The first United Airlines flight serving Paine Field in Everett taxis to the gate last March 31. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

The first United Airlines flight serving Paine Field in Everett taxis to the gate last March 31. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

United Airlines to end flights from Everett to San Francisco

The carrier cited insufficient demand. United will continue to fly from Paine Field to Denver.

EVERETT — Less than a year after beginning passenger flights from Paine Field, United Airlines will end service to San Francisco next month.

The carrier will continue to serve Denver with three daily flights.

“Over the weekend, we made a schedule change, discontinuing service between San Francisco and Everett, effective March 5,” United Airlines spokesman Jonathan Guerin said Monday in an email to The Daily Herald.

Customers with tickets beyond that date will be automatically rebooked and will receive notification of the change, according to the airline.

“We continuously review demand for travel in markets across the United States,” Guerin said. “In this case, we determined there was not sufficient demand and we made the difficult decision to discontinue service between San Francisco and Paine Field. We will continue to operate service between Denver and Everett with Embraer 175 aircraft.”

Beginning Feb. 13, Chicago-based United will fly three round trips a day to Denver, which is one of the carrier’s main hubs.

Passenger service at Paine Field is capped by the federal government at 24 daily departures and 24 arrivals. Six of those 24 slots belong to United. The company did not comment on plans for the three open slots.

United shares a new terminal at Paine Field with Seattle-based Alaska Airlines. Alaska offers 18 daily departures to 10 destinations, including San Francisco.

In October, Alaska said it was considering flights from Everett to Chicago and Dallas. Spokesman Ray Lane on Monday said the airline was aware of United’s reduction in service and “our schedule to and from Paine Field remains unchanged at this time.”

Alaska Airlines has so far described service at Paine Field as successful. In the fall, CEO Brad Tilden even expressed a wish that the two-gate passenger terminal be expanded to five or six gates.

United’s service between Paine Field and hubs in San Francisco and Denver started last April with four daily flights to San Francisco and two to Denver. While the service is under the United Express brand, the planes are operated by Utah-based regional carrier SkyWest.

All of Alaska’s current Paine Field flights serve western destinations: Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orange County, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Spokane and Palm Springs.

Janice Podsada; jpodsada@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3097; Twitter: JanicePods

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