JetBlue has announced that the launch of their flights from Boston to London has been postponed. The airline mentioned delivery delays from Airbus as the reason for the change.
Flights to London Gatwick now start on 4 August and to London Heathrow on 20 September. This represents a delay of several weeks from the scheduled launch dates, July 19 and August 22, respectively.
Affected passengers have been redirected via New York JFK on JetBlue’s existing transatlantic services, rebooked with partner airlines or offered full refunds.
JetBlue has delayed the launch of its services from Boston to London Gatwick and London Heathrow by several weeks. Photo: Sumit Singh | Simple flight
When the services are eventually launched, JetBlue will be the only airline flying from Boston to both London Gatwick and London Heathrow airports. The flight plans will be as follows:
- Boston to London Gatwick – departure at 18.37, arrives at 6.35 (+1)
- London Gatwick to Boston – departure at 12.15, arrives at 15.02
- Boston to London Heathrow – departure at 18.32, arrives at 6.30 (+1)
- London Heathrow to Boston – departure at 8.25 with arrival at 11.13
A321LR delivery delays
The setback is caused by delays in the delivery of aircraft. The Airbus A321LRs that JetBlue is waiting for have been ordered specifically to operate the airline’s transatlantic services. The A321LR’s range of 4,000 nautical miles is longer than the existing A321s in JetBlue’s fleet, and is more than enough to cover the 2,800 nautical miles between Boston and London.
JetBlue’s A321LRs feature 24 redesigned Mint Suites and 114 Core seats, offering passengers an impressive 32-inch economy class seat height. The airline currently has three A321LRs in its fleet, with a further 10 on order.
JetBlue’s Mint Suite on the A321LR. Photo: Sumit Singh | Simple flight
While Boeing has recently hit the headlines on several occasions due to delivery delays, such as those affecting Emirates’ Boeing 787s and Akasa Air’s Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, its competitor Airbus has mostly managed to avoid the limelight. Today’s announcement from JetBlue, however, shows that Airbus is not immune to the problems.
While the routes from Boston to London have been postponed due to lack of suitable aircraft, JetBlue has also cut a number of flights from its summer schedule due to ongoing disruptions and staff shortages. Many airlines around the world are currently facing similar problems as the demand for travel increases after the pandemic.
To disrupt the transatlantic market
JetBlue, the seventh largest airline in North America by passengers, already flies to both London airports from New York JFK. The airline launched its long-awaited transatlantic services in August last year, closing a gap left after the closure of Norwegian’s long-haul services. Since then, its low prices and highly rated onboard product have disrupted the market.
Norse Atlantic Airways joins JetBlue on the New York JFK route to London this summer. Photo: Norse Atlantic
With 10 more A321LRs still to be delivered, JetBlue may announce additional transatlantic routes in the future. This summer, the airline will meanwhile face further competition on the New York to London route from Norse Atlantic Airways, although it is still unknown whether the Norwegian airline will also enter Boston for the London market.
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