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What Happens to Your Miles When You Die?

Many of us save our air miles and hotel points for that special international trip or for retirement when we dream of having lots of time (and hopefully money!) to travel. In a perfect world, the day we expire is the day we’re on a trip enjoying the last of our rewards. But chance are, there may be a few miles, or million miles, in your account when you head to your permanent vacation spot in the skies.

So can you will your miles to someone else? My husband and I were just talking about this a few days ago, and then poof! this great article appears.

USA Today published an article by George Hobica of The answer is “yes.” Sort of.

. . . despite the fact that many airlines issue blanket statements in their rules that miles are not transferable upon death, Airfarewatchdog has found that the airlines do in fact allow miles to be inherited, or to be awarded in a divorce settlement. Call their frequent-flier service departments, and you’ll get an entirely different answer from what you see on the airlines’ websites.

Read  the full article for details, and a chart detailing:

  • Airline
  • What the Web site says about transferring miles in general
  • Cost to transfer miles among the living
  • What the service center told us about inheriting miles (deceased to inheritor)
  • Documentation needed to process deceased’s account

So include this planning into your affairs and leave account numbers and passwords where your family can find them, and make those special plans to use the miles that you have been traveling so much to earn.

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