Experts are saying that airfare hasn’t been this cheap since 2009. Do we have low-fare airlines like Spirit, JetBlue, and Frontier to thank for these low prices?
In 2022, Spirit Airlines and JetBlue Airways proposed a $3.8 billion merger deal. Some believed this would allow JetBlue to compete with the “Big 4” U.S. airlines: Delta, United, American, and Southwest. But recently, a federal judge blocked the proposed merger and claimed that the deal could drastically impact the industry. Now, JetBlue Airways has responded to the judge’s ruling, and Spirit Airlines issued a response of its own.
JetBlue Airways revealed that it is considering the idea of ending its bid to acquire Spirit Airlines, and may pull out soon, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Spirit responded by stating it plans to continue to meet its obligations regarding the merger “and it expects JetBlue to do the same.”
Spirit and JetBlue airlines stated their intention to appeal with a higher court following the news that a federal judge blocked JetBlue’s $3.8 billion deal. The Justice Department filed a lawsuit to block the merger and claimed that the deal would increase fares by reducing competition.
Most recently, JetBlue announced that the airline informed Spirit that certain aspects of the deal were not completed by the deadline, which may lead JetBlue to end the deal “as early as Sunday” (January 28th). Spirit then issued a response with a separate filing to dispute JetBlue’s statements.
According to the airline, “Spirit believes there is no basis for terminating the Merger Agreement.” If the merger were to happen, the deal would allow the two carriers to control roughly 10% of the domestic air travel business, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Currently, Spirit Airlines is the seventh largest airline in the U.S., while JetBlue is in sixth place. If the airlines merge, customers may see higher prices with one less budget airline to choose from when booking a flight.
We will continue to monitor the deal, so stay tuned for updates.