JetBlue Will Transition to an All-Airbus Fleet
Hours after Airbus unveiled the A220 family (renamed C Series), JetBlue announced an order for 60 A220-300 aircraft (and 60 options) with deliveries beginning in 2020. The New York-based carrier also converted 25 A320neo orders into the larger A321neo.
✈ 60 orders + 60 options for A220-300
✈ Deliveries begin 2020
✈ E190 phase-out completed by 2025
JetBlue Will Retire E190 Fleet Beginning 2020
After years of speculation on JetBlue’s plans to replace its E190 fleet, the carrier announced it will begin retiring its E190 aircraft starting in 2020 – the carrier’s 20th year in operation.
We are evolving our fleet for the future of JetBlue, and the A220-300’s impressive range and economics offer us flexibility and support our key financial and operating priorities.
– JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes
JetBlue’s order book now consists of six A321ceo, 85 A321neo, and 60 A220-300 – for a total of over 150 aircraft on order.
A Potential Game-Changer for JetBlue’s Operation
JetBlue’s core operations are centered on the Northeast – with hubs in Boston (BOS) and New York (JFK) – and Florida, namely Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and Orlando (MCO). JetBlue’s smaller E190 aircraft enabled the carrier to expand into smaller markets and fly routes with less demand, like Boston (BOS) to Austin (AUS) and New Orleans (MSY).
JetBlue’s E190 can comfortably fly 3+ hour flights, but the fleet cannot operate transcontinental routes (see below for a few notable exceptions*)
With a published range of 3,300 nautical miles, the A220-300 can operate ‘thin’ transcontinental routes (i.e. less demand) and potentially even transatlantic routes to cities like Dublin, Lisbon, London, etc.
JetBlue will be able to leverage the unbeatable efficiency of both the A321neo and the A220-300, as well as taking advantage of the roomiest and most customer-pleasing cabins of any aircraft in their size categories.
– Eric Schulz, chief commercial officer for Airbus
*JetBlue set the record for longest E190 flight in 2008 – 2,694 miles – nonstop from Anchorage (ANC) to Buffalo (BUF) on a charter flight for the McCain-Palin campaign. The carrier previously operated very limited transcontinental flights on the E190, like Long Beach (LGB) to Washington Dulles (IAD).