JetBlue on Sept. 29 filed a criticism with the U.S. Division of Transportation towards the Netherlands and the European Union in opposition to the upcoming diminished flight caps at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, the service confirmed. JetBlue indicated it believes the Dutch authorities is violating the U.S.-EU Air Transport Settlement, and requested DOT impose countermeasures on Dutch airways.
Some background: In what has appeared like ping-pong choices by the Dutch authorized system this previous 12 months, the courts in April dominated in a lawsuit filed by Delta Air Strains, KLM and different carriers that the federal government—which is a majority proprietor of Schiphol—couldn’t cut back additional the variety of flights allowed on the airport, which the federal government wished to do with a view to restrict noise air pollution.
In July, one other court docket reversed that call, granting permission for Schiphol to restrict its annual actions—takeoffs and landings. On Sept. 1, the Dutch authorities introduced that efficient March 31, 2024, actions could be capped at 460,000 yearly, down from the present 500,000. Starting Oct. 27, 2024, that determine could be diminished to 452,000, in line with JetBlue.
This is not the primary objection JetBlue has raised towards the Dutch authorities. In February, it filed a criticism with DOT about being unable to safe slots at Schiphol. The service ultimately was granted two advert hoc slot pairs for the summer season 2023 season, and it commenced service to Amsterdam on Aug. 29 from New York and on Sept. 20 from Boston. JetBlue additionally obtained two historic-eligible slots for the winter 2023-2024 scheduling season. It then eliminated its criticism on June 5.
In granting the slots, the Airport Coordination Netherlands, which coordinates slots for the airport, suggested JetBlue that as a result of the summer season slots had been on an advert hoc foundation, they might not be eligible for historic standing, and JetBlue couldn’t be assured any slots for the summer season of 2024, in line with the service.
In its new criticism, JetBlue believes that primarily based on that communication with ACNL, the service “moderately expects that it’ll not be allotted any slots in any respect for the summer season 2024 scheduling season,” and that it’s “uniquely located amongst U.S. carriers as a result of it faces precise expulsion from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol on the finish of the winter 2023-2024 scheduling season.”
“Carriers with historics at Schiphol are dealing with a 4 p.c discount in capability,” JetBlue wrote in an announcement. “New entrants similar to JetBlue are dealing with a totally closed market and one hundred pc expulsion from the market. This isn’t a good or proportional end result regardless of Dutch authorities assurances in any other case.”
JetBlue additionally famous that the “expulsion menace necessitates the Division’s extra rapid imposition of focused and impactful countermeasures.”
These requested DOT countermeasures embrace requiring the Netherlands-flag service—KLM— serving the U.S. to file schedules, mandating reductions in Dutch carriers’ scheduled providers to the U.S., and a “DOT-imposed limitation on scope of grants of antitrust immunity.”
“JetBlue doesn’t counsel these countermeasures flippantly,” the service wrote in its criticism. “We merely wish to guarantee our two every day flights at [Schiphol] can stay,” it stated in an announcement, which additionally asks the U.S. authorities to provoke formal talks with the Netherlands and EU to try to discover a answer to what it known as “the Dutch violations.”
“If no decision is discovered, then we’ve requested the U.S. authorities to take steps towards Dutch carriers, together with KLM, to make sure that they’re handled in an identical method to the best way U.S. carriers are being handled,” JetBlue stated.