JetBlue Airways increased the bottom end of its projected second-quarter (2Q) unit revenue guidance, aligning with both the carrier’s short-term outlook of an increasing revenue environment and bigger-picture trends that show strong demand and pricing.

The New York-based carrier now sees a year-over-year RASM increase of 2%-4% in the quarter, up from the 1%-4% range forecast in April as part of its 1Q earnings release.

“The [2Q] outlook ... has been mostly as expected, with April starting off weak, and demand picking up around Easter. This demand trend has continued through May,” Cohen & Co. analyst Helane Becker wrote. “June is also tracking in line with expectations.” 

Easter’s move to the second quarter this year is estimated to have shifted 2% of RASM along with it, accounting for some of the variation between 2018’s and 2019’s differing starts to the year.

JetBlue said its May capacity was up 5.4%, while RPMs rose 5.7%. Year-to-date ASMs are up 8.5%, which is above the airline’s full-year guidance of a 4.5%-6.5% uptick compared to 2018. RPMs were up 6.8% through May.

Sean Broderick, sean.broderick@aviationweek.com