“Hacking” United’s Mobile Site To Find Out If Your Plane Will Have Wi-Fi, DirecTV, And Other Amenities

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United has great close-in award availability in lie-flat first class seats on their 11 hour nonstop flight to Newark to Honolulu:

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Of course you’re a DansDeals reader, so you’ve studied the ultimate Hawaii award chart and know that the best way to get there in first class is with 30,000 Singapore miles. No close-in fees, just $20 to make a date change or $30 to redeposit your miles. And you can transfer AMEX, Chase, Citi, or Starwood points over to Singapore.

And what better time to fly off to paradise than now?

But 11 hours without internet? There’s nothing better than 25 hours of shabbos where you spend quality offline time with the family, but when stuck in a metal tube, that can be considered a form of 21st century torture.

The only question is do you fly Thursday or Sunday?

Alas United.com won’t let you check the flight details and amenities for a flight more than 2 days in advance, so it makes things hard to compare :

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You jump over to the unofficial United fleet site and confirm that while most of the 767-400s (764) that operates the route do have WiFi, there’s a couple pesky ones flying around that still don’t.

United’s mobile site can be accessed at mobile.united.com.  So you click flight status and check for flights from EWR to HNL tomorrow, select the nonstop, click on amenities, and then in-flight entertainment.

No-mention of WiFi:

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And just to confirm things you double-check the exact aircraft, #3065:

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Which indeed has no Wi-Fi:

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So, Thursday is out.  But how about Sunday?

Here is the URL that you will have at the top of your screen after clicking on amenities for that flight.

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All you need to do is manually change the URL to the date you want, here’s the link to the page for 04/26.

And sure enough it has Wi-Fi:

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And just to be double-sure, you confirm that aircraft 3066 does have Wi-Fi on the fleet site.
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Who knows…maybe you’ll even bump into someone hopping onto the wackiest trip you’ll ever hear about?

Of course the aircraft is subject to change, so it does pay to watch it, after all it’s just $20 to change the date on your award ticket.  United’s mobile site and app also provide excellent info on incoming aircraft so you know about any changes or delays before they’re even posted for your flight.

This same system will work to see if your aircraft has DirecTV, lie-flat seats, in-flight power, etc.

This won’t work for flights too far in advance as they don’t have a specific aircraft assigned to them yet, but it’s dead useful in situations like this.

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10 Comments On "“Hacking” United’s Mobile Site To Find Out If Your Plane Will Have Wi-Fi, DirecTV, And Other Amenities"

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Mendy

Dan you are officially awesome!!!

SAMUEL

Thanks. it looks like it only goes till 7 days in advance. makes sense?

Ari

How do you figure $20 award ticket change fee?

matovu

Got it,
enjoy the hopper sunday.
you’re awesome.

bob

That’s cool, although I can handle being with no Internet for a day

moishele

you can also see there on the mobile site parts of names of ppl ticketed on the flight, interesting.

Q

How about a list by airline which aircraft has a
Flat bed at J?
And what does Dreamliner offer at economy? J?

ed

thumbs up.
thanks

iwlw2

It seems that this is no longer working, maybe United “fixed” it?

maw

not working for me

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