JetBlue and Qatar Airways introduce reciprocal mileage earning
JetBlue and Qatar Airways are expanding their existing relationship to include new loyalty benefits.
On Wednesday, the two carriers announced that members of each airline’s frequent flyer program can earn miles from flights on either airline, effective immediately. This news comes on the heels of an expanded codeshare agreement between JetBlue and Qatar, which was unveiled back in April 2021.
Get the latest points, miles and travel news by signing up for TPG’s free daily newsletter.
JetBlue and Qatar Airways add reciprocal mileage earning
You’ll earn Qatar Qmiles or JetBlue TrueBlue points based on a combination of fare class and distance flown, according to the charts below.
Here's the accrual chart for JetBlue flights when you credit them to Qatar Airways' Privilege Club. Notably, all JetBlue coach fares, except for Blue Basic, will earn at 100% of the miles flown, while Mint fares will earn a 25% bonus, bringing the total to 125% of miles flown.
For those crediting Qatar flights to JetBlue, expect to earn points at a rate between 25% and 150% of the miles flown, depending on the fare class purchased. Unfortunately, Qatar flights do not count toward JetBlue Mosaic elite status qualification.
In addition to earning miles, the airlines are teasing that reciprocal redemptions will start in the coming months. The details of how those redemptions will work are still under wraps. If redemptions are introduced at reasonable rates, this could be a big boost for TrueBlue, as the program has historically only offered redemptions on its own flights and with Hawaiian Airlines.
Does it make sense to credit Qatar flights to JetBlue?
U.S.-based travelers now have three major loyalty programs to which they can credit Qatar Airways tickets. The Doha-based airline is a member of the Oneworld alliance, of which American Airlines and Alaska Airlines are also members. As such, you can earn American AAdvantage miles or Alaska Mileage Plan miles from Qatar-operated flights.
Be sure to look at the fare code on your ticket — along with the mileage earning tables for Alaska, American and JetBlue — to help make the decision when determining how many miles you’ll earn on Qatar flights.
At TPG, we value American miles at 1.4 cents, Alaska miles at 1.8 cents and JetBlue points at 1.3 cents.
On the surface, you might think that crediting to Alaska would make sense, since those miles are worth more, all else being equal.
However, you’ll want to consider how you spend your miles and your current balances when determining where to credit. Both American and Alaska have a long list of international partners, so those redeeming for long-haul travel might be better off crediting there when compared to JetBlue.
For now, TrueBlue points are best used toward deep-discount domestic coach tickets with JetBlue — though this could change when reciprocal redemptions with Qatar Airways launch at a later date. Though the redemption rate is tied to revenue fares, if you’re looking to boost your account balance, crediting to JetBlue could make sense, too.
Read more: The complete guide to the JetBlue TrueBlue program
It's great to see JetBlue and Qatar Airways expand their existing partnership and give frequent travelers more options for earning points and miles. Only time will tell how lucrative the redemption rates will be, but we'll dig into those details once they are announced.
Additional reporting by Andrew Kunesh