JetBlue and American went from enemies to frenemies earlier this year, and now they’re just plain friends. As of today, you can fly either airline, and earn both miles and elite qualifying status towards either loyalty program program, whichever airline you fly.
This is a big deal for domestic US air travel, which gives this airline partnership a leg up over most of the competition, who must “go it alone”.
JetBlue & American Reciprocal Mileage Earning
JetBlue and American Airlines kicked their partnership off with codeshare flights, which frankly most people still don’t understand. But they’ve now bettered that in a very big way, allowing people to earn miles on either airline, whichever they choose.
Codeshare flights allow airlines to sell tickets on flights of their partners, creating stronger schedules for people to choose from, not just with their own flights, but more flights via airline friends. It’s how you get things like an American flight number, but end up flying on JetBlue, or vice versa.
But for basic understanding, or only being able to earn points when flying on codeshares, it gets too hairy for people to care about. Codeshares didn’t do all that much for people, aside from being complicated.
So now, American Airlines and JetBlue have made it really easy. If you fly on one, you can earn miles and elite status credit with the other, in either direction.
For travelers, this means…
- An American Airlines AAdvantage member can earn both miles and EQM (elite qualifying miles) when flying on JetBlue flights. Any flights will do.
- A JetBlue TrueBlue member can earn both miles and elite bonus miles when flying on American flights. Any flights will do.
If you’re an American Airlines AAdvantage loyalist, you can enter that number when flying American or JetBlue. If you’re a JetBlue TrueBlue loyalist, you can enter that number when flying on American or JetBlue.
Bring On The Competition
This partnership brings a robust network and schedule to many parts of the United States. Being able to pick a JetBlue or American itinerary and benefit equally from either is a big deal.
With the news, airlines without significant domestic partnerships, such as United or Delta will have to become more aggressive to retain customers, perhaps by offering attractive pricing or schedules to win out.
Earning points and elite status just got easier. The change is immediate. Enjoy!