Middle East A Go-Go: JetBlue and Emirates Buddy Up for Seamless Travel
"Pittsburgh to Pakistan!
Syracuse to Sana'a!
Raleigh to Riyadh!
Tampa to Thiruvananthapuram!"
This morning, JetBlue announces that they are now totally tight with Dubai-based airline Emirates, via an interline agreement. What this means is, starting today, flyers will be able to purchase seamless flight itineraries that begin on JetBlue or Emirates and end on the other, making trips like the above ("Raleigh to Riyadh") possible, complete with one-stop check-in and baggage transfer between the airlines. Currently the bookings can be made by calling Emirates reservations, with a roll-out to Emirates.com soon.
For aviation geeks, this is particularly awesome, as you can start your trip by flying on a JetBlue A320 and grab the JFK-Dubai direct Emirates flight on the superjumbo A380 (no, Emirates is not having the engine problems with these that Qantas is). There are two non-stop Emirates to Dubai flights per day, with one on the A380 and the other on a 777, so just keep that in mind when you book your Denver to Dubai getaway.
This is hardly the first time JetBlue has thrown its coins in with a major international carrier; they have similar relationships already with South African Airways, American, Lufthansa, Aer Lingus, and Cape Air, although the furthest Cape Air goes is Nantucket.
The idea of the Emirates agreement is first to foster goodwill and tourism between the US and the Middle Eastjust please don't go flipping airport officials off in Dubaiand second to attract business travelers to JetBlue. If all those biz travelers on Emirates discover that they can go from the leather seats and excellent in-flight entertainment of the big international flights to similar service on JetBlue once they've reached the US, well then...this could be a very good thing for everyone.
[Photo: hartlandmartin & Jaunted]