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I have to admit, there are times when I feel a little bit indulgent as a points junkie. I accrue hundreds of thousands of points and miles for pennies on the dollar and then redeem them for unbelievable trips around the world. While I wouldn’t give this gig up for anything, I do like to balance it out with good deeds. Whether its helping family or friends when they are in times of need or donating my expertise and resources to charity – I think it’s good to give back as much as possible.
When I get the chance to donate to charity and earn miles, I feel like it’s a total win-win. While I’m not a tax expert and will not give tax advice (you should consult a professional for that), I have a feeling you can write off some or all of your charity donations that earn you miles. Per the rules, “For charitable deduction purposes, each mile is valued at 2.75 cents per mile if fewer than 6,000 miles are awarded and 2.5 cents per mile if 6,000 or more miles are awarded.”
This is a great thing, because today American Airlines announced they are going to give 30 miles per dollar (registration required) donated to Susan G Komen and USO, as part of their 30th Anniversary Celebration. For those mathematically challenged, this means you’ll get the following miles per donation, with a maximum donation to each of the two charities.
$25 = 750 miles
$50 = 1,500 miles
$100 = 3,000 miles
$250 = 7,500 miles
$500 = 15,000 miles
$1,000 = 30,000 miles
$1,666.67 = 50,000 miles
Remember, all miles earned count towards million miler status, so for $3,335.34 you could gain 100,000 AA miles (enough for a roundtrip flight to Europe in business class) and get 10% of the way to 1 million miles and Lifetime Gold Status – all while doing a good deed.
Offer valid on contributions made online at www.uso.org/aadvantage or www.komen.com/aa May 25, 2011, through May 31, 2011. You will earn triple AAdvantage miles for each dollar that you donate during this period. Gift card purchases are not included in this promotion. Minimum $25 donation required per charitable organization. Mileage cap for a 12-month period is 50,000 AAdvantage miles per charitable organization for U.S. members; 60,000 AAdvantage miles per charitable organization for international members. AAdvantage bonus miles do not count toward elite-status qualification. Please allow up to eight weeks for the AAdvantage bonus miles to be posted to your AAdvantage account. Donations can only be accepted in U.S. dollars. All gifts are welcome; however, AAdvantage miles will only be earned for donations of at least $25 USD. AAdvantage bonus miles may post separately from AAdvantage base miles.