New Jet Blue Sale
JetBlue Airways (tel. 800/538-2583; www.jetblue.com) has launched a sale for purchase by January 16 and travel completed by February 15, 2007. Advance purchase requirements vary depending on the route, but are either 7 or 14 days in advance of travel. In general, these fares are $10-$20 less than previously. Travel days vary depending on the route as well, with travel to Florida in most cases Sunday to Wednesday southbound and Tuesday to Friday northbound.
Sample routes, all one way before taxes, include:
- New York JFK to Pittsburgh $29
- New York JFK to Tampa $69
- Boston to Phoenix $99
So while these fares aren't the lowest we've ever seen, they are lower than some recent deals.
New Year's Sales
American Airlines (tel. 800/433-7300; www.aa.com) and United Airlines (tel. 800/864-8331; www.united.com) are both offering a New Year's sale. Travel Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday through March 7, 2007. Purchase your ticket by January 9, 2007. Below are some sample fares before taxes and fees:
- Charlotte, NC (CLT) to Ft Wayne, IN (FWA) $172 RT
- Charlotte, NC (CLT) to Kalamazoo, MI (AZO) $176 RT
- Chicago O'Hare, IL (ORD) to Cedar Rapids, IA (CID) $168 RT
- Chicago O'Hare, IL (ORD) to Cincinnati, OH (CVG) $168 RT
- Detroit, MI (DTW) to Des Moines, IA (DSM) $176 RT
- Detroit, MI (DTW) to Milwaukee, WI (MKE) $168 RT
January Deal of the Month: Hong Kong
Depart March 13, Return March 21
- Los Angeles to Hong Kong $792 vs. next lowest $1,031 on EVA
- New York to Hong Kong $892 vs. $1,030 on British Airways
Depart April 10, Return April 28
- Los Angeles to Hong Kong $792 vs. $1,031 on EVA
- San Francisco to Hong Kong $792 vs. $1,031 on EVA
This is a great deal for travel to Hong Kong and seats are very easy to find. Depart between March 1, 2007 and April 30, 2007 from Los Angeles or San Francisco. Departure from New York is $100 additional. Purchase your ticket by January 31, 2007.
Qantas Airways (tel. 800/227-4500; www.qantas.com.au) is offering a sale to Australia on its new nonstop service from San Francisco that starts in March. Below are some sample fares including all taxes and fees:
Depart April 2, Return April 14
- San Francisco to Sydney $1,016 vs. next lowest $1,123 on American
- San Francisco to Melbourne $1,181 vs. $1,221 on American
Depart April 28, Return May 14
- San Francisco to Cairns $1,292 vs. $1, 353 on American
As you can see, this is a great sale to Australia if you live in San Francisco. Connecting service is available to other U.S. cities, however availability is very limited. Begin your travel March 26, 2007 through June 4, 2007 and on the new Qantas flights 74 and 73 on Mondays and Saturdays. Purchase by January 5, 2007.
Amsterdam, Istanbul, & Shannon
Delta Air lines (tel. 800/221-1212; www.delta.com) has discounted fares from Atlanta to Shannon and from New York JFK to Amsterdam or Istanbul. Below are some sample fares including all taxes and fees:
- Depart February 14, Return February 22
- New York JFK to Amsterdam $494 vs. $429 on United/Lufthansa
- New York JFK to Istanbul $706 vs. $645 on Iberia
Depart March 21, Return April 4
- Atlanta to Shannon $699 vs. $679 on Continental
As you can see, most of these fares have been matched or beaten by other airlines. However, Delta offers nonstop flights on most of these routes. Begin travel between January 9, 2007 and March 31, 2007. Various blackout dates apply. All travel must be completed by April 30, 2007. Purchase your tickets by January 16, 2007.
SAA's BOGO Promotion
South African Airways (tel. 800/521-4845; www.flysaa.com) is offering a buy one get one free deal on tickets to South Africa. The airline operates nonstop flights to Johannesburg from New York's JFK and Washington Dulles. Below are some sample fares:
- New York to Cape Town $1,350
- New York to Johannesburg $1,350
Depart between January 15, 2007 and February 15, 2007. Return by March 14, 2007. Purchase by February 1, 2007. This deal can only be booked by calling 800-521-4845.
More Leg Room on JetBlue
JetBlue is removing a row of seats from its Airbus 320 fleet and will reconfigure cabins with at least a 36-inch pitch (the distance between two rows of seats) in rows one through 11, and at least a 34-inch pitch in rows 12 through 25, giving customers more legroom than any other airlines' coach cabin. The aircraft modifications are expected to be complete by March 2007.
JetBlue already offers customers higher than average pitch, including seats on its Embraer 190 fleet, which offers 32- and 33-inch pitch and no middle seats. Most U.S. airlines have a pitch of anywhere between 31 inches and 35 inches, with Continental Airlines, United Airlines and Northwest Airlines falling on the low end of the scale. This is certainly welcome news for taller or longer-legged passengers and in our book just one more reason to choose JetBlue (one of the others being live television and a large number of nonstop flights). However, we remember when American Airlines launched its similar "more leg room" program only to retreat a few years later when economic reality caught up with them. So enjoy the extra wiggle room while you can.
George Hobica is a syndicated travel journalist and blogger whose website, www.airfarewatchdog.com, tracks unadvertised airfare wars and other fare sales.
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