Last month I covered JetBlue’s ad campaign that alright isn’t good enough, trying to set themselves apart from other airlines.
The airline is beloved, though much of the credit they get is based on past efforts. JetBlue isn’t nearly as good as it once was, they even led last year’s checked bag fee increase. They’ve squeezed seats, just not as much as American, Delta, and United. And their Achilles heel is operational reliability,
- They are generally in the bottom half of the industry in on time operations
- They don’t interline with other domestic carriers, so when flights cancel you’re stuck waiting for another JetBlue flight which can even take days
- They have even had historically higher rates of involuntary denied boarding than other carriers, even with a policy of not overbooking their cabins (this is because of changing aircraft, swapping to planes with fewer seats than they’ve sold).
And of course JetBlue can barely be said to have a loyalty program.
Seth Miller outlines several new cost-cutting measures that JetBlue is taking with catering and aircraft cleanliness.
- Moving from Coke to Pepsi
- Pouring water instead of giving out individual bottles
- Reducing cleaning staff in Boston — one cleaner per plane instead of two, “focused on cleaning the lavatory.”
- Stretching a load of onboard snacks from one roundtrip out to two (increasing the likelihood that they run out of certain items on the second trip)
- Starting September 1 business class (‘Mint’) will eliminate who fruit snacks, the box that MilkBar cookies come in, and Raaka chocolates.
- Replacing Bulleit bourbon and Grey Goose vodka with Jack Daniels and Titos in business class.
JetBlue still offers free inflight internet and their coach seats have a bit more legroom, but the multi-year quest to become merely ‘a little less bad’ than competitors continues apace.