabin with rows of 4 seats across, for a total of only 8 seats (Rows 6-7)!

The Polaris seats are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration on the 787-8, offering every passenger direct aisle access. The odd rows face straight, and the even rows are at an angle. I always prefer the odd, window seats as a solo traveler for the most privacy. Though, couples should opt for the odd numbered middle seats in the middle so that you can be close together and lower the partition. I’d choose a seat in the second cabin, since it’s much smaller.


photo cabin-overview

My seat, 6A, is the bulkhead seat on the left side of the aircraft. The seat is a Polaris seat, but since this isn’t an international business class flight, there is no bedding or amenity kit provided.

The overhead bins on the 787s are massive, and have more than enough space to store any luggage that you may need to store in the overhead bins, especially if you’re in business class.

The seat has two windows, that are controlled by dimmer switches on the wall or in the IFE system. And this seat in particular offers excellent views of the engine! This seat had three windows.

A note about the windows on this particular seat on this particular aircraft: The windows appeared to be broken in some way. They were weirdly tinted yellow at their brightest setting, which is why the pictures appear yellow. Addditonally, even when I tried to put them at their darkest setting, they did not darken despite being set at the darkest setting. I later saw that some of the tint was damaged or faded on one of the windows, so I wonder if that had something to do with it. So, my apologies for the "yellow vision" throughout this review.


photo engine-viewphoto window-peeling

At the front of the seat is the IFE screen, which is quite large and touchscreen! It’s worth noting that United’s IFE system has a lot of options! You definitely will not run out of options to choose from!


photo ife-screen

The seat controls are located next to the left armrest, with a wheel that allows you to adjust between fully-flat bed mode, and the fully-upright taxi, takeoff, and landing mode. You can also adjust your footrest, your lumbar support, and your recline with a lot of different combinations.


photo seat-controls

There is a faux marble countertop on the right side where you can set things on top of. Just above the countertop is the IFE remote control, the universal power outlet, a USB-A charging port, the headphone jack, and a small vanity closet where you can store a few things during the flight. I find this the perfect spot to store your toiletries and/or chargers. There were already headphones in the vanity cabinet.


photo countertop

The seat is well padded, comfortable, and extremely private. You can’t see another passenger in the cabin unless you really start looking for them, and nobody else can see you. Which is what I love about the Polaris seats. On the 787-8, there are individual air vents above your seat, and an overhead reading light.


pre-departure


At 7:43, a Pre-departure beverage of water or orange juice was offered. I went with water.


photo pdb

At 7:45, a flight attendant came by to ask if I wanted her to hang up my jacket in the closet, and I took her up on it!

At 8:00, the purser, Candy, came by to introduce herself, and confirm my meal selection, and asked what I would like to drink. I went with a coffee with Bailey’s. Also, I had pre-ordered the Apricot and brie cheese baked french toast.

United allows you to pre-order your meal beginning 5 days prior to departure, up until 24 hours prior to departure. I recommend doing this so that you can guarantee your first choice. Also, in domestic First class, there are more choices in the online options than what will be offered on board.

Unlike in Polaris, there are no printed menus, but I can give you a screenshot of the United website where I was able to choose, so you can see the options.


photo menu

At 8:14, the captain came on to welcome us onboard and let us know of our flight time of 2 hours 22 minutes, which would put us into Houston almost an hour ahead of schedule!


flight


At 8:15, the boarding door was closed.

We pushed back at 8:19, and the safety video played.


photo safety-video

At 8:35, we were roaring down runway 30 for our departure.


photo takeoff

At 8:39, we reached 10,000 feet, at which point, I reclined my seat.

At 8:45, service started with a hot towel.


photo hot-towel

At 8:57, the captain came on to announce that we reached our cruising altitude of 36,000 feet and that we would likely be arriving in Houston about 45 minutes ahead of schedule!

At 9:03, my coffee with Bailey's was served.


photo coffee

At 9:13, my French toast was served with side of fruit, a croissant, and a yogurt. The Brie on the French toast was overpowering and made the dish not taste very good in my opinion. Once I scraped away the Brie, the dish was okay, at best. The croissant, as usual, was rock hard and inedible. At this point I was thinking that I should’ve just ordered the yogurt and granola meal option.


photo breakfast

During meal service, the mood lighting changed to the relaxing orange lighting. I love the mood lighting on the 787!


photo mood-lighting

At 9:27, I put what was left of my meal on the countertop and if was cleared almost immediately. Unlike on my previous domestic first flights, I wasn't asked if I wanted anything else.

At this point, I was feeling a bit tired, so I settled in for a small nap.


Arrival


i woke up around 9:20 Houston time, to the captain came on to announce that we were beginning our descent into Houston and that we’d be on the ground in about 30 minutes.

At 9:58, we touched down on runway 26L.


photo touchdown

We had a very lengthy taxi to the gate. This was due to the fact that there was a pretty big traffic flow problem on the ground at IAH today due to the weather. All aircraft were taking off and landing on the westbound runways, so we got mixed into the line with the aircraft heading out to 27 for departure. So, our almost hour early arrival, got shortened by a lot.

At 10.30… we were still sitting on the tarmac.


photo sitting-on-tarmac

At 10:33, we had parked at our gate, E5.


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Verdict

United

7.9/10
Cabin7.5
Cabin crew7.0
Entertainment/wifi10.0
Meal/catering7.0

United Club (Gate C7)

5.0/10
Comfort5.0
Meal/catering5.0
Entertainment/wifi5.0
Services5.0

Washington - IAD

5.0/10
Efficiency5.0
Access5.0
Services5.0
Cleanliness5.0

Houston - IAH

7.1/10
Efficiency7.5
Access6.5
Services6.5
Cleanliness8.0

Conclusion

Overall, this was an okay flight. Lie flat seating is always great! However, United loses some points here in a few categories:

First, I have to deduct some points for cabin because of the window being broken or whatever. The Yellow tint was annoying and the dimming didn't seem to work.

Second, the crew also got some points deducted here. The crew was good, but didn't go above and beyond. They didn't come around to ask if we wanted anything else or things like that. It's been done on shorter flights, so I expected it on this flight as well.

Three, the meal loses points here as well. The Croissant was inedible, as usual. I mean- why serve it if its hard and not edible? The french toast was flavorul and decent, but the brie was so strong that it overpowered the dish and I had to remove it from the toast in order to eat it. It wasn't the best meal, but wasn't the worst...

Anyways, this flight was just okay. i did have to deduct points here. I honestly had better in recent flights and expected more out of
United on this one.

Information on the route Washington (IAD) Houston (IAH)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 3 avis concernant 1 compagnies sur la ligne Washington (IAD) → Houston (IAH).


Useful

La compagnie qui obtient la meilleure moyenne est United avec 6.8/10.

La durée moyenne des vols est de 2 heures et 51 minutes.

  More information

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