Fresh on the heels of a New Years schedule cut, JetBlue expects to further trim operations into February. The company informed crew on Friday of impending “adjustments to our February schedule” in light of shifting customer demand.
The carrier’s initial cuts covered 1,288 flights scheduled to operate between 30 December and 13 January. Those changes explicitly addressed “staffing challenges throughout the system.” This was attributed to COVID infection rates among crew and limited availability, even with reduced isolation requirements from the CDC. Those changes are expected to be finalized within JetBlue’s operations by the end of the weekend.
The revised February schedule will be a more proactive take on adjustments, though still in the very short term. It also balances staffing challenges and reduced passenger demand.
The company did not indicate to what level schedules will be trimmed as part of the February adjustments. The changes are anticipated to be completed internally mid-week, with subsequent updates to the public scheduling systems.
It remains to be seen if other airlines will join JetBlue in making similar adjustments to their operations. Presumably consumer demand and COVID impacts on staffing will be distributed more broadly than just against the JetBlue operation.
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