The initial JetExpress partnership with Mesa ended in January 2004, when Horizon Air was selected to operate the routes. Horizon utilized slightly larger CRJ-700 regional jet aircraft on these routes. In August 2006, Frontier and Horizon ended their partnership. While Frontier was generally pleased with Horizon's operation, the carrier decided that it needed to revisit the agreement and find a provider with additional regional jets to grow the operation. The last of the CRJ-700's was returned to the Horizon Air fleet on November 30, 2007.
September 21, 2005: Flight 292 en route from Burbank, California, to New York City performed an emergency landing at Los Angeles International Airport (pictured on the right) following a failure of the front landing gear during retraction when it turned 90 degrees. The plane landed after holding for about three hours to burn fuel and therefore lighten the aircraft. The aircraft came to a stop without incident on runway 25L, the second-longest runway at LAX. The only apparent damage to the plane upon landing was the destruction of the front wheels, which were ground down to almost semicircles, and the tires; the front landing strut held. The passengers were unable to see themselves landing despite the DirecTV service in each seat, as they were instructed to brace.
On March 19, 2008, jetBlue added Orlando, Florida as a gateway focus city to international destinations in the Caribbean, Mexico, and South America. New international routes from Orlando International Airport include Cancún, Mexico, Bridgetown, Barbados, Bogotá, Colombia, Nassau, Bahamas, San José, Costa Rica, and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. In conjunction with the addition of new routes the airline will continue significant expansion of operations at Orlando International Airport including a planned 292-room lodge that will house trainees attending the existing "JetBlue University" training facility (opened in 2015).
On August 4, 2008, the Associated Press reported that jetBlue would replace their recycled pillows and blankets with an "eco-friendly" pillow and blanket package that passengers would have to purchase for use. Each package will cost $7 and will include a $5 coupon from retailer Bed, Bath and Beyond. This decision is the latest in a series of moves designed to increase revenue. jetBlue told the Associated Press that it expects to collect $40 million from passengers selecting seats with extra legroom and $20 million from passengers paying $15 to check a second bag. As of September 8, 2008 JetBlue charges passengers $10–30 for an extended-leg-room seat depending on the length of the flight.
In February 2002, the airline launched its first regional product, Frontier JetExpress, initially operated by Mesa Airlines using CRJ-200 regional jets. Similar to "express" operations of other carriers, Frontier JetExpress was targeted for markets to and from Denver that do not generate traffic sufficient to support Frontier's smallest mainline jet, the Airbus A318, but could still offer lucrative business with a smaller jet.
On June 22, 2009, Frontier Airlines announced that pending bankruptcy court approval, Republic Airways Holdings, the Indianapolis-based parent company of Republic Airlines, would acquire all assets of Frontier Airlines for the amount of $108 million. Thus, Frontier Airlines would become a wholly owned subsidiary of Republic. However, 5 weeks later on July 30, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines announced that it would be making a competing bid of $113.6 million for Frontier with intentions to also operate Frontier as a wholly owned subsidiary, but that it would gradually fold Frontier resources into current Southwest operating assets.
Frequent flyers of jetBlue Airways can benefit from the airlineï¿½s loyalty program, TrueBlue. The carrier takes a high-tech approach to their "flight gratitude program," skipping membership cards and paper mailings in favor of online operations. Points earned through jetBlue or its partners do not expire, as long as the member flies with the airline at least once per year. Points are earned for flights booked, with members accumulating three points for every dollar spent on a jetBlue service. The carrier awards double points if members book online.
In October 2005, JetBlue's quarterly profit had plunged from US$8.1 million to $2.7 million largely due to rising fuel costs. Operational issues, fuel prices, and low fares, JetBlue's hallmark, were bringing its financial performance down. In addition, with higher costs related to the airline's numerous amenities, JetBlue was becoming less competitive.
^ For comparison, fleet ages as of 2018: Southwest, 10.7 years; JetBlue, 9.7 years; Spirit, 5.4 years; WestJet, 9.7 years; Volaris, 4.3 years, Allegiant, 17 years, VivaAerobús, 5.2 years; Sun Country, 14.4 years. Information from Airfleets.net: Southwest, JetBlue, Spirit, WestJet, Volaris, Allegiant, VivaAerobús, Sun Country. (listed airlines from List of largest airlines in North America)
Today, it serves 77 cities on 176 routes. They cover destinations like Bellingham, Washington, Vancouver, British Columbia, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Nevada, Los Angeles, California, Myrtle Beach, Orlando, PhoenixMesa, Arizona, San Francisco Bay, Fort Myers and Tampa Bay or St. Petersburg-Clearwater. They have their operation bases at Bellingham International Airport, Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, Las Vegas McCarran International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, Oakland International Airport, Orlando-Sanford International Airport, PhoenixMesa Gateway Airport and St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport.