This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

JetBlue Maturing as Airline

Stocks in this article: JBL LUV CAL

In Boston, JetBlue was the fastest-growing carrier in 2008, adding an average of 190 passengers daily. In the current quarter, strong Florida traffic makes JetBlue Boston's No. 1 carrier. In Orlando, where it has added international flights to Bogota and San Jose, Costa Rica, JetBlue will be No. 2 this summer. At Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, JetBlue will have seven contiguous gates this spring, up from four today, and it will add flights to Santo Domingo and Cancun in June.

Of course, many airlines have struggled to build a franchise in Florida, where someone is always willing to charge a little bit less for a flight. In JetBlue's case, that someone is Spirit Airlines.

Privately held Spirit is off the radar for many industry observers, but it is the largest carrier at Fort Lauderdale International Airport, carrying about 20% of airport passengers. In the Fort Lauderdale-La Guardia market, where Spirit has seven flights a day and JetBlue has five, Spirit cost per available seat mile is 20% lower because it packs in its passengers, says Spirit CEO Ben Baldanza.

"They're a good airline, but they sell product, while we sell price," Baldanza says. "They can't make money at the fares we charge." Baldanza says South Florida to the Caribbean may also be a tough market for JetBlue, caught between price leader Spirit and well-established American (AMR). And Orlando, he said, is a leisure market with limited traffic: "We've tried a number of things out of Orlando -- it doesn't work," he said.

Overall, Baldanza said, JetBlue is a New York airline, hurt by the financial services meltdown and " playing the same game a lot of legacy airlines play, figuring out where its planes are losing money and how can they be redeployed to places where they will make money."

3 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 18,053.71 +23.50 0.13%
S&P 500 2,088.77 +6.89 0.33%
NASDAQ 4,806.8590 +33.3870 0.70%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs