Reasonable Flights Abound: JetBlue and Virgin America Flight Discounts and Overall Fare Observations

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Outside of peak holiday travel dates, winter travel is generally a slower period for the airlines and they’re more motivated to discount fares to fill plane. This summer I thought fares were noticeably higher than past years and I was worried that they wouldn’t come back down- especially with so much industry consolidation within the past couple years.

However, airlines are still running some pretty generous fare sales, but you often have to act quick. JetBlue is offering 25% off (Promo code WINTER25) for travel November 27-December 20th and 20% off (WINTER20) for travel January 7- February 14, 2014. Flights must be booked through and the promo code must be entered on the search screen.
However, don’t assume this makes JetBlue the cheapest option by 25% or more. I did a test booking for December 6-10 JFK-LAX and JetBlue came to $243 with the discount versus American at $264. Personally, I’d rather get double miles/elite miles on American, but I can see why non-brand loyal customers would rather fly JetBlue (better in-flight experience in economy- I mean Dunkin Donuts coffee!) over American.

Virgin America
Virgin America is also offering a 20% off coupon Main Cabin travel on select routes from non-stop routes to/from San Francisco and Los Angeles: Dallas, Washington Dulles, Chicago, Portland, Palm Springs and Philadelphia when you like their Facebook page and fill out a quick form. The discount code gets emailed within minutes. Travel must occur between January 7, 2013 and March 13, 2013. Blackout dates are Jan 18, Jan 21, Feb 15, and Feb 18, 2013. Also check out their new offer to match status of certain American and United fliers.

Reasonable Fares
In general I think flights have returned to a somewhat reasonable level on many routes. I just booked a last minute LaGuardia- Miami one-way for $81 total on American and a lot of the transcontinental flights I’m looking at over the next couple months are in the $250-$300 range vs. the $400+ I was battling for most of the year.  Let’s hope this trend continues, but I have a feeling unrest in the Middle East could send oil prices surging, but let’s hope for peace for more reasons than just cheap airfares!

Feel free to share your cheap airfare finds or any coupon codes that can make winter travel a little bit more affordable. Also, feel free to share your Virgin America discount if you don’t plan on using it…mine is D9F52E8A. 

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), up to a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at Marriott and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,200 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.