JetBlue merger with Spirit Airlines could have impact on Manchester-Boston Regional Airport

JetBlue merger with Spirit Airlines could have impact on Manchester-Boston Regional Airport

JetBlue Airways has announced a deal to buy Spirit Airlines, creating the country’s fifth largest airline, which could lead to changes in the future at Manchester-Boston Regional Airport.Spirit flies out of Manchester, and JetBlue uses Boston Logan International Airport as a major hub.Manchester airport officials said that in the short term, it will be business as usual. Until the deal is approved by regulators, both airlines will continue to operate separately, and their routes won’t be impacted.A combined JetBlue-Spirit airlines flight may not takeoff until 2024 or 2025. There are a lot of regulatory hurdles ahead for the proposed merger from the justice and transportation departments, and the deal could take years to complete.Ted Kitchens, director of Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, said that what attracted Spirit to Manchester in the first place is the low costs for the airline, which will keep the airport competitive in the future.”When I started, we were about the same price as Boston,” Kitchens said. “Now, we’re about a third of the cost of Boston, so for an airline that’s looking at growing into this region as part of their network strategy, then they’re going to look around and see where the best deal is.”If the merger happens, aviation expert David Dague said it could unlock more routes for Manchester.”You know JetBlue is not in Manchester, Spirit is,” Dague said. “Those yellow planes will eventually be painted in white and blue, but I think that is actually going to be a positive because it will bring in JetBlue’s system into Manchester, expansion possibilities into New York to the West Coast to other Florida markets.”It could also bring in new competition.”So, success breeds success, and Spirit’s success in Manchester is going to open up those possibilities for not only Frontier, for markets and carriers like Avelo — there’s a few other carriers, Allegiant, that’s out there,” Dague said. Kitchens said other low-cost carriers such as Frontier Airlines, which was beat out by JetBlue to win Spirit, could be looking for new ways to expand into the region.

JetBlue Airways has announced a deal to buy Spirit Airlines, creating the country’s fifth largest airline, which could lead to changes in the future at Manchester-Boston Regional Airport.

Spirit flies out of Manchester, and JetBlue uses Boston Logan International Airport as a major hub.

Manchester airport officials said that in the short term, it will be business as usual. Until the deal is approved by regulators, both airlines will continue to operate separately, and their routes won’t be impacted.

A combined JetBlue-Spirit airlines flight may not takeoff until 2024 or 2025.

There are a lot of regulatory hurdles ahead for the proposed merger from the justice and transportation departments, and the deal could take years to complete.

Ted Kitchens, director of Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, said that what attracted Spirit to Manchester in the first place is the low costs for the airline, which will keep the airport competitive in the future.

“When I started, we were about the same price as Boston,” Kitchens said. “Now, we’re about a third of the cost of Boston, so for an airline that’s looking at growing into this region as part of their network strategy, then they’re going to look around and see where the best deal is.”

If the merger happens, aviation expert David Dague said it could unlock more routes for Manchester.

“You know JetBlue is not in Manchester, Spirit is,” Dague said. “Those yellow planes will eventually be painted in white and blue, but I think that is actually going to be a positive because it will bring in JetBlue’s system into Manchester, expansion possibilities into New York to the West Coast to other Florida markets.”

It could also bring in new competition.

“So, success breeds success, and Spirit’s success in Manchester is going to open up those possibilities for not only Frontier, for markets and carriers like Avelo — there’s a few other carriers, Allegiant, that’s out there,” Dague said.

Kitchens said other low-cost carriers such as Frontier Airlines, which was beat out by JetBlue to win Spirit, could be looking for new ways to expand into the region.

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