JFK-LAX: How JetBlue Mint Compares to American Airways

I normally fly American Airways (AA) or their Oneworld companions as a result of I’m in mattress with their frequent flier program and I acquired hooked on my elite standing, which comes with every kind of perks together with free upgrades (see picture above).

I’m an Govt Platinum member, which suggests I fly not less than 100,000 miles a 12 months and spend the required minimal of $12,000; subsequent 12 months it’s rising it to $15,000. However AA is consistently disappointing with their tightening customer support guidelines, soiled aircrafts, unfriendly flight crew and seats which might be getting tighter and tighter even in most home Top notch planes (ahem, 737 Max). So I’m virtually prepared to leap ship.

On the identical time, I’ve been listening to rave evaluations about JetBlue Mint (JetBlue’s firstclass that’s solely out there on a few of their routes). I’ve been eager to strive it however didn’t wish to threat not getting my AA miles or the minimal spend to requalify. However when my spouse, two-year-old son and I have been flying JFK to LAX the day earlier than Thanksgiving and American’s economic system costs have been the identical as JetBlue’s Mint’s (I booked the tickets 10 days earlier than the journey), I made a decision to make the change on precept. Why ought to we endure a 5.5-hour flight in coach once we might do it in a lie-flat seat for a similar worth?

FYI: Tickets for JetBlue Mint on a few of their flights have been only a couple hundred dollars greater than the economic system fares however while you throw in checked baggage and seat assignments with extra legroom, it seems to be just some dollars extra so it’s a no brainer.

Right here’s what I cherished and didn’t love about JetBlue Mint and the way they in comparison with American Airways in all courses.

JetBlue Mint flies A321s between JFK and LAX, the identical as American Airways.

JetBlue (B6 – sure, that’s their two-letter airline code) has three courses of seats on this flight: Financial system, Even Extra Area and Mint. Beneath is a seat map of JetBlue’s airplane configuration and you’ll see there are 5 rows of Mint. The seats are 2×2 aside from rows two and 4, the place it’s 1×1. These single seats are good for solo vacationers as a result of they even have doorways so it’s virtually like your personal personal compartment. Coach is three×three in coach however the Even Extra Area seats have 37-41 inches of pitch/legroom and 18-inch-wide seats.

FYI: American Airways has 4 courses of service: Financial system, Major Cabin Further, Enterprise and First.

JFK Airport
JetBlue flies out of T5 whereas American makes use of T8. Each have devoted check-ins for First Class however JetBlue’s was friendlier and there was no wait. T5 is a tad nicer terminal with higher eating places however there’s no membership lounge so American wins this battle as a result of they’ve wonderful membership lounges right here.

FYI: When you have a toddler like me, JetBlue has an incredible airplane-themed play space for teenagers by gate 25.

Very hardly ever on American Airways do flight attendants truly greet passengers after they board and never many are even that pleasant – even in premium courses. I’ve flown JetBlue thrice prior to now few months (solely as soon as in Mint) they usually have been all the time super-friendly and greeted everybody.

Each airways supply comfy blankets and a pillow wrapped in plastic on every seat. Additionally they supply a bottle of water and amenity kits. JetBlue’s Amenity package has much more aptitude and the flight attendants write a handwritten notice welcoming you onboard.

Pre-Takeoff Drinks
American gives champagne, water or orange juice as a pre-flight drink. JetBlue has their signature RefreshMint which is a honey-infused limeade with a recent sprig of mint that may be made with or with out vodka.

Each AA and B6 have plush lie-flat seats however Jetblue’s have a bigger foot nicely so if in case you have large ft like me (measurement 13) then your ft don’t get caught as a lot.

Listed below are the seat measurements of all 4 courses in inches:

Pitch/Mattress Size
American Airways First: 62/82.5
American Airways Enterprise: 58/75-78
JetBlue Mint Closed Suite (1×1): 60/80
JetBlue Mint Open Suite (2×2) : 58/80

American Airways First: 22
American Airways First: 21
JetBlue Mint Closed Suite (1×1): 22
JetBlue Mint Open Suite (2×2) : 20.5

Leisure Methods
Each airways have giant screens for his or her leisure methods however JetBlue’s appears brighter and clearer however on American, the screens have a privateness protect so you’ll be able to’t watch what your seatmates are watching. Nonetheless, JetBlue gives Reside TV (although the satellite tv for pc connection cuts out usually), Sirius XM Radio together with a Canadian channel, and an Air Site visitors Management channel.

In-Flight Map
AA is eliminating their leisure methods on smaller planes (not the A321T), which is a disgrace as a result of their inflight maps are so a lot better than JetBlue’s primary maps.

Each airways have high quality headphones however Jetblue makes use of hand-crafted SR60e headphones from Grado Labs in Brooklyn they usually allow you to hold them till the tip of the flight. American Airways makes use of Bose noise canceling headphones however flight attendants accumulate them 40 minutes previous to touchdown (they do handout low-cost plastic earbuds), which is a nuisance.

JetBlue simply wins this battle as their WiFi is free and labored the entire time. American Airways costs not less than $16 and it may possibly solely be used for one gadget.

JetBlue’s menu consists of 5 seasonal small plates (passengers get to decide on three) by famend NYC restaurant Saxon + Parole. The meals is stable. Although their native artisanal ice lotions have been actually stable and will have been used as golf balls. It took the ice cream 20 minutes to thaw, which was torture for a sugarholic like me. To see a replica of their newest menu for the course you might be flying, scroll to the center of this web page.

American’s meals is getting higher and you’ll pre-order 24 hours upfront. The one factor you’ll be able to pre-order with JetBlue’s is their youngsters meals, which must be carried out 48 hours previous to the flight. The flight attendant on JetBlue instructed me that in case you’re within the final row, you may not get your first selection. American takes orders and serves meals from both entrance to again or again to entrance relying on the flight quantity. To get your selection, both pre-order or sit within the center.

Each airways serve cookies however American’s chocolate chip and snickerdoodle cookies aren’t superb and who desires one after a sundae, anyway? On JetBlue, they hand out boxed and wrapped Milka cookies, that are scrumptious and you’ll take pleasure in later.

I don’t drink alcohol so I’m not individual to guage however Jetblue does serve cappuccino and espresso from Brooklyn Roasting Firm, and bottles of wine from a few of America’s finest artisan winemakers, specifically curated by their wine knowledgeable Jon Bonné. On American, every wine they serve goes by means of an especially selective wine program lead by Bobby Stuckey.

There’s not a lot you’ll be able to say about loos however JetBlue’s was a lot cleaner. I assumed I observed the flight attendant cleansing it and requested if he had simply cleaned the lavatory. He mentioned that he had “simply tidied up” they usually continuously spray peppermint within the bathroom so it smells so a lot better than AAs. I’ve by no means seen an AA flight attendant clear a rest room, have you ever?

FYI: There are not any curtains on JetBlue separating the courses like they’ve on American. However what’s attention-grabbing is that it appeared that even with out the curtain, fewer coach passengers used the primary class bathroom.

Mid-Flight Snack
Each airways have a wicker basket they fill with treats. AA used to have superb French fry potato chips however they stopped and their baskets aren’t superb. JetBlue has Terra chips and PopCorners, which I like higher.

For coach passengers on AA, you might be just about held hostage for food and drinks by the flight attendants, whereas on JetBlue, they’ve all of their snacks and drinks in a case on the entrance of the cabin so passengers might help themselves. Nonetheless, AA simply began giving all coach passengers on their LAX/SFO – JFK flights a meal (normally a sandwich), which is nice.

Scorching towels
Each airways present sizzling towel service after takeoff and previous to touchdown.

Parting Present
Once more, JetBlue provides clients a scrumptious Milka compost cookie whereas AA typically passes out mints.

Good to Know
The final row of Mint (Row 5) is subsequent to the coach lavatory whereas on American the coach loos are within the again.

Ready for a Gate
I’ve solely flown JetBlue as soon as to LAX however I used to be impressed that we didn’t have to attend for a gate like we regularly do with American Airways. Undecided if that was an anomaly or not.

Stroller Gate Test
I’ve checked a stroller dozens of occasions on AA and it normally takes not less than 10 minutes for it to come back out. On JetBlue, it took simply three minutes. Spectacular.

I’ve waited over an hour a number of occasions for my baggage at LAX with AA and usually it’s not less than 30 minutes. Flying JetBlue, the luggage got here out inside 15 minutes of touchdown. Undecided in the event that they’re all the time this fast however I used to be a cheerful buyer.

American Airways has a stable exhausting product between JFK and LAX/SFO in enterprise and first and their 777 and 787 however their flight attendants for essentially the most half aren’t that pleasant and their fares and alter charges are ridiculously overpriced. JetBlue’s Mint alternatively is basically mint. Each their exhausting (seats) and gentle (meals and repair) merchandise are high notch. If JetBlue flew to extra locations from LAX and had a greater frequent flier program I’d fortunately do the complete change. I’m already beginning to slowly give them extra of my enterprise and after our flight final week, I hope there can be many extra to come back.

What’s your favourite airline to fly in coach or first between L.A. and New York?

Johnny Jet

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