JetBlue adds Amsterdam to compete with major rivals

NEW YORK (AP) — JetBlue said on Tuesday it would fly between New York and Amsterdam this summer after a Dutch court blocked government efforts to limit flights at Schiphol Airport.

JetBlue currently flies to London and will begin service to Paris in June. The Amsterdam flights will put the New York-based airline in direct competition with the alliance of larger rivals Delta Air Lines and KLM.

“This route is long overdue for some competition,” said Robin Hayes, CEO of JetBlue.

JetBlue said it eventually plans to add flights between Boston and Amsterdam, but didn’t reveal a timeline.

JetBlue has been trying to get permission to fly to Amsterdam for a while, but couldn’t get more than temporary takeoff and landing slots this summer, which wasn’t good enough. However, the airline reversed course on Tuesday, saying a court ruling against the Dutch government’s plan to reduce flights to Schiphol gave it confidence in entering the market.

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Most airlines use large, two-aisle aircraft for transatlantic flights, but JetBlue will operate a long-haul, single-aisle version of the smaller Airbus A321 to cut costs.

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