Home Airlines United, Why Can’t You Serve In-Flight Meals Like This Anymore?

United, Why Can’t You Serve In-Flight Meals Like This Anymore?

by joeheg

I recently had the distinct pleasure of having to go through a large pile of old paperwork that wasn’t mine. While most of the things I found were junk, I did come across this gem. Reading it, I thought that I wouldn’t be boycotting if United Airlines was still like this.

In fact, this reminded me more of our visit to the Pan Am Experience.  A trip back to a time where flying was an experience and not a chore.

Based on the typeface used on the menu and the Friendship moniker, my best guess is that this menu is from 1972-74 which is the only use I’ve found of the cursive “U” of United.

Imagine boarding your flight from Hawaii to California and being handed this menu.

The first page was for the drinks because it was the 70s and of course, that’s the most important thing.

I see no vermouth on the drink list so I’m assuming the “Very Dry” gin martini consisted of gin and ice :-). I also appreciate the statement that no minors will be served liquor. Interesting that they were also called “soft beverages” and no company had jumped in to be the official soda of United yet.

Here’s the breakfast menu.

Now consider that this was paired with the drink menu from the opposite page :-). Of course, if you were worried about your health you could order the Sanka.

The back page was specific for the flights from Hawaii.

Compare that to what you’ll currently receive on a United flight to Hawaii. That’s if you’re flying from anywhere except the west coast, because then you’ll get the same as any domestic flight.

If you’re flying in United Economy on a premium transcontinental or Hawaii flight*, you’ll receive an “all-in-one” snack bag with a wrapped sanitizer wipe, 8.5-ounce bottled water and two snacks.

I know there are many reasons that airlines no longer provide the service they used to “back in the day.” Airlines are all about profit and there is no shortage of ways they’ve tried to make planes lighter to reduce costs. Passengers have also proven that they don’t want to pay extra for a more enjoyable flight experience, leading to the creation of the Ultra Low-Cost Carriers like Spirit, Sun Country and Frontier in the U.S., RyanAir, and EasyJet in Europe and any number of carriers in Asia and everywhere else in the world.


Want to comment on this post? Great! Read this first to help ensure it gets approved.

Like this post? Please share it! We have plenty more just like it and would love it if you decided to hang around and get emailed notifications of when we post. Or maybe you’d like to join our Facebook group – we have 23,000+ members and we talk and ask questions about travel (including Disney parks), creative ways to earn frequent flyer miles and hotel points, how to save money on or for your trips, get access to travel articles you may not see otherwise, etc. Whether you’ve read our posts before or this is the first time you’re stopping by, we’re really glad you’re here and hope you come back to visit again!

This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

Cover photo United Retro Livery A320 2 by Bill Ward licensed under CC BY 2.0


Mak August 5, 2021 - 9:34 am

This leaves out one critical thing: the food was still terrible, even with the printed menu. I’m old enough to remember being served meals like this very well, and the fact is that nobody enjoyed eating this stuff, and it was still the butt of jokes. Fancy meals on planes are something that very few people want or need, and I’d rather have cheaper fares, less service in the cabin that keeps me stuck in my seat, fewer smells in the cabin, and the ability to buy or bring simple food that tastes better on the plane or to wait for a far better meal on the ground. With the exception of J and F on JAL and ANA, I don’t think I’ve ever had a meal on a plane that was half as good as a mediocre meal on the ground . . . a cabin is just not suited to it and no need to fit a square peg into a round hole.

Mally August 5, 2021 - 2:32 pm

Nothing is forever. For now…


Leave a Reply

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

%d bloggers like this: