JetBlue salvaged a really bad day by giving me a little grace

Sep 1, 2021

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COVID-19 isn’t the only virus circulating right now. This past Friday, I fell victim to one of the numerous viruses that occupy the grimy streets of New York City and it was pretty brutal. Not just because of the pain and swelling in my tonsils, but because I was supposed to leave for a weekend trip to Martha’s Vineyard with my sister and some friends.

I woke up at 5:30 in the morning, about an hour before my scheduled alarm, with killer pain in the back of my throat accompanied by a throbbing ear. I knew immediately I wouldn’t be able to get on my JetBlue flight.

I was ill and extremely frustrated because I had been looking forward to this trip for a while. This would have been my first time flying with JetBlue, so I was excited to try it out. I also knew it would be more of a hassle to recoup my money because I had booked a Blue Basic fare. I would incur a $100 cancellation fee (a policy JetBlue established on June 8). Oh, and I had already paid $35 for a checked bag the night before. I was $236.63 in and unsure of how much I would be able to get back. It was a bad morning, to say the least.

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I tried calling JetBlue and was quoted a 177-minute wait, which I absolutely wasn’t going to do. So I immediately contacted JetBlue on Twitter and told them the situation. I didn’t hear back for a few hours, so I also contacted JetBlue over messaging. I heard back around 10 a.m. from a representative named Jeff on Twitter but didn’t see the notification as I slept for a good part of the day. Around 6 p.m. I was connected with another agent on Twitter, Millie, who charged the $100 cancellation fee but issued the remainder as a JetBlue Travel Bank Credit.

Around the same time, I heard back from an agent over messaging. I told them I had been helped on Twitter but would appreciate it if they could also refund my checked bag fee. Without hesitation, the agent helping me, Amee, refunded the fee to my original form of payment. Then I was connected with another agent on Twitter (Denise), who sent me a message saying they would email me a waiver to submit within 14 days that would reimburse the cancellation fee due to my illness. I received the waiver form almost immediately, which was reassuring.

JetBlue website screenshot
(Screenshot courtesy of JetBlue)

I’ve since submitted the form and could wait up to 10 days to receive the money as another JetBlue Travel Bank Credit. But the wait doesn’t matter to me. What matters is that JetBlue recognized I was sick, issued my credits without hesitation and even sent me well wishes that I would heal quickly (thanks, Denise!).

As a new customer, it meant a lot to me and meant even more as I suffered through tonsillitis and serious FOMO. We all could use a little grace in times like these, and JetBlue didn’t hesitate to offer me some.

Featured photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy.

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