Economy

JetBlue to start offering flights to London

JetBlue to start offering flights to London”

Officials noted that London is the largest destination not served by the airline from both NY and Boston, and that the city had been a popular request from its customers.

It noted the A321LR would allow it to tap into new long-haul markets not previously accessible to its fleet. But the airline plans to expand its European destinations within reach of its aircraft.

JetBlue, which is also Boston's largest airline, said the new routes to London will be served by Airbus A321LR and will mark the first-ever transatlantic service offered by the award-winning airline. Norwegian Air makes the Boston-Gatwick route. The carrier will immediately face twin competitive threats from entrenched global airline alliances and struggling low-priced operators, while also needing to secure space at crowded airports.

JetBlue says it selected London as its first European market based on the company's formula for choosing which destinations to serve: markets that are overpriced, underserved, or both.

"Given a chance to compete, JetBlue can have a tremendous effect on lowering fares and stimulating traffic", she added. For one thing, it needs approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to conduct long, over-water flights with two-engine jets.

JetBlue has been calling on regulators in the US, United Kingdom and European Union to force airlines that are members of global alliances to give up some valuable flight slots at congested airports like Kennedy and London's Heathrow airport.

The competition is also tough at less trafficked hubs.

Hayes thinks there is room for JetBlue to undercut bigger rivals, whom he accuses of price-gouging.

With JetBlue flights, Boston will have five airlines offering flights to London - British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Delta Air Lines fly to Heathrow and are expected to join Cirium soon. From it's New York, Boston and Washington hubs, JetBlue now flies to a number of global destinations in South America and the Caribbean, with a reach extending as far as Peru, but London will be the airline's first foray into across the Atlantic.



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