JetBlue Secures Travel Booking Sites Claim Against Anticompetitive Pricing “Regime”
When looking for airline tickets online, are you really getting the best deal possible?
Farreportal, an online travel agency behind flight booking sites like CheapOair and OneTravel, this week filed a lawsuit against low-cost airline JetBlue, accusing it of engaging in a Anti-competitive “ploy” to prevent consumers from comparing JetBlue airfares with other airlines.
The lawsuit alleges that JetBlue makes it difficult for travelers to compare prices on the routes it “dominates”, which allows it to increase fares. Fareportal said JetBlue has blocked CheapOair and a dozen other online travel agencies from posting its content.
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This could lead to higher ticket prices in markets where JetBlue has a strong presence such as New York, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Boston, Los Angeles and San Juan, Puerto Rico, Farreportal said.
“JetBlue tries to force customers to book tickets on its website where the lack of price comparison with other airlines’ fares will allow JetBlue to increase ticket prices for price sensitive travelers,” said Frederick Stein, legal and compliance director of Farreportal in a statement. written statement.
However, the airline disputed Fareportal’s claims, calling them “frivolous and completely unfounded”.
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“It is standard industry practice for airlines to choose where to sell their products,” a JetBlue spokesperson said via email. “We are currently one of the many major airlines that do not sell through the Farreportal platforms.”
There are currently more than 10 aggregator and travel agency sites online that include JetBlue fares in their comparison lists with other airlines, according to the JetBlue spokesperson. They also noted that its lowest rates will always be posted on its own website.
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Farreportal said it serves customers in 195 countries and works with more than 600 airlines. He filed a lawsuit against JetBlue in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York on Tuesday.
The lawsuit comes as JetBlue holds its winter sale offering one-way tickets for as little as $ 49. The sale, for flights between January 16 and June 17, will continue until January 12.