United Airlines’ Denver Hiring Spree Draws Hundreds from Guam

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United Airlines officials announced today that 460 residents of Guam have relocated to Denver after accepting positions as ramp agents, following a 2-day job fair held on the island in January.

The move follows months of efforts by the airline to fill vacancies and hire new agents for a planned expansion in Denver, which is planned to eventually add about 1,800 new workers. About 2,600 Guam residents applied for the jobs, with 460 making it through the highly-specialized hiring process.

Entry-level wages in the Denver area start at around $20 an hour, with the union-negotiated payscales topping out at about $90,000 a year. Despite the high pay and union-protected job security, United has struggled to find new hires to work at Denver International. Efforts to find new workers have involved moving bonuses ranging well into the thousands of dollars.

Recently, United Airlines CFO Gerry Laderman dismissed speculation that the carrier could move its Headquarters from Chicago to Denver despite its recent purchase of over 100 acres of land near Denver International Airport.

Laderman was asked about the possible move at a September 6 investment conference.

“There are no imminent plans for that,” Laderman told the TD Cowen 16th annual Global Transportation Conference investors. “We have a long-term lease at the Willis Tower, our Headquarters. We’ve been there for decades in Chicago.”

The carrier recently purchased over 100 acres near Denver International Airport as part of a multi-million dollar expansion in the region, which includes a renewed presence at Colorado Springs. The investments led to some media speculation that the airline was considering relocating its Headquarters to the Denver area.

Laderman compared Denver to Houston, the home of former Continental Airlines, until the airline’s 2010 merger with United Airlines. “It’s fair to say Denver is like Houston. “We have a lot of facilities in Houston, and our in-flight training center’s there,” he said. “We have all sorts of operations there,” he continued. “Denver’s the same way.”

“We’ve outgrown it,” he said. “So one of the first things we’ll do with that new space we have is we have now a location to be able to expand the flight training center. And then over the years, we’ll find other opportunities.”

The idea that United might be interested in relocating to Denver is plausible; the land purchase was just the most recent action fueling such speculation. Denver is the second-busiest hub in United’s system, ranking right behind Houston’s IAH.

Denver rarely sees the types of stormy weather found in Chicago or Houston, where severe weather is a near-constant concern. Annually, Denver sees an average of 300 days of sunshine. Its position in the center of the United States would also give the carrier a Headquarters located about the same distance from its primary hubs, including San Francisco, Newark, Houston, and Chicago.

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United Airlines’ Denver Hiring Spree Draws Hundreds from Guam

September 8, 2023

United Airlines officials announced today that 460 residents of Guam have relocated to Denver after accepting positions as ramp agents, following a 2-day job fair held on the island in January.

The move follows months of efforts by the airline to fill vacancies and hire new agents for a planned expansion in Denver, which is planned to eventually add about 1,800 new workers. About 2,600 Guam residents applied for the jobs, with 460 making it through the highly-specialized hiring process.

Entry-level wages in the Denver area start at around $20 an hour, with the union-negotiated payscales topping out at about $90,000 a year. Despite the high pay and union-protected job security, United has struggled to find new hires to work at Denver International. Efforts to find new workers have involved moving bonuses ranging well into the thousands of dollars.

Recently, United Airlines CFO Gerry Laderman dismissed speculation that the carrier could move its Headquarters from Chicago to Denver despite its recent purchase of over 100 acres of land near Denver International Airport.

Laderman was asked about the possible move at a September 6 investment conference.

“There are no imminent plans for that,” Laderman told the TD Cowen 16th annual Global Transportation Conference investors. “We have a long-term lease at the Willis Tower, our Headquarters. We’ve been there for decades in Chicago.”

The carrier recently purchased over 100 acres near Denver International Airport as part of a multi-million dollar expansion in the region, which includes a renewed presence at Colorado Springs. The investments led to some media speculation that the airline was considering relocating its Headquarters to the Denver area.

Laderman compared Denver to Houston, the home of former Continental Airlines, until the airline’s 2010 merger with United Airlines. “It’s fair to say Denver is like Houston. “We have a lot of facilities in Houston, and our in-flight training center’s there,” he said. “We have all sorts of operations there,” he continued. “Denver’s the same way.”

“We’ve outgrown it,” he said. “So one of the first things we’ll do with that new space we have is we have now a location to be able to expand the flight training center. And then over the years, we’ll find other opportunities.”

The idea that United might be interested in relocating to Denver is plausible; the land purchase was just the most recent action fueling such speculation. Denver is the second-busiest hub in United’s system, ranking right behind Houston’s IAH.

Denver rarely sees the types of stormy weather found in Chicago or Houston, where severe weather is a near-constant concern. Annually, Denver sees an average of 300 days of sunshine. Its position in the center of the United States would also give the carrier a Headquarters located about the same distance from its primary hubs, including San Francisco, Newark, Houston, and Chicago.

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