Aeroplan Points Guide

Your Aeroplan Points Guide

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Last updated on September 4, 2019 Views: 547 Comments: 14
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Do you collect Aeroplan points/miles? If not, you may want to start. Aeroplan Miles are easy to amass, easy to redeem, and as long as you stay active, your points will never expire. Of course,  Aeroplan isn’t perfect (nor is any loyalty ecosystem), but if you take the time to learn the basics of the program you can really make your points work for you.

With the recent purchase of Aeroplan by Air Canada to come into full effect in 2020, we’re hoping and expecting to see some changes on the horizon. But, for now, let this 2019 Aeroplan Bible be your guide for everything that you need to know about Aeroplan points.

How to Get Aeroplan Points

It’s quite easy to collect Aeroplan Miles, which is partly why it’s such a popular program for Canadians. Aeroplan Miles can be earned in two primary ways:

Aeroplan Partner Merchants

Aeroplan has no shortage of partner merchants, many of which you probably use and shop with on a regular basis. Remember that you can ‘double dip’ the points you earn when shopping with Aeroplan Partners or travelling with a Star Alliance member by showing your loyalty card and then paying with an Aeroplan credit card. Some of the most popular partners include the following:

Travel

  • Air Canada
  • Star Alliance Members
  • Budget Car Rental
  • Courtyard by Marriott
  • Fairmont Hotel and Resorts

Retail

  • Costco
  • The Apple Store Canada
  • Sephora
  • Hudson’s Bay Company
  • The UPS Store

Keep in mind that some of these merchants only allow you to earn Aeroplan points when shopping online. For example, you can earn Aeroplan points when making online purchases at Costco, but you won’t earn any Aeroplan points for anything bought in store.

The Aeroplan eStore is a great resource if you shop a lot online, as it showcases more than 170 retailers who partner with Aeroplan. Each retailer has its own earning rate and some merchants may occasionally have extra mile promotions as well. Popular brands you can find on the Aeroplan eStore include amazon.ca, chapters.indigo.ca, Bed Bath & Beyond, Etsy, Dyson, and more.

Earning Aeroplan Points with Cards

TD Aeroplan Infinite VisaTD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card

Eligibility Criteria:
– Credit score required: 
good_excellent
– Min personal income required: $60000
– Annual fees: $120 

This offer is not available for residents of Quebec. For Quebec residents, please click here.

As mentioned above, one way to get extra Aeroplan points is by using Aeroplan credit cards, and one of our favourite cards on the market right now is the TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* card.

Those who apply for the card by December 1, 2019 can get 40000 Aeroplan Miles —New cardholders get 15,000 Miles after a first purchase; 2X Aeroplan Miles on eligible Purchases in the first three months up to a total of 20,000 Miles and another 5,000 Aeroplan Miles when you add an authorized user before December 1, 2019. The card’s value proposition is strengthened with an annual fee rebate for its first year.

The card earns 1.5 miles for every $1 spent on eligible gas, grocery, and drugstore purchases, as well as any purchases from aircanada.com. All other purchases earn 1 mile per $1 spent.

TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card cardholders will also be able to take advantage of other travel benefits. When booking an award flight via Aeroplan, cardholders get their first bag checked free, priority check-in and boarding, and an annual one-time lounge access to an Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge (for flights that were redeemed with Aeroplan miles).

Click here to apply for the TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* card


American Express Gold Rewards CardAmerican Express Gold Rewards card

Eligibility Criteria:
– Credit score required: 
good_excellent
– Min personal income required: $0
– Annual fees: $150

While not officially an Aeroplan credit card, points earned with the Amex Gold Rewards card can be transferred to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio. This makes the card’s earn rate outstanding compared to competing Aeroplan cards, because it generates 2 points per dollar spent on eligible travel, gas, grocery, and drugstores purchases in Canada, with all other purchases earning 1 point for every $1 spent

New cardholders will receive a sign-up bonus of 25000 points after spending $1,500 with the card in the first 3 months. Other benefits include comprehensive travel insurance and travel perks with The Hotel Collection from American Express and Hertz Car Rentals.

Click here to learn more about the American Express Gold Rewards card

What Is the Aeroplan Points Chart?

Aeroplan miles are popular among travellers, who might ponder their vacation plans and wonder: how many Aeroplan points does it take to fly? A quick look at this Aeroplan points chart should clear that question up, but there are a few important considerations to note first.

When booking flights with your Aeroplan miles, you’ll have two options. The first is to book with the fixed mileage option. This is the most common way to book flights with Aeroplan miles and is available for all flights run by Star Alliance members. The number of miles required per route do not change during the season (a definite benefit), however, these flights aren’t always ideal. Not every seat is available, and those that are tend to be limited, meaning you often need to book well in advance. Furthermore, these routes may be longer and might involve layovers.

Alternatively, you can book with market fare rewards. This option offers you much more choice and flexibility, however, it is limited to Air Canada flights only and therefore is not as popular as the fixed mile option. There are occasional market fare reward sales where you might get a better price, but this is rare. Quite often, a market fare flight will cost you 2-3 times more in points than a fixed mileage flight.

How Many Aeroplan Points Does It Take to Fly?

To give you an idea of how many Aeroplan points it takes to fly, we’ve broken down some of the most popular routes available with the fixed mile option. These flights are all based on a round-trip economy class ticket. We should also mention that you still have to pay fees, taxes, and surcharges when making an Aeroplan redemption.

Departure CityDestinationAeroplan Miles Required
VancouverOrlando25,000
CalgaryCancun40,000
TorontoParis60,000
TorontoTokyo75,000
VancouverHong Kong75,000

“Generally speaking, you’ll receive the highest value for your Aeroplan Miles if you use them toward flights and the lowest value if you use them toward car rentals.”

As you can see, flights are based on zones. A flight within the continental U.S. or Canada will cost 25,000 Aeroplan points for a return flight regardless of where you’re departing from. Flights to Europe are 60,000 miles and if you want to fly to Asia, you’re looking at a redemption of 75,000 miles. Those looking to fly premium economy or business will of course dole out more miles.

How Do Travellers Redeem Aeroplan Points?  

Wondering how to redeem Aeroplan points? You can easily redeem your Miles online for several types of products including travel and merchandise.

Travel redemptions include flights with any Star Alliance member (including Air Canada), as well as other travel-related purchases such as hotels, car rentals, or vacation packages. As for merchandise options, there’s a large selection of items to choose from ranging from fashion accessories to cookware. Alternatively, you can also use your Miles for gift cards rather than actual products.

What Is an Aeroplan Point’s Value? 

An Aeroplan point’s value is not concrete, and varies depending on what the points are redeemed for and the time of year they’re redeemed. Generally speaking, you’ll receive the highest value for your Aeroplan Miles if you use them toward flights and the lowest value if you use them toward car rentals.

Outside that broad rule of thumb there are several other redemption factors that affect the value of miles. For example, you’ll get better value for your miles if you use them for a domestic flight in Canada (or even a flight to the USA) than you would for booking big international flights on an economy ticket. However, if you choose a carrier with low fees and taxes, then the CPM of your Aeroplan redemption may go up quite a bit for international destinations.

Alternatively, if you understand Aeroplan’s rules, you could build a mini round-the-world flight. For example, let’s say you want to book a business class flight to Asia, Aeroplan allows you to fly to one destination with two stopovers (24 hours+) and up to 13 layovers (less than 24 hours). The destination refers to the furthest city, so if you can find the seat availability, you could get $10,000+ in value for just 150K Aeroplan points. For example, you could do one week each in Japan, Korea, and Thailand as well as a few other destinations on the same redemption ticket.

When redeeming your Aeroplan miles, you’ll want to make sure you get the best CPM (cost per mile). Take a look at the Aeroplan points chart below to get a better idea of the value of your Aeroplan points and how you can make them stretch farther.

Departure CityDestinationPrice if Paying CashAeroplan Miles RequiredTaxes, Fees, & SurchargesAmount SavedCost Per Mile
VancouverOrlando$1,151.2125,000$231.82$919.280.037
CalgaryCancun$673.2840,000$209.23$464.050.012
TorontoParis$1,193.8060,000$723.56$416.240.007
TorontoTokyo$1,230.0075,000$393.56$836.440.011
VancouverHong Kong$758.9375,000$299.91$459.020.006

As you can see, there’s some incredible value for that flight from Vancouver to Orlando. That being said, it’s not a direct flight, so it may not be ideal for everyone. We calculated our CPM above based on flights in April, whereas prices in other months could vary quite a bit.

Generally speaking, we value 1 average Aeroplan point at 1.4 cents. If you can get equal or greater value than that when making a redemption, you’re getting a good return.

Can Aeroplan Points Be Transferred?

Aeroplan points can be transferred to another Aeroplan member, however, there is an associated fee; 2 cents per mile transferred. As for the question of how to transfer Aeroplan points to another member, you can do it instantly online. But since this transfer fee is quite high, you’re almost better off just collecting Aeroplan points for each individual family member instead of trying to pool them together into one account.

Aeroplan points cannot be transferred to other loyalty programs, but there are several programs that will allow you to transfer your points into Aeroplan miles, including American Express and Marriott Bonvoy.

Preventing Expiration

One of the most common Aeroplan-related questions we get on GreedyRates is: What happens when Aeroplan points expire?

Prior to 2013, Aeroplan members had seven years to use their points before they expired. This is no longer the case today; your points will not expire so long as you actively collect and use them. But your points will expire if your Aeroplan account goes unused for a period of 12 months. It’s worth noting that this is a relatively short expiry period compared to competing travel rewards programs, like Air Miles.

The best way to avoid losing miles to expiration is to ensure that you keep collecting miles. With so many Aeroplan credit cards and partners across Canada, it should be relatively easy to do that.

*This post was not sponsored. The views and opinions expressed in this review are purely my own.

Article comments

14 comments
Andrea says:

My boss recently redeemed miles in order to buy his AirCan ticket from Toronto to London, UK and he thinks he should receive Aeroplan miles for the flight. That would be almost like double-dipping, and he won’t in fact be credited any miles, is this correct?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Andrea,

Break it to your boss lightly, but yes, you’re correct that he won’t be earning any Aeroplan miles on his flight. Redeeming miles to book a flight won’t reward you any miles as this would be double dipping, and there isn’t a bank on Earth that hasn’t closed this loophole. Only purchases made on credit rack up rewards, miles, points, cash back, or what have you—no exceptions. Even “cash-like” transactions won’t earn any miles (such as a cash advance, returned item etc.), and banks make it clear that unless you’re spending their money you won’t get a reward.

GreedyRates

Roland Seville says:

I have been getting treatments for cancer throughout throughout the last eleven months. My travel miles were cancelled last month. I received no notification this was happening. Who do I contact to straighten this out?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Roland,

Thanks for the comment, and we’re sorry to hear about the unexpected cancellation of your miles. This is likely due to inactivity, but if you’d like to confirm then we’d expect that an Aeroplan representative could provide help. This is likelier than it being an issuer or a bank matter. Good luck regardless.

GreedyRates

Denise says:

How many points do you need to be a Gold member?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Denise,

Thanks for the post. If you’re looking to climb the tiers of Aeroplan and earn a new status, know that Gold is no longer a real status. You’re able to go from Silver to Black to Diamond status, and these three levels require you to purchase fixed amounts of mileage through Aeroplan in each calendar year. To get Black status (rewarding you with 25% off the Aeroplan mileage cost for all Aeroplan flights) then you’ll need to have bought or flown at least 50,000 miles through Aeroplan that year. Then you’ll get Black status perks for the remainder. Hope that helps!

GreedyRates

Lee says:

How long does it take for Aeroplan points earned from a TD credit card to show up in one’s Aeroplan account? I see that the points are showing on my TD statement, but not on my Aeroplan account: does it happen automatically? How long does it take after the statement is issued?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Lee,

Thanks for the comment. If your Aeroplan Miles are showing up in the administration panel of your TD account, then they’ll shortly arrive in your Aeroplan account. There are a few degrees of separation between the actual purchase being made and the Aeroplan account, as the purchase must be processed and settled with TD and then TD will tell Aeroplan how many points to assign the respective cardholder. While this isn’t an exact answer, all Aeroplan says on the matter is that for its financial partners, “If you’re an Aeroplan-affiliated credit card holder, your miles will be deposited every billing cycle.” We imagine that you won’t have long to wait, accordingly. Good luck!

GreedyRates

ALBERT ABIAD says:

Hi,
Why you do not have partners with Gaz Stations,groceries or Pharmacies

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hey Albert,

Thanks for coming to GreedyRates with your concerns about the Aeroplan travel rewards program. Contrary to your comment, there are absolutely Aeroplan cards available that offer miles from gas, groceries, pharmacies, and even more common daily purchases. For example, if you look at the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite card, it allows you to earn 1.5 Aeroplan miles for every $1 you spend in these categories, and also on aircanada.com! The Amex Gold Rewards card provides the same ability, though at a lower rate and you’ll only get Aeroplan miles after exchanging them for the card’s default rewards.

If we misunderstood your comment just let us know and we’ll come back to give a more satisfactory answer, but in the meantime, thanks for reading.

GreedyRates

Gary says:

Does anyone know why Aeroplan points cannot be acquired on Air Canada express flights?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Gary,

To the extent of our knowledge, Air Canada Express flights by Jazz are eligible to earn Aeroplan Miles. According to the rules stated by Aeroplan, all scheduled Air Canada Express flights allow you to earn Miles, while chartered flights (including Air Canada Express) do not. Could it be that your flight was chartered and this is why you aren’t earning Miles? Perhaps it wasn’t offered through Jazz? Check into the details and let us know! Thanks.

GreedyRates

Oli Cosgrove says:

Can I transfer my points to someone who is not an Aeroplan member?

The GreedyRates Team says:

Hi Oli,

Interesting question! Essentially, you’re asking if it’s possible to transfer Aeroplan miles to another person but also if this is possible if that person doesn’t have an Aeroplan account. First of all, you won’t be able to collect any Aeroplan miles whatsoever if you don’t have an account, and all members have an account. This means non-members aren’t capable of receiving Aeroplan miles. That said, if the person you want to send miles has an Aeroplan account, you can transfer the miles to him or her for a fee of $0.02 per mile transferred. This service can be completed online in your Aeroplan account or with a short phone call to customer service, and the miles will hit the recipient’s account instantly.

Opening an Aeroplan account is easy and free and can be done online. You don’t need to sign up for a credit card to have an Aeroplan account, but it is useful if you want your friend to keep earning miles on their everyday purchases (and enjoy other travel-centric perks as well). If you’d like to provide them with a few card recommendations to go along with the miles you’re sending, point them in our direction and we’d be happy to answer their questions by email at info@greedyrates.ca. Thanks!

GreedyRates