Air Canada announced the features and benefits of its refreshed Aeroplan loyalty program, along with the additional benefits that come with TD, CIBC and American Express affiliated credit cards that will come into effect in November 8, 2020. We will be discussing the credit card benefits in another post.
In today’s post, I ranked my top 3 changes based on my level of excitement. You’ll also probably notice that it is probably also ranked as top current Aeroplan complaints.
1) No More Fuel Surcharges
I think this is self-explanatory. If I had to guess, I am sure that the biggest pet peeve of Aeroplan members has been fuel surcharges on reward flights. They will be eliminated, including on its partner flights!!
There will be a new $39 partner booking fee, which is charged when redeeming Aeroplan miles on partner flights (i.e. other than Air Canada). You will find that the $39 booking fee is generally much lower than fuel surcharges, so I’ll take that trade off!
When this change comes into effect and travel opens up more over time, I will be on more Air Canada flights going forward!
2) Seat availability
Blackouts dates are probably the second biggest complaint of Aeroplan members. Going forward blackout dates will no longer be an issue as members will be able to redeem miles on every Air Canada seat that is available to buy in cash on every flight. There will be no more distinction between Fixed Mileage Flight Rewards or Market Fare Flight Rewards.
Instead, they changed up their reward chart with a range of redemption options. Below is an example of the North American chart:
It will take a longer post to really explain how the reward chart works. For now, this is definitely a positive change.
3) Family Sharing
Lastly, probably the third most common complaint is not being able to use miles, because of lack of miles for a specific reward redemption.
Aeroplan’s new Family Sharing feature will make it easier for families and households to pool their points, similar to the British Airways Executive Club household accounts.
This is especially useful if you have some members in the pool who do not earn many miles and not sure what to do with them. It is also useful to help top up to a specific reward redemption.
There can be up to 8 people in the family account. Another amazing feature is that if someone in the pool has a credit card or elite status, everyone else in the pool gets to benefit from the preferred pricing too.
See Air Canada video on Family Sharing.
So there you have it. These are my top 3 picks of best upcoming Air Canada changes to its frequent flyer program (Aeroplan). We will be writing some other posts on its other features in the coming weeks, leading up to November 8, 2020, to cover other topics.
For now, great job Air Canada, 3 thumbs up in my books!
My hope is that these benefits will stick around long enough for when travel opens up further!