Big news in air travel to South America: JetBlue is launching a new route between New York and Guayaquil, Ecuador, the gateway to the Galapagos Islands. The airline has announced plans to operate a new, nonstop route between New York – JFK and Guayaquil’s José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport (GYE), subject to government approval. From that airport, additional onward flights are available to the Galapagos Islands.
The new JetBlue flight will launch December 5 and operate daily, and it will make JetBlue the only major U.S. carrier to offer nonstop service on the JFK – Guayaquil route. Guayaquil’s airport is currently served by Avianca, LATAM and tame. JetBlue first began flying to the destination with a flight from Fort Lauderdale that launched in February 2019.
The new route out of JetBlue’s JFK hub will be the longest in its route network, by over 200 nautical miles, and the airline says the new flight is only possible due to the new A321neo aircraft, which boasts 20 percent greater fuel efficiency over previous models.
The new aircraft will have Collins Meridian seats, which JetBlue says is the widest seat available for the single aisle Airbus family of aircraft. Each seat will have an in-flight entertainment system with a 10.1 inch seatback screen offering more than 100 channels of live TV with DVR-like pause and rewind functionality, as well as a picture-in-picture mode.
In addition to its flights to Guayaquil, JetBlue also operates a route between Fort Lauderdale and Quito, which provides access to a longer flight to the Galapagos, often with a stopover in Guayaquil. The airline plans to add a second daily seasonal flight to Quito this summer.