American low cost airline JetBlue launches new transatlantic route to London using long-range Airbus A321 planes
American low cost airline JetBlue has officially entered the transatlantic market with a new, nonstop service between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and London Heathrow Airport (LHR).
The first customer-carrying JetBlue flight between the U.S. and the U.K. touched down at Heathrow just before 10 o’clock this morning.
The UK opened to fully vaccinated U.S. travellers earlier in August.
But transatlantic travel remains partially shut as the United States is still not allowing most travellers from Britain into the country because of the pandemic.
Anyone who does enter, including U.S. citizens, must present a negative COVID-19 test.
Despite this, flights between New York-JFK and Heathrow will operate daily in August and four times weekly in September on JetBlue’s new Airbus A321 Long Range (LR) aircraft.
LONDON | Congratulations @JetBlue on your first @JFKairport to @HeathrowAirport transatlantic flight aboard the stunning #A321LR with #Airbus‘ Airspace interior for enhanced passenger comfort. #JetBlueLHR pic.twitter.com/qknDW95Muk
— Airbus In The UK (@AirbusintheUK) August 12, 2021
The airline has said it is offsetting CO2 emissions on London flights and partnering with U.K.-Based Non-Profits.
JetBlue converted 13 aircraft in its existing A321 order book to the LR version in April 2019 with the ability to convert more.
Additionally, JetBlue has converted another 13 aircraft in its existing order book to the Extra-Long Range – or XLR – version of the A321, the wings for all the jets are made at Airbus Broughton.
“As we come out of the pandemic and the international market recovers, the A321LR will position JetBlue to offer long-haul international travel at the highest level of customer service and at the lowest cost and risk, said C. Jeffrey Knittel, chairman and chief executive officer, Airbus Americas.
“We are proud to partner with JetBlue and congratulate them on their vision, consistent ingenuity and careful attention to detail in delivering an enhanced transatlantic customer experience that is truly world-class.”
The A321LR allows JetBlue to tap into new long-haul markets, like London, that were not previously accessible with the airline’s existing fleet.
The LR’s range of up to 4,000 nautical miles is made possible by three additional center fuel tanks and the aircraft delivers 30 percent fuel savings and nearly 50 percent reduction in noise footprint compared to previous generations of aircraft. JetBlue is also the global launch partner for the new Airspace by Airbus cabin, bringing long-haul style to the A321 for the first time ever.
JetBlue’s A321LR is powered by two Pratt & Whitney GTF engines.
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