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vacation, anyone?
August 13, 2009 4:40 AM   Subscribe

Most frequent flyer programs are kind of a raw deal: seats are often severely limited, many popular dates are blocked and fees can be steep. But there are exceptions: JetBlue just came out with an All-You-Can-Jet Offer. $599 gets people unlimited travel anywhere on their network for a month beginning September 8th and seats are not limited. The idea isn't new: American Airlines used to sell a Lifetime AAirPass through the Neiman Marcus catalog, which offered unlimited travel on any AA flight in any class. Unfortunately, it cost a cool $3 million.
posted by krautland (24 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
The name of the airline has already preempted my only possible comment.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 4:48 AM on August 13, 2009 [11 favorites]


Certain restrictions may apply.
posted by box at 4:54 AM on August 13, 2009


(Amtrak does this too, btw.)
posted by box at 4:55 AM on August 13, 2009


I think the Neiman Marcus catalogue deserves its own post. Specifically, the fantasy gifts section, which reads like a Borges encyclopaedia crossed with a Sharper Image store:

A gold toilet seat advertised as 'a 24 kt. Gold plated throne'
A Noah's ark with all endangered species aboard
A truckload of pink air
Mermaid suit, comes with a mermaid tail, faux pearl top and swimming lessons
An imperial sacrificial robe worn by a Chinese emperor, circa 1770
California Spangled Cat
Life-size Lego replicas of you and your beloved

posted by permafrost at 5:00 AM on August 13, 2009 [8 favorites]


oh neat, I didn't know about amtrack. I thought about writing about the united program as well, which used to offer free lifetime flights as well, but details seemed scarce and I didn't want to litter the post with potentially wrong information.

I wished lufthansa or BA would be doing a jetblue style program. I wished expedia or orbitz did it. this would rock in europe right now.
posted by krautland at 5:11 AM on August 13, 2009


Wish I had a vacation to the US coming up! That's seriously awesome. I used to really like airline coupon programs (I bought a bunch of flights this way on United once, 5 flights for maybe $500) but they seem to have been dying off of late. +1 krautland's suggestion that this would be awesome in Europe.
posted by wingless_angel at 5:28 AM on August 13, 2009


In 1952, Stanley Marcus introduced a new tradition of having extravagant and unusual gifts in each year's Christmas catalog, The Christmas Book; the idea was sparked when journalist Edward R. Murrow contacted Marcus to ask if the store would be offering anything unusual that might interest his radio listeners;

So I guess today's journalists aren't violating as many ethical guidelines as previously thought.
posted by DU at 5:32 AM on August 13, 2009


If you don't mind the train and you live in Europe, you can buy InterRail passes that offer unlimited train trips around Europe.
posted by cmonkey at 5:35 AM on August 13, 2009


Didn't Mission of Burma use an offer like this to tour the US by plane?
posted by drezdn at 5:37 AM on August 13, 2009


Too bad that JetBlue's network is kind of sucky. It's good to go from JFK to Florida or the West Coast, but that's about it.
posted by smackfu at 5:51 AM on August 13, 2009


God, I hate to sound like a total downer/climate pariah, but I feel like airlines should be doing everything they can to encourage responsible flying when carbon emissions from aviation are so staggeringly high, and particularly damaging at higher altitudes.
posted by smoke at 6:03 AM on August 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


the idea was sparked when journalist Edward R. Murrow contacted Marcus to ask if the store would be offering anything unusual that might interest his radio listeners
Ouch! May I offer my apology to quonsar for the doubt (who did indeed, take it to the new fangled mail thingy).
posted by tellurian at 6:04 AM on August 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Cathay Pacific offers something similar: the All Asia Pass--kinda' like a Eurorail pass, but for Southeast Asia, and by plane. You can fly four times in 3 weeks from 24 different SEA cities for $1500. The price includes the round-trip flight from L.A. or New York to Hong Kong.

/PacificBlue filter.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:16 AM on August 13, 2009 [5 favorites]


airlines should be doing everything they can to encourage responsible flying
you mean like mc donalds advertising its apples?
posted by krautland at 7:08 AM on August 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


I feel like airlines should be doing everything they can to encourage responsible flying when carbon emissions from aviation are so staggeringly high, and particularly damaging at higher altitudes.

They're essentially selling standby ("space available") tickets; it's not like they're going to warm up an extra plane if someone shows up with one of these passes and there aren't any seats left. The planes are going to fly either way, so the marginal cost to JetBlue and the environmental impact of these passes is very low.

If you could convince fewer people to fly overall, then eventually the airlines would reduce the number of flights and that would have an environmental impact, but you can't really expect them to encourage people not to fly. They are, after all, in the business of operating an airline. I can't think of any industry that has ever encouraged "responsible" consumption of their product, where "responsible" meant "less," unless it was a way to prevent lawsuits or as an alternative to abandoning the product completely (e.g. cigarette companies, junk food). It's pretty naïve to think otherwise.

If a carbon tax does go through and it's not a total exercise in political favoritism, it ought to have a measurable increase on the price of airline tickets relative to less-carbon-intense forms of transportation like passenger rail (especially electric trains; quite a bit of the NE Corridor—the old Pennsy, anyway—is hydroelectric).
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:21 AM on August 13, 2009


airlines should be doing everything they can to encourage responsible flying when carbon emissions from aviation are so staggeringly high, and particularly damaging at higher altitudes.

It's a beautiful irony how much damage a worldwide climate conference does to the environment.
posted by smackfu at 7:23 AM on August 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Jet...BlueBlue?

Although that is actually a pretty decent price - I was looking at LA-NY return, and it's about $170ish each way, which is just one trip.

Over a month I could easily rack up more than $600 worth.
posted by djgh at 10:23 AM on August 13, 2009


it's only $170 if you book on time and find a seat at that price. I have in the past paid up to $380 or $400 for a coach ticket on that route. so yeah, decent deal if you have some flying to do and JB's coach product is rather nice.
posted by krautland at 10:36 AM on August 13, 2009


Meh. Air Canada did this too. And the first time out they forgot to cap the number of Aeroplan points you could rack up so someone bought an unlimited use tickets and proceeded to fly 100,000 miles in the space of two months (maybe a million?) thus getting him top-tier elite status and enough FF miles to last a long time. I think it cost him around a couple thousand dollars and a few SAN points.
posted by GuyZero at 11:01 AM on August 13, 2009


Ah yes, The Metafilter post on getting a million miles in 60 days. $7000. 2005.
posted by GuyZero at 11:03 AM on August 13, 2009


Back in the early 80's Eastern Airlines did something similar. I think it was unlimited to 60 days from the first flight. My dad and I hit New Orleans, Atlanta, Washington, New York, Orlando, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Bahamas, US Virgin Islands, Mexico and Los Angeles. Great way to spend a summer when you are about 12.
posted by Razzle Bathbone at 11:50 AM on August 13, 2009


Certain restrictions may apply.

Well, maybe I should make a FPP about "Screw U Airlines", AKA as Continental Airlines. Or write a book about them.
posted by yoyo_nyc at 1:23 PM on August 13, 2009


airlines should be doing everything they can to encourage responsible flying when carbon emissions from aviation are so staggeringly high, and particularly damaging at higher altitudes.

Actually, you've got it backwards. What we should be doing is encouraging all flights to take place during the day.

Why?

So, some scientists were doing studies on how much sunlight impacts the ground and how much that results in atmospheric warming. And then 9/11 occurred, and all flights were grounded in the US. And, lo and behold, the amount of sunlight hitting the earth drastically shot up.

It turns out that contrails block the sunlight and reflect it back into space before it has a chance to warm the atmosphere.

On the other hand, if you fly at night, the contrails can trap heat that would otherwise be radiated off into space.
posted by Netzapper at 4:39 PM on August 13, 2009 [3 favorites]


A gold toilet seat advertised as 'a 24 kt. Gold plated throne'
A Noah's ark with all endangered species aboard
A truckload of pink air
Mermaid suit, comes with a mermaid tail, faux pearl top and swimming lessons
An imperial sacrificial robe worn by a Chinese emperor, circa 1770
California Spangled Cat
Life-size Lego replicas of you and your beloved


Sounds like the inside of Miguel Cardoso's house(s).
posted by armage at 7:57 PM on August 13, 2009


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