While it comes as a surprise (due to Massport incentives and high passenger loads), I guess I can understand not being profitable after your first year. It is a new endeavor and there is a lot of initial overhead to overcome with personnel, fuel, setting up a new facility, etc. No business can expect to start making money immediately. However I’m sure JetBlue has a game plan as to when they can expect to be turning a profit. I’d love to see how we look when compared to that time table. That will really determine where ORH stands.
If I recall from past posts, JetBlue has been seeing average passenger loads in the 80′s. How does this compare to flights out of other airports (both large and small)? I think that will be the biggest indicator of how Worcester is doing. I’m sure JetBlue is in it for the long haul given Massport’s influence over them (Worcester never had that in the past) but even they wont stay if ORH turns out to be a clear loser after a few years.
It won’t be easy to scare off JetBlue. ORH is Massport’s overflow plan for Logan so they can continue to grow despite Boston’s physical limitations. As a result, I envision Massport is using Jetblue as a divining rod of sorts. Worcester doesn’t have a great reputation so they are using a big regional name to help bring people into ORH. This builds the airport’s name/reputation with the people in the region and if JetBlue proves successful, will result in other airlines looking more favorably at the previously unsuccessful airport. Unfortunately, if JetBlue fails you can call it the final nail in the coffin. That is why Massport is putting so much into this and why it will be tough to scare off JetBlue.
That is why I feel there is no need to worry about JetBlue’s initial net losses. They’re expected and it will take a lot to scare them off. However it is worth keeping an eye on as JetBlue is Worcester’s final chance. Thanks.