How the airline industry is coming together to support healthcare workers and how you can help too

May 11, 2020

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

If you’d like to help go to the GoFundMe page here.

The airline industry has come together once again to support our hardworking healthcare workers, with the latest being Project Wingman’s newly opened “First Class Lounges” for healthcare workers at Flushing and Jamaica Hospital in New York City.

As the name suggests, there’s an aviation tie to this initiative with the volunteers being grounded/furloughed airline employees from American Airlines, Delta, Endeavor Air, JetBlue, Norwegian Air, Spirit and United. 

New to The Points Guy? Sign up for our daily newsletter and check out our beginner’s guide.

This initiative was first launched in the UK and has grown tremendously since its inception with over 4,000 volunteers at 30 hospitals across the UK currently. After witnessing the success of the project in the UK, Norwegian Air Director of Communications and Project Wingman USA Chairman Anders Lindström, was inspired to bring it across the pond.

“I was so impressed with what easyJet Captain Emma Henderson and BA Captain Dave Fielding launched about a month ago at a hospital in North London. I reached out to Emma to see how I could bring there concept to the U.S. and started getting my colleagues and partners involved. I then tried to find a suitable hospital to launch Project Wingman USA at and we got great responses from Flushing and Jamaica Hospitals, which are part of the Medisys Group.” said Lindström.

In these lounges, healthcare workers will be treated to complimentary food, drinks and gifts. But most importantly, these lounges will serve as a safe area to relax and rejuvenate.

Airline employees can find volunteer opportunities on Project Wingman’s website. The public can also help out by donating to the organizations GoFundMe page. All donations will go towards the purchase of snacks, beverage, transportation costs and other miscellaneous necessities.

Besides being in the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s fitting that Flushing and Jamaica Hospital are the ones with the lounges given the, “two hospitals located close to two of the busiest airports in the country [JFK and LaGuardia] and so close to where many airline employees live,” said Lindström, who is the U.S. Director of Communications, for Norwegian Air.

Related: How to donate to Project Wingman

Project Wingman has also partnered with the Front Line Appreciation Group (FLAG) of NYC in an effort to support local restaurants and businesses during these tough times.

When asked if Project Wingman plans to expand in the U.S., Lindström said, “That’s the goal. We want to establish these two lounges first and make sure we have enough volunteers and donations for them to run smoothly, and then expand.”

Safety is the number one priority for airline crew when they’re in the air, and it’s of equal importance when they’re on the ground volunteering for Project Wingman. The first-class lounges are set up in secluded, non-patient facing areas within hospitals. Doctors and nurses who come to the lounges are fully de-gowned and all potentially contaminated protection is removed to safeguard the health and well-being of the volunteers who are supporting them. Additionally, all volunteers are outfitted with PPE such as face masks and gloves as well.

Featured photo courtesy of Anders Lindström/Project Wingaman.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.