Most of my travels are usually with Delta. I have accumulated quite a lot of miles on their Sky Club program, which makes my travel more convenient. I am usually one of the first passengers to board and I enjoy an occasional upgrade.
This time, though, the Portugal Embassy in Washington, D.C. did not send my passport back in time to book a flight with Delta. By the time I received it, the airfare shot through the roof at over $2,500. We explored other options and settled on Jetblue and TAP Air Portugal for my trip to Porto. (I was going to attend a meeting of our partner organization there.) By doing this, we saved $1,000 on my airfare! Not bad for a reservation done, 2 days before the flight.
Check-in is easy.
I tried to checkin online but Jetblue’s website didn’t let me checkin. Instead, it advised me to see a ground crew. I went to the airport early to have enough time for checking-in. It’s always better to be early and kill time at the airport, instead of rushing and being late for my flight.
I tried using the checkin counter. But it directed me to the checkin counter. The lines weren’t long at all, even though I did not have any frequent flyer status at Jetblue. The ground crew handed me my boarding pass and wished me a good flight.
I went through security, and proceeded to my gate. No hiccups at all. I sat near my gate and waited for about an hour for boarding.
The boarding process is different, but orderly.
I am used to the boarding process for Delta airlines. Since I have a frequent flyer status with them, I enjoy being one of the first to board. But here’s the usual order of their boarding process:
- Passengers with special needs: persons with disabilities, pregnant women, and those with kids 2 years old or younger.
- Business Class & Sky Miles Diamond Medallion level passengers.
- Sky Elite: Platinum & Gold Medallion level passengers.
- Silver Medallion level passengers and those whose boarding pass shows Zone 1
- Zone 2 passengers
- Zone 3 passengers
Southwest also has a different way to board passengers. When you checkin online, you will be given a number, which is NOT your seat, but your place in the queue to board the plane. You can then take any vacant seat. If you want to be first in line you can pay extra.
For Jetblue, though, it is different.
- First, they ask the people who have paid their Even More Space seats. These are probably reserved for their frequent flyer program members, and those who paid for the privilege online.
- They then board passengers with special needs.
- They will then board the passengers, based on their seat numbers. But instead of those whose seats are in front, they start with the rows from the back. It makes sense. By boarding the passengers from the back of the airlines, they avoid the queue that forms when people in the front row seats put their bags on the overhead bins.
Because I was seated at 8D, I was one of the last passengers to board the plane, but it was easy and I still found a space for my carryon luggage.
Free WiFi for everyone! Yes, everyone!
Oh yeah! Free WiFi for every single passenger! Their WiFi, called Fly-Fi, is powered by Exede. With Delta, powered by GogoinFlight, you have to pay for WiFi access in-flight. But for JetBlue, you get to enjoy it for free!
There’s a catch, though. You have to signup for their mailing list, TrueBlue. So you’re trading your inbox for the free wifi, which is fine for me.
It’s amazing how technology keeps evolving! We even have WiFi in planes now. When can we ever disconnect and find peace in this tech-saturated world?
Couldn’t help it, though. I connected and did some work and kept up with my online feeds.
Jetblue provides ample legroom for passengers. This is awesome for tall guys. I am an average Asian man, about 5’6″ tall, but I can still appreciate good legroom.
Old looking, non-touch screens
Their screens for viewing movies or TV series look old, though. I know, I know we are spoiled passengers now and expect almost every screen to have touch capability. I wasn’t really in the mood to watch anything so I didn’t explore the shows available. My seatmate, though, was watching something from Cartoon Network. And I also spotted someone watching the latest installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise.
They provide basic snack and beverage
I regretted not bringing some nuts and snacks with me. Our flight to Boston was only for 2.5 hours and we were expected to land at 1:30pm. Thankfully, they had pretzels and cookies. If you ask nicely, they may give you two snack packs! I didn’t even need to use my charm. The attendant was just nice and gave me the extra bag of cookies.
While Delta’s coffee is provided by Starbucks, Jetblue’s is provided by Dunkin Donuts as you can see in the photo. I didn’t really mind drinking any of those coffee brands. But it was just enough to keep me awake during the flight.
On the whole, flying with Jetblue was a pleasant experience. They may have limited destinations within the United States and internationally, but I wouldn’t mind flying with them again if Delta’s flights are too expensive!