BOSTON (CBS) - JetBlue Airways will spring ahead in Boston.
JetBlue will launch promotional support as the official airline of the Boston Red Sox as their season begins Monday. They're also the official airline of the Boston Marathon that will host more than 25,000 runners April 15.
JetBlue is getting ready to add an important new business destination on May 23 when it begins five daily round trips between Logan Airport and Philadelphia. Its' direct competitor will be US Airways which is moving forward with a merger with American Airlines.
JetBlue has added an average of five new destinations a year from Boston since service was first launched in 2004. Earlier this year, it began flights to Charleston, South Carolina.
Boston is a focus city for JetBlue and the airline now ranks number one in passengers with about 25 percent of the people using Logan. April is one of the busiest months of the year with events like the Marathon and the spring school vacation week taking place at the same time.
JetBlue should handle about 650,000 passengers at Logan this month.
According to research conducted by the Boston Athletic Association, more than 62 percent of the runners and people accompanying them will arrive by air. 60.9 percent of the athletes come from a state outside of New England with 18 percent residing in a foreign country.
Sixty-nine percent of the runners will stay in a hotel and about half of the runners will be on the course for the first time. Six percent will be doing Boston for the fourth time.
According to the nine thousand runners who took part in a sruvey conducted after last year's race, 73 percent own a smart phone and 45 percent an iPad or other tablet computer.
WBZ-TV and CBS Boston.com will cover the race live from the start to the finish. John Hancock Financial is the major sponsor.
An important new feature of this year's marathon is the Runner Passport that has already been sent to all official runners. It provides information of all aspects of the marathon weekend, including transportation, restaurants and attraction information. When the runners pick-up their numbers at the Hynes Auditorium, they will be given a lanyard to display the passport which measures 4 inches by 6 inches.
Bob Weiss reports on business travel on Mondays at 5:55 a.m. on WBZ NewsRadio 1030.
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