American Airlines Group Inc. and JetBlue Airways Corp. are expanding shared loyalty program benefits under an alliance three weeks after the Justice Department sued to break up the venture for allegedly violating antitrust laws.
The changes will allow members of American’s AAdvantage program to use miles to book flights on JetBlue starting in November, the carriers said in separate statements Wednesday. Previously, members of both loyalty plans could earn miles or points when traveling on JetBlue or American flights, but until now they couldn’t use their rewards to cross-book flights.
AAdvantage and TrueBlue Mosaic, JetBlue’s top loyalty status, members will get benefits including priority check-in, two free checked bags, dedicated security lanes, first-boarding privileges and free same-day flight changes when traveling on either carrier, they said.
The U.S. and a group of state attorneys general sued the carriers on Sept. 21, saying coordination of flights in the U.S. Northeast hurt travelers nationwide through higher fares, reduced flight choices and lower-quality service. The airlines denied the claims.
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