United recently received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to carry out its first cargo-in-the-cabin flight.

    The US carrier’s inaugural cargo-in-cabin flight flew from London (LHR) to Chicago (ORD) and carried more than 4,200 pounds of mail in the passenger cabin, plus a full payload of freight in the belly of the aircraft.

    Initially, the cargo-in-cabin shipments will be loaded on the airline’s 777 and 787 aircraft, but United has said it will continue to evaluate additional opportunities to use this space to meet the growing cargo demand.

    United Cargo president, Jan Krems, said: “We send our sincere thanks to the FAA for working with our team to enable the transport of more critical goods on United’s cargo-only flights.

    “By loading existing cabin storage areas with cargo and mail, we can move even more critical medical equipment, PPE, and other vital shipments the world needs to manage through the pandemic.”

    United’s cargo-only network continues to expand and the airline is now offering services between six of its US hubs and 18 airports worldwide, including: CTU, HKG, ICN, MEL, PEK, PVG, SIN, SYD and TPE in the Asia-Pacific; AMS, BOM, BRU, DUB, FRA, LHR, TLV and ZRH in EMEIA; and SJU in the Caribbean.

    Since the start of its cargo-only flights programme March 19, United has operated more than 1,300 cargo-only flights transporting over 44 million pounds of cargo.

    Visit unitedcargo.com for more information.