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JetBlue Introduces 3 New Cards from Barclaycard

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The JetBlue cards from Barclaycard are now available. Earn 30,000 points after $1,000 spent in the first 90 days with The JetBlue Plus Card ($99 annual fee) or 5,000 points after $1,000 spent on purchases in the fist 90 days with The JetBlue Card ($0 annual fee). Get more information here.

Last month, JetBlue announced that current cardholders would be getting a new co-brand card, and now several new Barclaycard offerings are available to new customers as well. Today, TPG Contributor Jason Steele digs into the three new options from JetBlue.

It got everyone’s attention last year when American Express ended its relationship with Costco, but less noticed was Amex’s breakup with JetBlue. Perhaps that was because the old JetBlue card offered Amex wasn’t a dazzling product, and it hasn’t been missed much since its demise.

Today, JetBlue is introducing three credit cards from its new partner Barclaycard — the JetBlue CardJetBlue Plus Card and JetBlue Business Card — and these products are far more compelling to reward travel enthusiasts and casual travelers alike. Keep reading for a rundown of the new options along with a look at which option is best for you.

No-Fee JetBlue World MasterCard

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While holders of the previous JetBlue Amex card had to pay an a $40 annual fee, Barclaycard now offers a strong entry-level option with no annual charge, with the JetBlue Card. For a limited time, new cardholders earn 5,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.

Full benefits include:

  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.
  • Earn 3 points per $1 on JetBlue purchases, 2 points per $1 at restaurants and grocery stores and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases.
  • No blackout dates on JetBlue-operated flights & redeem for any seat, any time on JetBlue flights. Points required for an Award Flight will vary based on the published base fare at the time of booking.
  • Points awarded in your TrueBlue account don’t expire. Earn and share points together with Family Pooling.
  • 50% savings on eligible inflight purchases including cocktails, food and movies
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Chip technology & $0 Fraud Liability protection
  • 0% introductory APR for 12 billing cycles on Balance Transfers made within 45 days of account opening. After that a variable APR will apply, 12.24%, 20.24% or 25.24%, based on your creditworthiness.

 

 

JetBlue Plus Card

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For a $99 annual fee, travelers can move up to the JetBlue Plus Card and receive many additional benefits. New applicants can earn a 30,000-point bonus after spending $1,000 within 90 days of account opening.

Full benefits include:

  • Earn 30,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases within the first 90 days
  • Earn 6 points per $1 on JetBlue purchases, 2 points per $1 at restaurants and grocery stores and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • No blackout dates on JetBlue-operated flights & redeem for any seat, any time on JetBlue flights. Points required for an Award Flight will vary based on the published base fare at the time of booking
  • Points awarded in your TrueBlue account don’t expire. Earn and share points together with Family Pooling
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points every year after your account anniversary
  • 50% savings on eligible inflight purchases including cocktails, food and movies & your first checked bag is free on JetBlue-operated flights
  • Enjoy all TrueBlue Mosaic benefits for one year after you spend $50,000 or more on purchases annually with your card
  • Get a $100 statement credit after you purchase a Getaways vacation package of $100 or more with your JetBlue Plus Card

 

JetBlue Business Card

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The sign-up bonus and all of the terms are largely the same as the JetBlue Plus World Elite MasterCard, with the biggest difference being 2x points at office supply stores instead of grocery stores.

Full benefits include:

  • Earn 30,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn 6 points for every $1 spent on JetBlue purchases; 2 points for every $1 spent at restaurants and office supply stores; 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Free checked bag for the primary cardmember and up to three companions on the same reservation when you use your JetBlue Business Card to purchase tickets on JetBlue-operated flights
  • $99 annual fee
  • Enjoy all Mosaic benefits for one year after you spend $50,000 or more on purchases annually with your card
  • Get 10% of your points back every time you redeem to use toward your next redemption
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • $100 statement credit after purchasing a JetBlue Getaways vacation package of $100 or more with your JetBlue Business Card, available once every year
  • 50% savings on eligible inflight purchases like movies, cocktails and food
  • Chip-card technology
  • $0 Fraud Liability protection
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points every year after your account anniversary
  • Special travel and purchase protection benefits like 24/7 travel assistance and concierge service, travel accident insurance, car rental protection, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, baggage delay insurance, purchase security, return protection, extended warranty, Global Assistance Services, identity theft helpline and more
  • All the benefits of the TrueBlue program: No blackout dates on JetBlue-operated flights; points in your TrueBlue account don’t expire; unlimited earning; Family Pooling of TrueBlue points

What Do We Think?

TPG and I recently had a chance to meet with both Barclaycard product manager Kristen Bowdoin and the head of JetBlue’s loyalty program Scott Resnick, who you might think of as the proud parents of these new cards.

The first thing that jumped out at us was that JetBlue and Barclaycard were breaking new ground by properly rewarding customers for making purchases from JetBlue. Consider that the typical airline credit card offers a mere 2x for purchases from the airline — even premium cards such as the United MileagePlus Club Card, the and the Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard.

Earn as much as 17 points per dollar on JetBlue purchases with the new World Elite MasterCard.
Earn as much as 17 points per dollar on JetBlue purchases with the new World Elite MasterCard.

In contrast to these cards with $450 annual fees, the new no-fee JetBlue card offers 3x for JetBlue purchases and the $99 JetBlue Plus Card offers an amazing 6x. Resnick was quick to point out that JetBlue Plus cardholders will earn even more points when they make online purchases with this card.

Here’s the points breakdown for JetBlue airfare purchases:

  • 6x from the card
  • 3x from the TrueBlue program, if you purchase the most basic Blue fare class or for the airline’s premium Mint product
  • 3x points for purchasing airfare at JetBlue.com

At a bare minimum, JetBlue Plus cardholders earn a fantastic 12x points when buying airfare. According to TPG’s latest monthly valuations, TrueBlue points are worth between 1.0 and 1.4 cents each, which equates to between 12 and 16.8 cents of value returned for each dollar spent — half of that from the credit card alone.

Additionally, you can earn more points from higher fare classes (instead of the 3x from the Blue fare class):

  • 4x for Blue Plus fares, which include a free checked bag and reduced change fees.
  • 5x for Blue Flex fares, which offer two free checked bags and waived change fees.

Finally, those with Mosaic elite status (which you can earn from spending $50,000 annually on the JetBlue Plus Card) can earn another 3x points. So Mosaic members could earn as much as 17x points when purchasing a Blue Flex fare with their JetBlue Plus Card, getting 17 – 23.8 cents per dollar spent in value. Plus, when you redeem points for JetBlue flights, the card’s 10% bonus for flight redemptions will result in an even higher rate of return.

In comparison, those with Delta SkyMiles Diamond Medallion and United MileagePlus Premier 1K status will max out at 13x for purchases made with their respective co-branded cards. Of course, this isn’t a perfect analogy, since top-tier status with Delta and United is much harder to earn than JetBlue Mosaic — and they can offer significantly more value due to larger route networks and other benefits.

Which Card Should You Get?

JetBlue previously announced that existing customers of the old Amex card will be migrated to the JetBlue Rewards MasterCard, a separate product not offered to new applicants. It retains the $40 annual fee of the old Amex card while offering 4x points on JetBlue flights, 2x on grocery and restaurant purchases and 1x on all other spending.

Don't confuse these new cards with the JetBlue Rewards MasterCard, only available to JetBlue Amex holders.
Don’t confuse these new cards with the JetBlue Rewards MasterCard, only available to JetBlue Amex holders.

If I were a frequent JetBlue flyer with the JetBlue Card, I’d immediately upgrade to the JetBlue Plus Card to increase my earning from 4x to 6x when purchasing JetBlue tickets. I would justify the additional $59 in annual fees by the 5,000 bonus points received each year and the full range of additional benefits. Among the most valuable new perks are the free checked bag, the 10% return on points redeemed and the chance to earn Mosaic status through spending alone.

Finally, those who fly JetBlue just a few times a year should strongly consider the no-fee card. In the past, I’ve written about how entry-level frequent flyer credit cards generally aren’t worth having, but this card looks to be an exception. Where other entry-level cards provide scant benefits, the no-fee JetBlue card is competitive with other airline rewards cards that charge annual fees thanks to benefits like 3x points on JetBlue purchases. In particular, I love the fact that it has no foreign transaction fees (a charge that offers no value to cardholders).

Bottom Line

These new cards make JetBlue airfare purchases much more rewarding.
These new cards make JetBlue airfare purchases much more rewarding.

JetBlue and Barclaycard are both doing some innovative things in their respective industries, and their new partnership seems to be a good fit that benefits travelers. And like so many good couples, they’ve produced some attractive offspring — for frequent JetBlue flyers, the JetBlue Plus World Elite MasterCard offers some solid bonus categories and great perks like a free checked bag, while the no-fee JetBlue World MasterCard holds its own with 3x points on flights and other benefits.

What do you think about these new JetBlue products from Barclaycard?

The JetBlue Plus Card

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  • Earn 30,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 in purchases within the first 90 days
  • Earn 6 points per $1 on JetBlue purchases, 2 points per $1 at restaurants and grocery stores and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • No blackout dates on JetBlue-operated flights & redeem for any seat, any time on JetBlue flights. Points required for an Award Flight will vary based on the published base fare at the time of booking
  • Points awarded in your TrueBlue account don't expire. Earn and share points together with Family Pooling
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points every year after your account anniversary
  • 50% savings on eligible inflight purchases including cocktails, food and movies & your first checked bag is free on JetBlue-operated flights
  • Enjoy all TrueBlue Mosaic benefits for one year after you spend $50,000 or more on purchases annually with your card
  • Get a $100 statement credit after you purchase a Getaways vacation package of $100 or more with your JetBlue Plus Card
Intro APR Regular APR Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee Credit Rating
N/A 12.24%, 20.24% or 25.24% Variable $99 0% Excellent Credit