JetBlue is applauding the recently-approved civil aviation agreement between the US and Cuba.
The company said it would submit its application for new routes to the US Department of Transportation once it had fully reviewed the terms of agreement “has clarity on the process and timing of assigning frequencies to U.S. airlines.”
“Interest in Cuba has reached levels not seen for a generation,” said Scott Laurence, senior vice president airline planning, JetBlue. “We will review the terms of the agreement to understand how JetBlue can expand from charter service to regularly scheduled service. Our years of experience in Cuba and unmatched customer experience positions JetBlue as the carrier of choice for travel to Cuba.”
The company said that, depending on the number of flight frequencies available to the airline, it was “eager to offer affordable service from numerous U.S. cities to multiple destinations in Cuba.”
Cuba is the perfect addition to the JetBlue network.”
“We hope the next dot on our Caribbean route map will be Havana, and possibly even other destinations in Cuba,” Laurence said. “Cuba is the perfect addition to the JetBlue network. Over the last several years, we have become a leader in the Caribbean with our position as the largest airline in markets like Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic and an expanding presence across the region.”
JetBlue began offering charters to Cuba in 2011, and has been steadily increasing its charter network both in New York and South Florida.
The company has been at the forefront of the newly-eased Cuba travel market, and it’s made no secret of its interest in flying to Cuba.
That was particularly clear in April, when JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes joined New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on a trade mission to Cuba.
So will JetBlue be the first US carrier to offer regularly-scheduled flights to Cuba? Or will American Airlines, another Cuba charter service titan, swoop in and take the lead?