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What Exactly Does JetBlue's Purchase Of Spirit Airlines Mean?
Spirit Airlines sold itself to JetBlue Airways last week for $3.8 billion. The news came after Spirit broke off a merger with Frontier Airlines.
JetBlue now has to pass Biden’s Justice Department regulations. If passed, this deal could result in major changes for travelers.
While JetBlue has been known for comfortable seats, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a good snack selection, Spirit has been seen as a super low-budget, no-frills airline.
Spirit grew its company by offering cheap tickets to highly desired destinations.
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How JetBlue will change Spirit
We’re proud to announce JetBlue & @SpiritAirlines will come together to create a bigger, better JetBlue. After closing, we will offer 1700+ daily flights to 125+ destinations—and the low fares and award-winning service you know and love. Learn more: https://t.co/K0uz5rX3A1 pic.twitter.com/CjKzkhLJXO
— JetBlue (@JetBlue) July 28, 2022
JetBlue will leverage Spirit’s aircraft and pilots to grow its company. The aircraft will get makeovers and have more amenities as well as more comfortable seating.
The combined companies will make it the fifth largest carrier in the United States. The top 4 are currently American, Delta, United, and Southwest.
Both airlines will operate separately until the deal officially gets approved and is closed. After the merger becomes official, travelers will see updates to aircraft.
Although Spirit is often criticized, it has ranked 7th in on-time arrivals this year by the Transportation Department. JetBlue came in at number 10.
JetBlue’s CEO Robin Hayes says their priority is to improve reliability. This year, a third of the airline’s flights were delayed. According to Flight Aware, 4% of JetBlue flights have been canceled this year compared to 2.7% of Spirit flights.
Will flight costs increase?
Hayes says that scaling JetBlue will result in lower fares to more destinations. The airline currently offers low fares, like Spirit, that don’t include seat assignments or other amenities.
JetBlue is known for offering comfortable amenities, so the acquisition means flights will remain comfortable without breaking the bank.
When is the acquisition expected to be approved?
The deal between JetBlue and Spirit isn’t expected to be approved until late 2023 or early 2024. Once approved, the deal could officially close in the first two quarters of 2024.
It could be years to fully integrate both airlines. Renovating Spirit aircraft isn’t expected to start until 2025.
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