Monday, July 31, 2017

Trip Report: JetBlue, New Orleans to Boston, New Orleans to New York (July 2017)

Trip Report: jetblue, New Orleans to Boston & New York
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Ever since JetBlue first introduced service in 1998, it operated a bit differently.  It was one of the first carriers to introduce free live TV, one of the first carriers to provide free quality snacks, and one of the fist carriers to provide all leather seats.  Since its inception, JetBlue has made some changes to its operation to increase revenue but has maintained some of the perks that first adhered customers to their brand.  One change that has been beneficial to customers are the interline agreements JetBlue has with many international airlines.  JetBlue has partnerships with a variety of international airlines which allow you to book flights all on one ticket, which allows easy transfer of luggage.   Even better, JetBlue follows that carrier’s baggage policy.  JetBlue charges for checked baggage, but if the interline carrier offers free luggage then so will JetBlue on that ticket.  I have used JetBlue on interline many times and find the service very convenient.

In the month of July, I was going to be travelling twice on JetBlue through interline services – first from New Orleans to Boston connecting to Aer Lingus and second from New Orleans to New York and then connecting to Etihad Airways.  Each jetBlue flight was booked as a partner flight operated by jetBlue, so with this information I called JetBlue reservations to obtain my jetBlue confirmation number, preselect my seat, and to add my ff number.  JetBlue allows you to preselect your seat for free, or you can purchase an extra legroom seat. 

New Orleans to Boston:  This flight was scheduled to depart New Orleans at 11:51a and arrive into Boston at 4:14p for a scheduled flight time of 3hr28min.  I had signed up for flight alerts, which turned out to be very useful as I got notice that the flight was now delayed by an hour.  The inbound plane arrived a little after 12pm, and the airline tried to push a quick turnaround but we ended up pushing back on the delayed schedule.  Boarding was fine as it happened in groups, and the group numbers were enforced, and those who boarded last were still able to find overhead bin space.

On board the Airbus A320, the leather seats were laid in a 3-3 and the legroom on the plane was extremely gracious.  I am a tall person (6'1) and there was room between my legs and the seat in front of me - and this is standard economy as you could pay for 'even more space' seats with additional legroom.  Very generous legroom.  The leather seat was generally comfortable and was good for the 3+hour flight.  Behind each seat was an individual PTV, and the control was in the armrest on your right.  The PTV provided free live TV, which very nice, as well as certain free movies.  The only negative was the small screen of the PTV (it seems the screens on the plane have not been updated since jetBlue's inception) and the location of the control - every time the passenger next to me put their arm down on the shared armrest they would hit the controls and change the button.  This was frustrating.

jetBlue is also generous in their on-board service.  The attendants first came around to offer their snack boxes which are available for purchase, and afterwards they came back with the free snacks.  jetBlue offers a variety of free snacks including Terra Chips, cookies, pretzels, cheez-its, and popcorn chips.  You can take as many as you want, and there are more snacks available in the rear throughout the plane.  The attendants also came by to serve complimentary drinks as well.  Overall,the service on the flight was very good and the on board amenities were generous.  

My flight to New York was very similar.  It was also operated by an Airbus A320 in a 3-3 seat layout and each seat also had older PTVs which screened free live tv and free movies.  The legroom on the seats were again very generous – I had more than enough legroom in my seat.  Complimentary snacks and drinks were also served on the 2.5hr flight.  Both flights also had complimentary wifi or FlyFi which allowed free access to the internet while flying.  This enabled you to access your emails and social media while in the air.  Another perk of flying with jetBlue.

Overall, flying is a positive experience.  The seats are generally comfortable and provide really good legroom.  The onboard service of complimentary snacks, complimentary TV, and complimentary wifi are very nice perks.  The only negatives of flying with jetBlue are 1) you have to pay for your luggage and 2) if you are transferring in New York there is no transfer between terminals so you have to exit one terminal to switch to another – it’s a pain and while not all together in jetBlue’s control, it does affect the overall passenger experience.

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