JetBlue’s Rube Goldberg winning machine


JetBlue flies from cold, snowy New York to hip and sunny Palm Springs, California and to remind New Yorkers of that the carrier has a set up a fun, storefront-sized contest promotion involving a golf ball and a chance to win prizes.


Today and tomorrow – passersby in New York’s Lower East Side (at 168 Bowery and Kenmare) can putt a golf ball, watch its make its way through an intricate path set up in a 25-foot window and maybe win a trip to warmer climes – or other prizes.

Hours: Canceled Friday Feb 5 – due to snow – but let’s hope it’s up and running on schedule Saturday Feb 6, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Santa arrives – early – at Heathrow Airport

Airports are gearing up for the holiday season and many are planning to offer entertainment, special events and even some contests and give-aways to passengers.

With Santa’s arrival this past weekend, it seems that Heathrow Airport is already in the swing of things.

Santa handed out iPads to some arriving passengers and will be surprising some other passengers with other gifts – including some fancy watches and Hamley’s teddy bears, over the next three weeks.

The airport is posting clues to the daily surprises on its Facebook page

Heathrow has lots of other surprises in store for travelers throughout December. Free chocolates will be handed out by the airport ‘Journey Team’ from the 10th through the 24th, carolers will be singing and Santa will be listening to Christmas wishes from the 14th through the 23rd. And on Friday, December 21st, when the airport expects the heaviest traffic, elves will be on hand to distribute mince pies – and 100 bottles of perfume.

Not heading to Heathrow this holiday season? There’s an on-line “load the sleigh” game you can play and possibly win some prizes as well.

Win prizes at BWI and PDX airports

Baltimore Ravens football fans – and everyone else – can enter the “AIRMALL Purple Zone” contest at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) for the chance to win official Ravens gear and other prizes – including a trip to a Ravens away game during the 2013 season.

Passengers who make a purchase at participating BWI Marshall retail locations will receive a Ravens scratch-off ticket and have a chance at winning prizes that include Ravens t-shirts, hats, polo shirts, and autographed mini-helmets, discounts at some airport shops and – the grand prize : a trip for two to a 2013 Ravens away game, including round-trip airfare, game tickets, ground transportation, hotel accommodations, a Ravens prize pack and lunch. (You can also get a scratch ticket by mail. See the contest details.

And travelers who live in or near Portland, Oregon should definitely enter the Holidays Take Flight contest at Portland International Airport. The winner gets a $1,000 traveler voucher redeemable for round-trip travel from PDX to any Alaska Airlines destination. Enter here.

JetBlue’s summer reading program

JetBlue and PBS kids have rolled out a fun literacy program that will not only entertain kids, but help keep the cabin noise level in check.

The program has several elements, but here at we’re most pleased to learn that kids on JetBlue flights this summer will receive a free activity kit with reading games, including this fun word find exercise.

Kids and their parents can also download a reading activity kit, create a summer reading list, log reading minutes and do other activities. And for every reader that registers on, JetBlue will make a book donation to a child through First Book, up to 10,000 books.

Soar with Reading will also be giving $10,000 worth of children’s books to one community’s library. Another library will receive $2,500 worth of books and five other libraries will receive $500 worth of books, courtesy of Random House Children’s Books and JetBlue. You can nominate a library and, as a reward, be entered to win a vacation package to the Bahamas.

So it’s win-win-win all around.

Friday is Customer Appreciation Day at Pittsburgh Airport

People are generally nice at Pittsburgh International Airport, but on Friday, morning December 3rd they’re going to be extra nice.

PIT Customer Appreciation

That’s because on Friday, from 10 a.m. until noon, it’s customer appreciation day at the airport.

In addition to live music and tree decorating in the pre and post-security areas, you’ll find many airlines and car rental agencies hosting activities at their counters and airport ambassadors handing out candy canes and cookies. Anyone who makes a donation (of any amount) to United Way will get a chance to spin a prize wheel for some of the great gifts donated by airport merchants.  Many airports shops will be having special discounts and promotions as well.

Why is the airport being so nice?  Pittsburgh International Airport has trained hundreds of its employees in Resiliency Edge’s N.I.C.E. (Neutralizing Irritations Customers Experience) program, which is designed to solve customer problems.  So having a customer appreciation day is, well, just nice!

To find out more about Pittsburgh Airport’s customer appreciation day and see a list of discounts and specials being offered by various shop,see the notice on the  PIT website.

If there’s any chance you will be at the airport, be sure to print out the page – some extra discounts are being offered to those who show the N.I.C.E. day notice.