This paper studies the political economy of relief aid allocation using empirical evidence from relief programs after a major cyclone (Gafilo) hit Madagascar in March 2004. Relief was provided by the Government of Madagascar as well as local and international aid agencies. Aid allocation was generally more likely in areas with a higher need for aid, but there were substantial differences between aid allocation by the government and by international aid agencies. The likelihood of receiving aid from the government was higher in cyclone-affected communes with higher radio coverage and with stronger political support for the government. Relief from aid agencies was not affected by media or political factors but was more likely to go to poorer and easier accessible communes, whether or not they were affected by the cyclone.