How to Earn Points With the JetBlue TrueBlue Program
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JetBlue is one of the newer players to the North American airline lineup. Founded in 1999, the airline now serves over 250 destinations around the United States, Caribbean and Latin America. Further, the airline has JetBlue Mint, the inaugural TPG Award winner for best domestic premium class. This innovative product gives flyers international-style business class seats and is currently in use on multiple transcontinental and Caribbean routes.
And starting in 2021, the airline is planning to enter a new market, as it just announced future transatlantic service to London from New York-JFK and Boston. While details still aren’t available, these future routes may help boost the carrier a couple of notches in your airline hierarchy.
Of course, no airline is complete without a loyalty program. JetBlue’s program — TrueBlue — has been around since the airline’s inception. It’s one of the most straightforward mileage programs in the sky but tends to fly under the radar (which may change as it expands across the Atlantic). In this article, we’ll dive deep and take a look at how to earn TrueBlue points through flying and by leveraging some of its many airline and retail partners.
Let’s dive in and check it out!
Earn by Flying
As you’d expect, you can earn TrueBlue miles by flying on JetBlue-operated flights. But did you know that you can also earn TrueBlue miles when flying on JetBlue’s international and domestic partners too? Even though the carrier doesn’t belong to an alliance, it still has agreements with a half dozen or so other carriers, so here’s a quick overview of how to earn TrueBlue points when you hit the sky.
Flying on JetBlue
JetBlue awards TrueBlue points on its own flights based on three factors: how much you pay for your flight, the fare type you book and where you book. It starts simply enough: for every paid JetBlue flight, you’ll take home at least 3 TrueBlue points per dollar spent. If you book that flight on JetBlue.com (or via the carrier’s mobile app), you’ll earn an additional 3 points per dollar spent. Additionally, those with JetBlue Mosaic elite status earn another 3 points per dollar spent on all paid JetBlue flights, no matter the fare booked.
If you’re booking through one of JetBlue’s direct channels, here’s how those flights will earn points:
- Blue — 6 points per $1 spent
- Blue Plus — 7 points per $1 spent
- Blue Flex — 8 points per $1 spent
- Mint — 6 points per $1 spent
Here’s how you’ll earn points if you book through an online travel agency, which includes using Chase Ultimate Rewards points directly through the Ultimate Rewards travel center:
- Blue — 3 points per $1 spent
- Blue Plus — 4 points per $1 spent
- Blue Flex — 5 points per $1 spent
- Mint — 3 points per $1 spent
To put this into perspective, a $300 flight from New York-JFK to Los Angeles (LAX) in the lowest fare class (Blue) on JetBlue booked on the carrier’s website would earn 1,800 TrueBlue points for non-status members and 2,700 TrueBlue points for Mosaic members, though the earning rates would drop to 900 points and 1,800 points for regular members and Mosaic travelers (respectively) if booking elsewhere. It’s really that simple.
It remains to be seen if the carrier’s new international service will offer the same rates, though it stands to reason that it should.
There are a couple of additional ways to earn bonus TrueBlue points via JetBlue flights. The first is by purchasing an Even More Space seat. These will get you an extra 200 points, regardless of the additional fee you paid:
You’ll also earn 15,000 bonus points by qualifying for Mosaic status, which is accomplished by earning 15,000 base points ($5,000 in spending) or by completing 30 segments and earning 12,000 base points ($4,000 in spending). This is a one-time bonus awarded at the time of qualification.
Finally, the TrueBlue program offers a series of bonuses based on your flight activity throughout the year, even if you don’t reach Mosaic status. Here’s a rundown of these three tiers:
- Take 3 Bonus: Earn 5,000 bonus points when you purchase and fly three round-trip JetBlue flights in the calendar year.
- Lucky 7 Bonus: Earn 7,000 bonus points when you purchase and fly seven round-trip JetBlue flights in the calendar year.
- Go Long Bonus: Earn 10,000 bonus points when you purchase and fly 10 one-way JetBlue flights that are 1,600 miles or more in the calendar year.
These bonuses will typically post in along with the qualifying flight segment:
In the above screenshot, TPG Editor Nick Ewen completed his third round-trip of 2018 flying home from Boston (BOS) to Orlando (MCO) and took home an extra 5,000 points in addition to the 207 base points he earned from his $69 fare.
Flying With Partners
JetBlue has a number of domestic and international partners, and while you can only redeem your TrueBlue points on one of them (Hawaiian Airlines), you can easily earn points on all of them by adding your TrueBlue number to your flight reservation. Currently, JetBlue partners with these airlines for earning points:
- Hawaiian Airlines
- JetSuite X
- Silver Airways
- Singapore Airlines
- South African Airways
The number of miles you’ll earn per partner flight depends on the airline and booking class. Determine your mileage earning by finding the airline on JetBlue’s partner directory and click on the partner’s logo. Then, find your partner booking class on the earnings chart, and the “TrueBlue Point Accrual” column will tell you how many points you’ll earn per mile flown.
Here’s an example of this chart for Icelandair:
For example, if you booked an Economy Comfort ticket on Icelandair in E class, you’d earn 1 TrueBlue point per mile flown. So flying one-way from Seattle (SEA) to Reykjavik (KEF) would earn 3,622 points.
Earn Through Credit Cards
JetBlue revamped its credit card portfolio back in 2016, introducing three new credit cards with Barclays. Two of these credit cards are personal cards, and the other is a business card. Each offers a different suite of in-flight benefits and awards TrueBlue points for everyday purchases. Additionally, each JetBlue card has a lucrative welcome bonus that can give you a nice lump sum of points up-front.
Here’s the current details on these three cards:
- JetBlue Card: Earn 10,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days Earn 3x points on JetBlue purchases, 2x points at restaurants and grocery stores and 1x points on all other purchases.
- JetBlue Plus Card: Earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days and paying the annual fee. You’ll earn 6x points on JetBlue purchases, 2x points at restaurants and grocery stores and 1x points on all other purchases.
- JetBlue Business Card: Earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days. Earn 6x points on JetBlue purchases, 2x points at restaurants and office supply stores and 1x points on all other purchases.
All three cards waive foreign transaction fees and offer 50% off in-flight purchases. In addition, the Plus and the Business card also get you a free checked bag on all JetBlue flights, 5,000 bonus points on your anniversary and 10% of your points back every time you redeem them for a JetBlue-operated flight.
Earn Through Partners
Don’t want to fly or open a new credit card? No worries—try earning TrueBlue points through one of JetBlue’s many retail and everyday partners. You can use these partners to earn miles on dining out, online shopping and rides to the airport. Here’s an overview of JetBlue’s lineup of everyday partners:
Transfer Points from American Express, Chase, or Citi
You can transfer points to JetBlue from all major credit card programs: American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Citi ThankYou Rewards. Points transfer at a 1:1 ratio from Chase and Citi if you have a Citi Prestige or Citi Premier Card, though your ratio is 1.25:1 from American Express.
TPG’s most recent valuations peg JetBlue points at 1.3 cents per points, which is lower than all three of these transferable point currencies. As a result, you will likely be giving up some value if you transfer in from any one of these three programs, but if you need to top up your JetBlue account for a specific award ticket, you’d be best off using Citi or Chase points for a 1:1 transfer, since the Amex transfer rate is lower and it applies a small excise tax to these transfers.
Transfer Miles from Hotel Partners
Like credit cards, TrueBlue miles can be transferred in from hotel partners, and under normal circumstances, Marriott would be the only one that makes sense. However, JetBlue’s partnership with Marriott has a less lucrative transfer rate compared with other airlines. Currently, JetBlue points transfer at a 6:1 ratio from Marriott, while most other airlines offer 3:1 transfers. As a result, I’d recommend steering clear of this option.
Earn with Lyft (airport rides only)
Like Delta, you can earn TrueBlue points on Lyft rides, but unfortunately this is limited to an initial 750 points for signing up for Lyft and taking your first ride as well as trips to or from the airport. You’ll earn 30 TrueBlue points per ride from the airport, up to 1,200 TrueBlue points per year. Just link your TrueBlue account to your Lyft account here and you’ll earn the points automatically — no action required on your part.
Like many major airline programs, JetBlue has its own dining rewards program: TrueBlue Dining. All you have to do is sign up for an account and link your favorite dining credit card. You’ll then earn extra TrueBlue points when eating out at participating restaurants (which you can find on TrueBlue Dining’s website). Even better? These points are in addition to the points or miles you’d earn with your credit card, so be sure to use a card that gives you extra points on dining purchases.
Unlike other dining rewards programs, TrueBlue Dining earns 3x points per $1 spent at all participating restaurants, bars and clubs (others require you to submit your email address for this earning rate). The more you spend, the more you earn, so next time you need to take a group of coworkers, clients, vendors or friends out for lunch, see if you can pick somewhere on TrueBlue Dining to rack up some serious points.
Shop with Shop Blue
JetBlue has its own shopping portal dubbed Shop Blue. This site lets you earn extra TrueBlue points in addition to any credit card earnings. To use the portal, just sign-up for a Shop Blue account and look for your merchant on the site. When you click through its link instead of going directly to its page, you’ll earn bonus TrueBlue points. Each Shop Blue merchant offers a different amount of points per dollar spent, and these rates fluctuates frequently, so check the Shop Blue site frequently for up-to-date info. You can also quickly compare the earning rates with other online shopping portals like Ebates by using a portal aggregator like CashBackMonitor.com.
Earn on Amazon
Although the days of earning JetBlue points on all Amazon purchases are long gone, you can still earn them while on a JetBlue flight. All you have to do is connect to the carrier’s free in-flight Wi-Fi, enter your Amazon email address on the login screen and shop on Amazon as usual. You’ll earn 3x points per $1 spent on Amazon purchases in-flight, as TPG Editor Nick Ewen did in December while Christmas shopping en route home from the TPG Awards:
If you know you have a large Amazon purchase coming up, you may want to save it for your next JetBlue flight.
There’s one final aspect of the TrueBlue program that can help you earn points more quickly: Points Pooling. This used to be limited to families in the same household, but in August 2018 the carrier announced that it would be expanding this to non-household members. As of late 2018, this is now live and is an easy way to combine small balances from up to seven TrueBlue members, regardless of how those points are earned.
For full details, check out our guide to JetBlue’s points pooling.
JetBlue TrueBlue points are some of the easiest domestic airline points to earn, and the carrier is a favorite of many casual and semi-frequent travelers thanks to its terrific in-flight product, including free Wi-Fi, snacks, drinks and DirecTV. With JetBlue poised to launch service to London in 2021, it may see an even greater influx of new members. Use a combination of the methods above to jumpstart your TrueBlue balance, and before you know it, you could be flying across the country (or the Atlantic) in the airline’s solid economy class or award-winning Mint business class.
Featured photo by Allison Joyce/Getty Images