NEW: JetBlue Airways increased its checked bag fees in January 2020. See below for details.
With its main base out of John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, JetBlue Airways controls much of the low-cost airfare market by giving snowbirds easy access to warmer temperatures.
Although it is a low-cost carrier, JetBlue is known for its amenities. In this article, you’ll learn all about them, as well as how to save on airfare when booking on JetBlue.
JetBlue Airways: What to Know Before Booking a Flight
The New York City-based airline was incorporated in 1998 as NewAir, but changed its name to JetBlue shortly after.
The sixth-largest airline in the nation, JetBlue boasted revenues of more than $7 billion in 2018, giving it one of the strongest balance sheets in the aviation industry.
Whether you’re thinking about booking a flight for the first time or contemplating whether to buy another ticket, here are some things to know about JetBlue:
- Where Does JetBlue Fly?
- What Are JetBlue’s Fare Options?
- What Is JetBlue’s Baggage Policy?
- What Are JetBlue’s Change Fees?
- What Are Some Features and Amenities?
- How Much Legroom Does JetBlue Offer?
- How Do Customers View JetBlue?
- Ways to Save on JetBlue
1. Where Does JetBlue Fly?
JetBlue flies to 102 cities, including destinations in the Caribbean and Latin America.
Domestically, the airline’s main concentration is on operations from six “focus” cities — Boston; Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood, Florida; Los Angeles (Long Beach); Orlando; New York and San Juan. See JetBlue’s route map here.
2. What Are JetBlue’s Fare Options?
JetBlue has five branded fares: Blue Basic, Blue, Blue Plus and Blue Flex and Mint. The cheapest fare level, Blue Basic, is the airline’s version of basic economy, which features no-frills or perks.
Here is a breakdown of the fare differences:
|Features||Blue Basic||Blue||Blue Plus||Blue Extra||Mint|
|1 carry-on bag + personal item||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Number of checked bags included||0||0||1||0||2|
|Changes||Not allowed||Allowed with fee starting at $75||Allowed with fee starting at $75||Allowed||$200|
Although fares come with different TrueBlue point eligibility (TrueBlue is JetBlue’s loyalty program), all of them include in-flight entertainment, snacks and non-alcoholic drinks — all free of charge. Regardless of the fare, passengers can “buy up” to get more amenities.
Let’s talk more in detail about JetBlue’s “Cadillac” fare: JetBlue Mint.
What is JetBlue Mint?
JetBlue’s premium product is called Mint. With Mint, you get “lie-flat” seats that allow you to get some serious shuteye on long flights as well as “artisanal” dining options like locally curated ice creams and exclusive chocolate bars from Raaka.
On many jets, JetBlue has 16 fully lie-flat seats, four of which are located in suites with a privacy door. The airline markets Mint to transcontinental business travelers, and no wonder: Mint launched in 2013 with one-way seats starting at $599.
3. What Is JetBlue’s Baggage Policy?
Each passenger is allowed one carry-on bag and one personal item (purse, briefcase, laptop, etc.). Personal items can’t be larger than 17 inches long, 13 inches wide and 8 inches high and must be able to fit under your seat.
Here is JetBlue’s checked baggage policy:
|Fares||1st Bag||2nd Bag|
|JetBlue Plus Cardmember||Included||$45|
If you wish to check a third bag (or more), there will be a $150 fee, the airline says.
As for size, checked bags that exceed 62 inches overall (length + width + height) or weigh more than 50 pounds will be assessed a fee.
4. What Are JetBlue’s Change Fees?
When it comes to change and cancellation fees, JetBlue has a tiered fee schedule. For Blue Extra passengers there are no change fees except a difference in fare. For Blue Basic, changes are not allowed voluntarily.
Here Are Blue & Blue Plus Change Fees:
- $75 + the difference in fare for fares below $100
- $100 + the difference in fare for fares $100-$149.99
- $150 + the difference in fare for fares $150-$199.99
- $200 + the difference in fare for fares $200 and up
5. What Are Some JetBlue Features & Amenities?
JetBlue has some amenities and features that other airlines simply don’t have. They include:
A Customer Bill of Rights
If anything ever goes haywire involving a flight, passengers have a written recourse that they can use to get monetary compensation, re-accommodation and more. it’s called JetBlue’s Customer Bill of Rights.
The Bill of Rights explicitly outlines how much money fliers get in the case of a ground delay or overbooking. This handy document will help to cut down on confusion and compensation expectations.
The airline offers free Wi-Fi on all domestic flights. The airline has branded the service “Fly-Fi” and bills it as gate-to-gate mobile and internet service for passengers.
Best Fare Guarantee
The carrier promises that it will always display its cheapest fares on its own site. “If by any chance you find a lower JetBlue fare elsewhere on the same day of purchase, we’ll give you a $50 credit good for travel on JetBlue and refund the fare difference,” the airline says on its website.
This is important because some major airlines hide their cheapest fares on their own website but allow them to be searchable on some of the other travel sites like Kayak, Expedia and Priceline.com to compete with low-cost carriers.
6. How Much Legroom Do JetBlue Seats Have?
When it comes to seat pitch, JetBlue planes are some of the more spacious in the industry. The reason for that is largely because its fleet includes the Brazilian-built Embraer 190 (E190), which offers customers the roomiest interior of any narrow-body aircraft.
For a fee, JetBlue also offers Even More Space seats, which give travelers up to 38 inches of legroom.
7. How Do Customers View JetBlue’s Service?
When it comes to customer satisfaction, JetBlue came in tied for second place among major U.S. carriers in the American Customer Satisfaction Index report released in April 2019.
|Airline||2019 Score||2018 Score|
|Delta Air Lines||75||74|
8. How to Save Money on JetBlue Flights
Now that you know all about the airline, here are some ways you can save money on JetBlue flights:
- Book online: JetBlue adds $25 per person to fares purchased by phone
- Check their deals page: Use JetBlue’s Deals page, its Best Fare Finder and the JetBlueCheeps account to save
- Become a TrueBlue member: JetBlue’s frequent flyer program, TrueBlue, offers numerous perks for members, including exclusive fares and upgrades