Double Duty Daddy

My 75,000 Point JetBlue Mileage Run

Yesterday I flew JetBlue from Fort Lauderdale to Nashville in the early afternoon and landed back home in Fort Lauderdale at 8pm. This act of doing a quick turn-around (I had 30 minutes between landing and boarding again) is commonly referred to as a mileage run. Some people do mileage runs for same-day return, some do them to gain as many miles as possible while collecting elite qualifying miles to gain or retain airline status. But the art of the mileage run is all but over because the three legacy airlines in the United States (AA, Delta, United) now have a revenue based award program.

In simple terms, you no longer earn elite qualifying miles towards status by how many miles you’ve flown but how much you spend with the airline. You either purchase LOTS of expensive flights or you’ll never sniff airline status.

So why did I do a mileage run? 

In June, JetBlue announced a campaign called #goforthwithjetblue, where they would offer to match the balance of points from your Virgin America Elevate account into your TrueBlue account. It was tabbed by many travel rewards addicts (like me) as the most generous promotion of the year.

I’ll let JetBlue explain.

If you’re a Virgin America® flyer and Elevate® member looking to spread your wings, but don’t want to lose out on any points – then you’ve met your match!

Earn with JetBlue, too – just for giving our award-winning experience a try! Show us your Elevate® Points balance by 7/4/2016, then book and fly one roundtrip JetBlue flight by 08/31/16 and we’ll match (or give you more) TrueBlue points!

But what if you don’t have any Elevate points? No problem. Virgin America partners with American Express, Starwood Preferred Guest and Citi so you can transfer your bank points to your Virgin America Elevate account and then send a screenshot via email to JetBlue proving you have a miles balance with Virgin America. The maximum amount of miles Jetblue would match is 75,000 miles and they would give you those 75,000 miles if you have at least 50,001 miles in your Elevate account.

So how did I do it?

I transferred 40,001 points from my Starwood Preferred Guest account and got 10,000 extra miles since airline transfers get 5,000 extra miles for every 20,000 you send from SPG to any airline partner. Once my Virgin America Elevate account showed 50,001 miles, I sent an email to JetBlue showing them my balance for the maximum points match of 75,000 miles. After a few tries of getting registered for the promo (they were picky on how they wanted the screenshot to appear), I finally got the coveted confirmation email.

Congratulations!
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.

I then waited for one of those amazing JetBlue fare sales that show up every other week or so and decided on Fort Lauderdale to Nashville and back home on the same day for $70 total. I was going to do Jacksonville for a shorter flight at $103 roundtrip but the layover was a bit longer and would have had me home by 10pm. I preferred being home by 8pm and having some more time on the flight to write and work on a powerpoint for work.

Conclusion:

I’ll now wait for my 75,000 JetBlue miles to appear in my account in the next few days and plan to use those miles for a family vacation in the near future. Mileage runs may be all but dead but for targeted promos like #goforthwithjetblue, they are alive and well.

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