A JetBlue giveaway with a twist; Airline tickets to be passed out at anniversary event - Colonial attire required

July 27, 2007

Leave it to JetBlue Airways to cook up a marketing gumbo that includes free air travel, Ukrop's Super Markets and the 400th anniversary of Jamestown.

From noon to 2 p.m. Monday, the low-fare airline will give away 401 round-trip tickets at the Westpark Ukrop's at 9645 W. Broad St. The store, near Gaskins Road in western Henrico County, will let people start lining up in the parking lot at 7 a.m.

Participants must dress in a Colonial costume and bring at least two canned goods for the Central Virginia Foodbank.

Why 401 tickets? That's one ticket to mark the anniversary of JetBlue's arrival in Richmond last March with service to New York and Boston.

The other 400 tickets - with an average value of $299 - are meant to commemorate the settlement of Jamestown.

JetBlue spokesman Bryan Baldwin said the airline, known for quirky marketing, ran a similar promotion in New York and saw long lines of ticket-hungry customers.

"We're prepared for that" in Richmond, he said.

The first 401 people in line will get certificates that can be redeemed for tickets to New York or Boston - the carrier's two nonstop destinations from Virginia's capital.

The certificates must be redeemed within a year. There are no restrictions on travel times, Baldwin said, but there could be limited seating on certain flights.

JetBlue approached Ukrop's about the promotion because the airline is supporting tomorrow's Ukrop's Monument Avenue 10K.

Asked how JetBlue's staff will define Colonial garb, Baldwin said: "We allow people to be pretty creative. The donation is a big part of it, but we do need to see you've shown a little bit of effort with the costume."

JetBlue marketing staff will be on hand "in full regalia. We'll be working with the folks in line and having some fun with everyone there."

Contact staff writer Chip Jones at [email protected] or (804) 649-6726.