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JetBlue Mint

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N923JB "It's Mint To Be", one of JetBlue's Airbus A321 aircraft used for Mint flights

Mint is a premium airline product offered by JetBlue on some flights between the West Coast and the East Coast of the contiguous United States, and seasonally on some flights between the United States and Caribbean destinations. The service is operated with a fleet of Airbus A321 aircraft in a premium configuration, with lie-flat seats in premium class. As of May 2016, JetBlue is the only low-cost airline in the Americas offering a dedicated premium product.[1]

History[edit]

JetBlue first announced its intention to introduce premium seats on some of its transcontinental flights in March 2013.[2] The company officially announced its Mint premium class product on September 30, 2013; the aforementioned service was to be available on flights between New York and San Francisco and New York and Los Angeles, with fares for Mint-class seats starting at US$599 each way.[3] Dave Barger, JetBlue CEO at the time, said that the move was necessary for the airline to better compete with its competitors,[4] which were operating lie-flat seats in transcontinental markets, leaving JetBlue with an all-economy class cabin.[1] The routes were to be operated with new Airbus A321 aircraft, and feature Wi-Fi connectivity. JetBlue's all seven daily round-trip flights between New York and Los Angeles were to feature the service by the fourth quarter of 2014, and all five daily round-trip flights between New York and San Francisco by early 2015. The first Mint flight, from New York–JFK to Los Angeles, was to begin on June 15, 2014.[4]

On March 15, 2015, JetBlue announced seasonal expansion of its Mint service to Caribbean routes, with service from JFK Airport to Aruba and Barbados. The service was to operate once daily per destination during the winter holiday season, and once weekly per destination for the rest of the winter season.[5] JetBlue announced expansion of its Mint service to Boston in June 2015, with year-round service from Boston to Los Angeles and San Francisco,[6] and seasonal Saturday-only service from Boston to Barbados.[7] Flights from Boston to San Francisco began on March 24, 2016,[8] and flights from Boston to Los Angeles were to begin on October 20, 2016.[9]

On April 12, 2016, JetBlue announced an expansion of its Mint service. New routes utilizing the Mint configuration were to be launched to Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, San Diego and Seattle, with service beginning during 2017 and 2018.[10] The announcement was made almost immediately after Alaska Air Group announced its intention to acquire Virgin America and merge it with Alaska Airlines. Either Alaska or Virgin operated in 4 out of 7 of JetBlue's newly announced markets.[1]

Service[edit]

The Mint subfleet consists of A321 aircraft with 159 seats,[11] including 16 flat-bed Mint seats. The Mint seat is a version of the Thompson Aero Vantage business class seat, customised to include extra storage and dual 110 V + USB power outlets at every seat.[12][13] 4 of the 16 Mint seats are mini-suites which include a sliding door for privacy.[12] The seats have a width of up to 22.3 inches and can convert to a flat bed of up to 6'8" in length. Pairs of non-suite Mint seats alternate with single mini-suite seats.[14] The seats use air cushioning, allowing passengers to adjust the firmness of the seats.[13][14] Economy class on Mint A321 aircraft uses B/E Aerospace Pinnacle slimline[15] seats, with a seat pitch of 33 inches in the main cabin and up to 37 inches in the "Even More Space" extra legroom product.[12] There are two power outlets per row of economy class seats.[15]

A 15.6 inch video screen provides Live TV 4.0, SiriusXM Radio, and a selection of films as in-flight entertainment.[14] The TV system provides about 100 DirecTV channels.[13] However, on flights outside the coverage range of satellite TV, such as flights to Caribbean destinations, TV channels and radio are not provided.[16] In-flight Wi-Fi is provided via a Ka-band satellite system.[12]

Passengers are provided with a choice of five offerings for meal service, including hot and cold options, and may choose three.[12][13] Amenity kits are provided by Hayward & Hopper, a cosmetics company based in New York.[17]

Routes[edit]

As of August 2019, JetBlue offers Mint service on the following routes:[18]

From Boston:

  • Aruba
  • Barbados
  • Las Vegas
  • Los Angeles
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • Seattle
  • St. Lucia (seasonal)
  • St. Maarten (seasonal)

From Fort Lauderdale:

  • Los Angeles
  • San Francisco

From New York–JFK:

  • Aruba
  • Barbados
  • Grenada
  • Las Vegas
  • Liberia
  • Los Angeles
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • Seattle
  • St. Lucia (seasonal)
  • St. Maarten (seasonal)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "jetBlue's Mint a great example of innovation; next phase now tests its premium model more widely". CAPA – Centre for Aviation. May 15, 2016. Archived from the original on June 21, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  2. ^ "JetBlue to add premium seats on some flights". Associated Press. March 20, 2013. Archived from the original on March 24, 2013. Retrieved April 14, 2016.
  3. ^ Clampet, Jason (September 30, 2013). "JetBlue's New 'Mint' Class Promises Premium Seats for Less". Skift. Retrieved April 15, 2016.
  4. ^ a b Jones, Charisse (September 30, 2013). "JetBlue launches premium brand called Mint". USA Today. Archived from the original on April 16, 2016. Retrieved April 15, 2016.
  5. ^ Rosenbloom, Stephanie (March 15, 2015). "JetBlue Mint to Travel to Caribbean in High-Flying Style". In Transit. The New York Times. Archived from the original on April 16, 2016. Retrieved April 16, 2016.
  6. ^ Luna, Taryn (June 23, 2015). "JetBlue adding first-class cabin on some flights". Boston Globe.  – via HighBeam (subscription required). Archived from the original on September 11, 2016. Retrieved April 19, 2016.
  7. ^ "JetBlue Commences Mint Service in Boston". Travel & Leisure Close-Up.  – via HighBeam (subscription required). March 30, 2016. Archived from the original on September 11, 2016. Retrieved April 19, 2016.
  8. ^ Goodison, Donna (March 24, 2016). "JetBlue's Mint offers taste of luxury". Boston Herald. Retrieved April 18, 2016.
  9. ^ "JetBlue Further Updates A321 MINT Boston – Los Angeles Planned Launch in 16Q4". Airline Route. April 5, 2016. Archived from the original on April 19, 2016. Retrieved April 19, 2016.
  10. ^ "With New Mint Routes, JetBlue Will Expand Its Refreshing Take on Premium Travel From East to West" (Press release). JetBlue. April 12, 2016. Retrieved May 22, 2016.
  11. ^ "JetBlue | Our planes". JetBlue Airways. Archived from the original on June 21, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  12. ^ a b c d e Miller, Seth (June 10, 2014). "JetBlue goes 2.0 as low-cost carrier unveils Mint premium product". Archived from the original on June 21, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  13. ^ a b c d Rabinowitz, Jason (June 15, 2014). "Flight Review: JetBlue Mint "Suite" Inaugural". Airways Magazine. Archived from the original on October 29, 2014. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  14. ^ a b c Flynn, David (June 6, 2014). "Review: JetBlue's new Mint business class seats and suites". Australian Business Traveller. Archived from the original on March 18, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  15. ^ a b Rabinowitz, Jason. "JetBlue "New Core" A321 Flight Review". Airways Magazine. Archived from the original on March 18, 2016. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  16. ^ Marcus, Lilit (November 9, 2015). "Three Meals in Four Hours: The Luxe Life of JetBlue's Mint Class". Condé Nast Traveler. Condé Nast. Archived from the original on November 10, 2015. Retrieved June 21, 2016.
  17. ^ "Mintroducing: Hayward and Hopper – Out of the Blue". blog.jetblue.com.
  18. ^ "Mint". JetBlue. Retrieved August 18, 2019.