SALT LAKE CITY — Breeze Airways, founded by David Neelman of JetBlue, was supposed to launch in 2020, but for obvious reasons, the timeline was pushed back. However, with the pandemic drifting into our tailwind, Breeze Airways flights went on sale May 21, 2021, at flybreeze.com, and via the new Breeze mobile app.
“It would be safe to say the addition of Breeze to trade show event travel options will have a tremendous impact,” Gareth Edmondson-Jones, Spokesman at Breeze Airways, said. “Trade show attendees, like leisure travelers, prefer to fly nonstop for less money. By flying nonstop as opposed to connecting through hubs, Breeze gets you there in half the time for half the price.”
Louisville will be one of the airline’s first launch cities and Breeze will offer year-round, nonstop flights to Charleston, S.C., New Orleans and Tampa from the Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport.
As of June, Louisville is at nearly 100% of pre-pandemic travel levels, while national capacity is still down 20%. “We are thrilled to welcome Breeze Airways to Louisville’s Muhammad Ali International Airport, Cleo Battle, Chief Operating Officer, Louisville Tourism, said, adding that this new air service launch is perfectly timed to capture this summer’s leisure travelers, directly connecting Louisville with Charleston, New Orleans and Tampa. “We are appreciative of the commitment Breeze Airways has made to Louisville and anticipate this new air service to be one of the building blocks aiding Louisville’s tourism recovery.”
But with an aviation market already crowded before the pandemic, what does Breeze offer to make it different and sustainable?
Launching in 16 cities across the country, Breeze Airways is the fifth airline started by Neeleman. Based in Salt Lake City, the airline plans to provide low-fare, point-to-point service between markets that the airline considers to be underserved. This includes mid-size city pairs without current nonstop flights, and it also includes flying into and out of secondary airports in regions. As Neeleman described it in a news release, according to CNN, “Breeze will fly nonstop service between places currently without meaningful or affordable service.”
And technology will be a major focus; Neeleman has even described the business as “a technology company that happens to fly planes.”
The Breeze Airways’ low cost carrier passenger experience will include:
- No seatback entertainment, but Breeze will offer streaming entertainment and Wi-Fi; the airline has just entered into a definitive agreement with Anuvu to provide Wireless IFE (W-IFE) services on its E195 and E190 fleets, with the provider receiving the STC for its Airtime IFE Pro hardware from the FAA in early May.
- The airline is moving forward with a premium cabin onboard its Airbus A220s. This cabin will be similar to a domestic first class product, with the first Airbus A220-300 scheduled to arrive at Breeze Airways in October.
- As a low-cost-carrier, Breeze plans to charge for everything from seat selection to carry-on bags on top of the basic fare.