Donating reward miles

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by Betty Boop, Apr 3, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    Seeking advice from the group on the best way to make a donation of 50k AA miles (enough for two RT tix) to a charity auction. I just spoke with EPlt desk and they said that the only way was to have the 'winner' go online, find the flights they want with reward ticket and place on hold. They would have 5 days to ticket BUT they would have to call me and I would have to ticket, pay taxes (ok part of donation) etc. If at all possible I don't want to be in the middle of the ticketing process. No more paper certificates which would be great. Has anyone done this and is there an easier way? Thanks!
     
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  2. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    So I am going to answer this post....I have spent a few days looking into this and it appears that the only way to do this is to
    1. Make up an 'award' certificate that can be used at the auction saying that the winner can use 50K miles to travel wherever they want (All Taxes and fees to be paid by Winner)
    2. Winner goes on AA website and identifies itinerary that they want
    3. Winner puts itinerary on hold (will be held for 5 days)
    4. Winner contacts donator with name, address and credit card info (donator does not pay taxes and fees)
    5. Donator then books award ticket
    6. Value of donated miles at $1.77 per mile = $885
     
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  3. iolaire
    Original Member

    iolaire Gold Member

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    The key here is to be upfront with what you are donating and make sure that gets into auction documents - also mention that it’s pending award space availability - that’s the biggest IF in the offer.

    We do many silent auctions and have bought hotel nights this way but it’s uncommon to see this. The time we bought the hotel nights it was a mix of voucher at one SPG hotel, and then points for another - obviously booking via the hotel and a voucher is cleaner, where booking via the donor takes more emails back and forth and a bit of worry that there will not be problems at check in.

    It will require much more work from the buyer to use miles than when they buy a certificate donated by AA... But it’s still a nice thing to buy.
     
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  4. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    Thanks for that handy tip 'subject to mileage award availability' as I hadn't thought of that. I want to do this because 1) I already said I would and don't like to go back on my word and 2) because it is to a scholarship fun for young women pursuing a career in science. Having said that, if I had done my research first I probably wouldn't go through the trouble. Others have told me they don't do this because of the hassle. Hopefully everyone wins in this case!
     
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  5. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    And I thought of one last thing which anyone else having the same crazy idea I had should do - Add that this offer expires one year from whenever the auction is - otherwise I have visions of being contacted in 10 years asking about those miles!!!!
     
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  6. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Gold Member

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    And, possibly, the need to contact you with any changes, especially unexpected ones like missing flights, etc.

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  7. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    Actually I said that the winner was responsible for changes, cancellations etc. My thought was that once they had the ticket they had the responsibility. I don't think there is much i can do for a misses flight unless there is something I am missing Mike?
     
  8. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed Gold Member

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    If its booked on your miles and they want a change, they'll need you to do it.

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  9. Betty Boop

    Betty Boop Gold Member

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    Seeing this post from Mike prompted me to call AA again and mentioning the word 'AUCTION' resulted in the very nice agent trying to find out if there was some restriction on donating miles under such a circumstance. While she couldn't be sure she recommended that I call AA HQ on Monday morning.
     
  10. SFObased

    SFObased Member

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    I don't think that donating miles is tax deductible, so the "value" may be irrelevant if you're using it for anything other than driving up the price on the auction.
     
  11. iolaire
    Original Member

    iolaire Gold Member

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    Please report back.

    Also a suggestion for the future should someone read this. A huge service people can provide to fundraisers is to research and find sources to request donations from. Perhaps effort is better severed searching the airlines sites for donations and figuring out the process for the charity to request donations of vouchers directly from the airline. Generally that involves getting a donation request letter on the organizations letter head with their tax id number and filling out a forum and hoping for the best. Do this well in advance. If you volunteer likely you will also get a list of local donor businesses to call to and solicit donations from.

    Here are some links:
    http://www.southwest.com/donations/ (more info: http://southwest.sponsorport.com/)
    http://help.hawaiianairlines.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1869/related/1 (Prize and Donation Requests)
    http://www.usairways.com/EN-US/FAQS/CORPORATEGIVING.HTML
    https://donationsalaskaair.com/index.lasso?page=start
    https://www.budget.com/budgetWeb/fe....ex?selfreqrentersub=display-donationFormInfo
    etc.. search for “american airlines donation request” but I could not find AA.

    FYI: here is a 2007 Inside Flyer article on donating miles:
    http://www.insideflyer.com/articles/article.php?key=4181
     
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