In the wake of the Haiti earthquake many organizations have been collecting cash and other donations to help the people in that country. One way that travellers can help out is by donating airline miles or hotel points to organizations like the Red Cross who can then use them to fly people and supplies in.
So if you have a few miles or points to spare, here’s how to send them over to folks who can use them.
Alaskan Airlines– Alaskan will match up to 5 million miles for any miles donation.
Continental– No minimum donation amount required.
United– Choose to donate miles in any amount to the Red Cross, Airline Ambassadors or Operation USA. UA will match up to $50,000 of donations through the linked page.
Best Western Rewards– Make a donation in blocks of 5,000 points or more.
Choice Privileges– 1,000 points equals a $5 donation to one of several charities.
Hilton Hhonors– 10,000 points equals a $25 donation to the Red Cross.
Marriott– 18,000 points equals a $50 donation to the Red Cross.
Priority Club– Several charities available for blocks of 10,000 points each.
SPG Starpoints– 4,000 points equals a $50 donation to the Red Cross.
Wyndham Rewards– 5,500 points equals a $25 donation with over 100 charities to choose from.
Some airlines are also offering miles in return for a cash donation. American Airlines will give you miles for donations of at least $50, and Spirit Airlines is giving out miles for donations of $5 or more made using the Spirit Mastercard.
Some bloggers like Gary of View from the Wing and Rick over at the Frugal Travel Guy point out that the hotels and airlines aren’t being entirely altrustic by accepting miles for donations. By doing so, they are able to get some of the miles off their books for cheap. Still, with Haiti in such dire straits right now any donation they can get will help the country get back on its feet.
Personally, I’m choosing to help the folks in Haiti by supporting Food for the Hungry. You can make a $10 donation to them by texting “quake” to 85944.