US airline JetBlue has reduced its one-way fares for evacuees in several cities in the path of Hurricane Irma.
The low cost-carrier announced last night that it would reduce fares to between $99-$159 including government taxes on any remaining seats in select markets where there are aircraft available.
The fares apply to destinations including Savannah in Georgia, Charleston in South Carolina, and the state of Florida. They will also be honoured on international journeys from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Turks and Caicos Islands and Nassau, The Bahamas, as well as from several airports in the Dominican Republic and Cuba.
Cancellation and change fees have also been waived for customers with existing reservations to Florida and the Caribbean.
JetBlue stated yesterday afternoon that it had cancelled approximately 150 flights and was taking a number of steps to assist customers and support new bookings for those looking to evacuate.
The move by the New York-based airline comes amid customer fury at price hikes ahead of Irma’s arrival in Florida this weekend. Many areas in the state are under mandatory evacuation orders and fares have increased significantly. One-way domestic flights can now cost up to $1,000.
Hurricane Irma has already caused widespread destruction across the Caribbean since hitting the duel-territory of Antigua and Barbuda yesterday before heading to Saint-Martin, Saint Barthélemy, Anguilla and the US and British Virgin Islands. It is a category five hurricane, the highest possible level, with wind speeds of 185mph.
It is expected to affect the Bahamas, Haiti, Cuba, the Dominican Republic and the Turks and Caicos islands before arriving in Florida on Sunday.