Tag Archives: Airbus A320-232

Reuters: Ryanair plans to replace Lauda’s Airbus jets with Boeing

Lauda - laudamotion.com Airbus A320-232 OE-IBJ (msn 3259) PMI (Ton Jochems). Image: 946729.

From Reuters:

“Ryanair plans to cancel all Airbus deliveries of Airbus jets planned for its subsidiary Lauda, and expects to replace them with ones from Boeing, its chief executive Michael O’Leary said on Tuesday.

“We have aircraft that are due to be delivered over the next 12 months and we will cancel almost all of those deliveries,” which are from leasing companies, O’Leary told Reuters in an interview.

“I think Lauda will have a fleet of about 30 Airbus aircraft – we would probably replace those Airbus with Boeing over the next couple of years,” he said, on condition that Ryanair reach “an acceptable outcome” in talks with Boeing over compensation for delays to deliveries of the 737 MAX.”

Top Copyright Photo: Lauda – laudamotion.com Airbus A320-232 OE-IBJ (msn 3259) PMI (Ton Jochems). Image: 946729.

Lauda aircraft slide show:

JetBlue announces its first quarter 2020 results

Airline Color Scheme - Introduced 2019 (Spotlight)

JetBlue Airways Corporation today reported its results for the first quarter 2020:

  • Reported GAAP loss per share of ($0.97) in the first quarter of 2020 compared to a diluted earnings per share of $0.14 in the first quarter of 2019. Adjusted loss per share was $0.42(1) in the first quarter of 2020 versus adjusted diluted earnings per share of $0.16(1) in the first quarter of 2019. Note A to this earnings release includes the GAAP to Non-GAAP reconciliation between reported and adjusted diluted earnings per share.
  • GAAP pre-tax loss of ($354) million in the first quarter of 2020, compared to a pre-tax income of $58 million in the first quarter of 2019. Excluding the one-time items, adjusted pre-tax loss of ($152) million(1), versus adjusted pre-tax income of $70 million(1) in the first quarter of 2019.
  • GAAP pre-tax margin of (22.3%) in the first quarter of 2020, down 25.4 percentage points from a pre-tax margin of 3.1% in the first quarter of 2019 due to the impact of COVID-19. Adjusted pre-tax margin of (9.5%)(1), a decline of 13.2 percentage points year over year from adjusted pre-tax margin of 3.7%(1), exclusive of the one-time costs.

Operational Highlights from the First Quarter

  • First quarter 2020 revenue declined 15.1% year over year as a result of a 52% decline in March revenue due to the impact of COVID-19, resulting in both lower demand volumes and a very challenging fare environment following a very solid start to the year.
  • Reduced March capacity by 19% year over year and took aggressive action to reduce second quarter 2020 schedules to mitigate cash burn. Our ability to adjust March schedules was limited to close-in cancellations.
  • Operating expenses increased 7.1% year over year. Excluding special items, adjusted operating expenses(1)declined 3.6% year over year. We successfully removed ~$150 million from our planned cost base in the first quarter driven by variable cost reductions, mainly through capacity cuts in March and fixed costs reductions achieved by adjusting work schedules where possible and eliminating some discretionary spend.
  • Increased cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments from $1.3 billion at the end of 2019 to approximately $1.8 billion at end of first quarter of 2020. We further increased our liquidity to $3.1 billion as of April 30, 2020, resulting from additional financing transactions and full disbursement from the CARES Act Payroll Support Program of $936 million.

Balance Sheet and Liquidity

  • JetBlue ended the first quarter with approximately $1.8 billion in unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short-term investments, or 22.2% of 2019 revenue.
  • JetBlue repaid $102 million in regularly scheduled debt and finance lease obligations during the first quarter of 2020.
  • JetBlue has taken the following measures to-date to bolster liquidity:
    • Raised $1.0 billion under a secured, 364-day term loan.
    • Drew down $550 million under the existing credit revolver.
    • Negotiated with business partners to extend payment terms and reduce expenses.
    • Revised order book with Airbus, resulting in a $1.1 billion reduction in aircraft capital expenditures through 2022.
    • Deferred plans to take delivery of four leased aircraft announced in January.
    • Paused A320 cabin restyling program, having completed over half of our fleet.
    • Suspended all non-essential projects across the organization.
    • Ceased share repurchases until further notice.
  • Resulting from the actions taken, JetBlue expects to reduce its daily cash burn from an average of $18 million in the second half of March to just below $10 million in May, excluding the CARES Act support of approximately $5 million per day through the end of the third quarter.

CARES Act

  • JetBlue reached an agreement with the Department of Treasury to receive $936 million under the Payroll Support Program of the CARES Act. The payment consists of $685 million in grants and $251 million in an unsecured term loan.
  • In consideration for the payment, we issued approximately 2.6 million warrants to the Department of Treasury.
  • In late April, JetBlue applied for the Loan Program of the CARES Act, which would provide up to $1.14 billion in additional liquidity, if needed.

Fuel Expense and Hedging

The realized fuel price in the quarter was $1.86 per gallon, a 9.3% decline versus first quarter 2019 realized fuel price of $2.05.

The decline in average fuel prices reduced the Company’s first quarter 2020 fuel expense by approximately $46 million versus our January 2020 guidance. The reduction in fuel consumption driven by capacity cuts reduced the Company’s first quarter 2020 fuel expense by approximately $40 million versus our January 2020 guidance.

JetBlue has entered into forward fuel derivative contracts to hedge its fuel consumption for the second, third, and fourth quarter of 2020. Based on the forward curve as of April 24th, JetBlue expects an average all-in price per gallon of fuel of $0.76 in the second quarter of 2020.

Protecting our Stakeholders

“I could not be prouder of our JetBlue family – not just over the past two decades – but for their service to each other, our customers, and our communities as they provide an essential service during the coronavirus pandemic,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s Chief Executive Officer.

“We entered this crisis with the second strongest balance sheet among U.S. airlines. In the past two months, we have moved quickly to both protect and strengthen our liquidity position. Since the beginning of March, we have made decisive changes to our growth plan to minimize cash burn, including deep capacity cuts to our schedules. We have now reduced our CAPEX plan by $1.3 billion between now and the end of 2022, and by the end of May, we anticipate we will have lowered our operating expenses by approximately 50% year over year.

As we move towards recovery, we have three priorities. The first is the immediate need to protect the safety of our Crewmembers and Customers. The second is to minimize cash burn. The third priority is to set JetBlue up for future success by restoring Customer confidence, by returning to cash generation, and by rebuilding our margins and balance sheet.

We believe that, not only will we get through this crisis, but we will ultimately emerge as a stronger JetBlue. JetBlue has been a force for good for our industry, and we have been resilient through crises for over 20 years.”

Action Plan, Revenue and Capacity

“Our first priority since the onset of the pandemic has been to ensure the safety of our customers and crewmembers. We have responded quickly to changing conditions, and overseen the rapid evolution of policies and programs designed to address the threats to crewmember and customer safety posed by this virus,” said Joanna Geraghty, JetBlue’s President and Chief Operating Officer.

“Although the overall number of bookings remained extremely limited, we believe that we reached the bottom in terms of demand around mid-April, and expect to have a better sense of third and the fourth quarter of 2020 by early summer.

Our March capacity declined 19% year over year, as a result of scheduled reductions and close-in cancellations. Our working assumption for the second quarter is for capacity to be down about 80% compared to our original plan.

While much of our team is focused on navigating the near-term challenges, we are focused on how the business will look for customers and crewmembers as we transition to recovery. We believe our inherent strengths as a trusted brand with an unparalleled culture and superior product will serve us well, as customers evaluate their air travel options. We plan to continue to be thoughtful as we adapt to changing customer needs.”

Cost Performance and Outlook

“Thanks to our continued focus in managing JetBlue to investment grade metrics, building a strong balance sheet, improving our cost structure and strengthening our margins, we believe we are in the best position of any time in our 20-year history to effectively weather this crisis and emerge even stronger,” said Steve Priest, JetBlue’s Chief Financial Officer.

“From a financial perspective, we are focusing our efforts over the coming months on three key areas: preserving our liquidity, reducing operating expenses, and managing our capital expenditures.

We started the year with $1.3 billion in cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments. By the close of April, our liquidity position reached $3.1 billion, or ~38% of our 2019 revenue, including the payroll support through the CARES act.

In addition to successfully raising liquidity in a short period, we have acted with urgency to minimize our cash burn, reducing our expenses and re-working our plan for capital expenditures. We lowered our cash burn from an average of $18 million per day during the second half of March, to just under $10 million per day by May, excluding proceeds from the Payroll Support Program. We are leaving no stone unturned to protect the financial security of JetBlue.”

Top Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N794JB (msn 4904) (Spotlight) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 949849.

JetBlue Airways aircraft slide show:

JetBlue to honor 100,000 healthcare workers with pairs of roundtrip flight certificates, will have a New York flyover

JetBlue Airways has launched JetBlue Healthcare Hero, which will honor 100,000 healthcare workers with roundtrip flight certificates for two to anywhere JetBlue flies.

JetBlue will also bring the Clap Because We Care movement to the skies with a three aircraft, low altitude flyover salute above New York City on May 7 at 7 p.m. ET. The flyover will include the airline’s three New York-themed special liveries honoring the Fire Department of New York (FDNY), New York Police Department (NYPD) and all who live in and love New York (I LOVE NY/Empire StateDevelopment).

"Blue Bravest"

Above Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N615JB (msn 2461) (FDNY – Fire Department New York) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 939468.

2017 version of "Blue Finest"

Above Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N531JL (msn 1650) (Blue Finest – Honored to Support New York’s Finest) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 939472.

JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N586JB (msn 2160) (I Love NY) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 949900.

Above Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N586JB (msn 2160) (I Love NY) JFK (Fred Freketic). Image: 949900.

“JetBlue’s mission of inspiring humanity is stronger now more than ever,” said Joanna Geraghty, president and chief operating officer, JetBlue. “We applaud the healthcare workers who are helping us get through this challenging time and inspiring humanity along the way. This is an opportunity for us to fly it forward and show our appreciation for the heroic efforts of medical professionals, first responders and public servants – not just here in our home of New York but around the country as well.”

Nominate Your JetBlue Healthcare Hero

To kick off the program, JetBlue is donating pairs of roundtrip flight certificates for 10,000 healthcare workers at the Mount Sinai Health System, including their Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island campuses, as well as at NYC Health + Hospitals, the largest public healthcare system in the United States with more than 70 locations across the city’s five boroughs.

JetBlue is now calling on customers to thank the healthcare heroes in their life – from doctors and nurses, to pharmacists, therapists, social workers, public health administrators and more – by nominating them for a chance to receive one of 90,000 pairs of roundtrip flight certificates for two to use when the time is right. Starting today through May 15, 2020, customers can submit a brief description of why they are nominating their healthcare hero (a). For more information and full terms, please visit jetblue.com/healthcarehero.

JetBlue Crewmembers Invited to Celebrate Their Own Healthcare Heroes

Over the past 20 years, first responders have been at the heart of JetBlue. Many retired police officers, firefighters, EMTs, nurses and military personnel are actively employed across the airline. With this camaraderie in mind, JetBlue is providing its almost 23,000 crewmembers with roundtrip flight certificates to gift to the healthcare heroes in their life.

JetBlue Brings Clap Because We Care Movement to the Skies Thursday, May 7 at 7 p.m. ET

Every night, New Yorkers take to the streets at 7 p.m. to applaud the efforts of healthcare and essential workers near and far.

On May 7, JetBlue will take the Clap Because We Care movement to new heights by flying its three New York-themed liveries at a low altitude over the Big Apple during the evening clap. The aircraft, I Heart Blue York, co-branded in partnership with Empire State Development with the I LOVE NY; Blue Finest, dedicated to the New YorkPolice Department; and Blue Bravest, honoring the Fire Department of New York, will make an appearance over New York City between 7-8 p.m. tomorrow evening.

The flyover is being operated at no cost to JetBlue. The airline thanks its partners at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, JetBlue Air Line Pilots Association, CarbonFund.org and a fuel provider. JetBlue also thanks NYC Emergency Management, as well as the Federal Aviation Administration for their incredible logistics support to make these flights happen, on top of all of their support of JetBlue during this pandemic.

Continuing to Support the Medical Community

JetBlue remains firmly committed to its mission of inspiring humanity by helping to get healthcare workers and much-needed supplies to the places where they are needed most.

To-date, JetBlue has flown more than 1,400 medical professionals to New York City and other destinations to help in relief efforts. Additionally, the airline has donated one million TrueBlue points to transport Red Cross personnel and disaster relief volunteers, along with 7,500 books and online educational resources to kids in need. Recently, JetBlue worked with Mercury Medical to fly 2,400lbs of cargo containing 2,500 disposable CPAP devices to New York State, in addition to the Ricky Martin Foundation, Project Hope and Charity Stars to fly critically needed personal protective equipment (PPE) to Puerto Rico for distribution in dozens of hospitals. to fly critically needed PPE down to Puerto Rico for distribution in dozens of hospitals. The airline has also donated cots, blankets and Mint amenity kits to Mount Sinai hospitals throughout New York to help keep their medical professionals rested in between shifts. JetBlue’s crew members are also paying it forward, coordinating donations of snacks to hospitals in Broward and Palm Beach counties and local food banks.

JetBlue Airways aircraft slide show:

JetBlue announces its third quarter financial results

JetBlue's 2019 "Bear Force One"

JetBlue Airways Corporation today reported its results for the third quarter 2019:

 

  • Reported diluted earnings per share of $0.63 in the third quarter of 2019 compared to a diluted earnings per share of $0.16 in the third quarter of 2018. Adjusted diluted earnings per share was $0.59(1) in the third quarter of 2019 versus $0.42(1) in the third quarter of 2018. Note A to this earnings release includes the GAAP to Non-GAAP reconciliation between reported and adjusted diluted earnings per share.
  • GAAP pre-tax income of $254 million in the third quarter of 2019, compared to a pre-tax income of $68 million in the third quarter of 2018. Excluding the one-time items, adjusted pre-tax income of $239 million(1), up 32% from an adjusted pre-tax income of $180 million(1) in the third quarter of 2018.
  • Pre-tax margin of 12.2%, up from a pre-tax margin of 3.4% in the third quarter of 2018. Adjusted pre-tax margin of 11.4%(1), a 2.4 percentage point increase year over year from an adjusted pre-tax margin of 9.0%(1), exclusive of the one-time items.

Highlights from the Third Quarter 2019

  • Third quarter 2019 revenue per available seat mile (RASM) declined (0.9)% year over year. This decline is slightly better than the mid-point of our updated guidance range of (2.0)% to 0.0%.
  • Operating expenses per available seat mile, excluding fuel (CASM ex-fuel)(1) increased 0.3%, better than the low end of our initial guidance range of 0.5% to 2.5%. This improvement is driven by the compounding benefits of the Structural Cost Program, and the favorable timing of expenses from the third into the fourth quarter of 2019.

Key Guidance for the Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2019:

  • Capacity is expected to increase between 4.5% and 6.5% year over year in the fourth quarter 2019. For the full year 2019, JetBlue expects capacity to increase between 6.0% and 7.0%.
  • RASM growth is expected to range between (3.5)% and (0.5)% for the fourth quarter 2019 compared to the same period in 2018.
  • CASM ex-fuel is expected to range between (1.0)% and 1.0% for the fourth quarter of 2019. For the full year 2019, JetBlue expects year over year CASM ex-fuel growth between 0.5% and 1.0%.

Executing our Plan to Reach our EPS Commitments

“I want to thank all the teams at JetBlue for executing our plan to create long-term value for our customers and owners. We are gaining traction on all of the strategic ‘Building Blocks’ we laid out in our last Investor Day. We are just beginning to see the benefits of our revenue, cost, fleet and capital allocation efforts, with additional opportunities ahead of us. Despite some near-term pressures on revenue in our international markets and NEO delays, we believe we are on track to deliver on our goal of $2.50 to 3.00 dollars EPS in 2020,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s Chief Executive Officer.

“I’m particularly pleased with the progress we are making to improve our unit costs as we deliver on our commitments. In the third quarter, we beat the low end of our CASM ex-Fuel guidance, despite over a half point of capacity lost due to Hurricane Dorian. Our improved completion factor more than offset any storm impact.”

“In our commercial building blocks, we believe that our plan to strengthen our unit revenues into 2020 can return us to positive RASM growth. Our efforts into 2020 include a second year of network reallocation and ancillary initiatives, innovations from JetBlue Travel Products, our ongoing work in Loyalty, as well as the contribution from Fare Options 2.0 launching this quarter.”

Revenue Performance and Outlook

“During the third quarter our capacity grew 4.8 percent, near the high end of our guidance range of 3 to 5 percent. Higher capacity growth was the result of solid improvement in our completion factor. Our operational initiatives more than offset the impact of hurricane Dorian and runway construction in Fort Lauderdale and JFK,” said Joanna Geraghty, JetBlue’s President and Chief Operating Officer.

“Our Latin and Caribbean franchise was impacted by disruption in multiple markets. We saw challenges begin earlier this year, but ramped significantly through the summer. We’ve taken quick action and are redeploying capacity to manage demand in the impacted markets.

For the fourth quarter, we expect RASM to decline between (3.5) and (0.5) percent year over year. We anticipate steady demand in the domestic market, led by transcon and business travel, and see a broadly decelerating domestic yield environment for JetBlue and the industry. In our international markets, we expect capacity and demand challenges to continue into the fourth quarter. We expect ongoing capacity adjustments, combined with demand recovery, to further improve our international RASM trends into next year.”

Cost Performance, Outlook and Balance Sheet

“During the third quarter, CASM ex‐fuel increased 0.3 percent year over year, beating the low end of our guidance range of 0.5 to 2.5 percent. CASM ex-fuel growth was driven by ongoing Structural Cost Program benefits, but also benefited by a half point of timing as expenses shift to the fourth quarter,” said Steve Priest, JetBlue’s EVP Chief Financial Officer.

“I’m thrilled with the progress we are making on better controlling our cost growth. We entered the fourth quarter ahead of plan for the year, and are well on pace to beat the mid-point of our original full year 2019 cost guidance of 1.0 percent. We now estimate our CASM ex-Fuel guide for 2019 should range between 0.5 and 1.0 percent.

I’m proud of the efforts of our team to overcome lower scheduled capacity growth, manage through runway construction in Fort Lauderdale and JFK, and manage the impact of NEO delays and hurricane Dorian. This is the result of relentless execution of our Structural Cost Program, and an outstanding focus on costs by the entire JetBlue team.”

Capital Allocation and Liquidity

JetBlue ended the quarter with approximately $994 million in unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short term investments, or 12.4% of trailing twelve month revenue. JetBlue repaid $76 million in regularly scheduled debt and capital lease obligations for the third quarter.

Fuel Expense and Hedging

The realized fuel price in the quarter was $2.06 per gallon, an 11% decline versus third quarter 2018 realized fuel price of $2.32.

JetBlue has entered into forward fuel derivative contracts to hedge its fuel consumption for the fourth quarter of 2019. Based on the forward curve as of October 11th, JetBlue expects an average all-in price per gallon of fuel of $2.07 in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Notes

(1) Note A provides a reconciliation of non-GAAP financial measures used in this release and provides the reasons management uses those measures.

Top Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N632JB (msn 2647) (Boston Bruins) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 947651.

JetBlue Airways aircraft slide show:

JetBlue relocates in Houston with move to George Bush Intercontinental Airport and adds new route to Costa Rica

JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N584JB (msn 2149) (Highrise) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 946259.

JetBlue Airways today announced that the airline’s operations in Houston will relocate from William P. Hobby Airport (HOU) to George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) later this year.

The final day of flying at Hobby Airport will be on October 26, 2019 and the first day of flying at Bush Intercontinental will be on October 27, 2019. JetBlue plans to operate from Bush Intercontinental’s Terminal A.

Schedule between New York (JFK) and Houston (IAH)
Beginning October 27, 2019

JFK – IAH Flight #1381

IAH – JFK Flight #1382

1:00 p.m. – 4:10 p.m.

11:13 a.m. – 3:35 p.m.

Schedule between Boston (BOS) and Houston (IAH)
Beginning October 27, 2019

BOS – IAH Flight #1931

IAH – BOS Flight #1932

7:00 a.m. – 10:13 a.m.

4:55 p.m. – 9:32 p.m.

 

Connecting Costa Rica with New York-JFK

JetBlue today also announced it will introduce new nonstop service between New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport (JFK) and San José, Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) beginning November 1, 2019. Service will operate three times weekly on Fridays, Sundays and Tuesdays.

New York-JFK service in San José will complement JetBlue’s daily service between Costa Rica’s capital and the airlines’ focus cities in Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Orlando. Additionally, JetBlue also offers nonstop service, including seasonal Mint flights, to Liberia, Costa Rica from the airline’s home at New York-JFK. JetBlue first began serving Costa Rica with San José service more than a decade ago in March 2009.

Schedule between New York (JFK) and San José (SJO)
On Fridays, Sundays and Tuesdays Beginning November 1, 2019

JFK – SJO Flight #1793

SJO – JFK Flight #1794

6:25 p.m. – 10:50 p.m.

11:59 p.m. – 6:09 a.m. (+1)

JetBlue will operate both Houston and San José flights using its Airbus A320 aircraft.

Top Copyright Photo: JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N584JB (msn 2149) (Highrise) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 946259.

JetBlue aircraft slide show:

Business Insider: American Airlines CEO reveals why he engineered 2 of the biggest airline mergers in the last 20 years

From Business Insider:

American Airlines’ current CEO, Doug Parker, originally was the CEO of America West Airlines when he saw an opportunity to grow the company when he saw weakness in a struggling fellow carrier. He acquired and merged bankrupt US Airways with America West. The more appropriate US Airways name and brand was adopted.

Next, another opportunity came when American Airlines went into bankruptcy. Parker orchestrated a buyout and strategic merger of US Airways with American Airlines when it came out of bankruptcy. Once again the larger company’s name was adopted. As a result of the merger, the current day American Airlines is the largest airline in the world.

Peal the paint away of some AA Airbus A320s and you will find the America West roots.

This is really the story of how upstart America West Airlines (a new airline of the deregulation era) under CEO Doug Parker became the largest airline in the world through two acquisitions and two name adoptions.

Read the full story.

America West Airlines Airbus A320-232 N657AW (msn 1083) LAX (Bruce Drum). Image: 101107.

Above Copyright Photo: America West Airlines Airbus A320-232 N657AW (msn 1083) LAX (Bruce Drum). Image: 101107.

America West Airlines aircraft slide show:

America West September 7, 2005 Route Map:

JetBlue announces its first quarter 2019 results

"My Other Ride is A JetBlue E190"

JetBlue Airways Corporation today reported its results for the first quarter 2019:

  • Reported diluted earnings per share of $0.14 in the first quarter of 2019 compared to $0.28 in the first quarter of 2018. Adjusted diluted earnings per share was $0.16 in the first quarter of 2019 versus $0.26 in the first quarter of 2018. Note A to this earnings release includes the GAAP to Non-GAAP reconciliation between reported and adjusted diluted earnings per share.
  • GAAP pre-tax income of $58 million, a decline of 48.5% from $113 million in the first quarter of 2018. Excluding the one-time costs, adjusted pre-tax income of $70 million(1), a decline of 38.2% from the first quarter of 2018.
  • Pre-tax margin of 3.1%, inclusive of the one-time costs, a 3.3 point decline from the first quarter of 2018. Adjusted pre-tax margin of 3.7%(1), a 2.7 percentage point decline year over year.

 

Highlights from the First Quarter 2019

  • First quarter 2019 revenue per available seat mile (RASM) declined 3.1%, year over year, driven by holiday calendar placement, improved completion factor and certain areas of softness observed in the trough period. Excluding the 0.75 point impact from high completion factor, RASM declined 2.4% year over year, slightly better than the mid-point of our guidance range of down (3.5%) to down (1.5%).
  • Operating expenses per available seat mile, excluding fuel (CASM ex-fuel) (1) increased 0.9%, below the low end of our initial guidance range of 1.5% to 3.5%. This increase includes a benefit of approximately 0.75 points from improved completion factor.

Key Guidance for the Second Quarter and Full Year 2019:

  • Capacity is expected to increase between 4.5% and 6.5% year over year in the second quarter 2019. For the full year 2019, JetBlue expects capacity to increase between 4.5% and 6.5%.
  • RASM growth is expected to range between 1.0% and 4.0% for the second quarter 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. Our guidance includes a benefit of 2.25 points of impact related to the calendar placement shift of Easter and Passover between the first and second quarters of 2019.
  • CASM ex-fuel is expected to increase between 1.5% and 3.5% for the second quarter of 2019, principally driven by engine maintenance timing and the year-over-year impact of the pilot contract effective on August 1st, 2018. For the full year 2019, JetBlue continues to expect year over year CASM ex-fuel to be between flat and 2.0%.

Executing our Plan to Reach our EPS Commitments

“We are very proud of our team and the work they do every day to deliver the JetBlue experience. This quarter our financial performance was mainly impacted by the calendar placement of Easter and Passover holidays and, as disclosed in March, a softer revenue environment than initially expected,” said Robin Hayes, JetBlue’s Chief Executive Officer.

“In recent years we have repeatedly demonstrated our ability to adapt to the changing environment around us to achieve our margin commitments – and 2019 is proving to be no different. We believe we will successfully execute our five ‘building blocks’ introduced at our 2018 Investor Day, and we remain committed to our goal of delivering earnings per share between $2.50 and $3 dollars by 2020. We also continue to expect margin expansion in 2019, and to further expand our margins in 2020.”

“We believe our work will position us for success into the next decade. Next year we anticipate the first delivery of our margin-accretive A220s, a game-changing aircraft to further help us reduce our unit costs, improve our margins and increase our EPS. We are thrilled that we recently converted 13 A321s in our order book to A321 LRs, and we expect to begin our European service by adding London from Boston and New York starting in 2021,” said Joanna Geraghty, JetBlue’s President and Chief Operating Officer.

Revenue Performance and Outlook

First quarter RASM declined 3.1% year over year. Excluding the 0.75 point headwind from improved completion factor, RASM was slightly better than the mid-point of our guidance range of down (3.5%) to down (1.5%). “Our RASM was negatively impacted by three drivers: this year’s holiday calendar placement, improved completion factor, and certain areas of softness we observed in the trough period,” said Marty St. George, JetBlue’s EVP Commercial and Planning.

“Looking into the second quarter, we expect RASM growth between 1.0% and 4.0% year over year. Our guidance includes an anticipated 2.25 point positive impact of Easter/Passover holiday placement shift into April. March RASM showed clear signs of a weaker trough, which extended into the first half of April. The April peak, however, is showing the strength we had expected, and very early look at May and June points to sequential RASM acceleration.”

Cost Performance, Outlook and Balance Sheet

“Our first quarter CASM ex-fuel represents a unit cost increase below the mid-point of our guidance range. For the second quarter, we expect CASM ex-fuel growth to range between 1.5% and 3.5%. As a reminder, both our first quarter and second quarter guidance include an approximately three-point impact from our pilot contract signed last August,” said Steve Priest, JetBlue’s EVP Chief Financial Officer.

“We could not be prouder of the hard work across JetBlue to deliver on our commitments to hit our goals. We are encouraged by the CASM ex-fuel progress we made in the first quarter, and the progression we anticipate for the rest of the year. In the first half we will continue to digest our first pilot contract, and despite our capacity reduction from early March, our guidance range remains between 0 and 2 percent.”

Capital Allocation and Liquidity

JetBlue ended the quarter with approximately $876 million in unrestricted cash, cash equivalents, and short term investments, or about 11.3% of trailing twelve month revenue. In addition, at the end of the quarter, JetBlue maintained approximately $625 million in undrawn lines of credit. JetBlue repaid $133 million in regularly scheduled debt and capital lease obligations for the first quarter.

Fuel Expense and Hedging

The realized fuel price in the quarter was $2.05 per gallon, a 2.0% decline versus first quarter 2018 realized fuel price of $2.09.

JetBlue entered into forward fuel derivative contracts to hedge approximately 7% of its fuel consumption for the second quarter of 2019. Based on the fuel curve as of April 12th, JetBlue expects an average all-in price per gallon of fuel of $2.21 in the second quarter of 2019.

Top Copyright Photo (all others by the airline): JetBlue Airways Airbus A320-232 N793JB (msn 4647) (Highrise) LGB (Michael B. Ing). Image: 946262.

JetBlue Airways aircraft slide show: