Scrambling for last minute holiday gift ideas? How about giving the gift of flight? We often give Grandma a Southwest gift card so that she can come visit TJ. The gift card lets Grandma know she is wanted in our home, and she doesn't have to pay to visit her favorite (in our opinion) grandson. Here are just a few examples of big carriers that have cool gift ideas you can purchase online:
- Southwest: purchase a Southwest gift card online. They'll ship your card of up to $1,000 value via USPS or FedEx.
- American Airlines: purchase an American gift card online in any denomination between $50-$1500.
- United Airlines: purchase miles online through their give miles program. One thousand miles costs $64.57. Then, send an electronic gift card or print out a gift certificate to send to Grandma. A great gift for the United frequent-flier would be Economy Plus Access. Although the $349 price tag is a little steep, your gift would provide one year of 5-extra inches of legroom near the front of the economy cabin on all United, Ted, and explus flights worldwide. Of course, if the gift recipient flies United often enough to make this worthwhile, there's a good chance they've already earned the 25,000 miles to get United Premier status, which comes with free Economy Plus seating. So, check with your frequent flier first.
If you are truly in the holiday spirit, it would be so nice to donate unused frequent flier miles to our troops. Operation Hero Miles gives family members of wounded service people plane tickets to visit loved ones recovering at military hospitals. Or, Soldiers' Angels helps soldiers return home for a death/illness in their family, and helps spouses or parents travel to the hospital of their wounded soldier. It'll certainly stop you from complaining how you can never do anything good with all of those miles you've accumulated.