- Introduction: A Side of Mint, Take Two
- Review: The Club at DFW, a Priority Pass Lounge
- Review: American Airlines B787-9 Business Class, DFW to LAX
- Korean Air Lounge LAX, a Priority Pass Lounge
- Review: jetBlue Mint, Los Angeles to Boston
- Amenity Kit Review: jetBlue Mint (Hayward & Hopper)
- Review: Delta Comfort+, Boston to Atlanta to Dallas
In September, I detailed my quick trip to Portland for a chicken sandwich and a whiskey. While fun, half of that trip ended up on the chopping block due to an untimely hurricane. Originally, I planned on flying jetBlue Mint from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale. But thanks to Irma, I headed straight home instead. I wanted to wrap that up as soon as possible, so I targeted November to try again.
The Flight Plan
In the end, my route ended up like so:
JetBlue waived change fees due to the hurricane cancellation, so I had my entire $498 original fare to work with. Unfortunately, jetBlue raised prices in the meantime, and I couldn’t find anything at that price point. The closest I could get was LAX to Boston, which priced at $548 the first Saturday of November. An extra $50 out of pocket seemed reasonable, and set the base for the journey. Now, we’d just have to see if Mint lived up to the hype.
So how to get to LA and back from Boston? Getting to LAX from Dallas is easy, with roughly 217 flights a day on pretty much every airline. (Ok, I exaggerate. The actual number is 24 on Saturdays.) A search pulled up $87 one-way fares coach fares on American. No, that’s not a misprint, and that’s not Basic Economy. But wait, there’s more! American uses a 787-9 on one flight a day each Saturday, presumably as a positioning flight. Plus, First Class priced out at just $288. While that meant a 4 hour plus layover at LAX, the chance to check out the fancy international Business Class seat on that plane proved too appealing to pass up.
Note: although I paid $338 cash for these two flights, I used an old stash of Capital One points to cover both charges in full. So, out of pocket, they cost me nothing.
Getting home from Boston proved more challenging. I thought about spending the day in Boston, and then trying Spirit’s Big Front Seat in the evening. But I wanted to get home as soon as possible, and didn’t really want to walk around all day after getting off a redeye. American offers a few nonstops, but all priced out between $230 and $280. Then I remembered I still have a small stash of Delta SkyMiles remaining from years ago. I originally spent most of these to book a flight home from Fort Lauderdale. But after Irma canceled my flight, Delta returned the miles. Delta offered seats in Comfort+ for only 17,000 miles, a pretty decent value I thought.
This required a connection in Atlanta, but I’d get two useful things out of it. First, I could try Comfort+, Delta’s attempt at a Premium Economy-light product. Second, I could fly from Atlanta to Love Field on a Boeing 717, a plane I have an irrational obsession with. For $5.60 in taxes, I get that, and I get home by 3 pm. Sold.
My final flight schedule ended up looking this:
- Saturday, 11/4: American Flight 2463, depart DFW International AIrport (DFW) 17:55, arrive Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) 19:05
- Saturday, 11/4: jetBlue Flight 688, depart LAX 23:50, arrive Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) 07:13 (+1)
- Sunday, 11/5: Delta flight 2648, depart BOS 08:30, arrive Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport (ATL) 11:28
- Sunday, 11/5: Delta Flight 2055, depart ATL 13:59, arrive Dallas Love Field (DAL) 15:14
Hotels and Food
I very, very rarely travel without at least sneaking in a food component. But this time, this trip would be all about new airline products and lounges. And of course, by flying a redeye, Mint would be my hotel. So yes, food plays a part, but only in the context of airplane food and lounge offerings. Who wins between American and jetBlue in the pointy end?
Or perhaps you prefer a showdown of jetBlue and Delta signature cocktails?
And can you really fill yourself up at a pair of Priority Pass lounges in Dallas and Los Angeles?
I take one for the team, so you don’t have to…
Thanks for following along, and hope you enjoy the show!