With its new transatlantic routes, JetBlue should benefit from pent-up demand for travel from the UK to the US and vice-versa. However, significant risks are present.

Financial concerns have increased due to the pandemic. With many consumers recently unemployed or on lower wages, this leaves an opportunity for low-cost options to prosper. According to a live Verdict Community Survey*, the main factor (53% of respondents) in deciding on an airline to fly with is the price/value. This shows that budgets for holidays may be less than previous years, leaving opportunity for JetBlue.

With JetBlue offering lower fares on the US’s most popular international route (JFK (New York, US) to LHR (London, UK)), this will help to attract those who are financially struggling whilst simultaneously desperate for a vacation.

Travellers are willing to travel out of the continent

37% of respondents in a live Verdict Community Survey**, when asked what trips they would consider in the next 12 months, said they were willing to travel to a different continent, which is positive news for airlines in the transatlantic space. Intercontinental holidays are the second most popular answer after domestic holidays, where people are more likely to travel out of the continent than stay in the same continent (28% of respondents).

The UK and US are progressing well in terms of vaccine rollout, meaning concerns regarding transmission of COVID-19 during travel should be low. With increasing talks regarding COVID-19 passports, the development of this could lead to greater willingness in travelling across the pond, giving a much-needed income boost for JetBlue in the near future.

Business travel will also be a focus of JetBlue’s new routes. Declining corporate travel budgets will pose a threat to airlines dependent on business class passengers. However, JetBlue’s business fare may attract companies hit by budget cuts. 43% of respondents in a Verdict Community survey*** said that corporate travel budgets have been ‘significantly reduced’ due to the pandemic, showcasing the need for more low-cost options in this space.

JetBlue could struggle in the UK

Whilst the low-cost airline may be a household name in the US, UK travellers may not be aware of the brand. Entry into the UK market should be cautious, focusing on flexibility and hygiene procedures to respond positively to new traveller demands.

The airline may struggle to capture the UK market as using familiar brands will still hold great importance. Many travellers will also have flight vouchers issued in place of cancelled trips and therefore stay loyal to brands they have booked with before.

JetBlue’s new transatlantic routes will only be effective if the opening of the UK/US travel corridor runs smoothly. If a corridor is agreed in the near future, it needs to permanently stay in place to ensure the success of JetBlue’s new low-cost transatlantic routes. If the corridor is quickly retracted, traveller confidence will be damaged and JetBlue could experience significant losses as a result.


*Verdict community survey live since 19 April 2021, with 406 respondents.

** Verdict community survey live since 17 November 2020, with 1,341 respondents.

*** Verdict community survey live from 17 November 2020 to 16 April 2021, with 347 respondents.

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