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JSX Review – Semi Private Flights With JetSuiteX?

If you’ve been on a commercial flight in the past twenty years, you’ll be familiar with the headaches it can cause – from the long security lines and invasive screenings, to having to check in two hours early for a flight that lasts 45 minutes.

Historically, the only way to get out of the rat race of the skies was to shell out at least $3k/hour on a private flight charter; a luxury out of the realm of possibility for most people.

Thankfully, JetBlue cofounder Alex Wilcox has created a way to put those days behind us with the introduction of a new airline, JSX (formerly known as JetSuiteX).

JSX is a semi-private airline, meaning they sell individual seats on privately operated aircraft and don’t have to adhere to the same regulations as a typical commercial airline.

Though the cabin is shared with other passengers, a JSX ticket allows travelers the same perks as flying private, the biggest of which being no security screenings and not having to fly out of the main passenger terminal.

A seat will typically cost about the same as a first class ticket on a legacy airline, but they have frequent sales which offer prices more in line with standard economy fares. 

JSX began operating on the West Coast with routes between cities in California as well as to Las Vegas, but have expanded eastward in recent years. They now offer flights in nine states and Mexico, and continue to add more routes each year.

I had the privilege of flying JSX from Houston (Hobby) to Gunnison, CO, with a layover at Dallas-Love Field. Here’s my fully comprehensive JSX review.

Snapshot Verdict ON JSX

JSX is a semi-private airline that can cost you the same as first class travel on a commercial flight. The difference with JSX is that you’ll skip the painful check-in and security processes.

The whole experience is smoother, more relaxing, and with that touch of luxury. The staff are attentive, and the aircraft immaculate. Your pet can travel with you for an extra fee, and they too are made to feel welcome. The complimentary food and drinks were also premium.

I strongly recommend that if you have the budget for a commercial first class ticket, look for those deals with JSX instead. It’s a wonderful experience I’d opt for again and again.

Getting The Best Deal On JSX

When looking to book a semi-private flight, there are some key things to be aware of that will help you get the best deal.

For those booking with points, JSX has partnerships with United and JetBlue, allowing passengers to earn miles through MileagePlus and TrueBlue.

MileagePlus members will earn miles based on 100% of their flight length, times whatever multiplier is associated with their status, while TrueBlue members will earn 150 points for the ‘Hop On’ fare or 250 points with the ‘All In’ fare.

The amount of miles the flight will cost can vary greatly based on which airline you book through, but I’ve found short flights (i.e. Burbank to Las Vegas) starting around 50,000 United miles.

Booking with JSX is quite similar to the rate you’d pay for a first class seat on a commercial flight. However, you can get some good deals with JSX, especially when flying in/out of smaller airports. 

Take Gunnison for example. It’s a very small town with an airport that almost exclusively sees leisure travelers heading to the ski resorts in nearby Crested Butte.

I once managed one of these resorts, and when booking travel for guests I would usually find round trip economy tickets starting in the $500-600 range on American and United. Accounting for luggage, especially for those bringing ski equipment, you could easily be looking at $800 per person in economy.

This is where JSX sales can really show competitive advantage. They run these sales every few months, so if time allows, I would recommend watching for when these prices become available (you can also sign up for their email list to be notified).

With a bit of savvy, you could take to the skies on a semi-private flight for a very reasonable price.

Booking JSX

I booked my flight through the JSX website, which was essentially the same process as booking through any other airline. The only inconvenient part about it was that I had to book each leg of my trip separately.

I booked during their Red Stripe Sale; my leg from Houston to Dallas was $199, and from Dallas to Gunnison it was $149. That’s right, these prices were actually cheaper than economy flights on American and United, the only other airlines that fly to Gunnison.

JSX offers two fare classes: ‘Hop On’ and ‘All In’.

A Hop On fare, which is what I booked, includes two checked bags, is non-refundable, and charges for seat selection and flight changes. For a price difference of usually a couple hundred dollars, an All In fare includes three checked bags, is fully refundable, and includes complimentary seat selection and flight changes.

My top reason for flying JSX (besides always being up for trying a new airline) was due to their generous in-cabin pet policy. I was flying with my cat, and JSX didn’t charge a fee at the time to have a pet with you as long as the carrier fits underneath the seat in front of you.


JSX has since updated its in-cabin pet policy, and now charges a $100 one-way fee for pets in-cabin.

Arriving at the Airport

JSX doesn’t operate out of the main terminals with other passenger carriers. Their terminal in Houston is a small, converted hangar that feels like more of an office than an airport gate (perhaps it was an office at one point).

I had a family member drop me off, and we were able to pull right up to the front door. If you’re using your own vehicle, they offer valet parking for a fee.

A huge perk of flying with JSX is the lack of security rigmarole; there was literally no screening at all. This allows you to show up to the airport only 15 minutes before the flight, which is when boarding and baggage loading starts.

If you’re traveling within Texas or California, flying commercial is often more time-consuming than driving, courtesy of all the processes that take place before getting on the flight.

With JSX, you can be walking in the door at the Houston terminal and walking out of the Dallas terminal in less than 90 minutes. This is a game changer for intrastate business travel, providing the fastest publicly available transit option along major travel corridors like Houston to Dallas or Los Angeles to San Francisco.

HOU Terminal

Check in was a breeze. They took my checked bag, tagged my backpack and cat carrier and handed me my boarding pass in less than two minutes.

The waiting area is pretty small, but for people traveling in groups, they have conference rooms available for use before the flight. They allowed me to use one of these rooms to get my cat ready, which was a lifesaver since he was stressed out and needed to stretch his legs before the first flight.

Boarding JSX Flights

The boarding process was, arguably, the fastest I’ve ever experienced. Once it’s time to board, the agent scans your boarding pass and you walk directly onto the tarmac up to the plane.

I’ve never had the chance to fly on a true private jet, but I did feel the same sense of sophistication and class that I imagine one would have boarding their own plane. A couple of Instagram photoshoots were even happening at the boarding stairs. A real premium experience for the same cost of a ticket on the Southwest aircraft we could see in the distance.

The flight attendant kindly welcomed everyone onboard and personally directed us to our seats.

Hobby is the smaller of the two commercial Houston airports and has served as a hub for Southwest for decades. I took this flight during one of Southwest’s infamous canceling-every-flight-just-because scandals, and our flight attendant was playfully joking about how we would actually take off and on time.

Within a few minutes of the boarding door closing, we were moving. Since JSX operates out of a private terminal, they’re able to use the smaller runways that only cargo and private aircraft usually have access to, so taking off was quick. We got the usual safety briefing and were up in the air shortly thereafter.

The Aircraft

JSX exclusively operates Embraer’s 135 and 145, in either a 1-2 layout or a 1-1 layout (my HOU-DAL leg was 1-2, DAL-GUC was 1-1). Each seat offers 36 inches of pitch, while exit rows offer 50.

JSX Legroom

That being said, these seats are not all created equal. On the 1-1 layout, the seats on the left side of the cabin are standalone, while those on the right side of the aircraft have leather cocktail trays and armrests next to them, and have double the underseat storage (see right).

These seats can cost an extra $79-$99 to reserve during booking, but luckily there weren’t many people on my flight, so I snagged one free of charge when I got to Dallas.

Notably, JSX aircraft don’t have any overhead storage bins, which means no larger carry-on bags allowed.

Each reservation includes at least two checked bags up to 50 pounds each, and one personal item that can fit underneath the seat in front of you.

The staff in Houston thankfully weren’t forcing people to put small items in sizers or being especially difficult about it (looking at you, Frontier), but it’s a good thing to keep in mind when flying with them.


Shortly after take-off, the flight attendant came around for our drink order. There’s no service cart on JSX; orders are written down and brought out individually.

I’ve flown from Houston to Dallas dozens of times, and due to the short duration of the flight there’s normally a limited refreshment service, if any at all. Not in the case of JSX.

We had access to the full drinks menu, including free alcohol, as well as an array of complimentary snacks. They offer Starbucks coffee on board, which is what I opted for. The flight attendants also came around offering refills despite only having about twenty minutes left before landing, something I found to be a nice touch on a short commuter flight.

Being on a flight with a pet can be stressful, and I’ve had experiences where flight crew were less than pleased to see me traveling with one.

However, the flight attendant on this flight couldn’t have been more accommodating. She went above and beyond to ensure both my cat and I had a comfortable flight; she brought him a bowl of water without having to be asked, and wasn’t uptight about me unzipping the carrier to calm my little guy down.

I travel somewhat frequently with my cat, and when airline staff show kindness to pet owners it leaves me with a great impression.

DAL Terminal

We deplaned directly onto the tarmac in Dallas and luggage was delivered planeside. The terminal in Dallas is considerably larger than the one in Houston and is nicer than some airport lounges I’ve been to.

Cat wearing JSX pet bandana

JSX provided free snacks and non-alcoholic beverages in the terminal, including espresso-based coffee drinks, with an array of seating options.

Notably, however, there weren’t any private conference rooms like at their other locations. I was banking on these rooms being available so I could take care of my cat during my layover, but after talking to the staff they graciously allowed me into a back office to get him situated.

They also gave me a JSX branded pet bandana, which I still have.

Since I had to book two separate tickets on this itinerary, I needed to check-in again with a gate agent in Dallas. This is when I asked about being moved to the right side of the aircraft, which the agent obliged as the flight was less than half full.

While I appreciated the complimentary seat change, this is where I encountered the only problem I had on my journey…

I had a total of three pieces of luggage with me: a suitcase, a backpack, and a pet carrier. Since I was traveling with a pet, that technically counts as a personal item and I was informed I had to check my backpack.

The staff in Houston let me board with both my cat and backpack, and that was on an aircraft with a 1-2 layout with the potential for a seatmate, so I didn’t quite understand why it was okay on my first flight but not the second with a 1-1 layout, as I wouldn’t be taking space from another person. But, rules are rules and I didn’t see the point in arguing.

The gate agent did allow me to hold onto my backpack until boarding which was nice, and this was only a minor inconvenience which I’m happy to overlook given all the other benefits.

JSX flight view Dallas terminal
View of the tarmac on the ground in DAL


Boarding the second flight was just as seamless as the first. Love Field is the smaller of the two Dallas airports with commercial passenger service, and has considerably more private aircraft activity due to its proximity to the city. 

Since this leg was considerably longer than the last, we were treated to a selection of fresh food on top of the normal snack and drink offerings on board. I opted for the fruit and cheese plate, which was surprisingly fresh and had a nice variety, even by on-the-ground standards.

Always one to get my money’s worth, this leg is where I indulged in the complimentary alcoholic beverages that are included in the fare. They have a great selection of medium-to-high shelf spirit options, on top of wine and beer.

I started with a tequila sprite with Cazadores. (Note: on the menu it lists Casamigos, which I prefer and is considered a higher-quality tequila, but you can’t be too picky when it’s free!)

I rounded this off with a chardonnay from Josh Cellars, and though it’s not the nicest wine in the world, they did give me the entire 375ml bottle, which paired perfectly with views of the southern Rockies and being nestled up with a book.

JSX fruit and drink on flight table

All this merriment of course led to me using the lavatory. Though I didn’t get a picture, it was quite modern and shockingly clean for airplane bathroom standards.

There were faux marble finishings and a large, well-lit mirror, adding a luxurious feel. Not quite the shower suite on Emirates, but better than expected for a two-hour domestic flight.

The flight attendant on this leg provided the same great service that I received on the first. She was very attentive and consistently came up and down the aisle throughout the flight, offering to serve us up until our final descent.

One thing that stood out to me is that she would freshen up the lavatory after every couple of uses. I’ve seen this done on international flights in premium cabins, but never that frequently and certainly never on a domestic flight. The flight crew on JSX gets a 10/10 from me.

Upon landing in Gunnison, our luggage was delivered planeside, and I didn’t have to wait at all – a welcome surprise as the bitter mountain cold nipped at my mood slightly. We were led across the tarmac and through a back hallway, and after a ramp agent quickly asked to pet my cat, my first semi-private experience concluded.


If you’re shopping for a flight on a route that JSX offers, or you’re okay with slight itinerary modifications, I cannot recommend JSX enough.

The benefits of flying semi-private are what sell this experience, the biggest of which I would say is the lack of laborious security screening. JSX has done a great job of removing the stressful parts of air travel – being able to show up at the terminal and just fly is really the only edge JSX needs to be competitive with legacy airlines.

The semi-private space is growing, however, and the superior service and amenities JSX provides will help set them apart going forward. Flying with them was a genuine pleasure and I look forward to doing it again soon.

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