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An opinion on the JetBlue merger rumors

Word on the street (, technically) is that there’s nothing to the JetBlue merger rumors. Ted Reed’s article provides a good briefing on the why and why not, and makes a convincing case that any rumblings are simply the airline industry’s version of high school gossip: just something to pass the time and get people whispering.

I, for one, was happy to hear this opinion. The airline industry is full of giants already, and as we’ve seen time and again, size rarely improves travel experiences.

Even with last winter’s series of delay debacles, JetBlue still enjoys one of the best reputations among airlines. Absorption into one of the legacy carriers people love to hate would risk not only the loyalty of its passengers but all the things that make those passengers loyal in the first place.

Speaking of recent news about JetBlue, two weeks ago I wrote about CEO David Neeleman stepping down and asked for your opinions on the matter. Bob and Barbara B. wrote in to say that they were sad to see him step down, and that they hoped the move, “proves good for him as he is a visionary worthy of praise and thanks from the traveling public.”

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