Will new transatlantic competition lower ticket prices?

JetBlue aircraft (Source: JetBlue)

In a time where some airlines struggle to survive others make plans for the future. This week, US carrier JetBlue announced to start connecting Europe and the United States. Next to that, Irish airline Aer Lingus announced to connect Manchester with the US, as an addition to its exiting transatlantic efforts. All in all, travellers’ options between the two continents will increase. But the question is: will the additional transatlantic offer lower ticket prices in the future?


The low cost carrier JetBlue currently focuses on domestic US destinations and routes to the Caribbean and Latin America. The airline operates a fleet of 268 aircraft by Airbus and Embraer. The largest part of the fleet consists of the Airbus A320-200 and A321-200 (including the -neo). The remainder of the fleet consists of Embraer E190 aircraft. JetBlue is planning to add the Airbus A321LR and A321XLR in the near future. The airline intends to operate these aircraft on the new transatlantic routes.

JetBlue offers an Economy Class cabin and on selected routes you will also find Premium Economy (Even More Space) and Business Class (Mint). Business Class isn’t available on all routes. JetBlue is not part of an airline alliance, but the airline does have several codeshare agreements with the likes of Emirates, Aer Lingus, Icelandair and South African Airways.

JetBlue aircraft parked at the tarmac (Source: JetBlue)
JetBlue aircraft parked at the tarmac (Source: JetBlue)

Aer Lingus

This week another carrier announced plans concerning transatlantic flights. Although Aer Lingus already flies between Europe and the US, the airline now adds Manchester to its transatlantic network. Currently, Aer Lingus only operates flights to the US from Shannon (SNN), and Dublin (DUB). The Irish airline mostly operates Airbus A330-300 and A321neo aircraft across the Atlantic. Both aircraft offer Economy and Business Class cabins. Aer Lingus also isn’t part of any major airline alliance, but the airline does have codeshare agreements with several strategic partners. 

Airbus A330 in Aer Lingus livery (Source: Aer Lingus)
Airbus A330 in Aer Lingus livery (Source: Aer Lingus)

Ticket prices

JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes thinks that additional capacity for transatlantic flights will eventually lower ticket prices. This is mainly due to increased competition. This most probably means that JetBlue is planning to offer competitive fares compared to other airlines that hop the pond. Of that is indeed that case, and Aer Lingus also joins that party, ticket price may actually drop. Moreover, it will be interesting to see how airlines are going to persuade travellers to book transatlantic flights post COVID-19.