JetBlue’s Bid on Spirit Airlines: What U.S. Consumers Want from their In-Air Experiences

If you’ve been keeping up with the skies—specifically U.S. airline news—you may have heard Spirit Airlines is this year’s belle of the ball. Earlier this year, Spirit and Frontier Airlines announced a merger that would create the 5th largest airline in the country. Then, in early April, JetBlue came in from left field with an “unsolicited $3.6B bid” for Spirit Airlines. What does this mean for the U.S. airline industry? Will this new bid disrupt the upcoming merger? And more importantly, will consumers be more or less excited to fly JetBlue if talks between the two airlines lead to a deal? That’s what we’re here to find out. Resonate delivers the airline passenger data needed to power today’s data-driven marketing. And today, we’re using it to discover: 

  • Who are the consumers flying JetBlue and Spirit Airlines today?  
  • What do these audiences value, and where do these values intersect? 
  • What are these flyers looking for in airline providers? 

Because, first of all, as frequent travelers, we’re curious how JetBlue and Spirit customers compare. But, even more important, because, as marketers, we know a rich, relevant understanding of consumers is integral to better messaging, creative, and overall marketing. So, let’s get started. 

Comparing the Personal Values of JetBlue and Spirit Airlines Flyers 

When it comes to passenger data that can stand the test of time (especially during uncertainty) and generate lasting value for brands like Spirit and JetBlue, personal values should always be top of mind. Values guide and decide customers’ attitudes and behaviors on the products and the services airlines offer. Whenever you build an audience within the Resonate Ignite Platform, you have access to the values report, which shows which values drive that consumer — and which don’t.

The top 3 personal values of JetBlue Flyers are living a life full of excitement, acquiring wealth and influence, and maintaining a good public image. For them, life is about adventure and taking risks as much as it is about social status and social respect.  

Personal Values of JetBlue Flyers

Source: The Resonate Ignite Platform


The top 3 personal values of Spirit Airlines Flyers are actually fairly similar in that both groups value openness to change and self-enhancement. In fact, both audiences value acquiring wealth and influence as well as living an exciting, stimulating life. Where they differ slightly is that while JetBlue Flyers care more about their reputation, Spirit Airlines Flyers seek success and the admiration of others for being successful. 

Personal Values of Spirit Airlines Flyers

Source: The Resonate Ignite Platform


Want to know more about the Resonate Values Report and how brands incorporate consumer values into their messaging and creative? Check out the Marketer’s Guide: Understanding the Critical Role of Personal Values in Shaping Stronger, Lasting Consumer Connections.

Flight Considerations: Similarities Between JetBlue and Spirit Airlines Flyers 

Both Spirit Airlines (in black) and JetBlue (in blue) Flyers want to get the best prices, feel safe while flying, and make sure they secure the best dates and times for their travel plans. These are pretty standard requirements of many flyers, but it’s worth noting price specifically because while JetBlue is considered a low-cost airline, Spirit is in the ultra-low-cost carrier tier. Will prices go up or down? 

Airline Selection Considerations | Similarities Between JetBlue and Spirit Customers

Source: The Resonate Ignite Platform


Flight Considerations: Differences Between JetBlue and Spirit Airlines Flyers 

When it comes to flying, we tend to share some preferences, such as best prices. But there are certain considerations that set different flyers apart. For example, JetBlue flyers put much more emphasis on Internet availability than consumers who fly Spirit Airlines. This makes sense, since JetBlue is known for its fast, free Fly-Fi service for all flyers. Spirit Airlines Flyers care a lot less than JetBlue Flyers about that and in-flight entertainment options in general.  

JetBlue Flyers are also 127% more likely to value family-friendly flying than those flying on Spirit Airlines. Will the potential merger lead to more family-friendly Spirit Airlines flights? We’ll be keeping an eye out! 

Airline Selection Considerations | Differences Between JetBlue and Spirit Customers

Source: The Resonate Ignite Platform


Keeping a Pulse on Airline Passengers 

The travel industry is picking up after many pandemic-driven fluctuations. In fact, our recent Emerging Trends Report shows a 28% increase in Americans who believe leisure travel will be back to normal in the next few months. Airline mergers often disrupt the industry, and it’s consumers who feel these disruptions the most. How will Americans respond to the looming changes to the ways we fly due to the potential JetBlue-Spirit Merger? The jury is out. At Resonate, we’ll keep a pulse on what trip-loving consumers are thinking, buying, and doing — so you don’t have to. Stay tuned for more airline passenger data! 

Categorized as: Consumer Insights, Brand

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