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Airline employees and frequent fliers raise millions to aid Japan

Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger

From New York to San Francisco, and as far away as London, American Airlines and American Eagle employees have sponsored airport bake sales to raise money for relief efforts to Japan. And 16,000 members of the airline’s AAdvantage rewards program made contributions to the American Red Cross in exchange for bonus miles. As of last week, American said it had raised $1.64 million from its workers and customers.

American isn't alone. United and Continental airlines said last week that more than 23,000 employees and customers donated $2.5 million in cash for the Red Cross and 63 million frequent-flier miles to charities.  And it's not over yet. Both airlines continue their fund-raising campaigns, which award 250 miles for a $50 donation and 500 miles for a $100-plus donation to the Red Cross until April 30.

All Nippon Airways posted a thank-you message on its Facebook page last month to the more than 37,000 frequent fliers who donated a total of 231,404,000 miles. The airline has chosen to donate the money it raises to an international relief agency called Japan Platform.

Dela Air Lines in March pledged $1 million in cash and in-kind support for relief efforts, and its foundation added $250,000, according to a news release. As of March 23, the airline and its customers had donated nearly 40 million air miles to World Vision Japan through Delta's SkyWish Asia program.


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