Need Your Help TODAY To Secure 500,000 United Mile Matching Donation

Update 5/15/23: I need your help by May 20th to secure 500,000 miles in matching gifts.

It’s frustrating that there’s usually no good way to donate miles to charity. They’re a great asset, just like cash, and some of us have more spare miles than money. Usually we can only donate to a charity that officially partners with a frequent flyer program. And the airline or hotel is already supporting them, how much extra difference will our few thousand miles make?

I’ve wished for more for a long time, and I joined the board of Give A Mile – where I donate a lot of my own miles.

Give a Mile is a non-profit that helps people in need with air travel, using miles donated by members. First they began working with Air Canada. They also have a partnership with United. I’d like to see this grow and expand.

They are on a campaign to raise 1.5 million miles to help connect people to share the moments of life. Give A Mile raises miles and books award travel so that no one has to die alone.

  • The Give A Mile Mother’s and Father’s Day campaign connects those on hospice with their loved ones for a final goodbye.

  • Your United MileagePlus miles donation to Give A Mile will be matched today May 11 through May 20 up to 500,000 miles by mileage commitments from Give A Mile supporter Brent Herspiegel and board members Wes Harrington and Gary Leff.

  • You can give as little as 1,000 miles.

I’d appreciate it if you would join me in making a donation, that I will help match. (I’ve given away enough United miles to the cause that I may have to transfer Chase points into United to cover this commitment.)

If you don’t happen to have United Airlines MileagePlus miles to give they appreciate tax-deductible contributions as well.

Give a Mile does more than just spend your miles. They work with hospices, ICUs and hospitals to confirm details – they find the people who need help, validate their stories, and connect people in their last moments of life. They’re a 501(c)3 public charity and all miles going towards the program.

Hopefully the ability to give to more charities – often we’re miles rich, and cash poor – is something airlines will consider. United deserves credit for making this platform available, and Give A Mile for using it to help people in need.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Gleff,
    I’m speaking for those of us who’ve been at this hobby a long, long time. We can separate the wheat from the chaff, and appreciate all you do. Count me in. And thanks.

  2. Why don’t you donate 500k of the American miles you “earned” through the simplymiles campaign? It’s the gift that keeps on giving, as you “earned” those through a donation to some charity also…

  3. Is there any way to donate expiring flight credits to charity? I wonder airlines don’t want to do that, but if somebody can persuade them to put real money into it instead of their virtue signaling…

  4. Your article reminded me that I had 5,199 United Miles doing nothing for a long time so they have been donated.

  5. Perhaps they’d be equally served by your booking service, Gary. I would not presume a small non-profit would know how use the miles efficiently.

  6. Count me in for 3k split into two donations. You had me at Hospice, great organization!

  7. I just noticed I have travel bank $100 that’s been dormant for who knows long, any way to throw that in the pot as well?

  8. OK after the unannounced walloping 40% devaluation by Mileage Plus today, this would be the last place left to get any kind of value for United miles

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