JetBlue Introduces Animal Farm Elite Status

Via Wandering Aramean come the details of the elite status program that JetBlue will be introducing.

It’s called Mosaic, and they don’t want you to call it an elite level.

While other airlines categorize their Customers, we’ve always steered clear of items that feel elitist or exclusive, and this strategy has helped carve our name in the industry.

Status is earned based on straight spending in a calendar year, or flight segments and spending. And it offers benefits much like an elite program would.

But they won’t refer to it as an elite program, since all of their customers are equal. All passengers are equal it seems, although some will become more equal that others.

As readers know I’m a big proponent of loyalty and long-term value propositions. The ‘some are more equal than others’ proposition makes me wish that Snowball (Dave Neeleman?) had won… Although the doublespeak is more reminiscent of Orwell’s other famous work. Just sayin’.

Qualification criteria and benefits are expected to be as follows:

Much like other aspects of the TrueBlue program, qualification will be based on annual spend. A minimum spend of $5,000, or 30 one-way trips with a spend of $4,000, in a calendar year will qualify customers for the TrueBlue Mosaic badge. The benefits for reaching this level are being reported as:

  • 100% bonus on base flight points. This translates to an additional three points per dollar spent on flights.
  • Free Even More™ Speed
  • Early boarding (even for travel companions!)
  • Access to a dedicated Customer Service line available 24/7
  • A second bag checked free
  • Ability to use TrueBlue points to purchase an Even More™ Space seats
  • Six Even More™ Space seat upgrades

This all makes good sense. But JetBlue isn’t fooling anyone.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. It is a “Mosaic badge,” not an elite level. 😉

    I think the name is a bit silly but I get past that sort of thing pretty quickly and look at the benefits. In this case I think they did a pretty good job. The threshold to qualify is a bit high, but it is still a pretty good option for folks in NYC and Boston who are commuting on JetBlue these days.

  2. I missed the word “farm” and just read that JetBlue was giving animals elite status. Which makes sense, since they already have “JetPaws…”

  3. Gary-
    Your politics is showing, of course. It somehow gets under your skin that JetBlue won’t play the elite game.

    But I would also advise you that other airlines don’t call their flyers or more-frequent frequent flyer programs elite, either. United calls it premier, Delta calls it Medallion, AA calls it Executive and, really, does anyone care what US Airways calls anything?

    In fact, only Continental ever called it an “elite” program.

    So why not try NOT getting caught up in trying do decide if the bed has sheets…or if any particular pigs are sleeping with any particular humans.

  4. @LiterateEnough – my politics? JetBlue can call it what it likes. But they are the ones saying their Mosaic program doesn’t mean some customers are elite and others aren’t, they’re the ones playing word games not me. The whole point is that the moniker they choice doesn’t alter the essence of the program.

  5. Not sure what politics have to do with any of this.

    I’m even better than elite. I’m elite plus! Not super elite though.

    @literateenough: you’re flat out wrong on airlines using the “elite”label. Examples above.

  6. Jet Blue is spineless. How lame do you have to be to not want to just say that you are rewarding your best customers.

  7. I guess it’s a shameful thing to recognize your best customers?!?!

    The math is simple and it works, I spend more money where I get the best price, most perks, fly with least hassles and more routes.

    Maybe they want to be like Virgin America, where you get an elite level and they pretend it never happened…

    I think US Airways has the right name: Preferred. A preferred customer.

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