For those who have been procrastinating booking summer travel to Europe because of soaring international airfares, you can now breathe a sigh of relief, and say, non, je ne regrette rien—thanks to JetBlue Airways. After announcing in November that a new transatlantic route from New York to Paris was in the works, the low-cost carrier has officially put those flights on sale, and they are now available to be booked on the JetBlue website and app.
JetBlue’s daily service between New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) will begin on June 29, 2023, with introductory economy fares starting at $479 round trip, and Mint class seats (JetBlue’s version of business) starting at $1,899 round trip.
JetBlue flight 1407 will depart JFK daily at 5:09 p.m. local time and land at CDG the following day at 6:55 a.m. local time, and return flight 1408 will depart CDG at 8:55 a.m. local time and arrive at JFK at 11:51 a.m. local time.
The carrier is crossing the Atlantic using a fleet of Airbus A321 LR (long-range) planes, narrow-body aircraft that can fly longer and farther than previous iterations of the model. For transatlantic flights, the planes are configured with 114 coach seats, some with extra legroom, and an expanded 24-seat Mint premium class—JetBlue’s version of business class with lie-flat seats—including two rows of “Mint Studio” seating, featuring 22-inch TVs, added storage, and a seat and table for a guest. This year, the airline will begin taking delivery of the very latest version, the A321 XLR, which, as the moniker suggests, can fly even farther nonstop—up to about 5,400 miles, or 1,000 miles more than the 737 and other single-aisle models.
JetBlue prides itself on offering some unique on-board amenities, such as free, unlimited, high-speed Wi-Fi on all flights, a promise that extends to international service. In addition, the carrier’s aircraft feature seatback screens that stream live TV and movies, including a selection of French films for the Paris service.
When it comes to food, JetBlue aims to impress with a partnership forged with New York–based farm-to-table, vegetable-forward restaurant group Dig to create seasonal menus for all classes of service. A “pantry” on JetBlue flights offers complimentary self-serve snacks.
For the Paris flights, JetBlue “will introduce elements of French flair into the menu,” JetBlue’s president and COO Joanna Geraghty tells AFAR. Said menu is still in development and will be finalized closer to the route launch.
Where to next? JetBlue is eyeing additional Europe destinations
The new Paris flights will join JetBlue’s only other transatlantic route—New York to London—but more Europe gateways are likely to be added to the JetBlue roster, with Amsterdam topping the list of likely next stops.
Says Geraghty, “We’re dreaming about Amsterdam. We really would like to get in there. It’s a constrained airport that’s slot controlled [and] that’s dominated by legacy carriers, and we’d like to continue to be that disruptor that comes in and serves the customers in those communities with a better experience at low fares.”
All the “big 3” U.S. airlines have formal partnerships with European carriers to provide more seamless connections between the continents. American Airlines is part of the oneworld Alliance, which includes British Airways, and Delta Air Lines is partnered with Air France, KLM, and Virgin Atlantic for transatlantic flights. United Airlines is part of the Star Alliance network, which includes the airlines Lufthansa, Austrian, and TAP Air Portugal.
JetBlue will be strengthening its efforts to compete with them with the launch of nonstop service between New York and Paris, after which it will add nonstop service between Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) and CDG—although no precise time frame has been provided for the Boston flights.
JetBlue first entered the transatlantic market in August 2021 when it snapped up slots at London Heathrow that had temporarily opened up as travel halted during the pandemic. Last summer, the airline successfully sought permission to make the slots more permanent. And on October 29, JetBlue added a second daily flight between New York’s JFK and London Gatwick (where it started service later in 2021), bringing the number of frequencies between New York and London to three flights per day. JetBlue flights from Boston to Gatwick kicked off in August, followed by Boston to Heathrow flights in September.
While JetBlue might be one of the most recognized low-cost carriers crossing the pond from the United States, it certainly isn’t alone in the burgeoning travel segment. Several newer players have entered the low-cost long-haul market, including France-based French bee (which we recently reviewed); Level, the Spanish low-fare unit of IAG (parent of British Airways, Aer Lingus, and Iberia); Play, the reincarnation of Icelandic carrier Wow; and Norse Atlantic Airways, a resurrection of the former Norwegian Air that is growing its transatlantic service, too. With international airfares giving many travelers sticker shock this year, these lower-priced options offer hope for more affordable international travel.
Barbara Peterson contributed reporting.
Michelle Baran Michelle Baran is the senior travel news editor at AFAR where she oversees breaking news, travel intel, pandemic coverage, airline, cruise, and consumer travel news. Baran joined AFAR in August 2018 after an 11-year run as a senior editor and reporter at leading travel industry newspaper Travel Weekly.