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JetBlue Airbus A321LR economy review from London to New York


Quick take: A comfortable transatlantic economy experience with an innovative and memorable approach to meal service.


  • Better than average food choice and quality
  • Comfortable seat and ample legroom
  • Competitive pricing


  • Basic earphones with tinny sound quality
  • Limited electrical outlets
  • Only two lavatories for the economy cabin

If you’re a loyalist to other airlines such as American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, British Airways or Virgin Atlantic, then JetBlue might not be top of mind for a transatlantic hop between London and New York. However, you might want to consider the New York-based carrier, especially if you will be flying in economy.

JetBlue’s airfares are competitive, and it offers three daily nonstop flights in each direction between the two cities (though two different London airports). That’s not to mention onboard benefits that even economy flyers can take advantage of, including free inflight Wi-Fi and above-average meal options.

Here’s what it was like flying JetBlue economy on the Airbus A321LR from London to New York, and everything you need to know about the experience.

How much does economy class cost to book on JetBlue?

Between London and New York, JetBlue operates out of both London Gatwick Airport (LGW) and London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR), flying nonstop to and from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). The routes are operated by single-aisle Airbus A321LR aircraft.

JetBlue offers three economy fare types on this route; here’s a look at the inclusions you can expect.

Fare type Change fees Checked bag fees Seat selection Boarding
Blue Basic $100 per person (North America, Central America, Caribbean)

$200 per person (other routes)

$65 first bag, $105 second bag Additional fee Groups E to F (final groups)
Blue No fee One checked bag on flights to/from U.K./Europe and U.S., $105 second bag Included Groups B to D (general boarding)
Blue Extra No fee One checked bag on flights to/from U.K./Europe and U.S., $105 second bag Included Group A (after pre-boarding, Mosaic and Mint customers)

All passengers can bring one carry-on bag and one personal item on flights between the U.S. and U.K./Europe for free.

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Here’s a snapshot of starting airfares over the next several months and mileage redemption requirements on round-trip flights from New York to London.

Class Blue Basic Blue  Blue Extra Mint
Airfare $617 $797 $847 $2,262
JetBlue True Blue points N/A 47,300 points plus taxes/fees 51,300 points plus taxes/fees 209,600 points plus taxes/fees

My one-way flight cost $719.10 ($380 for the ticket, plus $339.10 in fees). Comparatively, I could have booked the flight using around 39,600 TrueBlue points, plus the same fees.

TPG values TrueBlue points at 1.4 cents per point, giving that redemption the approximate value of $554.40. After taxes and fees are added, this would have been more expensive than paying cash.

You can maximize JetBlue purchases by using the JetBlue Card (earning 3 points per dollar on JetBlue purchases) or the JetBlue Plus Card (earning 6 points per dollar on eligible JetBlue purchases).

Additionally, it’s also worth keeping in mind that eligible JetBlue purchases count toward earning Tiles for Mosaic status with the airline.

The information for the JetBlue Card and JetBlue Plus Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Checking in to and boarding economy on JetBlue 

My original booking was a nonstop flight departing Heathrow at 7:25 a.m. and arriving at JFK around eight hours later at 10:48 a.m. Due to bad weather, this flight was canceled and JetBlue placed me on its 11:55 a.m. departure out of Gatwick to arrive at JFK at 3:42 p.m. — much later than I anticipated.

It was a stressful morning shifting my plans and getting to an entirely different airport from the one I had planned, not to mention arriving five hours later than expected, but at least I made it to New York for my work trip.

It did illustrate a drawback to flying JetBlue on this route, though, since the airline was only able to make an inconvenient switch for me rather than being able to place me on another of its own flights or one offered by a partner at a better time from Heathrow.

JetBlue’s check-in area at London Gatwick can be found in Zone A on the first floor. Check-in is performed via electronic kiosks, which were not busy when I flew. However, there aren’t many of them, so you could find yourself waiting in line during peak periods.

The kiosks are straightforward to use — simply scan your passport or enter your boarding pass details and follow the ensuing directions. During my check-in, the machine repeatedly asked me to pay for my seat, though I had already paid in full.

A JetBlue staff member, who explained this was an error due to my earlier canceled flight, was able to check me in manually without additional fees. I could easily have paid for the seat accidentally in my frazzled state, so if you’re in a similar situation, do reach out to the staff to help — it could save you money.

Gatwick does not participate in TSA PreCheck. You can pay 6 British pounds ($7.50) to access expedited security but I did not take advantage of this.

Despite this, the security experience was pain-free and I was through within 15-20 minutes, though your time commitment may vary.

Lounge access is not included with economy tickets so I was restricted to the main concourse of the terminal, which contained a small assortment of coffee shops, restaurants and bars, and duty-free shopping.

Related: Best credit cards for airport lounge access


The boarding area had a mix of metal and plastic seating with good views of the airport runway and boarding bridge.

Although basic, it was bright with plenty of windows and more than enough seating.

My economy ticket put me in boarding group D (the seventh out of 10). The boarding process itself was relatively speedy with four agents scanning boarding passes at three desks.

How comfortable was economy on JetBlue?

Number of seats 114 (90 regular and 24 Even More Space)
Cabin layout 3-3
Seat pitch 32 inches
Seat recline 3 inches
Seat width 18 inches
Screen size 10.1 inches 

My aisle seat about midway back in the cabin was comfortable with ample cushioning and firm back support, and the headrest could be raised and lowered with easily adjustable wings to cradle my head. There was no footrest, but I had plenty of legroom — I’m 5 feet, 11 inches and didn’t feel cramped.

The plug distribution was disappointing, however, with two universal power sockets shared between three seats in each row. Not ideal if everyone needed to charge, and the act of “plugging in” was awkward with a stranger in the middle seat.


The same shared socket has a USB-C port, while each passenger has their own USB-A port in their seatback screen.

Best seats for solo travelers Rows 13, 18-27 A, F (window seats)
Best seats for couples Any pairs together
Seats to avoid Rows 22 and 23 (misaligned windows)

The tray table was small but sturdy and its adjustable sliders created additional room for larger electronic devices. It was adequate but I wouldn’t want to work from it for a long period due to the lack of pitch.

A big negative was the bathrooms, because only two were shared by all the passengers in economy and Even More Space seats. This caused frequent lines to form. The toilets themselves were pretty unpleasant by the time we reached our destination; it didn’t seem like the crew was cleaning them at all throughout the flight. On the plus side, the lavatories had touchless buttons to flush the toilets and to activate the water taps on the sink, so at least you didn’t have to physically touch them.

Amenities in JetBlue economy

The inflight entertainment systems in JetBlue economy do not come with remotes. Instead, you must use the touchscreen or connect your mobile device as a makeshift remote. You can do so through the JetBlue web portal after connecting to free Wi-Fi on your device. From there, you’ll be prompted to input a code shown on your IFE before opening the remote in your browser.

My iPhone 15 Pro struggled to connect as a remote, but when it did, the system was slow. The feature is a nice idea but not a good user experience. Old-school corded remotes would make more sense on a long-haul flight, though the touchscreen worked well enough.

The film selection was varied and included new releases and classics like “Barbie” and “Dirty Dancing,” and some not-so-recent TV releases such as “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “Community.” Live television was available but didn’t work consistently.


The small but good-quality IFE is let down by the poor quality of the free in-ear headphones economy passengers receive. Certain sound frequencies actually hurt my eardrums when using them. That said, you can always bring your own pair, provided they are wired or you have a Bluetooth adapter.

All fare types have access to JetBlue’s free inflight Wi-Fi, which I found very reliable; it was easy to check emails, text via WhatsApp and browse the internet.


Economy passengers also receive earplugs, a blanket and a polyester eye mask. The earplugs were standard foam ones, and the eye mask had a very synthetic feel to it, though the nighttime sky design was cute.


The blanket, however, was a standout. Economy blankets are often flimsy and made of synthetic materials that do not breathe. This was a refreshingly normal blanket — cushioned and thick enough to keep you warm.


How was the food in JetBlue economy?

Unlike other airlines that offer limited set menus for economy meals, JetBlue allows you to “build-your-own” meals, with dishes by New York-based Dig restaurant group.


You select your main meal upon boarding using your IFE. Your order is then logged with flight attendants for later in the flight.

I chose from three mains:

  • Charred chicken with brown rice
  • Tamarind meatballs and butternut squash farro
  • Roasted mushroom and rosemary polenta

I was then prompted to select two side dishes from a choice of three:

  • Endive, blue cheese, and cranberry salad
  • Sheet-tray carrots
  • Cauliflower cacio e pepe

I opted for meatballs with the cauliflower and the endive salad, which were served just over an hour after takeoff. It was one of the better meals I’ve experienced flying economy and the ordering process felt quite novel.

The cauliflower had a roasted quality to it and the meatballs came with quinoa and small pieces of diced carrot. A nice surprise was a separate serving of hot sauce (surprisingly fiery).

If I’m griping, I’d say that the meatballs, while good, didn’t taste particularly meaty and the salad — though fresh — looked unappetizing.


Dessert was vegan-friendly Jude’s vanilla bean ice cream. Sadly, I didn’t get to sample mine as my meal tray was cleared away during a mistimed trip to the loo.

The food looked and tasted great, and the charcoal-colored containers that were used to serve it gave it a sleek, elegant feel.

After the meal service was cleared, an announcement informed us that the “Pantry,” located at the back of the plane, was now open with additional complimentary snacks available. These included Chifles Plantain Chips, sea salt-flavored Popchips, and Stellar Vegan Butter Pretzel Braids.


Drink refreshments were offered soon after takeoff and along with the meal. After the meal, flight attendants came through with a coffee service, and shortly before landing, there was another drinks service. An array of free hot drinks (Dunkin’ black tea and coffee) and cold beverages (Pepsi, Starry Lemon Lime, seltzer and lime Bubly sparkling water, among others) were available throughout the flight.

Alcoholic beverages were also complimentary with a choice of beers, spirits and wine — including red, white, rose and sparkling wine by Archer Roose; beer brands such as Bud Light and Stella Artois, and popular spirits like Jack Daniel’s, Tito’s vodka and Bombay Sapphire gin.

Two hours before landing, passengers were offered a hot pretzel with a sachet of English mustard. This was a delicious treat to keep hunger pangs at bay before the end of the flight.


Would you recommend JetBlue economy? 

JetBlue economy was one of the best international coach experiences I’ve had thanks to comfy seats and above-average food. While airfares fluctuate, you can find very competitive prices throughout the year.

My only gripes would be the quality of the provided headphones and the cleanliness of the bathrooms throughout the flight — but this was more than made up for with the comfort and menu offerings. If you have a limited budget, I’d highly recommend JetBlue economy on the A321LR between New York and London.

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