Who arrives at the airport 7 hours early?
Meetup organizers do! Tuesday was the official start to the JetBlue All You Can Jet pass. I arrived at T5 at JFK Airport in New York City at 12:30 pm, almost seven hours before my flight to Seattle. I brought my laptop, expecting to take advantage of the free wifi and get some planning done, but there were plenty of distractions that filled my time.
In addition to the pass launch day, JetBlue was celebrating a new partnership with the aptly named, New York Jets. After the announcement, JetBlue CEO David Barger made a pit stop over to the Meetup area to talk with All-You-Can-Jet pass holders. He was just as friendly and genuine as the rest of the JetBlue team I have had the pleasure to meet. He was sporting a fancy new #AYCJ pin. I wonder how often he's on Twitter.
There were also some familiar JetBlue faces from the New York City Meetup last week, such as official camera geek Morgan Johnston and AYCJ's biggest fan Marty St. George. The JetBlue folks handed out some fun swag, such as pins, luggage tags, and my favorite, the tshirts. It made for some great photos and big smiles.
Many jetters met up at T5 throughout the day as well. I caught up with Greg Krause (30daysonjetblue.com), who was also mentioned in the CNN.com article for his work raising support for a new elementary school in Zambia Africa. I especially loved his plan to donate his clothes during his travels, to shed some weight in his overstuffed backpack. A few others passed through, and many tweeted around the terminal.
In all the excitement of the pass, there's another reason why the community has been so fun. Behind the scenes of the JetBlue jetters are stories of pilots, sailors, romance, humanitarians, and cupcakes. As I sit on my first JetBlue flight on the way to Seattle, i'm contemplating schedule changes. I'm now less concerned about where i'm going, than who I can meet there. This is a unique opportunity, and there are unique people who chose to take it. My mission is to find out who they are. What other reason is there to arrive at the airport 7 hours early?