JetBlue accepts its first Airbus A220

To round off a very difficult year, the American carrier received good news in the form of its debut A220

New York-based JetBlue Airways ended 2020 with the delivery of its maiden Airbus A220-300.

The airline – which has an order 70 examples – accepted N3008J (c/n 55099) into its fleet on December 31.

JetBlue A220
The jet first flew on December 9, 2020 from Airbus' US facility. Airbus

The narrowbody arrived at JetBlue's New York/JFK hub from Airbus’ US production facility in Mobile, Alabama.

The type will be phased in to ultimately replace the operator’s existing fleet of 60 Embraer E190 aircraft.

E190 JetBlue
The European narrowbody is replaceing the carrier's fleet of 60 E190s. Aviation Image Network/Bailey

“The A220 is a next-generation aircraft our customers and crew members will love, featuring impressive range and superior economics to support critical financial and operating priorities along with new network planning flexibility,” said Robin Hayes, chief executive officer, JetBlue. “And as we evolve our fleet for the future, the A220’s significant reduction in per-seat emissions supports our ongoing commitment to carbon neutrality for all our domestic flights and moves us closer to achieving our pledge of net-zero carbon emissions across all operations by 2040.”

A220 production facility
Airbus' Mobile, Alabama facility was officially opened in May 2020. Airbus

JetBlue says the A220 boasts nearly 30% lower direct operating costs per seat compared with its current fleet of Embraers. The airline anticipates the A220 fleet, with improved reliability and longer maintenance intervals, will have a maintenance cost per seat that is more than 40% lower than E190s it is replacing.

Excluding the recent Airbus addition, the carrier’s fleet currently comprises 130 A320s, 76 A321s and 60 E190s.