I enjoy stumbling upon great brands, so I quite pleased to almost literally fall into the seat of JetBlue when flying to and from Seattle on vacation. I’d known it for its good prices, but never flown it … and I was particularly impressed with the brand’s emphasis on user experience.
The brand’s tagline of Happy Jetting! won’t win any awards for cleverness, and their advertising makes the point that you aren’t flying with them, you’re Jetting. Beyond playing on their name, the point of their branding is differentiating from the average flying experience. And in that they do succeed.
Like with 36 DirectTV channels, which allowed me to watch U.S. Open golf and the U.S. soccer team’s tough 3-2 loss to Brazil in the ConFed cup (the number of whoops and fists in the air when the U.S. scored its second goal showed how many on the flight were watching). Or 100 Sirius XM stations — the grunge-era rock of Lithium when I wanted to stay awake, and the mellow electronica of Chill when I wanted to relax. The headphone jack works with any iPod or similar earbuds, though if you don’t have headphones, they’ll sell you one for the high price of … $1. An airline not taking advantage of a captive audience! Inconceivable!
JetBlue doesn’t serve major meals, just snacks such as chips and cookies. Though not only are they good chips and cookies, but after meal service you can just walk back to the flight attendant ask for more. As many times as you like. Again, differentiation from the normal experience of getting a small meal and that’s it for the flight. Generous legroom and plush seats plus ample restrooms (three) also help with the comfort factor.
The attendants handled issues pretty well. One row had TV screens that didn’t work, just flickered annoyingly, but those passengers were given the opportunity to move (on a nearly full flight) if they wanted. Overall, there seemed to be a why not? attitude instead of the usual why? when they received a request. That’s a great customer-service ethos. And a day after the trip out to Seattle, an email asking for my feedback and opinions on the flight appeared in my inbox.
I’m not exactly sure how JetBlue, like fellow price-hawks Southwest, manages to deliver both low fares and a great user experience. But needless to say I’d happily fly with them again. Er, correction, I’d happily Jet with them again.