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JetBlue may add premium seating

The chief executive of JetBlue Airways says he wants to expand the airline’s new premium  seating to transcontinental flights from Boston to Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Andrew Burton/Getty Images

The chief executive of JetBlue Airways says he wants to expand the airline’s new premium seating to transcontinental flights from Boston to Los Angeles and San Francisco.

The chief executive of JetBlue Airways says he wants to expand the airline’s new premium seating to transcontinental flights from Boston to Los Angeles and San Francisco.

“I personally believe it would work really well here,” said David Barger, chief executive of JetBlue. “I don’t think it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when.”

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Barger made the remarks at a winter operations and deicing conference held at the Hyatt Boston Harbor, where he was a keynote speaker on Monday.

For years the low-cost airline based in Queens, N.Y., offered a single coach-only cabin. JetBlue added its first business class cabin, dubbed Mint, on Airbus A321 planes flying nonstop from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York to Los Angeles International Airport in June. The airline will expand the seating on its New York to San Francisco route in late October.

The 16 premium seats in the Mint cabin recline into fully-flat beds and include four private suites. The seats are the longest and widest in the US domestic market and JetBlue is the only US airline to offer private suites, the company said.

The seats are priced competitively from $599 to $999 for one-way tickets. Airline analysts say JetBlue is trying to attract high-end leisure travelers and business travelers that don’t have corporate accounts with other carriers.

Barger said the company has not yet officially decided to add the seating to Logan International Airport flights. If approved, Mint seats would likely become available in the end of 2015 or in early 2016 following a year-long trial in New York.

JetBlue operates 120 daily flights in and out of Logan, which is more than any other carrier. The airline currently offers three nonstop flights to Los Angeles International Airport and three to San Francisco International Airport each day.

Taryn Luna can be reached at taryn.luna@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @TarynLuna.
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