With the busy holiday season approaching, JetBlue is hoping for a disruption-free next few weeks. Having seen the chaos that can ensue due to widespread absences at other US carriers earlier this year, the airline is looking to minimize the risk of this. It is doing so by offering incentives to cabin crew that don’t call in sick between tomorrow and early January.
Extra pay for perfect attendance
New York-based hybrid carrier JetBlue has put together an attendance incentive scheme for its cabin crew to ensure minimal operational disruption during the festive season. According to CNBC, the airline told its flight attendants in a memo that perfect attendance between November 22nd and January 5th would result in a $1,000 bonus.
The bonus that comes as a result of not calling in sick during this window is also subject to full-time employees having worked 100 credit hours in the period. Those that do need to call in sick due to will need to produce a doctor’s note to verify their absence. In a memo to cabin crew, JetBlue’s Head of Customer Care and Programs, Ed Baklor, stated:
“To prepare for the holiday hustle while also recognizing your commitment and support to protecting the operation through the holidays, we’re launching a one-time holiday rewards program to thank Crewmembers who fly their trips and do not call-out.”
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Always a busy time of year
Christmas is always a busy time of year for air travel. All over the world, passengers travel to celebrate with family members located elsewhere. Even last year, when the ongoing coronavirus pandemic was more severe, and vaccination rates were minimal, the festive period in the US saw the TSA register its highest passenger figures in nine months.
Thanksgiving also takes place in the US in late November. This is once again a holiday that many people travel for. It can also serve as a precursor to Christmas demand. Indeed, it resulted in a surge in passenger numbers last year. As such, JetBlue has been astute in including Thanksgiving (November 25th) in the qualifying period for its attendance bonus.
Similar schemes at other US carriers
JetBlue isn’t the only US-based airline to have recognized the need for perfect attendance during what will be a busy next few weeks. Indeed, Simple Flying reported on a similar program at Southwest Airlines earlier this month. However, this scheme will reward qualifying employees with up to 120,000 Rapid Rewards Points, rather than a cash bonus.
Members of the US ‘big three’ airlines have also been getting in on the act. According to CNBC, the Fort Worth-based US legacy carrier and oneworld founding member is offering between 150% and 300% rates of pay for flight attendants. The exact figure will depend on their attendance and what flights they work on during the peak holiday season.
Simple Flying has reached out to JetBlue for further information regarding its incentive scheme. We will add any further details to this article upon receiving them.
What do you make of this incentive scheme> Do you know of any other airlines offering similar packages? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.