The United States Department of Justice filed a lawsuit on Tuesday to oppose the purchase of Spirit Airlines by its rival JetBlue. For the US government, the operation would generate higher prices and reduce options for passengers. Both airlines maintain flights to Costa Rica from various US cities. Spirit accepted JetBlue’s $3.8 billion offer last July, after signaling for several months that competition authorities would be reticent about such an operation.
Increased competition and lowered fares
With its very low-price ticket business model, Spirit “increased competition and lowered fares on hundreds of lines across the country,” the Justice Department highlights in its complaint. JetBlue meanwhile wants to “abandon this model,” “reduce the number of seats on Spirit planes” and “make customers pay more,” they say.
Since Joe Biden came to power, the competition authorities have toughened their stance and opposed several mergers, with more or less success. JetBlue, anticipating the process, said on its website that the two companies compete on only a few routes.
Fair competition In addition, it argues that it agreed to cede some lines and spaces in airports to other low-cost companies. If completed, the merger would create the fifth largest airline in the United States in terms of passenger seats behind American Airlines, United, Delta and Southwest.