Organizations That Finance Flights for Cancer Treatment

Small boy looking out of airport window

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Depending on where you live, you might have to travel near and far for cancer treatment. Those "far" treatments that require air travel can get really expensive really quickly, even if you're only traveling for treatment a few times a year. Luckily there are ways to pay for the cost of a plane ticket.

Several organizations help people with cancer who need to travel long distances to receive treatment by providing free flights. Some are need-based organizations, but many are not. Remember that what is considered "financial need" for one organization may be different for another, so be sure to check out all of the fine print details of the programs you're exploring. Here are five reputable organizations worth checking out:

Air Charity Network

This organization organizes a network of regional flight assistance programs throughout the United States, making it easier for you to find and coordinate flight assistance near you. Air Charity Network is a need-based organization. Applicants must demonstrate financial need.

Corporate Angel Network

This organization provides non-need-based flight assistance to cancer patients and bone marrow recipients and donors. To qualify you must be a cancer patient who does not need in-flight medical support or assistance. Corporate Angel Network utilizes empty seats on corporate jets that are donated by businesses. There is no limit on how often you can fly, as long as it is for cancer treatment purposes.

Angel Airlines for Cancer Patients

Angel Airlines provides free or reduced commercial airline tickets for cancer patients and their families in need. Patients must express a financial need in order to participate in this program. Angel Airlines helps patients traveling to medical facilities for evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment all across the United States.

Lifeline Pilots

Lifeline Pilots is not limited to cancer patients. It's open to those suffering from other diseases, too. Volunteer pilots provide transportation for a range of medical purposes, from diagnosis to treatment. This is another non-need-based organization that requires the traveler to be medically stable for the flight.

Mercy Medical Angels

In its 42 years of existence, Mercy Medical Angels have provided patients with more than 150,000 trips. The organization coordinates free commercial airline tickets by using donated frequent flyer miles. They also have a special program for veterans.

Additionally, Mercy Medical Angels offer a ground transportation program. They provide bus and Amtrak tickets, as well as gas cards if a car is available. Patients must demonstrate financial need and require no medical assistance in-flight.

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