JetBlue’s London Flights to Get Luxury Touches in Premium Cabins
(Bloomberg) -- JetBlue Airways Corp. has remodeled its premium Mint cabin for the company’s trans-Atlantic debut later this year, changing the seats into “suites” with sliding doors and adding two larger “studios.”
The carrier will offer 24 premium berths on flights connecting New York and Boston with London, which are set to begin in the third quarter with single-aisle Airbus SE A321LR jets, according to a statement Monday. JetBlue also will install 14 suites and two studios on new “low density” A321 planes that will fly between New York and Los Angeles starting in June.
The carrier will enter a trans-Atlantic market hammered by the coronavirus pandemic, which has prompted the U.S. to temporarily restrict travel from the U.K., Ireland and 26 other nations in Europe. JetBlue, which has vowed to undercut “obscene” business-class fares, is betting on a recovery later this year spurred by virus testing requirements and expanding vaccination efforts.
“Demand changes quite quickly overnight when case counts come down and travel restrictions are lifted,” Chief Operating Officer Joanna Geraghty said in an interview.
JetBlue remains in talks to secure “the right slots at the right airport at the right time,” she said, referring to authorization to operate at London’s Heathrow and Gatwick airports. The New York-based airline is nearing an airport announcement, she said.
The studio has an extra seat and pop-out table that will enable two people to dine together. Geraghty declined to comment on fares or how much higher the price of a studio will be compared with other seats on the plane. The A321LR will have “just over” 100 coach seats, although JetBlue hasn’t settled on a final number.
JetBlue first introduced its Mint premium cabin in June 2014 on a handful of flights connecting New York with Los Angeles and San Francisco. The carrier touted the seats as being cheap enough for vacation travelers to fly cross-country in a first-class experience. Mint has since been expanded to 30 routes.
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