Continental Airlines

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Continental Airlines

Continental Airlines (IATA Code: CO) is a U.S. airline based in Houston, TX. It operates domestic hubs at Cleveland (CLE), Houston International Airport (IAH), and Newark International Airport (EWR)

Continental has international service to Latin America from Houston, and to Europe from Newark. Continental has Asia/Pacific service from Newark to Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Tokyo/Narita.

As a result of the Delta/Northwest airline merger in 2008, Continental has left the SkyTeam airline alliance and joined the Star Alliance in late October 2009.

Continental has airport lounge reciprocity and growing flight code-sharing with United. Continental flights at Chicago/O'Hare Airport(ORD) are operating out of the fomer United Gates 1 - 4 in Concourse B.

Continental's Micronesia Division is based in Guam and provides service throughout the islands of Micronesia, and also to Hawaii. Continental also has a very close partnership with Panama-based "COPA Airlines" which provides service throughout Central America and to parts of South America.

The Continental website is a key source of information about flying CO. Unfortunately, information can be a bit difficult to find at times.

Frequent Flyer Programme

Continental's "One Pass" program has 3 tiers and can be achieved by flying the required miles and earning Elite Qualifing Miles (EQMs). Flights booked on credit 100% for EQM.

  • Silver 25,000 EQM
  • Gold 50,000 EQM
  • Platinium 75,000 EQM

Additionally, the FT forum on OnePass (CO's frequent flyer program) is a wonderful source about how things actually work. (For example, if one asks the OnePass Service Center about what happens when one is on the waitlist for a mileage upgrade and then becomes eligible for an Elite Upgrade Automation (EUA), one will get a non-deterministic answer. The OnePass forum seems to have pretty well sorted out that you'd better have good evidence that you got an EUA or else you'll lose the miles.)

(Also see the more extensive set of articles on "One Pass" that are linked to the bottom of this page.)


Continental's "President's Club" lounges are located in:

  • Atlanta (ATL),
  • Austin (AUS),
  • Boston (BOS),
  • Cleveland (CLE),
  • Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW),
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL),
  • Guam (GUM),
  • Honolulu (HNL),
  • Houston International (IAH),
  • Las Vegas (LAS),
  • Los Angeles (LAX),
  • New York/La Guardia (LGA),
  • Newark (EWR),
  • Panama City (PTY),
  • San Antonio (SAT),
  • San Francisco (SFO),
  • Seattle (SEA), and
  • Washington/National (DCA).

Because Houston (IAH) and Newark (EWR) are Continental's major hubs, they have multiple lounges at those airports.

In late October 2009, Continental joined "Star Alliance", enabling its elite passengers to access Star Alliance Gold lounges around the globe.

Flying Continental

Continental offers only 2 classes of service on its international routes. The front cabin, called BusinessFirst, usually offers a 156 degree recliner seat (170 degree on B-777 aircraft) and is comparable to Business Class on most major international airlines. The airline has rolled out new 180 degree flat-bed seats that are slowly being installed.

Continental has in recent years found out that there is a great market for non-stop service from the US (usually EWR) to underserved non-gateway cities in Europe; Belfast, Bristol (BRS), Edinburgh (EDI), Glasgow (GLA), and Berlin/Tegel (TXL) are examples. These are flown with smaller aircraft (usually 757-200), offering a good BF (BusinessFirst class), and a substandard coach cabin.

Continental's non-stop 777 service between Newark and Hong Kong has attracted many people in recent years, as no other US-flag airline offers any non-stop service to Hong Kong from the US east coast.


Continental Airlines:

  • 787: 25 are on order with Boeing.
  • 777-200ER 22 in service; 2 more on order with Boeing.
  • 767-400ER 16 in service.
  • 767-200ER 10 in service.
  • 757-300 21 in service.
  • 757-200 41 in service.
  • 737-900 42 in service.
  • 737-800 111 in service; 50 more on order with Boeing.
  • 737-700 36 in service.
  • 737-500 31 in service.

All of these have a 2-cabin seating configuration.

Continental Express:

  • CRJ-200 17 in service. This is a 50-seat regional jet.
  • ERJ-145 234 in service. This is a 50-seat regional jet.
  • Q-400 14 in service. This is a twin-engine propeller aircraft.

All of these only have Economy seating.

External links