Details on the American & JetBlue Partnership: Redemptions & Reciprocal Elite Benefits

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When American Airlines and JetBlue announced their Northeast Alliance partnership, a lot of details were still a mystery. Now, we have some of the most important details. In this post, we'll break down award redemption pricing from one partner to another and also the elite status benefits you can expect when flying on the other partner.

Recap on American Airlines and JetBlue Partnership

The so-called “Northeast Alliance” is a partnership between American Airlines and JetBlue that was first announced in mid-2020. First, this partnership added codeshare flights on select flights in and out of the Northeast. However, the partnership has grown to include dozens of new flights from key markets.

Earlier this year, the two airlines announced reciprocal points earning benefits when flying on the partner airline. That announcement also included elite status credits when flying on the other partner. You can read the full breakdown here, including mileage and status earning rates.

Given that JetBlue TrueBlue is a transfer partner of Amex Membership RewardsChase Ultimate Rewards, Citi ThankYou RewardsMarriott Bonvoy, and Brex, this partnership can open more doors to booking American Airlines flights. That's because American Airlines is only a transfer partner of Marriott Bonvoy & Bilt Rewards.

It's also important to note that this partnership is moving forward and expanding, despite a lawsuit from the Department of Justice. JetBlue and American have responded with a dedicated website arguing the case for their partnership.

See also: A Guide to JetBlue's TrueBlue Loyalty Program
See also: A Complete Guide to American Airlines AAdvantage Elite Status

Redeeming Miles to Fly on the Other Airline

AAdvantage Redemptions for JetBlue Flights

American Airlines is using the same redemption tables that are used for all other partners. Thus, there's no special mileage table to consult when redeeming for JetBlue flights.

Here is the American Airlines award table for economy flights departing the continental U.S. & Canada (prices are one way, per passenger):

DestinationOne-way economy cost (in miles)
U.S. 48 & Canada12,500
Alaska15,000
Hawaii22,500
Caribbean, Mexico & Central America17,500
South America zone 120,000
South America zone 230,000
Europe30,000
Middle East40,000
Indian Subcontinent40,000
Africa40,000
Asia zone 135,000
Asia zone 237,500
South Pacific40,000

JetBlue doesn't operate flights to all of these destinations, but you can mix and match JetBlue and other AAdvantage partners to get to any of these destinations. To understand which destinations are in which regions, consult this list.

While the economy chart remains unchanged, American Airlines is treating JetBlue Mint differently than other partners. Rather than treating it as a business class product, American Airlines is applying first-class award pricing to all Mint awards.

Even worse, Mint service to or from the following cities — referred to as “premium airports” hereafter — will require extra mileage on award bookings: Boston (BOS), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Los Angeles (LAX), Miami (MIA), Newark (EWR), New York (JFK), San Francisco (SFO), and West Palm Beach (PBI).

Here is the AAdvantage mileage chart for award redemptions that include flights in JetBlue Mint class:

DestinationOne-way business / Mint award pricingOne-way business / Mint award pricing to premium airports
Continental U.S. & Canada50,00065,000
Alaska55,00070,000
Hawaii80,00095,000
Mexico, Central America & the Caribbean52,50067,500
South America Zone 155,00070,000
South America Zone 285,000100,000
Europe85,000100,000
Middle East115,000130,000
Indian Subcontinuent115,000130,000
Africa120,000135,000
Asia zone 180,00095,000
Asia zone 2110,000125,000
South Pacific110,000125,000

JetBlue award search results on AA's website

Important notes for AAdvantage award bookings for JetBlue flights:

  • You need “P” class availability to redeem AAdvantage miles for JetBlue economy flights.
  • You need “I” class availability to redeem AAdvantage miles for JetBlue Mint (business class).
  • The Northeast Alliance specifically excludes JetBlue's new New York (JFK) to London (LHR) flight. Thus, you can't redeem AAdvantage miles for this flight.
  • You can redeem awards that have a connection with flights connecting between American & JetBlue in the same itinerary; this will not alter the price.
  • The award tables include regions where JetBlue doesn't fly since you can connect to these places with American Airlines or other AAdvantage partners.
  • If either the start or end point is one of the premium airports, then you will pay the higher mileage rate for a business class redemption–even if only one leg is in Mint and the other leg is in American Airlines “domestic first class”.
  • With the premium American Airlines is charging on Mint flights, it may make sense to book via Emirates Skywards instead.

TrueBlue Redemptions for American Airlines Flights

Details on the American & JetBlue Partnership: Redemptions & Benefits
Search results on JetBlue.com when trying to find American Airlines award flights

While American Airlines has the details of its award table ironed out, JetBlue does not. At present, you cannot book American Airlines flights using TrueBlue points.

Reciprocal Elite Status Benefits

One of the key details in any airline partnership is what benefits elites from American Airlines can enjoy on JetBlue and vice versa. These reciprocal benefits are now active as of October 13, 2021.

AAdvantage Benefits when Flying on JetBlue

You can add your AAdvantage number when checking in online, at the airport, via kiosk, or in the app for a JetBlue flight. No waiting in line to talk to a person is required. AAdvantage elites should get the following benefits:

  • Priority check-in
  • Expedited security screening
  • Priority boarding
  • Up to two free checked bags, up to 50 pounds each (one free checked bag for Gold elites and two free checked bags for all other levels)
  • Priority baggage delivery

JetBlue Mosaic Benefits when Flying on American Airlines

JetBlue Mosaic members will enjoy the following benefits when flying on American Airlines:

  • Priority check-in
  • Expedited security screening
  • Complimentary preferred seating selection (does not include Main Cabin Extra)
  • Group 4 boarding
  • Complimentary same-day changes to flights
  • Two free checked bags, up 50 pounds each
  • Priority baggage delivery

It's interesting to note that JetBlue Mosaic members will board in Group 4 on AA flights. This is the same boarding group as Gold elite members, oneworld Ruby members, AirPass members, those flying Premium Economy, those with the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® card, any travelers who bought Priority boarding, and eligible corporate travelers.

Group 4 boarding is later in the boarding process than people flying in first class & business class, as well as those with AAdvantage ConciergeKey and Executive Platinum, Platinum Pro, and Platinum status. It's also behind the boarding order for oneworld Emerald and oneworld Sapphire members.

Bottom Line

There are still some things to iron out, such as putting your JetBlue TrueBlue redemptions for American flights. However, the partnership between American Airlines and JetBlue continues to move forward. We now having pricing for JetBlue award flights using AAdvantage miles and lists of benefits that elites can enjoy when flying on the other airline. As the partnership continues to progress and more information is known, we will continue to provide updates.

Will the American-JetBlue partnership change your travel experience, or does it not do anything for you? Let us know.

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Comments

  • At least there are steps forward with this. It’ll be nice to be finally able to redeem JetBlue on AA flights. I know it’ll open up possibilities for me. I am wondering what happened with the data from the temporary transfer to AA from Citi and how long will they take to analyze it to see that it would be a good option.

  • Useful! Thanks for the breakdown!

  • I currently have free checked bags on American via our Citi Platinum card. I’m not sure if that qualifies as ‘elite’ – does this carry over to JetBlue assuming I enter my AA miles number on Jet Blue?
    T

    Thanks!

    • Unfortunately it doesn’t. The terms are pretty clear that the flights have to be domestic flights operated by AA:
      “Eligible Citi® / AAdvantage® primary credit cardmembers may check one bag free of charge when traveling on domestic itineraries marketed and operated by American Airlines, or on itineraries marketed by American Airlines and operated as American Eagle® flights by Envoy Air Inc., Republic Airways Inc., SkyWest Airlines, Inc., Mesa Airlines, Inc., PSA Airlines, Inc., or Piedmont Airlines, Inc. All flights on the itinerary must be domestic flights marketed by American Airlines and operated by American Airlines or American Eagle. This benefit will not be available for travel on codeshare flights booked with an American Airlines flight number but operated by another airline.”

  • Noticed that this December 2021 holiday American had added several daily nonstops from my home (Houston IAH) to New York (LGA), whereas American had no nonstops from Houston to New York for over 2 decades before the AA/B6 partnership. Furthermore, American was charging less for First Class (259) on most of their flights than JetBlue was charging for economy (569) on their once per day flight from Houston to New York. Both carriers flights showed up on each others websites, and Google Flights showed each flight economy (for American flights) and Blue Basic and Blue (for JetBlue flights) as bookable on both airlines websites. However, American First Class seats did not show up on JetBlue’s website. No Basic Economy pricing showed up for the American Airlines flights (or for Delta) but their regular economy rates (79) were the lowest available prices for the route out of all of the airlines. United, our Houston hub carrier, was matching American and Delta’s regular Economy price – but in Basic Economy instead of regular Economy. The most expensive prices – was Spirit! Second highest was JetBlue. I was looking on a Friday for flights the following Tuesday before Christmas. What a topsy-turvy air travel world we are in right now, with ULCCs Spirit and JetBlue charging higher airfares than mainline carriers American, Delta, United. American and United are using a mix of full size aircraft and RJs (and United also some B767/B777/B787, while Delta is strictly using A220s). Delta and United were matching American’s First Class price on some (not all) of their flights. So since pre-pandemic Houston to New York was a regular route for me, and while I prefer premium travel but I always shop it competitively (the opposite of going for elite status), I would say the Northeast Alliance seems to be increasing competition and bringing more value for me, particularly if 6 different airlines (the 6th is Southwest, whose rates do not show up on Google Flights) continue to operate nonstop service Houston to New York.