Look for more airlines to turn to codeshares with JetBlue as they seek alternatives to the American Airlines behemoth.
Shortly after American Airline’s announcement that it was breaking off its frequent flyer and interline partnership with JetBlue this March 15, oneworld partner JAL has just announced it will increase its codeshare cooperation with the trend-setting low-cost carrier.
Starting March 30, 2014, the number of JAL codeshare flights on U.S. domestic routes operated by JetBlue will increase, with a total of sixteen flights or flight pairs appearing on their schedule starting March 30.
JAL indicates that this additional cooperation with JetBlue will allow them “to further improve the convenience for transit passengers” flying their twice-daily service from Narita to JFK starting March 2014, as well as their flights to Boston and San Francisco. Through this code share, JAL ticket holders will be able to connect to a host of U.S. cities covered by JetBlue including, Long Beach, Houston, Orlando, and New Orleans.
The oneworld alliance member airline credits JetBlue’s “service quality including leather seating, rich in-flight entertainment, and unlimited snacks and drinks,” as factors of quality they require from a codeshare partner and also recognises JetBlue’s “strong U.S. domestic network.”
JAL indicates that this move is part of its continued efforts “to provide its customers with greater convenience through expanded network within the U.S..” It first established its codeshare cooperation with JetBlue in 2012 to increase its East Coast coverage, and now uses the JetBlue network for greater market penetration from coast to coast.
These new codeshare flights fill gaps in service or schedule from JFK, Boston and San Francisco, on both American Airlines and its newly acquired U.S.Airways, which would have made onward connections to the cities added by JetBlue complicated or impossible for JAL customers.
There is no mention of how milage credits will be applied for JetBlue flights to JALs frequent flyers in the airline’s announcement.
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Photo credit: Yoshiharu Ueki, president of Japan Airlines, poses for photographs with a model of JAL's Airbus A350-900 after an interview with Reuters at its headquarters in Tokyo. Yuya Shino / Reuters