JetBlue Outsources Planning to AirTran

This is starting to become a regular event for JetBlue. Let AirTran announce new markets and then announce you’ll fly the same routes with an earlier start date.

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The latest announcement is that JetBlue will begin flying to Newburgh/Stewart (just north of NYC) on Dec 19. Flights will operate from Newburgh to Orlando, Ft Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach.
Does this sound familiar? It might. AirTran announced three weeks ago that they would begin flying from Newburgh to Orlando, Ft Lauderdale, Tampa, and Atlanta on January 11. Intro fares started at $89, but JetBlue has come in with a $79 intro fare.
Does all this sound familiar? Again, it might. Let’s flash back to 2005. On November 10, AirTran announced it would start flying between Washington/Dulles and Boston beginning February 15. A mere one week later, JetBlue said they’d start the route as well, but they would begin on January 17. In the end, AirTran decided it wasn’t worth it to even try to fly it with that much competition and they walked away.
It’s an interesting strategy. You’d think AirTran wouldn’t make announcements so far in advance going forward anymore.
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