Scheduled for arrival at ALB: JetBlue

JetBlue airplane tailAnnounced today: JetBlue will begin service out of Albany International Airport in 2015. Chuck Schumer has been pushing for the airline to serve ALB, so he was chuffed about the announcement. Said the peripatetic Senator in a press release from his office:

"This should increase competition at the airport, increase the availability of flights to Albany International's most popular destinations, like Florida, and drive down prices for the average flyer. What's more, it will keep more residents in the area flying out of Albany, instead of traveling out-of-state for cheaper flights. It's a win across the board that will reap benefits for Albany International, JetBlue, and the region's tourism industry for years to come."

The two flights planned for the ALB schedule: Fort Lauderdale and Orlando. Here's JetBlue's current service map. Its slate of upstate-ish cities currently includes Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Newburgh, Westchester, and Burlington.

When word started spreading about JetBlue's impending arrival this morning, we noticed a bunch of people in our Twitter stream hailing the news. To which we ask, earnestly: Why?

We're kind of the thinking that most airline travel is pretty much like any other airline travel these days. Sure, there's some variation -- the Southwest people might be a bit funnier and that airline doesn't charge you for checking a bag. But on price, and many other aspects, there doesn't seem to be a lot of difference. So, aside from the increase in competition, what's the big deal? If you've flown JetBlue, please share. We're genuinely curious about what separates this airline from the others.

Elsewhere: A ranking of nine major carriers by the WSJ released in January pegged JetBlue at #5.

photo: Aaron Gustafson (cc) via Wikipedia

Comments

The two times I have had to take JetBlue out of Syracuse because of the destination, I have loved the extra legroom, and the wifi/tv capability.

TV's in every seat with Direct TV and Sirius more room in the seats.

My first and so far only experience with JetBlue was a flight to Austin out of JFK Terminal 5, which was great. I was quite impressed to find the only MUJI store in a US airport. The flight offered nice snacks (Terra Blue chips, cookies) and they let you take seconds. First checked bag is free. Also the legroom seemed pretty good, and I hear there is free (albeit limited) wifi now? So far I am thinking JetBlue is a win for Albany.

Just more variety, and more competition for the existing carriers. Also, more flights to Florida which is nice.

Leg room! As a freakishly tall female having space to actually fit my knees in was just the best. I took JetBlue out of JFK a few weeks ago and it was just an all around positive experience from the healthy and gluten free snack options all the way to the free checked bag.

I live in Hollywood Beach FL, and grew up in Delmar. I personally welcome the competition with SW for direct flights into Albany. The direct SW flights are often priced a lot higher than equivalent flights, and although I fly Delta for business constantly, when going home for a bit, I don't want the connection in ATL....

The more direct flights, the better the competition for the fares. I just hoe there's enough volume to support the two carriers....

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