State of the Airlines

Thursday, October 05, 2006

United Says No Fair to JetBlue in O'Hare

JetBlue has publicly coveted service to Chicago for quite a while so yesterday's announcement that it is has formally requested landing rights at Chicago O'Hare (ORD) comes as no surprise. However, this unabashed attempt to step into the backyard of two of the biggest airlines in the US, United Airline and American Airlines, did not go unnoticed. United has quickly flown the protest flag but not for anything related to business or congestion at O'Hare. Instead, United appears to be arguing on a technicality by stating:
"JetBlue must operate in accordance with the regulatory rules of the road, just as all other carriers must do. Because its current request ignores those rules, it must be denied,"
While that may be true it is, at best, a delaying tactic. If the FAA sides with United then its only a matter of time until JetBlue refiles the right way. So what will the United's next protest be? JetBlue's colors clash with the ticket counters in the terminal? Okay that's kinda unfair and over-simplistic but still...

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