JetBlue, American given OK to suspend Worcester flights

  • In a move widely expected, JetBlue Airways and American Airlines can suspend service to Worcester Regional Airport in light of the COVID-19 crisis, according to a determination made by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

    Not yet a member of The 016? Sign up today!

    In its Final Order on Adjustments to Service Obligations dated Wednesday, June 3 and released Thursday, June 4, the DOT wrote, “The Department recognizes the challenges faced by communities resulting from the loss of certain air services. However, the Department believes that the process we are finalizing here strikes an appropriate balance between the needs of communities to maintain at least minimal access to the national air transportation system during the public health emergency, and the needs of carriers to conserve financial resources to weather this time of unprecedented loss of demand.”

    JetBlue and American were officially given the OK to suspend service at Worcester Regional Airport

    JetBlue and American are among 15 carriers affected by the order.

    According to an article on the site One Mile at a Time: “Several weeks the DOT announced that US airlines would be able to drop service to more airports:

    • “Airlines can drop service to either five total markets, or to 5% of their total markets served, whichever is greater
    • “Airlines could prioritize the markets to which they wanted to drop service, and then the DOT would make the final decision, ensuring that each market still has service from at least one airline
    • “These exemptions apply for service through September 30, 2020 (after that airlines can do whatever they want, since CARES Act funding runs out)”

    According to an April 9 article in Worcester Business Journal, JetBlue had already suspended flights between Worcester and Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Its remaining flight, to JFK in New York, can be suspended.

    Also affected is American Airlines service between Worcester and Philadelphia. 

    With these suspensions, Delta is the only large commercial carrier servicing Worcester Regional Airport. Delta operates a flight between Worcester and Detroit.

    In a May 27 article on Spectrum News 1, Massport said: "JetBlue and American have been, and continue to be, great partners both at Logan and Worcester Regional. We look forward to both these airlines returning to Worcester in the near future to continue serving all of Central Massachusetts."

    What else happened today in Worcester? Click here or keep scrolling ⤵️