Travel The cheapest ways to fly in JetBlue’s premium Mint cabin
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From boutique Pacific carriers to New York’s homegrown airline, these seven exciting cabins, chosen by TheDesignAir founder Jonny Clark, should be at the top of your 2021 bucket listJetBlue A321 Mint
Reviews of JetBlue’s premium Mint cabin have beensince the product debuted back in 2013. It even took home the TPG Award for best domestic business class multiple years in a row. The seats are spacious and private, the food and drinks are consistently great, and perhaps most importantly, it’s often reasonably priced.
We’ve seen Mint routes , so it’s possible to score a relative deal for this comfortable inflight experience. Also, although the airline isn’t a part of any formal airline alliance, there are a few ways to book Mint with points and miles. Today, we’ll look at both revenue and award options to find the cheapest ways to book JetBlue Mint.
JetBlue cuts a whopping 27 routes in sweeping network update
JetBlue’s route map is getting a pandemic-era shake-up. Over the weekend, the New York-based carrier filed a slew of cuts beginning this fall, per Cirium schedules. The majority of the cuts are on routes that were added during the pandemic, a development that comes JetBlue begins seeing “more expected booking patterns.” The carrier confirmed the …Over the weekend, the New York-based carrier filed a slew of cuts beginning this fall, per Cirium schedules. The majority of the cuts are on routes that were added during the pandemic, a development that comes JetBlue begins seeing “more expected booking patterns.
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Aircraft and routes
JetBlue’s Mint product is only available on select A321,and aircraft. You’ll find these planes operating a growing number of , Central American, and . Here are some key Mint routes:
- New York-JFK to/from Los Angeles (LAX), Las Vegas (LAS), San Diego (SAN), San Francisco (SFO), Seattle (SEA), Aruba (AUA), St. Maarten (SXM) and London (LHR).
- Newark (EWR) to/from Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), Aruba (AUA) and St. Maarten (SXM).
- Boston (BOS) to/from Los Angeles (LAX), Las Vegas (LAS), San Diego (SAN), San Francisco (SFO), Seattle (SEA) and St. Maarten (SXM).
- Los Angeles (LAX) to/from Liberia, Costa Rica (LIR), Miami (MIA) and Fort Lauderdale (FLL).
Note that some Mint routes are seasonal or operate just once a week, so make sure to check JetBlue’s schedule carefully when planning your trip dates.
What it’s really like to fly standby as an airline employee
Free travel is one of the most enticing perks of working in the airline industry, but there’s a major asterisk involved. Airline employees have access to non-revenue travel, meaning you’ll only get a seat if there’s space available. For those who like a good gamble, showing up to the airport without a confirmed seat can …Back in summer 2019 — also known as the golden year for air travel — I was an intern at JetBlue Airways. One of the perks was standby travel, and during those 10 weeks, I wanted to take full advantage of my (short-lived) benefits. Overall, it was a success, as I flew more than 30 times that summer, with seven of those flights on the coveted JetBlue Mint business class.
Aside from on theflying to London and select A321neo flights between New York-JFK and Los Angeles (which offer even better seats), JetBlue offers a consistent business-class cabin across its Mint-equipped fleet.
There are 16 Mint seats spread across five rows, with each row alternating between a 2-2 configuration (odd-numbered rows) and 1-1 configuration (even-numbered rows). All seats are fully lie-flat and feature a massage function, a built-in power outlet, USB port and seatback entertainment. That said, the seats in the even-numbered rows offer the most privacy, complete with closing doors.
Booking JetBlue Mint with cash
Not surprisingly, the most straightforward way to book Mint tickets is naturally with cash. As mentioned, we’ve seen Mint fares go for under $300 one-way. However, you can usually expect to pay around $600 each way on cross-country routes, $500 each way on Caribbean routes and around $1,000 to the U.K.
Business-class battle: The best lie-flats between the US and London
International airlines are facing some stiff competition on bread-and-butter routes between the U.S. and London. JetBlue recently began offering regular service between New York-JFK and London Heathrow (LHR), with flights between New York and London’s Gatwick Airport (LGW) launching soon, followed by Boston (BOS)-London in 2022. With fares of around $2,000 round-trip, the new addition …JetBlue recently began offering regular service between New York-JFK and London Heathrow (LHR), with flights between New York and London’s Gatwick Airport (LGW) launching soon, followed by Boston (BOS)-London in 2022.
To see if we could determine a time or route that was consistently the cheapest, we searched 14 Mint routes for a one-way ticket for both close-in dates (less than 72 hours) and three months in the future. Here’s a chart of the results:
Video: I Was on JetBlue's First Flight to London — Here's What It Was Like (Travel + Leisure)
|New York-JFK||San Francisco||$959||$817|
|New York-JFK||Los Angeles||$799||$667|
|New York-JFK||London Heathrow||$1,979*||$992*|
|New York-JFK||St. Maarten||$430||$430|
|Los Angeles||Fort Lauderdale||$699||$599|
*Price each way when booking a round-trip ticket
Overall, the Caribbean Mint routes are typically going to be your best chance at flying Mint at the lowest prices. Booking a couple of months in advance will often score you lower prices, but the differences aren’t always that significant. In one of our examples, it was cheaper to book close-in than far out so there’s no hard and fast rule there at the moment.
JetBlue Is Having a Sale With Fares Starting As Low As $39 Each Way — Here's How to Book
The sale is valid through Sept. 16 at 11:59 pm ET. To take advantage, customers must book travel for Sept. 20 through Nov. 18, according to the airline. The sale excludes blackout dates from Nov. 11 to Nov. 15. Fly from New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport to Miami International Airport for only $39 one-way, or travel from New York to destinations like Dallas, Fort Lauderdale, Nashville, and Orlando for only $44 each way.
How to book JetBlue Mint with points
There are three main ways to book JetBlue Mint tickets with points. You can either redeem directly through, or your credit card’s . Some transferrable card points such as Amex Membership Rewards and Chase Ultimate Rewards also transfer into the JetBlue program. Although you can also book JetBlue flights with HawaiianMiles, it doesn’t have an avenue to book Mint tickets.
While booking Mint seats via TrueBlue might seem like the most obvious option, it is rarely the most valuable. JetBlue uses a dynamic pricing scheme so the price of an award flight will always be tied to the cash rate. The more a flight costs in cash, the more it will cost in points.
TPG ased on our experiences, the redemption value tends to be around 25% lower for Mint award tickets than for the rest of the seats on the plane. As such, you’ll usually be better off saving your points for economy redemptions.TrueBlue points at 1.3 cents per point. However, b
Luckily, in July,. Previously, only economy awards were available.
Emirates prices JetBlue awards based on the distance flown. And in many cases, the redemption rates can actually be a good deal. Emirates’ award chart for JetBlue flights is as follows. As you can see, Mint is always double the price of economy in this program.
I Was on JetBlue's First Flight to London — Here's What It Was Like
The airline’s inaugural flight to London is its first venture into Europe, and they did it with a brand new, fully loaded fleet. The airline currently services over 100 destinations across the U.S., Latin America, and the Caribbean, but had yet to service Europe — that is, until now. And earlier this year, the airline overhauled their first-class offering with the debut of the new Mint — offering private "cabins" with ample space.
|One-way distance (miles)||Economy||Mint|
|0-250||8,000 miles||16,000 miles|
|251-500||10,000 miles||20,000 miles|
|501-1,000||14,000 miles||28,000 miles|
|1,001-2,000||20,000 miles||40,000 miles|
|2,001-3,000||26,000 miles||52,000 miles|
|3,001-4,000||32,000 miles||64,000 miles|
|4,001-5,000||38,000 miles||76,000 miles|
|5,001-6,000||44,000 miles||88,000 miles|
|6,001-7,000||50,000 miles||100,000 miles|
|7,001-15,000||60,000 miles||120,000 miles|
To give you an idea, here are the rates for some popular Mint routes:
- New York-JFK to Aruba (AUA): 40,000 miles (1,951 miles in distance).
- New York-JFK to Los Angeles (LAX): 52,000 miles (2,475 miles in distance).
- Boston (BOS) to San Francisco (SFO): 52,000 miles (2,704 miles in distance).
- Los Angeles (LAX) to Miami (MIA): 52,000 miles (2,342 miles in distance).
JetBlue’s new route from New York-JFK to London Heathrow would cost 64,000 miles (3,451 miles in distance). That said, reports suggest that U.K. flights are not bookable with Skywards miles yet. All other routes are bookable online via Emirates’ website. As long as there’s “I” fare availability, it should be bookable through Emirates.
Considering transcontinental routes sometimes start around $900 each way, you can get about 1.7 cents in value per mile with these redemptions, which is pretty solid. If you need Emirates miles, you can transfer points to Skywards from all major, including (1:1 ratio), (1:1), (1:1), (1:1), (2:1) and (3:1 with a 5,000-mile bonus for every 60,000 Marriott points transferred).
London’s calling, again: JetBlue launches service to Gatwick tonight for its second UK route
JetBlue launches its inaugural service to London’s Gatwick airport tonight, seven weeks after the airline kicked off its long-awaited U.K. service to London’s Heathrow airport. The Gatwick launch comes under very different circumstances to the Heathrow inaugural, which JetBlue hopes will lead to strong demand on both routes. Want more airline-specific news? Sign up for …The Gatwick launch comes under very different circumstances to the Heathrow inaugural, which JetBlue hopes will lead to strong demand on both routes.
The final option to consider is redeeming your transferable points at a fixed rate directly through your credit card’s travel portal.
For instance, if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you’re able to redeem your points on thefor 1.5 cents apiece. This means that a $300 Mint ticket to the Caribbean would cost just 20,000 Chase points. Meanwhile, Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Ink Business Preferred Credit Card holders can redeem at 1.25 cents each toward travel in the Chase portal.
If you have The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and receive the(up to 500,000 additional points per year), that ticket would come out to a very attractive 19,500 Amex points.
JetBlue Mint is a wonderful product and there are plenty of affordable opportunities to fly at almost any given time. The cheapest Mint fares are typically offered on flights to the Caribbean, but if you’re booking far enough in advance, you can find good deals on cross-country and U.K. flights as well.
Although there historically haven’t been many good ways to book Mint awards with points, this is no longer the case now that Emirates Skywards offers Mint redemptions. When cash fares are low, redeeming your points at a fixed value through your credit card’s travel portal may also be an appealing option.
Additional reporting by Richard Kerr.
Featured photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy.
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.
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