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How to get upgraded on JetBlue Airways

Aug. 06, 2022
10 min read
JetBlue Mint Business Class
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Are you looking to score an upgraded seat on JetBlue Airways? If so, you may wonder how to get on the JetBlue upgrade list and get a free JetBlue upgrade.

Even though JetBlue doesn't offer many complimentary upgrade options for those with elite status, there are a few different ways to redeem TrueBlue points or Mosaic+ upgrade certificates to get a JetBlue upgrade without paying a dime. These upgrade options include Even More Space seats that offer more legroom and lie-flat Mint seats.

Here's what you need to know about getting a free JetBlue upgrade.

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Book Even More Space seats for a JetBlue upgrade

(Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy)

Within JetBlue's economy class cabin, you'll find Even More Space seats with up to seven extra inches of legroom. These seats will also give you Group A boarding and access to expedited security lanes (where available).

The cost for Even More Space seats varies by route. When booking your flight, the seat map will show the price to purchase Even More Space seating. An Even More Space seat is available on all JetBlue flights for all economy class fares. And if you book a Blue Basic fare and pay for an Even More Space seat, you can bring a carry-on bag onto the flight for free.

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If you need to change or cancel your JetBlue flight before departure, JetBlue will refund the seat upgrade fee to your original form of payment.

Related: The complete guide to the JetBlue TrueBlue program

Upgrade to an Even More Space seat with JetBlue status

Instead of paying to select an Even More Space seat, JetBlue Mosaic members can redeem JetBlue TrueBlue points for the seat selection unless they're flying on a Basic Blue fare. And throughout 2022, JetBlue Mosiac members will need to redeem no more than 200 TrueBlue points for an Even More Space seat (which is an unbelievable deal).

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Best of all, JetBlue is giving the points redeemed for Even More Space seats back to Mosaic members as a rebate for the 2022 calendar year. So, JetBlue Mosaic members can currently reserve an Even More Space seat at the time of booking for no additional cost. Best of all, this benefit applies to all traveling companions on the same reservation.

Mosaic members who book a Blue Basic fare can't redeem JetBlue points for an Even More Space seat. Instead, passengers on a Blue Basic fare can either pay cash for an Even More Space — as any passenger can — or request a free Even More Space seat at the gate.

Related: JetBlue baggage fees and how to avoid paying them

Get a JetBlue upgrade to Mint seats

(Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

JetBlue offers a premium cabin it calls Mint on select aircraft. The Mint cabin contains fully lie-flat seats with adjustable firmness cushions, a massage feature and a Tuft and Needle-designed comforter and pillow.

Each Mint seat has a TV with free on-demand movies, shows and other entertainment options. JetBlue even revamped the Mint cabin on some routes (select flights between New York and Los Angeles and all flights between New York and London), where you can enjoy a private suite with a closing door. When booking a Mint seat, you'll also receive additional benefits, such as two complimentary checked bags, priority boarding and priority security lanes (when available).

Mint cabins are typically available on longer routes, including select transcontinental, Latin American and Caribbean flights and all flights to or from London. The JetBlue Mint route map shows all city pairs offering Mint seats.

Pricing for Mint is typically more favorable than lie-flat, premium-cabin seating on other airlines. But, Mint is usually significantly more expensive than standard economy seating. Fortunately, there are a few ways to get a JetBlue Mint seat without the hefty price tag.

Book a JetBlue Mint seat with points

You can redeem JetBlue TrueBlue points if you're looking to save some cash on a Mint seat. Since JetBlue uses a dynamic pricing scheme, the award rate is directly tied to the cash price. In short, the more expensive a flight is, the more points it will require.

However, there isn't a set rate at which you can redeem JetBlue points for Mint. And TPG's analysis in 2021 found that redeeming JetBlue points for Mint typically provides 25% less value than redeeming JetBlue points for economy travel. TPG's valuations peg the value of JetBlue points at 1.3 cents each, so you'll typically want to aim for that redemption rate when redeeming JetBlue points.

Related: 6 things JetBlue should change about Mint

If you don't have enough points in your account to book a Mint seat, JetBlue also allows you to use a combination of points and cash (this is the case for all JetBlue point reservations). Additionally, you can transfer points from American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards and Citi ThankYou Rewards into JetBlue TrueBlue points.

To determine which flights offer JetBlue Mint seating, you'll want to select the "Mint" option from the "Explore fares" section. If the route offers Mint seats, the price in points will be displayed. However, if there are no Mint seats for that particular flight, you'll be given the number of points in a different fare class with the wording "Mint not offered."

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But if you are booking through the JetBlue app, you'll need to click on each flight option to see if there's Mint seating. Additionally, on the app, you'll easily see whether Mint is even an option for the city you are flying to or from, noted by a green icon next to the city name.

Upgrade to a Mint seat with JetBlue status

(Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

If you have JetBlue Mosaic+ status — JetBlue's newest status level that the airline recently introduced — you'll have the opportunity to earn Mint upgrade certificates in 2022. Once earning this status, you'll receive four one-segment Mint upgrades to use on any route (except to/from London). But, you have to use the certificates by Dec. 31, 2022.

You must book a revenue fare at least 96 hours before departure to redeem this certificate. You'll automatically join the JetBlue upgrade list if you still have certificates in your account. If you do not want to use one of your certificates for the particular flight, you'll need to call JetBlue's Mosaic line to remove your upgrade request.

Approximately 24 hours before the flight's departure, the waitlist list will start to clear if any open Mint seats are available. Passengers will clear based on their booking date, so there is an advantage to booking far in advance. Unfortunately, if your upgrade doesn't clear at this time, there's no way to use your upgrade certificate for a Mint seat at the gate — even if another passenger is a no-show or cancels at the last minute.

Suppose you're traveling with another passenger booked under the same reservation number. In that case, JetBlue will add that additional passenger to the Mint upgrade list (and use one of your certificates for your companion). Then JetBlue will either upgrade both passengers or neither passenger — the system will not split you up. So if you don't want to use an upgrade certificate on the other passenger, you'll need to either remove both names from the upgrade list — and forgo the upgrade yourself — or book the reservations separately.

Finally, if you have three or more travelers on your reservation, no one can get a free JetBlue upgrade using certificates (including yourself). If you want to get on the JetBlue upgrade list in this scenario, you'll need to book separate reservations.

Related: How to increase the value of your JetBlue TrueBlue points by 10%

Book JetBlue Mint with American Airlines miles

(Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

Now that you can use your American Airline AAdvantage miles for a JetBlue flight, you can put those miles to work to snag an upgraded Mint seat.

The number of miles required for a Mint seat follows American Airlines' standard partner-pricing chart: 50,000 miles one-way within the mainland U.S. and Canada and 52,500 miles one-way to or from the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America. However, for select routes, you'll need to spend an additional 15,000 AAdvantage miles for Mint.

When searching on American Airlines' website, you'll want to ensure the search results state "Operated by JetBlue" and that there is award availability in business class. After booking, you'll need to call JetBlue directly to pick your specific Mint seat as you won't be able to make a seat selection with American.

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Even though redeeming American Airlines miles on a JetBlue Mint seat is possible, availability is extremely limited. To be able to redeem your AAdvantage miles on a JetBlue Mint seat, there needs to be "I" fare class availability (when searching for economy class seats, you need the "P" fare class).

Redeem: How to change or cancel a JetBlue flight

Bottom line

Unfortunately, JetBlue only offers complimentary upgrade certificates for Mint to those with Mosaic+ status. And as of now, this benefit is only for 2022. You won't get a space-available upgrade to Mint if you have regular Mosaic status.

Travelers with Mosaic status can upgrade to an Even More Space seat for free in advance, but this is only for 2022. Hopefully, the 200-point cap will stay intact next year as this is still an incredibly cheap option.

While JetBlue's upgrade policy isn't nearly as good as Delta or United, it's far better than the lower-cost airlines such as Frontier and Southwest. However, JetBlue's deal to buy Spirit Airlines isn't an encouraging sign for JetBlue loyalists hoping for more favorable benefits and upgrade options.

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