For those who are a bit out of the aviation loop, JetBlue recently acquired budget adversary Spirit Airlines. This looks to be a successful merger for the most part—but if you ask Frontier Airlines CEO Barry Biffle, he believes the collaboration could actually do more harm than good for the customers.
According to Biffle, the result in a JetBlue-Spirit merger will be higher prices—an unfortunate prospect, when you consider that cheap prices have always been Spirit’s main selling point.
“If you are a Spirit customer,” said Biffle, You will see the biggest inflation you have ever seen. You’re going to see fares jump up over 40%. It’s going to be hundreds of dollars per family. And so that’s why I think it’s a challenge for their consumers. There are going to be millions of people that get priced out.”
But Biffle’s thoughts weren’t echoed by JetBlue. A spokesperson for the airline maintained that “customers will continue to benefit from JetBlue’s unique combination of low fares and award-winning service.”
“Importantly, our presence on new routes is proven to bring down legacy fares more than ultra-low-cost carriers, benefitting customers and stimulating demand. So this is a win for customers—whether you fly JetBlue or another airline.”