Airline mileage programs

What we’re watching: CNBC’s ‘Now Boarding’ on airline frequent flyer programs

Do you play the airline miles status game?

If you fly a lot or know someone who does, you know that achieving status on an airline through actual miles flow plus, increasingly, credit card spending can open the door to travel perks such as free checked bags, upgrades, free drinks, extra legroom, and more.

But is playing the game worth it?

On the latest edition of their weekly ‘Now Boarding’ podcast, CNBC airlines reporter Leslie Josephs and CNBC senior producer Erin Black do a very nice job of discussing frequent flyer status, airline perks, and whether it’s really worth it to play the game.

Adding their expert insights to the discussion are Tom Stuker, who has flown more than 23 million miles (23 million!!!) on United Airlines, and Brett Snyder, who is the founder of the Cranky Network Weekly, an industry analysis site, as well as a travel agency.

Donate to CA wildfires relief, get bonus United Airlines miles

Get bonus United Airlines miles for donating cash to fight California wildfires

United Airlines has launched a fundraising campaign to support the people and organizations responding to the wildfires in California.

If you contribute at least $50 you’ll not only help raise funds for the campaign; you’ll get some bonus airline miles.

Here’s the deal:

United is offering MileagePlus members bonus award miles for making cash contributions of $50 or more to the three disaster relief charities listed below. The airline has set aside 5 million miles for the offer and will match contributions made to the campaign up to a total of $50,000.

Donate $50 to $99 and earn 250 bonus miles
Donate $100 to $249 and earn 500 bonus miles
Donate $250 or more and earn $1000 bonus miles

The charities that will benefit from your donation to this campaign are:

American Red Cross



North Coast Opportunities (for the Mendocino Complex Fire)

Shasta Regional Community Foundation (for the Carr Fire).

All these organizations are doing incredible work. Here’s some information from Airlink about just soe of what they’ve been doing to help with the effort:

“The Northern California wildfires are now the largest in the state’s history and United Airlines is launching a fundraising campaign to help Californians affected by the historic blaze.

Airlink is currently responding to the fires in partnership with Operation BBQ Relief. We’ve supported flights for volunteers serving 20,000+ warm meals to displaced residents and first responders.

As the fires burn through the region, Airlink continues to work with its nonprofit partners, ready to send responders or relief cargo when and where they are needed.”

The deadline for making your contribution and getting these bonus miles is August 30, 2018

Here’s the link to donate to the United Airlines fundraising campaign in support of California Wildfires relief efforts.

I’m donating. Are you?