I’ve left Delta for jetBlue…a tough choice after 8 years

jetblueDeltaEvery consultant knows it’s about loyalty to that one airline in order to take advantage of points and upgrades.  I have flown an average of 125,000 miles a year for 8 years.  An all time high of 180K in 2008 and all time low of 60K in 2013.  Delta has always been my number one choice with the exception of flights to Dallas, Chicago, Miami, and Philadelphia.  Those cities just weren’t ever an option given connections, layovers, and price tag.  Since starting to travel again, mainly for personal vacations, I’ve started to think about the pro’s and con’s of flying Delta.  I’m sure you all are faced with the same dilemma, so let’s break this down.

Delta Breakdown

  • Delta flights from Boston all require a connection through Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis, or Salt Lake City.  Period.  There appears to be no exception to this rule.
  • These connecting airports are way to large to risk 45 minute connections, so I’m forced to select a minimum of 2 hour lay overs.
  • Since I did not make Platinum or Diamond status on Delta in 2013, the likeliness of receiving any upgrades are minimal.
  • The perks of boarding if no carry-on or if purchased additional space seats is above my status.
  • The points conversion for free flights went up from 25K to 50K.  You earn points now by miles flown and cost of flight.
  • Cost for Delta flights are routinely 25% higher.
  • The only direct flights I can take advantage of other than those hubs listed above are Orlando, Cincinnati, and Cleveland.

jetBlue Breakdown

  • All flights from Boston on jetBlue are direct flights for any city I would be traveling to including many west coast destinations.
  • The point conversion for free flights to points is a flat 10,000.  You earn 6 points for every $1 spent and 200 for More Space seats.
  • More Space and loyalty members board at the same time.
  • More Space and loyalty members have their own security line.
  • Flight costs are significantly lower and service better.

Truly when looking at flights to such destinations as let’s say Vegas or Denver, the time saving is 4 hours and the cost saving about $300.  With the exception of those cities that jetBlue has terrible on time departure ratings (72% in Fort Myers, 74% in Las Vegas)…the time savings is the biggest reason to convert here.  I’ll have to give up first class with all the perks of free booze and dinner.  But I’ll have enough time and money now to get a real dinner somewhere else!

What flight options and pros and cons are you facing from your destination?  Share your story here.

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