Get up to a 60% bonus when buying JetBlue points

Editor's note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with the latest promotion.

For a limited time, you can get up to 60% bonus points when you purchase JetBlue TrueBlue points. The tiered promo lasts through June 10, 2020. A bonus kicks in when you purchase a minimum of 3,000 points and grows based on the number of points you buy.

You can buy JetBlue points for as little as 1.71 cents each with this promotion, making this sale the best deal we've seen for buying TrueBlue points. That said, it doesn't always make sense to buy points, so we'll give you an overview of the promotion and discuss when it makes sense to take advantage of it in this article. But first, let's discuss the risks of buying points during the coronavirus outbreak.

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Should you buy points now?

As you're probably aware, the world is in the middle of the coronavirus outbreak. This has put non-essential travel on pause, and while things are looking up, the vast majority of us won't be traveling for at least a few months from now. With that in mind, there are a few things you should keep in mind before purchasing points and miles, whether they're with JetBlue or another airline.

The first thing to keep in mind is that you may need to cancel future travel if the coronavirus situation doesn't improve, so make sure to read up your airline's change and cancellation policy before you buy points to book a ticket. If you do need to cancel, you leave yourself subject to change and cancellation fees and a possible mileage devaluation.

Further, keep your airline's financial footing in mind. All of the major U.S. airlines are facing a rough financial outlook and are requesting a government bailout to stay afloat. While we're confident that JetBlue will make it through the coronavirus travel downturn, your TrueBlue points could be rendered worthless if the airline goes bankrupt.

In short: Only purchase points and miles if you're comfortable with the airline's change and cancellation policy, think travel will resume soon and believe that your airline will fair the coronavirus travel downturn without going belly up.

A closer look at the JetBlue buy-points promotion

Historically, most JetBlue buy-points bonuses have been targeted and offered a different bonus to each TrueBlue member. This time, the bonus is the same across the board — here's a look at how many bonus miles you can earn:

  • Purchase 3,000 to 9,500 points: Get a 40% bonus
  • Purchase 10,000 to 29,500 points: Get a 50% bonus
  • Purchase 30,000 points: Get a 60% bonus

When buying with the 60% bonus, you can purchase points at 1.71 cents per point. This is the best deal we've seen for buying TrueBlue points — and is far cheaper than the usual 3.8 cents — but it's still significantly lower than TPG's valuation of 1.3 cents apiece.

Note that you can purchase a maximum of 30,000 points per transaction, and a maximum of 120,000 points per calendar year, not including the 40% to 60% bonus. This means that you can buy a maximum of 30,000 points each in four consecutive transactions.

Does it make sense to buy TrueBlue points?

Buying points and miles without a bonus is rarely a good idea, but sometimes travelers can get enough value out of their miles and points that it can make sense. Several of us at TPG max out our points purchases from airlines and hotels, taking advantage when there's a solid buy-points bonus — as we get more value from these points than what we pay by taking advantage of sweet spots.

That's possible because many programs are region- or distance-based points/miles redemption programs, rather than strictly revenue-based programs. The problem with revenue-based redemptions is that there's a fairly fixed value that you're going to get from these points and miles.

JetBlue TrueBlue is one of these types of programs. This makes it easy for TPG to calculate a fixed value of TrueBlue points at 1.3 cents each, but it also means that you're not going to get much more than this in value from any TrueBlue redemption.

Related: How to redeem points with the JetBlue TrueBlue program

TrueBlue points typically cost 3.8 cents each including the tax recovery fee (which is currently waived), and this promotion only lowers the cost to 1.71 cents per point when purchasing with the 60% bonus. You'd be paying far more than what these TrueBlue points are worth even with the highest bonus, so this promotion is a skip for most travelers.

If you're just a bit shy of an award flight, buying a small number of points to bridge the gap might make sense — and this promotion will at least let you do that at a discount.

Even then, you should consider other options first. You could transfer points from Chase Ultimate Rewards (1:1, instant transfer) or American Express Membership Rewards (250:200, instant transfer). Or, you can pool your points with up to six other JetBlue TrueBlue members to get enough for the redemption.

Related: A guide to earning transferable points

Which credit card to use

JetBlue point purchases are processed by, so these purchases won't code as travel. You won't earn bonus points from cards such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

So, you'll want to use the best non-bonus category credit card for your situation. Based on TPG's valuations, The Blue Business®️ Plus Credit Card from American Express's 2x Membership Rewards (on the first $50,000 per year; then 1x thereafter, terms apply), or Chase Freedom Unlimited's 1.5% cash back would be the most rewarding choices.

The information for the Chase Freedom Unlimited has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Related: The best travel rewards credit cards

Featured photo by EQRoy/Shutterstock

JT Genter contributed to this post.

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