JetBlue has added another earning option for points in their TrueBlue loyalty program: Getaways vacation packages. The bundles – air plus hotel, car, transfers or excursions – will now earn points based on the total value of the package purchased, less taxes and fees. TrueBlue customers will earn three points per dollar spent with JetBlue American Express card holders earning an additional two points per dollar spent rather than the normal one point for purchases.
To celebrate the launch of the program JetBlue is offering a double points promotion through August 31, 2010. All packages purchased between now and August 31 will earn three bonus points per dollar spent, doubling the regular earning rate. This bonus is based on when the booking is made, not travel dates.
Because the TrueBlue program earning scheme for points is based on spend rather than on distance traveled it is uniquely positioned to be able to offer earning on vacation packages such as these. Virgin America is the only other airline in the USA that has a similar revenue-based model for point accrual but their vacation packages earn only based on the flight component, not on the total package value. This differentiation is a great feature of this new JetBlue Getaways earning program.
JetBlue also provides for “Go Big” and “Go Long” bonus thresholds in the TrueBlue program. These are based on total ticket spend and long segment flights, respectively. For tickets purchased through the Getaways package deals the air component will still count towards these bonuses; the hotel, transfers, car and excursion components will not. In some cases this may mean it is better to book discrete components rather than the package to maximize the points accrual once the current double earnings bonus expires. The air travel component will also count towards extending the life of points in the existing TrueBlue accounts.
Like I always say, seeing new ways to earn points is always a welcome change. And in this case it appears that JetBlue has put together a very strong offering. They are leading the industry on this front.
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