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JetBlue announces crew base in San Juan

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JetBlue establishes a new crew base at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, expanding its commitment to Puerto Rico with over 400 local jobs, reflecting the airline’s growth and investment in the region.

JetBlue announced plans to open a pilot and flight attendant crew base at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU) in San Juan, Puerto Rico, underscoring the airline’s commitment to growth and investment in the region. JetBlue, which offers its customers a unique combination of low fares and great service, is the largest carrier in San Juan, which is one of the airline’s focus cities. The news coincides with JetBlue’s 22nd anniversary of service to the island and comes after the airline’s recently announced plans to expand service from San Juan into more U.S., Caribbean, and Latin America destinations.

The new crew base is expected to open by the end of 2024, and by 2025 bring more than 400 local jobs to San Juan, contributing significant economic and community impact. Stationing pilots and inflight crewmembers in San Juan will not only bolster job creation on the island but also enhance JetBlue’s service and operational capabilities throughout the Caribbean and beyond.

“We’re so excited to base hundreds more crewmembers right here in San Juan, where we are proud to be the largest airline with plans to grow even more,” said Warren Christie, JetBlue’s chief operating officer. “The new crew base will support our operation as we grow and benefit the local economy in a place we are proud to call home.”

“This great announcement from JetBlue is a testament to the potential of our Island and the growth we have had in the tourism sector over the past three years,” said Puerto Rico Governor Pedro R. Pierluisi. “This new crew operation base at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, in addition to creating hundreds of jobs, confirms the confidence of the airline in the Puerto Rico market. I thank JetBlue for choosing our Island for its continued economic growth on our Island.”

This operational expansion will station up to 120 pilots and up to 325 inflight crewmembers in San Juan, with the base opening in phases. Assigned pilots and inflight crewmembers will begin and end trips in San Juan, allowing JetBlue to further diversify its crew’s geography to better recover during irregular operations, such as severe weather. Currently, JetBlue crew bases include Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Newark, New York City, Orlando, and Los Angeles. In 2020, JetBlue added a maintenance base in San Juan for its technicians to provide aircraft maintenance and related services.

“The new San Juan crew base is truly a milestone in the island’s air access history and evidence of the strength of the long-standing partnership between Puerto Rico and JetBlue,” said Carlos Mercado Santiago, executive director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Company. “As a key domestic and international flight gateway in the Caribbean, the facilities at Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport will provide additional network expansion opportunities for the airline, as well as create new local jobs and increase the tourism industry’s contribution to Puerto Rico’s economic growth.”

JetBlue plans expansion in Puerto Rico with service to even more places

The announcement of JetBlue’s newest crew base comes just weeks after the airline announced it would be further expanding its network from San Juan with the addition of six new destinations across the U.S. East Coast, the Caribbean and Latin America, enhancing connectivity and offering more choices to customers. In July, it will also introduce its popular Mint experience for the first time on a daily flight between San Juan and New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). The addition of Mint, with its lie-flat seats and an elevated dining experience, will mark a milestone in premium travel for Puerto Rico. By this winter, JetBlue will offer nonstop service between Puerto Rico and 18 cities in the U.S., Latin America and the Caribbean.

In addition to positions created by the crew base, the planned network expansion will create approximately 80 additional new jobs in San Juan, spanning from frontline operational positions to technical operations roles, and will stimulate economic activity across the region, leading to further job growth. Currently, JetBlue employs over 370 crewmembers across Puerto Rico, supporting the airline’s operations in San Juan, Aguadilla, and Ponce.

“We are so proud that our superior product and service has resonated with Puerto Ricans and the many visitors we bring to the island,” said Christie. “As we set out to connect more people and destinations to Puerto Rico, we will do it by ensuring our staffing and our service meet the needs of our customers and standards they expect from JetBlue.”

For more than two decades, JetBlue has been known for its industry-leading travel experience, which provides every customer with the most legroom in coach1; seatback entertainment at every seat; free, fast and unlimited Fly-Fi broadband internet 2; complimentary, brand-name snacks and drinks; and award-winning customer service.

A community partner in Puerto Rico

JetBlue and its dedicated crewmembers are committed to giving back to the Boricua community and are proud to have supported numerous charitable causes in Puerto Rico over the years. Donating time to a variety of initiatives, including volunteer projects, conservation efforts, fundraising activities, airport events and community care, giving back is part of JetBlue’s role in the communities it serves.

In 2022, JetBlue hosted its signature event, “Fly Like a Girl,” for the first time in Puerto Rico. This event featured girls ages 4 to 14 years old from Puerto Rico visiting JetBlue’s crewmembers to learn about careers in aviation, and experience boarding an aircraft, aiming to spark their interest in the aviation industry. Over the past decade, the JetBlue Foundation has contributed travel certificates and more than $280,000 in grants and in-kind support to nonprofit organizations in Puerto Rico, primarily supporting science, technology, engineering, math and aviation education initiatives.

“I’m so proud of our crewmembers and their commitment to make a positive impact in the communities we serve, including here in Puerto Rico,” said Hector Camacho, JetBlue’s general manager for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. “Whether through hands-on community engagement or volunteerism, our team is dedicated to serving our customers, our communities and fellow crewmembers on the island. I am certain that our crewmember’s commitment to give back is the secret ingredient that makes our airline so special.”

As the largest carrier on the island, JetBlue is dedicated to investing in the infrastructure and community of Puerto Rico. This new crew base is part of a broader strategy to deepen its ties and commitment to the island, ensuring that the airline continues to contribute to its thriving tourism industry and economic stability.

 

1 JetBlue offers the most legroom in coach based on average fleet-wide seat pitch for U.S. airlines
2 Fly-Fi and live television are available on all JetBlue-operated flights. Availability and coverage area may vary by aircraft. Details on inflight wi-fi and entertainment

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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