One of the world’s largest airlines has returned to Victoria, restoring an important connection between Melbourne and San Francisco.

United Airlines flight UA60 touched down at Melbourne Airport this morning, with Wurundjeri Woi-Wurrung Elders welcoming the Captain and crew to Country, while disembarking passengers were treated to a performance from the Djirri Djirri dance group.

United will initially fly a Boeing 787-9 featuring its upgraded Polaris Business Class product between Melbourne and San Francisco three times a week, before increasing later this year.

Prior to the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, United was the second largest carrier between Melbourne and the United States and recently launched a partnership with Virgin Australia to enhance its Australian connectivity.

Melbourne Airport’s Acting Chief of Aviation Jim Parashos said the resumption of flights to San Francisco would provide a significant boost to Victoria’s tourism and technology sectors.

 “San Francisco is the gateway to Silicon Valley and this direct connection is critically important for Melbourne’s growing number of software and app developers.

 “The city is also United’s largest west coast hub and that means millions of people in a huge range of cities across North America now have one-stop access to Melbourne.

 “Because of United’s global reach they can fly their aircraft anywhere, so having Melbourne back on their route network is a huge vote of confidence in our city and state.

 “This is also great news for Victorians looking for an overseas break, because it puts all the attractions of San Francisco, the bay area and northern California within easy reach once again”.

 Underlining its commitment to Australia, United plans to add more capacity across the Pacific by resuming service between Melbourne and Los Angeles in the northern winter.