DALLAS — JetBlue Airways (B6) announced two new nonstop flights from Orlando International Airport (MCO). The New York-based airline will launch service in November 2023 between Orlando to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and Santiago, Dominican Republic.
JetBlue will be the only airline to connect Orlando and Santiago with a nonstop flight. The airline also announced that after its acquisition of Spirit (NK) is approved, the airline is expected to reach 200 daily flights by 2027.
Flights between Orlando (MCO) and Punta Cana (PUJ) will operate daily starting on November 4. Flight B61077 will depart MCO at 8:35 AM and arrive in PUJ at 12:05 PM. The return flight B61078 will depart PUJ at 1:10 PM and arrive in MCO at 3:00 PM. Daily flights between MCO and Santiago (STI) will also begin on November 4. Flight B61265 departs MCO at 1:00 PM and will arrive at STI at 4:20 PM. The return flight B61266 will depart STI at 5:30 PM and arrive at MCO at 7:10 PM.
In 2008, Orlando became a JetBlue focus city, and the airline has grown its presence in Central Florida since then. The planned acquisition of NK will allow B6 to grow its route network, which would not be possible otherwise. B6 could offer flights to 20 cities not currently served by either carrier from Orlando and increase flight frequencies on 25 routes.
The airline had strongly advocated for the development of MCO’s new Terminal C. B6 became Terminal C’s anchor tenant when the US$2.8bn terminal opened in October 2022. The new terminal took over five years to construct and decades of planning.
In addition to B6, the terminal also houses other carriers, including Azul (AD), Aer Lingus (EI), British Airways (BA), Caribbean Airlines (BW), Emirates (EK), Gol (G3), Norse Atlantic Airlines (N0), Lufthansa (LH), and Icelandair (FI). The terminal has 15 gates that can accommodate 20 total aircraft.
Comments from JetBlue, MCO Officials
JetBlue Chief Executive Officer Robin Hayes commented, “we are pleased to share our plans to deliver more growth and more jobs in Central Florida, enabled by Florida’s booming economy, our combination with Spirit and as part of the growth commitments we agreed to with Florida Attorney General Moody.
He added, “This growth will establish JetBlue as Orlando’s national low-fare carrier of choice, ensuring customers don’t have to choose between low fares and a great experience.”
Kevin Thibault, Chief Executive of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, commented, “JetBlue’s new daily service to the Dominican Republic is a welcome addition to Orlando International Airport.”
Adding, “as an anchor in our innovative Terminal C, JetBlue continues to provide travelers with options to experience desirable destinations, including Orlando, recognized as one of the most visited cities in the U.S. These expanded routes help Orlando International deliver connectivity and strengthen our position as a major economic generator in the region.”
Featured image: jetBlue N967JT Airbus A321-231(WL). Photo: Ryan Scottini/Airways