I Was Approved For JetBlue’s Points Match Promotion!

Earlier I wrote about the insane promotion JetBlue just launched, where they’re offering to match your Virgin America Elevate points balance if you take one flight with them by August 31, 2016.

JetBlue-Points-Match-2

In some cases they’ll even match your account at a better than 1:1 ratio. For example, if you have 50,001 Elevate points, they’ll give you 75,000 TrueBlue points.

JetBlue-Points-Match-1

The timing of this promotion couldn’t have been better for me, since I just transferred points from Starwood Preferred Guest to Virgin America Elevate earlier in the week, so my Elevate balance is ~53,000 points (despite having only ever once flown with Virgin America).

Virgin-Australia-Starwood-1

How quickly is JetBlue responding to points match requests?

I emailed JetBlue a screenshot of my Elevate account homepage at pointsmatch@jetblue.com. Three hours later I received the following response:

You are now registered for #GoForthWithJetBlue Points Match!

Way to let your independent flag fly! To take advantage of the #GoForthWithJetBlue Points Match and earn your bonus TrueBlue points, just book and take a roundtrip JetBlue flight by August 31, 2016.

Once you fly, your points will automatically be added to your TrueBlue account within 4 – 6 weeks.

Thanks again for spreading your wings!

See you onboard soon,
The TrueBlue Team

That was quick!

JetBlue-A321

Should you transfer points to take advantage of this promo?

The question I’ve been getting over and over is whether it makes sense to transfer points from SPG to Virgin America Elevate in order to take advantage of this promotion. For what it’s worth, it typically takes less than a day for points to transfer from SPG to Virgin America, and often only a few hours.

Some people are concerned that JetBlue will update the terms of the promotion to exclude certain types of points from being matched, like those being transferred from partners. In theory I see the concern, as it wouldn’t be the first time a major loyalty program made a screw-up like that. However:

  • I imagine JetBlue is savvier than that, especially with a promotion as straightforward as this one
  • It would generate a lot of ill-will if they changed the terms, which goes directly against the point of the campaign
  • You need to fly JetBlue in the next couple of months to qualify, and presumably they want you to be a loyal customer after that, regardless of whether you’re currently loyal to Virgin America or not
  • There’s no easy way for them to differentiate between points earned through flying and points earned through other means

My inclination is that the promotion will be honored as is and that they knew all of this going in, but I could also be wrong.

So does it make sense to transfer Starpoints? Let’s say you transfer 41,000 Starpoints, in order to fully maximize this promotion. I value Starpoints at ~2.2 cents each, so to me those Starpoints are worth ~$902. For that you’d receive the following, after completing a flight on JetBlue:

  • 51,000 Elevate points (enough for ~$1,100 worth of travel on Virgin America, or you can redeem them on partners)
  • 75,000 TrueBlue points (enough for ~$1,000 worth of travel on JetBlue)

Virgin-America-Elevate

That’s pretty darn compelling, but everyone has to crunch the numbers for themselves based on their travel patterns.

For those of you in the above situation, do you plan on converting points from a transferrable currency to take advantage of this promotion?

Comments

  1. do you know if the names need to match for an spg transfer? i know its inconsistent for each partner…
    thank you

  2. I also just got approved. Here comes my LGB-OAK $45 ($90 RT) mileage run. And at $2/hour for parking at LGB you can’t beat that!

  3. @Lucky and @tommy. Officially, yes, names have to match. However I know someone who’s last name was missing 8/10 letters (eg. Jo instead of Johnstone) on Virgin and JetBlue still honored it.

  4. “In some cases they’ll even match your account at a better than 1:1 ratio. For example, if you have 50,001 JetBlue points, they’ll give you 75,000 TrueBlue points.”

    You have a typo here…I’m sure you mean Elevate.

  5. Lucky,
    do you need to purchase the round-trip ticket on JetBlue AFTER getting your points match approved by JetBlue in order to participate in this promotion?
    I happen to have bought a JetBlue ticket last month, and I’m wondering whether I can still get the points match with the ticket I bought, or whether I need to buy another round trip ticket after I submit my points match request and get it approved.

  6. @lucky – is that names having to match just the policy or is it in practice also? usair used to go through if they didnt match i believe…

  7. I think there is a way for them to differentiate points you earned by flying vs transfer. They can ask you to show your activity with Virgin like many hotels do when you ask for a match status. For example, if you have SPG Gold just based on your Amex Platinum but never stayed there a hotel can deny you status match. JetBlue could ask for a proof that you actually flew Virgin to earn points.

  8. @ Santastico — True, but that’s for status matches and not points matches. Account activity only goes back so far, so what if you earned your Elevate points a couple of years ago?

  9. I transfered 100k TYP (and bought 500 VX points because Amex froze my points like they’ve done with most people who got the 100k sign up bonus). Submitted a couple hours ago and waiting to hear back. I’m one of those anxious people worried they’ll change the terms. 50k VX + 75k True Blue makes the transfer worth wild. Otherwise I’m throwing money away with only 50k VX.

  10. And what exactly did you send them? The home page when you log in to Elevate? If you’ve just transferred points, that would show up in a big bubble on the home page, so it would be pretty obvious to JetBlue. Or did you send something else?

  11. @ Bgriff — Nope, the part above that. The same thing shown in their sample screenshot on the points match page.

  12. Any idea how long a transfer from Citi takes? I needed to top up a little bit to reach the next threshold and want to hopefully send my registration email asap.

    Thanks

  13. Does anyone know if the round trip ticket with JetBlue has to meet any price or revenue requirement?

  14. @Gus Mine was instant. The page said several days but they showed up after logging in and out of my VX account.

  15. Do you think it is a good opportunity to stack the SPG points on sale for 30% bonus and transfer to virgin, while getting JetBlue points?

  16. When I try to look at flights from Houston, the cheapest round trip is $500 to Washington. And a night in a hotel to return next day. Obviously not worth the aggravation.

  17. @lucky: I currently have ~38K elevate points. I have a few options.
    1) Transfer ~24k MR to get 12k elevate
    2) Transfer ~12k SPG to get 12k elevate[no 1:1.25 ratio]
    3) Match with what I have now and get 50K match instead of 75K.

    what would lucky do?

  18. Ben (or anyone else who submitted and was approved), did you have any credit activity in the “Status” section? Or do you think they won’t care if mine says 0 Credits/0 Segments for the year.

  19. I signed up for Virgin America Elevate today, but I didn’t want to transfer a lot of points in because I probably will only be flying with them once in the next year due to their limited route network. I moved 21,000 ThankYou points into Elevate, and that made me eligible for 30,000 JetBlue TrueBlue points. Also, I have 10,500 Elevate points now.

    Using Lucky’s valuations:

    21,000 ThankYou points x 1.8 cents/point = $357

    10,500 Elevate points x 2.0 cents/point = $210

    30,000 JetBlue points x 1.3 cents/point = $390

    So ($210 + $390) – $357 = $243.

    If I had no reason to fly JetBlue roundtrip and I get the round trip JetBlue flight (need to fly by August 31) for $243 or less, I break even (and get a quick getaway someplace out of it).

    Lucky’s numbers for points value for Virgin America and JetBlue seem a bit conservative, too. Some other bloggers give 2.2 cents/mile on Elevate points and 1.4 cents/mile on JetBlue. Using those numbers, I come out at being ahead $294.

  20. Man, Jetblue is serious about this! In the other post, I lamented that I burned 58,000 VX points yesterday on an award ticket, but I emailed Jetblue anyway, even though it was a long shot. I included the activity description in my screenshot, so they could see the redemption and the date. Much to my shock, I got the standard approval email, with the following attached: “PS. We went ahead and honored the point value you had in your Virgin American account before you redeemed the points yesterday.” WOW!!!

  21. If I thought SQ F was going to be a realistic hope, I’d leave them in MR for a future transfer at SQ. The cutbacks in TransPac F seats is causing me to reconsider.

  22. I submitted my point match on June 24 at 3pm PST but never heard back. Anyone else have submitted their point match at or after that time and got approved? Just want to see the turnaround time. Thanks.

  23. If I just joined Virgin America purely for this promotion, and the screenshot shows it (as it has the date joined), does anyone know if that effects eligibility?

  24. Are JetBlue points only valid for travel on JetBlue? Or can they be used on other airline partners (SQ or EK)?

  25. Submitted point match request on June 24 at 3PM PST. Received approval on June 25 at 6PM PST.

  26. I sent a screenshot that looked exactly like the requested one and got this back as well –

    You are not registered for #GoForthWithJetBlue Points Match.

    The points balance proof you provided doesn’t meet the requirements of the promotion. If you would like to try again, please resend a screenshot that includes all of the information as shown below. We are unable to read the point amount on your original screenshot.

    Thank you!
    The TrueBlue Team

  27. I submitted mine on Saturday at 6:30 PM PST and still no response yet. It was me re-submitting ater an earlier one that day because the mobile version screenshot didn’t include my last name or the full dashboard. Hopefully I’ll hear back today.

  28. I submitted mine on Monday, June 27 in the morning by transferring TYP 102000 to get 51000 elevate points, but I just joined Vx not long ago, and had flown a JetBlue round trip 1 week ago before the promotion announced(urgh).

    I was hesitate to do it first as I’m worried JetBlue may not honor my match so I planned all the trips before transferring the TYP (will do a real trip instead of MR), I am hoping they will approve but so far I haven’t received anything. :/

  29. I’m slightly worried that JetBlue might reject my submission. I’ve been thinking about it since Saturday and finally pulled the trigger and transferred my SPG points. I opened my Virgin account this morning and had my SPG points show up this afternoon. Anyone else in the same boat who got approved?

    I read through the terms nothing sounds like they should reject me.

    Should I only give a partial screenshot any thoughts?

  30. Hey everyone,

    If you just call the jetblue number and transfer to the trueblue rep, they’ll fast track your registration. I applied 2 days ago and heard nothing so I just called them right now and she pushed mine and my girlfriend’s applications through. Good luck!

  31. @Lucky – I think a transfer of 40,001 Starpoints does not maximize the value of the promotion; a transfer of 10,001 Starpoints does.At the 10,001 -> 30,000 level you are earning 3 TrueBlue points per Starpoint, and at the 40,001 -> 75,000 level you are earning 1.875 TrueBlue points per Starpoint. The Virgin America miles are the same in either case, and have nothing to do with the current promotion, since you can get that value 365-366 days a year.

    Am I wrong? Your take?

    @Duane – any update regarding your rejection?

  32. Nope nothing yet. I ended up transferring points for my wife’s account too so hopefully I don’t end up getting shafted. I have already planned out a short Boston vacation based on getting these miles.

  33. @ Gordon — Sure, as a percentage that’s true, but marginally I still think it’s worth transferring 40,001 Starpoints. If you transfer 10,001 Starpoints you receive 10,0001 Elevate points & 30,000 TrueBlue points.

    Meanwhile if you transfer 40,0001 Starpoints you receive 50,0001 Elevate points & 75,000 TrueBlue points.

    In other words, for the 30,000 marginal Starpoints you’re earning an additional 40,001 Elevate points and 45,000 TrueBlue points. I value Starpoints at ~2.2 cents each, so for ~$660 of value you’re getting ~$880 worth of travel on Virgin America, and $720 worth of travel on JetBlue.

    To me that’s worthwhile, though obviously everyone crunches numbers differently.

  34. I received this message:

    The points balance proof you provided doesn’t meet the requirements of the promotion. If you would like to try again, please resend a screenshot that includes all of the information as shown below.
    I did send a screenshot like their example – does it need to be .png format?

  35. Anyone else get rejected?

    I got a response from Jetblue saying that ” You are not registered for #GoForthWithJetBlue Points Match.
    The points balance proof you provided doesn’t meet the requirements of the promotion.”

    Everything matched and looks right, any recommendations??

  36. If you are on PC,try using snipping tool to capture the screenshot so it will include your first and last name on the upper right hand corner of the screen. It worked for me.

  37. @Frank & @Rody – I ended up using MS Paint to circle my name and points balance, and saved it as .PNG and .JPG and they just accepted it after being denied the first time. I’m not sure what they are doing over there lol

  38. I submitted saturday with no reply yet. Finally got someone to speak with me who looked into it and after quite awhile reported back that my request was in “pending” because of no flight history …. hmmm not what I wanted to hear…

  39. How do you send a snapshot and who do you speak to regarding the transfer to TrueBlue?

  40. @Chapman, any updates? I’m in the same boat. Also, did you paste your screenshot directly into the email or as an attachment? I attached a jpeg of my entire screen

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