United says goodbye to the B747

9 Nov 2017 by Robert Curley
United UA747

For decades, the Boeing B747 set the standard for long-haul jumbo jet service, but the iconic airliner first introduced in 1969 is slowly disappearing from the skies.

United Airlines this week concluded its final 747 flight — designated Flight UA747 — on a trip between San Francisco and Honolulu. That’s the same route flown by the first United 747 back in 1970.

Flight attendants and crew wore 1970s-era uniforms on the special one-way flight, and many passengers also dressed up in period clothing for the November 7 flight to Hawaii.

United UA747

There was even a mid-flight proposal on the plane’s upper-deck (she said “yes”), USA Today reports.

“The iconic 747 is a remarkably special aircraft that signaled a new era of air travel and was equally recognizable and beloved by our customers and crew alike,” said Oscar Munoz, CEO of United.

“While today is bittersweet, we’ll continue to honour the Queen of the Skies’ game-changing legacy of connecting people and uniting the world with our next-generation of long-haul aircraft.”

Delta has also said 2017 will be the final year of service for its fleet of B747s. The plane is still flown by British Airways and Lufthansa among other major carriers. In total, 489 B747s are currently operated by commercial airlines worldwide.

Loading comments...

Search Flight

See a whole year of Reward Seat Availability on one page at

Business Traveller December 2022 / January 2023 edition
Business Traveller December 2022 / January 2023 edition
Be up-to-date
Magazine Subscription
To see our latest subscription offers for Business Traveller editions worldwide, click on the Subscribe & Save link below