JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes announced Wednesday that the airline plans to start flying to London from NY and Boston in 2021. Most airlines providing transatlantic flights cost more money to maintain and sell pricey tickets to match, while the low-priced carriers often charge you extra to bring along a tiny purse.
JetBlue shares rose 58 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $16.92 in anticipation of the widely rumored announcement.
The CEO made it official during an employee gathering at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport. Airbus's A321LR will be the cornerstone of the transatlantic service. The new route will opens up more markets for the carrier that hasn't usually been served in this way.
Discount carrier Wow Air Hf, which used single-aisle planes to connect European cities to the US with a stop in Iceland, shut down last month after failing to secure rescue funding. "It places cities such as Dublin and possibly Amsterdam in scope". The trans-Atlantic is a graveyard for airlines. "London is the largest metro area JetBlue doesn't yet serve from both Boston and NY, and we could not be more thrilled to be changing that in the years ahead".
Hayes, who has been JetBlue CEO four years, previously worked for British Airways, as did Chief Financial Officer Stephen Priest. He said he can offer dramatically lower fares in business class and throw in amenities like live TV and more legroom in economy to stimulate new demand.
Delta President Glen Hauenstein reacted that his airline has witnessed other carriers try to compete throughout the Atlantic.
"There are always new entrants coming and there always entrants leaving", he said, adding that he thinks Delta is "in a very good spot".
JetBlue has a lot of work to do until the very first passenger may board. The carrier has created an internal team to begin securing US regulatory approval for extended flights over water. It will tap outside assistance, and jetBlue has hired industry veterans with expertise in the FAA process, Hayes explained.
JetBlue will finally take you to London.
JetBlue, whose fleet comprises Airbus A320 and A321s and Embraer 190s, plans to fly the route with the A321LR; it is converting 13 of its A321neo orders into the long-range version for the transatlantic route, with the option for more later on.