United Airlines has partnered with Hotel Hub, a global hotel booking platform, to provide a “touchless” online solution to help customers find a hotel in the event their flights are delayed, cancelled or otherwise disrupted.
If travelers are affected by a flight disruption that is within the airline’s control, they will receive a text message or e-mail directing them to Hotel Hub. Once in the booking platform, the traveler can browse through a list of available hotels for that airport and make a selection, at no cost to the passenger.
By automating the hotel shopping process, it becomes touchless, rendering it unnecessary for the passenger to contact an agent at the airport. The booking will also provide meal vouchers at the same time, but when the hotel room is also being provided by the airline. Delays or cancellations due to weather, for example, are outside the airline’s control, and accommodations are not offered.
The United connection with Hotel Hub is rolling out as a pilot program at the airline’s US hubs, including Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark, San Francisco and Washington, DC.
The airline said it plans to expand the system to 46 additional airports early next year.
The enhancement is part of a United initiative to use technology to smooth the travel experience during disruptive times. Recently the airline introduced a redesigned mobile app offering customers with visual disabilities enhancements to make their travels easier.