Jet Blue is a favorite airline among domestic travelers and points and miles enthusiasts. This is especially true because the airline is a Chase transfer partner. This means that you can transfer Ultimate Rewards (UR) points to your JetBlue account. However, Chase cards are not the only way to earn TrueBlue bonus points.
The Barclays Jet Blue Plus Card is a great option for those who want to earn TrueBlue bonus points faster. It also has the potential to be a long-term keeper card.
The Jet Blue Plus Card is the best way to earn TrueBlue bonus points, especially if you don’t have a Chase UR-earning card. This card earns 6x points for every dollar spend with JetBlue flights. It also earns 2x points at Grocery Stores and Restaurants. And it also earns one point for all non-bonus category spend.
Barclays also offers a sign-up bonus worth 40,000 points. You can earn the bonus after spending just $1,000 in the first three months. This is a nice bonus with a low minimum spend akin to the Amex Hilton Honors card.
The question here is “what do you do with all of those TrueBlue bonus points?”. There are two options that could be of value.
As with most airlines, redeeming for airfare is the most rewarding and valuable method. Plus, you will receive 10% of your points back towards the next redemption each time you book a reward ticket. Barclays gives a similar bonus with their Arrival + card.
Jet Blue Vacations
Jet Blue Vacations are pre-packaged trips that are often offered on airline portals. You can’t redeem points for hotel rooms, rental cars, or other incidentals. However, you can get packages that include everything.
The Jet Blue Plus has some nice benefits that should help justify its $99 annual fee (NOT waived the first year).
Mosaic Elite Status
This level of status is the highest in the Jet Blue pyramid. You can achieve it after spending $50,000 per year on your card. Mosaic Status includes the following:
- Bonus Points
- Dedicated Customer Service Phone Number
- Priority Check-In, Security, & Boarding
- Qualification Bonus
- Take 3 and Lucky 7 Bonuses
- Two (More) Free Checked Bags
All these perks are worth the card’s $99 annual fee and then some, even if you fly JetBlue once per year. The two checked bags are easily worth $50 each. The catch is that you must spend at least $50,000 per year on the Jet Blue Plus card to get the status. I don’t suggest doing so because you can spend more efficiently. Otherwise, you can justify the card’s annual fee through its other perks.
50% Discount on In-Flight Purchases
This is a nice perk for any incidentals, food, and entertainment that’s purchased while flying. Many airlines charge premiums for in-flight goods and services, so its nice to see Jet Blue pass the savings along.
$100 Annual Statement Credit
If you buy a Jet Blue vacation package worth at least $100, you will receive a $100 annual statement credit. This credit is enough to justify the card’s $99 annual fee and come out with a whole dollar of positive expected value.
Free Checked Bags
This perk gives you the first checked bag free for you and up to three companions or family members. The Delta Gold Card has a similar perk, but it covers the main flyer and up to nine companions.
Trip Delay Protection helps you out if your flight is delayed at least six hours. You can receive up to $300 for incidentals and food. This insurance can only be used twice per calendar year.
Trip Cancellation Insurance also covers up to $5,000 to refund your trip if you need to cancel before departing. This insurance has a maximum liability of $10,000 per calendar year.
If the Barclays Jet Blue Plus Card is not right for you, check out these alternatives:
American Express Delta Gold Card
This card from Amex and rival airline Delta has a $95 annual fee (NOT waived the first year). But it has similar perks that are great for Delta flyers.
This card has no bonus categories besides 2x on Delta purchases. However, it does have a two-part sign-up bonus. You can receive a $50 statement credit after making one Delta purchase in the first 3 months. I suggest buying a Delta gift card up to $50 and pocketing the rest. You will also receive 30,000 SkyMiles after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months.
The main draw for this card is its fantastic Free Checked Bags perk. You and up to eight people can get your first bag checked for free. At $50 per bag, that’s a maximum value of $450. Other perks include 20% off in-flight purchases, discounted Delta lounge access, and priority boarding.
Chase Sapphire Reserve
Chase’s top credit card can be either a complement or a substitute for the Jet Blue Plus card.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve earns 3x UR points on Travel and Dining and only one on non-bonus spend. UR points can be transferred to Jet Blue. Furthermore, the Reserve has a sign-up bonus worth 50,000 points. It can be earned after spending $4,000 in the first three months.
As for benefits, the Reserve has excellent travel insurances that would work well with those from the Jet Blue Plus card. The Reserve also has Priority Pass airport lounge access and a fee waiver for Global Entry / Pre-TSA. The Jet Blue Plus card does not have either of those benefits, stating the Reserve’s case for being a complement.
However, the same perks could also replace those of the Jet Blue Plus. The Reserve’s membership in the Chase “ecosystem” also does not limit it to Jet Blue redemptions. Therefore, people who are not loyal to Jet Blue (or any other single airline or hotel) could transfer points to one of Chase’s 13 partners.
The Barclays Jet Blue Plus card is a great option for Jet Blue loyalists. Those who want a potential long-term airline keeper card will also like this card. This card’s $99 annual fee can be justified with enough spend, use of perks, or both.
Apply Today: Barclays Jet Blue Plus Card