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JetBlue has a revenue based frequent flyer program, meaning the number of points required for a redemption is directly correlated to the revenue cost of a ticket. Therefore there’s not really a best time to redeem points, since you’ll always get roughly the same amount of value per point.
Well, the one exception is when JetBlue is offering award sales, as they are now.
JetBlue is offering a 15% refund on points when you redeem by 11:59PM EST tomorrow, May 10, 2016.
The basic terms of the promotion are as follows:
- Valid for flights through June 30, 2016 (unlike some of the promotions JetBlue has had in the past, there are no blackout dates or capacity restrictions within that timeframe)
- Only valid on new bookings made during the promotion period
- The 15% refund in points will post to your TrueBlue account 4-6 weeks after your flight
- Registration is required
Ordinarily JetBlue points can be redeemed for ~1.4 cents each towards the cost of a paid ticket on JetBlue (that’s why I value them at ~1.3 cents each, since you don’t earn points when you redeem them).
With a 15% refund you can increase the value you’re getting per point by ~0.2 cents. Also keep in mind that if you have the new JetBlue Plus Card you get a 10% refund on points redemptions, which can be stacked with this. If you have the card and book by tomorrow, that translates to a 25% refund on redemptions.
For example, take the below flight between New York and Los Angeles, which retails for $149:
If redeeming points it costs 10,000 points plus $5.60:
That means you’re getting ~1.43 cents per point.
If you booked this by tomorrow you’d receive a further refund of 1,500 points, and if you had the JetBlue Plus Card you’d receive a refund of 1,000 points. If you stack those two, you’d get a total of 2,500 points back.
That lowers the cost to 7,500 points for $143.40 worth of travel. That’s ~1.9 cents per JetBlue point, which is great.
Since the number of TrueBlue points required for a redemption is directly correlated to the cost of a ticket, the absolute best time to redeem is during a sale. So if you can redeem points by tomorrow, you absolutely should. If you happen to have the JetBlue Plus Card you can knock a further 10% off the cost of a redemption, which is all the better.
Anyone planning on taking advantage of this JetBlue award sale?
(Tip of the hat to @BrianECase)