JetBlue, Virgin America Set Upgrades to Frequent-Flyer Programs
By James Shillinglaw
July 23, 2012 10:57 PM
JetBlue Airways unveiled details of an enhancement to its TrueBlue frequent-flyer program, followed only hours later by Virgin America, which announced another level to its Elevate frequent-flyer plan and a contest where a top mileage passenger can win a space flight on Virgin Galactic.
Under JetBlue’s new TrueBlue Mosaic, an enhancement to the carrier's existing customer loyalty program, which will officially launch this fall, members will get a second checked bag for everyone flying on the member's reservation; free Even More Speed, providing expedited security at 36 airports for everyone flying on the member's reservation; early boarding with early access to overhead bin space for everyone flying on the member's reservation; ability to use TrueBlue points to purchase Even More Space seats for extra legroom; access to a dedicated 24/7 customer service line; three Bonus TrueBlue points per dollar spent for a total of nine points per dollar when booking on jetblue.com.
Existing members of TrueBlue, JetBlue's loyalty program, will be automatically upgraded to TrueBlue Mosaic if they have earned 15,000 base flight points or completed 30 flight segments and have earned at least 12,000 base flight points in a calendar year. Current TrueBlue members eligible for TrueBlue Mosaic will be notified and automatically enrolled in the program this fall.
To celebrate the launch of Mosaic and show appreciation for its most frequent customers, JetBlue is rolling out a special introductory gift of six free Even More Space seats for TrueBlue members earning the Mosaic badge in 2012. Even More Space provides customers additional room to stretch out and relax, plus early boarding and early access to overhead bins.
Meanwhile, Virgin America unveiled enhancements to its Elevate frequent-flyer program. As of this summer, the airline's top flyers can move up to new Elevate Gold and Elevate Silver status levels within the program, with perks that include priority check-in, security clearance and boarding; points earning bonuses; free checked bag allowances; enhanced digital/social rewards; private discounts; an expanded advance purchase upgrade window for the airline's eight-seat first class; complimentary space-available upgrades to the carrier's premium main cabin select service; and complimentary access to the best seat assignments within main cabin.
Virgin America also announced that the Elevate member who earns the most status points between Aug. 8, 2012 and Aug. 7, 2013, would earn a sub-orbital space flight on Virgin Galactic. These Elevate enhancements, which go into effect Aug. 8, 2012, are timed to coincide with the airline's fifth anniversary.
Elevate members who earn 50,000 Elevate status points in a full calendar year will achieve Elevate Gold status and members who earn 20,000 Elevate status points in a calendar year will achieve Elevate Silver status. Qualifying existing members will automatically receive Elevate Gold or Elevate Silver status as of today, in recognition of their cumulative flight activity over the past year, enabling them to use the new benefits as of Aug. 8, 2012 through 2013. Elevate status points can be earned for purchased flights with Virgin America, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia, and for select purchases made with the Virgin America Visa Signature credit card.