JetBlue has obtained one of the 14 flights to Cuba to which aspired American Airlines (AA), which is finally left with 13. The United States Department of Transportation, which set a limit of 20 daily round trips to Havana, has thus resolved the dispute that arose between the two companies for becoming with more routes.
American Airlines had six daily flights from Miami to the Cuban capital and starting in December it will expand to 13 more routes, while JetBlue adds one to the three it had from Fort Lauderdale.
Since the government of Joe Biden revoked the rule of the previous one, presided over by Donald Trump, which prohibited flights to Cuban cities other than the capital, American Airlines began requesting permission to expand operations and in July obtained authorization to fly from November to Santa Clara, Holguín, Varadero and Santiago de Cuba.
The airline said the flights would improve “service and access between the United States and these points outside of Havana, after more than two years during which such operations were suspended.”
The Fort Worth-based company submitted a request to increase the route between Miami and Havana by two more daily flights, one in the morning and one in the evening, which meant acquiring 14 frequencies
In August, the Fort Worth-based company submitted a request to increase the route between Miami and Havana by two more daily flights, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, which meant acquiring 14 frequencies.
At that time, JetBlue decided to enter the dispute, claiming that AA was taking over a dominant position. “There is no public interest justification for granting additional US frequencies while there is such a competitive imbalance,” argued the New York-based company, which requested a flight for Saturdays.
“Of all the US airlines, JetBlue has the fewest options to offer low-cost flights between South Florida and Havana on Saturdays, one of the most important days for travel in the Caribbean,” he added in his letter to Department of Transportation.
American Airlines, however, argued that the additional frequencies “would maximize benefits by increasing capacity at the gateway with the highest demand for travel between the US and Havana, while improving connectivity using American’s leading network in Miami”.
JetBlue has finally got what it wanted, although the benefit may accrue to both, since they are in a merger process under the name of Northeast Alliance, which depends on the decision of a federal court.
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