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Airlines and Aviation

Ask kids what they want most, and 70% of the time their answer involves travel. An airline in the United States is making the wishes of 33 kids come true this holiday season by flying them to their travel destinations for free.

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Wish-A-Wish recipient Jalen in the cockpit of an Allegiant airliner. Photo Credit: Allegiant

 

Discount travel provider Allegiant Travel is playing Santa Claus by helping to make the Christmas wishes of 33 needy kids and their families come true by flying them to the travel destinations of their dreams in conjunction with the charity, Make-A-Wish.

Take 5-year old Jaylen, who was diagnosed with leukemia, for example. His wish was to fly to Florida and visit the theme parks there.

Jaylen's Make-A-Wish experience started at the Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington, Illinois, where he and his family were greeted by Allegiant employees and given a heart-felt send-off.

Allegiant, which prefers to be called 'travel company' rather than airline, has been providing air travel and send-off celebrations for Make-A-Wish recipents such as Jaylen and their families.

More than 150 of them have been flown to their dream travel destinations in 2014 alone!

The company is expanding its effort to help make dreams come true by matching dollar for dollar airline employee donations up to US $5,000 until 31 January 2015.

"Allegiant is proud to be a part of each community we serve, and working with Make-A-Wish has allowed us to have a positive impact on wish families around the country," says Brian Davis, Allegiant Travel Company's Vice President of Business Development.

"Allegiant team members are passionate about our relationship with Make-A-Wish and making wish flights a special experience for the families."

Allegiant has donated air travel to more than 250 kids and their families since 2012 and more than US$250,000 in cash sponsorships as part of its on-going commitment to corporate social responsibility (CSR).

"Allegiant is a terrific sponsor that plays an important role in getting wish kids to destinations for life-changing wish experiences," says Kathy Forshey, Vice President, Corporate Alliance of Make-A-Wish America.

"The Allegiant team members welcome each one of our wish kids and their families while traveling on their wish."

According to a study or the programme's impact, most of the health professionals surveyed believed a wish-come-true had positive impacts on the health of children, giving them renewed strength to fight their illnesses. Their parents, meanwhile, believed it also helped to make the entire family stronger.

Make-A-Wish granted more than 254,000 wishes since its inception in 1980; more than 14,200 in 2014 alone.

Click here for more information on the Make-A-Wish programme.

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