I don’t write all that much about the JetBlue TrueBlue program, since it historically hasn’t offered many opportunities for outsized value. Fortunately that’s something that’s slowly starting to change, as JetBlue has added some online partner redemption opportunities.
In this post I wanted to cover the basics of redeeming JetBlue TrueBlue points, and how to get the most value with these points.
In this post:
JetBlue TrueBlue points are easy to earn
JetBlue TrueBlue points are super easy to come by. For one, you can earn TrueBlue points for flying with JetBlue, and you earn even more points if you have Mosaic status. JetBlue also has a co-branded credit card, which has a decent value proposition.
Note that while transfers from Chase and Citi are at a 1:1 ratio, transfers from Amex are at a 5:4 ratio, so that’s not quite as good of a deal. Furthermore, Amex passes on a federal excise tax on these points transfers, so I’d definitely pick Chase and Citi transfers over Amex transfers.
Always think twice and crunch numbers before moving points from a transferable points currency to JetBlue TrueBlue, since the program is primarily revenue based, so the opportunities to get outsized value are fairly limited. In some cases, you may be better off redeeming your points through a credit card travel portal, getting more value that way.
JetBlue TrueBlue points don’t expire
JetBlue TrueBlue points don’t expire, regardless of any activity activity. That’s fantastic, since you never have to worry about keeping your account active in order to prevent points from expiring.
JetBlue awards have no change or cancelation fees
If you’re redeeming JetBlue TrueBlue points, there are no change or cancelation fees if you need to make changes to your ticket. The only restriction to be aware of is that the taxes and fees you pay won’t be refunded to your original form of payment, but rather will be added to your JetBlue Travel Bank, and can be used toward a future flight.
How to redeem JetBlue TrueBlue points
There are a few options for redeeming JetBlue TrueBlue points, and the value you get also differs based on how you redeem:
- You can redeem TrueBlue points for any seat on a JetBlue flight; for these redemptions, TrueBlue is revenue based, so the cost of a ticket varies based on how much it would cost in cash
- You can redeem TrueBlue points for award travel on Qatar Airways and Hawaiian Airlines; while there’s not a published award chart, award pricing is pretty consistent, and is zone based
So let’s take a look at the details of these redemption values.
Redeem TrueBlue points for JetBlue economy travel
The most popular way to redeem TrueBlue points is for travel in economy on JetBlue. You can redeem points for any Blue or Blue Extra fare, though can’t redeem for Blue Basic, JetBlue’s version of basic economy.
Generally you can expect that each TrueBlue point will get you roughly 1.5 cents toward the cost of a JetBlue ticket in economy, though there’s some inconsistency.
For example, on a random flight between New York and Los Angeles:
- A Blue fare costs $219 or 14,200 points plus $5.60 in taxes, getting you 1.5 cents of value per point
- A Blue Extra fare costs $254 or 16,700 points plus $5.60 in taxes, getting you 1.5 cents of value per point
Taking another random flight between New York and Tampa:
- A Blue fare costs $129 or 8,000 points plus $5.60 in taxes, getting you 1.54 cents of value per point
- A Blue Extra fare costs $154 or 9,700 points plus $5.60 in taxes, getting you 1.53 cents of value per point
As you can see, there’s a bit of variability in terms of the value that you get, though in general I’d recommend trying to use your points in a way that gets you at least 1.5 cents of value per point.
Redeem TrueBlue points for JetBlue Mint travel
JetBlue Mint is JetBlue’s amazing business class product. There are two versions — the “classic” one in a staggered configuration, and the new version in a herringbone configuration. JetBlue Mint is among the best business class experiences you’ll find in the United States.
JetBlue Mint is often quite reasonably priced, but here’s what’s annoying — when redeeming points, you don’t get nearly as much value toward a Mint ticket. For example, as shown above, you can typically get 1.5 cents of value per TrueBlue point toward an economy fare.
For example, let’s take a random JetBlue Mint fare between Boston and Seattle, which costs either $543 or 42,700 points plus $5.60 in taxes. That gets you just 1.26 cents of value per point, which is significantly less value than you’d get in economy.
So I generally wouldn’t recommend redeeming TrueBlue points for Mint, though there are other ways to score a deal in Mint.
Redeem TrueBlue points for travel on Qatar Airways
Nowadays it’s possible to redeem TrueBlue points on Qatar Airways. These awards are bookable directly on JetBlue’s website, and there are no carrier imposed surcharges on these redemptions.
Awards are possible in all regions, and award pricing varies based on where you’re traveling, though there’s no published award chart. The good news is that pricing is quite reasonable, and if you can find business class award availability, it can be a great deal.
For example, you can fly Qatar Airways business class from the United States to Doha for 70,000-80,000 points, or fly from the United States to India via Doha for as little as 106,000 points. That has the potential to be a great deal, and can offer outsized value.
Redeem TrueBlue points for travel on Hawaiian Airlines
It’s also possible to redeem TrueBlue points on Hawaiian Airlines. These awards are bookable directly on JetBlue’s website, and there are no carrier imposed surcharges on these redemptions.
Awards are possible in all regions, and award pricing varies based on where you’re traveling, though there’s no published award chart. Inter-island awards cost 5,000 points in economy or 10,000 points in business class, and Hawaii to West Coast United States awards cost 20,000 points in economy or 40,000 points in business class.
This has the potential to be a good deal, though just keep in mind that revenue fares are often reasonable for these flights as well, and award availability can also be tough to come by.
JetBlue TrueBlue is a pretty easy to use frequent flyer program. TrueBlue is revenue based for redemptions on JetBlue, and you’ll generally get more value per point when redeeming for economy rather than business class.
TrueBlue also allows select partner redemptions, including on Qatar Airways and Hawaiian Airlines. Redemptions on Qatar Airways are definitely the best value, assuming you can find availability.
But other than Qatar Airways redemptions, you’re typically best off just redeeming for roughly 1.5 cents each toward a JetBlue economy ticket.
What’s your take on the best way to redeem JetBlue TrueBlue points?