Breeze Airways targets domestic leisure travel market on first flights
Breeze Airways is about to take off. The new low-cost airline will operate its first flights on May 27.
Why is this important: The airline has come to life just in time to take advantage of the historic upheavals caused by the pandemic in the air transport market.
- Used planes are plentiful and cheap, and there is a labor pool to choose from after pilots and other workers lose their jobs at major airlines, the AP reports.
- Flight volumes are starting to rebound, driven by domestic pleasure travel – Breeze’s target market.
An unusual pitch: “We created Breeze as a new airline combining technology and friendliness,” says founder David Neeleman.
- Breeze will even offer KIND bars in flight (also Utz products).
Details: Neeleman is a prolific airline founder, having previously launched JetBlue, the Brazilian Azul, the Canadian WestJet and Morris Air (acquired in the 1990s by Southwest).
- By July, Breeze aims to offer non-stop service from 16 U.S. airports, targeting small towns where major airlines have downsized.
To note: Low-cost airline Avelo Airlines also launched this spring, serving a handful of destinations on the West Coast.
Our thought bubble: Right off the bat, Breeze fills a gap for services that traditional carriers do not currently provide. But it could still eat away at incumbent sales on the margins – especially helping customers avoid those annoying layover flights to midsize cities.
- This as Delta, American Airlines and United Airlines operate under the weight of tens of billions of additional debt they have borrowed to stay afloat during the pandemic.
What to watch: Breeze is just beginning. “There are so many city pairs that need nonstop service across the country, we have 100 more cities under review,” according to Neeleman.