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JetBlue’s Latest Play for Virgin America Flyers: Matched Points

SmarterTravel

With the high probability of Virgin America’s being folded into Alaska Airlines within the next two years, Virgin loyalists are in the market for an alternative. And JetBlue wants to be that alternative.

In April, JetBlue’s “Calling All Virgins” sweepstakes targeted Virgin America customers in California and New York who had never flown JetBlue.

And through May 31, JetBlue was matching travelers’ elite status in a number of airlines, but most pointedly in Virgin America’s Elevate program.

Maintaining that marketing pressure, JetBlue is offering yet another incentive for Virgin America flyers to make the switch.

Offer Details

Members of Virgin America’s Elevate program who submit a screenshot of their points balance by July 4, and complete a roundtrip JetBlue flight by August 31, will have their Virgin points matched with JetBlue points as follows:

  • Elevate members with 500 – 5,000 Virgin points will receive 5,000 JetBlue points
  • Elevate members with 5,001 – 10,000 Virgin points will receive 10,000 JetBlue points
  • Elevate members with 10,001 – 30,000 Virgin points will receive 30,000 JetBlue points
  • Elevate members with 30,001 – 50,000 Virgin points will receive 50,000 JetBlue points
  • Elevate members with 50,001 or more Virgin points will receive 75,000 JetBlue points

The JetBlue points awarded through this offer do not count toward elite status in the TrueBlue program.

Deal or No Deal

Whether your long-term plans include switching to JetBlue or not, this offer is well worth considering by anyone with a cache of Virgin America points.

JetBlue points are worth around 1.2 cents apiece. So the value of 5,000 points would be $60, and 75,000 points would be worth $900. Considered simply as bonuses for taking a single JetBlue flight, those are very attractive incentives, especially at the higher end.

And in the long term, while Virgin’s value and service proposition can’t be replicated point for point by any other airline, JetBlue comes closest. So in a sense, you’re being rewarded for embracing the inevitable.

This is a gift horse; don’t look it in the mouth.

Reader Reality Check

If JetBlue isn’t the best alternative to Virgin America, which airline is?

More from SmarterTravel:

After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.

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