How to maximize 100,000 JetBlue TrueBlue points in 2021
As a Florida resident who lives halfway between Orlando (MCO) and Fort Lauderdale (FLL), it’s no surprise that JetBlue Airways is one of the airlines I fly most frequently. With nonstop service to dozens of destinations plus guaranteed, in-flight DirecTV and free, fast Wi-Fi, most of my domestic flights in a typical year are on one of the carrier’s planes.
Earlier this fall, Barclays launched an incredible, 100,000-point bonus on the card. While I can’t take advantage of it (as an existing cardholder), this can offer some monumental value for those who want to be ready to take to the skies next year.
Here are some ways to make the most of 100,000 TrueBlue points in 2021.
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Details on the new offer
Before getting into the reward options, a quick refresher on the new offer: If you apply for the
Card, you can currently earn up to 100,000 bonus points, broken into two tiers:
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases and paying the $99 annual fee in full, both within the first 90 days.
- Earn an additional 50,000 bonus points after spending a total of $6,000 on purchases within the first 12 months.
The information for the JetBlue Plus Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
100,000 TrueBlue points are worth $1,300 based on TPG’s most recent valuations — and that’s not even including the valuable perks like free checked bags, 5,000 points on your cardmember anniversary and 50% off in-flight purchases of food and drinks. You can even earn JetBlue Mosaic status by spending $50,000 on the card in a calendar year.
So … what do those points get you? Here are some suggestions for maximizing 100,000 TrueBlue points as you start to think about 2021 travel plans.
Book during a sale
JetBlue is known for running frequent sales across its route network, and since TrueBlue award tickets are typically tied directly to flight prices, you’ll need fewer points to book award flights when paid tickets drop in price.
Just last week saw the most recent sale launch, offering discounts on tickets booked by Nov. 12 for flights through Feb. 10, 2021. As an example, booking a flight from Orlando (MCO) to Austin (AUS) during this promotion would’ve set you back 6,300 points on Friday, Feb. 5.
The exact same flight one week later was over 40% more expensive when using TrueBlue points.
At that sale price, you could redeem 100,000 TrueBlue points for nearly 16 round-trip award flights on this route — an incredible amount of travel for a single sign-up bonus.
Use the Best Fare Finder
Flexibility is one of the most potent weapons you can wield when booking award tickets, especially when it comes to your dates of travel. Fortunately, JetBlue makes the search process incredibly easy thanks to its Best Fare Finder tool. Simply plug in your details, check the box for Use TrueBlue points, then click Explore fares.
Note that this functionality only displays one month at a time, so from the initial results, be sure to click on See more months under the calendar to get a broader view of flight prices.
Using the above example — from West Palm Beach (PBI) to New York City (NYC) — I can see that April 2021 award rates at the time of writing start at 8,000 points each way. Moving into June, July and August increases the starting price to 9,500 points each way. I can thus zero in on the exact flights I want that offers the best combination of price and convenience.
If you’re booking travel for summer 2021, the 100,000-point bonus could get you five of these round-trip flights.
Splurge for a ticket (or two) in Mint
JetBlue Mint is the carrier’s premium business-class product, flying mainly transcontinental routes but also appearing on select flights to the Caribbean and Central America (you can view a full route map at the bottom of this page). While award tickets are naturally quite pricey in this cabin, it can represent a nice splurge — and many flights are well within reach using the 100,000-point welcome offer.
Here are a handful of one-way flights from Boston (BOS) to San Francisco (SFO) that fall in that range for June 2021:
And two from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to Los Angeles (LAX) in April 2021:
If you’re flexible with your dates, you could even book round-trip flights on select routes — like this option from New York-JFK to Seattle (SEA) in March 2021:
Note that the Mint experience has been adjusted due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, you can still enjoy many of the amenities that helped it earn the award for Best Domestic Business-Class product at last year’s TPG Awards.
Enjoy 10% of your points back
Finally, it’s important to note that the above redemptions don’t even take into account one of the best perks on the JetBlue Plus card: the 10% rebate you get on award tickets. Whenever you use your TrueBlue points, you’ll receive 10% of them back after you take the flight — as long as your card is open at the time of travel. Better yet, there’s no cap to this perk, so you could save a bunch of points every year.
Here’s an example of how this worked when my wife, my daughter and I took a long-weekend trip to Rhode Island last fall (we have a family account, where we pool TrueBlue points together):
As you can see, the final number of points deducted from my account was 21,240 — but that included a 2,360 redemption bonus due to the JetBlue Plus card. If I had booked those flights as a member without the card, I would’ve spent 23,600 points, saving $30.68 worth of rewards (based on TPG’s most recent valuations).
It’s not all that often we see 100,000-point welcome offers on credit cards, and it’s even rarer to have them pop up on airline cobranded cards. However, that’s exactly what’s currently available on the JetBlue Plus card, and this haul of TrueBlue points can unlock a ton of travel in 2021.
And when you include all of the perks the card offers, this card may be a no-brainer for anyone who flies JetBlue even once a year.
Featured photo by Zach Griff / The Points Guy
All screenshots courtesy of JetBlue.com
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