JetBlue is getting into the transcontinental pizza delivery business. It's a marketing stunt, designed to draw attention to JetBlue's 11 daily nonstops between JFK and LAX--and since I've never written the phrase "JetBlue's 11 daily nonstops between JFK and LAX" before, mission accomplished.
Here are the details:
The program is called Pie in the Sky. Between May 9 and 11, starting at midnight each day, JetBlue will take orders online, at jetblue.pizza, and they'll deliver genuine New York City pizzas--from Patsy's Pizza in Harlem--to 350 customers per day in Los Angeles.
"It's all part of the process of making this the first-ever coast-to-coast pizza delivery by an airline," a spokesperson told me via email. "The pizza is made fresh every day at Patsy's Pizzeria of East Harlem and baked in their coal-fire oven. From there, it will be packed for the flight. Upon arrival at LAX, the pizza will be brought to a kitchen and prepped for final delivery so that it's fresh and delicious upon delivery to your door."
This means that if you're in Los Angeles, all you really have to do is to plan ahead, provided you happen to live in one of the select zip codes that are within the delivery area. Just order at midnight: $12 for a cheese pizza, $15 for pepperoni. (Delivery and driver tips are included.)
Then, go to bed, wake up, go about your normal day, and be home in time to get your pizza delivered, sometime between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m., California time.
Patsy's is an inspired choice, too. Founded in 1933, its website claims with typical New York humility to be "the undisputed premier pizza dynasty in New York and arguably in all of The United States," and also that their founder basically "invent[ed] selling pizza by the slice."
"The JetBlue marketing team spent a lot of quality pizza eating time testing all of the iconic pizza in New York and ultimately Spike Lee helped to break the tie, helping us pick Patsy's Pizzeria of East Harlem," the same spokesperson said. (He did a promotional video, too.)
You might be wondering how the pizza will taste after a 10 or 12-hour journey from Harlem to your door in California.
JetBlue insists they've thought of this, and their FAQ insists that "a designated pizzaiolo (a specially trained pizza chef) has overseen the logistics of the pizza's journey to ensure quality is maintained throughout the process."
This is one of the few business and marketing stories I've done where I can't see any downside for anyone involved. For example:
The place is always crowded, so I don't know that they really need this added PR boost. But it's a good one.
Please. Costs to them are negligible, the promo is fun, and it underscores their claim to be "New York's Hometown Airline."
Citizens of Los Angeles
Prepare to have your mind blown. Your Mexican food is much better than ours, and your fast-food burgers are amazing. But when it comes to pizza, fuggetaboutid. Also, don't get me started on the bagels.
Speaking of which, I asked JetBlue if they might do this again, flying bagels out west, or even delivering In-N-Out burgers to us back home in New York. No plans as of now, they said, but they've been getting requests via social media, "so maybe it will inspire another idea in the future."