Air Canada has relaunched its rewards program, and although it retained the Aeroplan identify, fairly just a few facets of this system have modified. One in every of these adjustments: the number of points required for award flights on Air Canada and its companions.
Whereas this transition closed the door on outdated Aeroplan candy spots — particular routes and seats that supplied uncommonly good offers for award journey — it opened up an entire new set of candy spots. Right here’s a fast overview of the revamped Aeroplan program, adopted by a dive into a number of the greatest reserving methods to maximise the worth of your factors.
The way to get Aeroplan factors
You’ll be able to earn Aeroplan factors by flying Air Canada. You can too credit score flights on 37 airline companions to Aeroplan or you possibly can earn factors via 4 automotive rental companions, main resort loyalty packages together with Marriott Bonvoy, IHG and Greatest Western Inns, Air Canada bank cards (out there in Canada solely right now), and different journey and procuring companions.
However the best method to amass Aeroplan factors is by transferring factors from transferable point programs. Aeroplan is at present a switch associate of three packages:
Fundamentals of the brand new Aeroplan Rewards program
The variety of Aeroplan factors you want for a flight is predicated on the gap you fly. It prices extra to fly longer flights than shorter flights, however the actual award fee relies on which zone you’re touring to and from. Fortunately, there are simply 4 zones to study:
Aeroplan’s chart exhibits what number of factors you want for a flight inside North America. The space, the category of service and whether or not the flight is operated by Air Canada or one among its companions all issue into the price.
Financial system award flights begin at 6,000 factors every manner and prime out at 25,000 factors one-way. Enterprise class awards begin at 15,000 factors and climb to not more than 70,000 factors every manner. Premium economic system awards can be found on Air Canada flights solely.
For flights on associate airways, the variety of factors wanted is ready at a hard and fast fee. Air Canada pledges to make each seat on each Air Canada flight out there for redemptions and there’s a spread of pricing for awards on Air Canada flights.
The North America chart leads us to our first Aeroplan candy spot:
Fly inside North America from 6,000 factors every manner
For simply 6,000 Aeroplan factors, you possibly can fly in economic system on Air Canada or its companions as much as 500 miles in distance.
5 hundred miles may not sound very far. However there are many methods this candy spot can come in useful. This 500-mile vary consists of award flights on Aeroplan’s associate United on routes like:
Chicago to Nashville, Memphis, Knoxville, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Kansas Metropolis and different Midwest locations.
Newark to Raleigh-Durham, Toronto, Quebec, Pittsburgh, Buffalo and Bangor.
Denver to Oklahoma Metropolis, Jackson Gap, Wichita, Lubbock and Billings.
San Francisco to Los Angeles, Las Vegas, San Diego, Redmond, Eugene and Reno.
Houston to Lubbock, Memphis, Tulsa, Fayetteville, Oklahoma Metropolis and New Orleans.
This 500-mile vary additionally consists of the route between New York-LaGuardia and Toronto — which is the seventh-busiest worldwide route on the planet.
Fly to Hawaii from 12,500 factors every manner
In contrast to most airline packages, Aeroplan doesn’t take into account Hawaii a part of a distinct area than the contiguous U.S. Which means a route underneath 2,750 miles in distance will price 12,500 Aeroplan factors wherever in North America — together with Hawaii.
That’s simply sufficient miles to incorporate flights between the West Coast and Hawaii. So, for as few as 12,500 Aeroplan factors, you possibly can e book United or Air Canada flights from:
Los Angeles to Honolulu, Maui, Kauai and Kona.
San Francisco to Honolulu, Maui, Kauai and Kona.
Vancouver and Honolulu, Maui and Kona.
Nerd tip: You aren’t restricted to nonstop flights. Aeroplan makes use of the “precise distance flown between origin and vacation spot” to calculate the factors required. So you possibly can e book a connecting itinerary for simply 12,500 Aeroplan factors if the full distance flown is underneath 2,750 miles.
Fly to Hawaii in enterprise class from 25,000 factors every manner
It’s not simply economic system awards to Hawaii that may be an amazing deal. You’ll be able to fly between the West Coast and Hawaii for 25,000 Aeroplan factors in enterprise class, so long as you retain the route underneath 2,750 miles in distance.
Nevertheless, enterprise class award availability to Hawaii could be arduous to search out. Use the United calendar award search instrument to browse a few months of availability at a time.
Begin on this search page. Enter your route, choose “My dates are versatile,” then enter a date within the month you need to journey. When you click on search, enterprise class award availability is proven as 5 dots on the date.
United prices 40,000 MileagePlus miles for a saver award flight to Hawaii in first-class. That’s not dangerous, however Aeroplan’s fee of 25,000 factors for these flights is unimaginable.
Fly to Europe in enterprise class from 60,000 factors every manner
Europe, Africa, the Center East and even India are all included within the Atlantic award zone. Award flights between North America and the Atlantic zones which are underneath 4,000 miles in distance price as little as:
35,000 factors in economic system.
50,000 factors in premium economic system (legitimate on Air Canada flights solely).
60,000 factors in enterprise class.
90,000 factors in first-class.
Of these choices, there’s a transparent candy spot: enterprise class. So long as you possibly can preserve the mixed flight distance to underneath 4,000 miles, you possibly can e book a business class award flight to Europe for 60,000 Aeroplan factors.
That covers United flights from Newark to not less than 17 locations in Europe:
Or you possibly can fly on United flights from Washington-Dulles to not less than seven locations in Europe:
You can additionally e book an award flight on one among Air Canada’s many European companions together with Austrian Airways, Brussels Airways, LOT Polish, Lufthansa, SAS, SWISS, TAP Portugal and extra.
A key side of the brand new Aeroplan program is “no money surcharges.” It is a enormous deal contemplating many European airways cost a considerable quantity for carrier-imposed charges. Below the outdated program, Aeroplan would cost members for these charges. However not anymore.
Hop via Europe from 12,500 factors for 2 locations
When you get to Europe, you in all probability don’t need to see only one metropolis. You need to use Aeroplan’s “inside Atlantic zone” award chart for award flights intra-Europe:
Aeroplan prices 7,500 factors for a one-way award underneath 1,000 miles in distance or 12,500 factors for award flights between 1,000 and a couple of,000 miles in distance.
Say you utilize the 60,000-point candy spot to fly to Edinburgh, Scotland. You’ll be able to then fly from Edinburgh to Munich for simply 7,500 factors.
However wait, there’s extra. The brand new Aeroplan stopover guidelines assist you to add a vacation spot alongside the way in which for simply 5,000 extra factors. Which means you possibly can see two extra locations in Europe for 12,500 factors so long as you possibly can preserve the flight distance underneath 1,000 miles.
So for 12,500 Aeroplan factors, you possibly can e book:
London to Brussels (stopover) to Rome.
Barcelona to Paris (stopover) to Frankfurt.
Paris to Vienna (stopover) to Berlin.
You’ll be able to construct fairly the European journey by combining the Aeroplan candy spot for enterprise class flights to Europe and the candy spot to see two extra locations in Europe for 12,500 extra factors.
Ensure that to test money costs for the intra-Europe flights. It may be low cost sufficient to pay for the flights outright fairly than reserving with Aeroplan factors.
The underside line
These candy spots solely scratch the floor of what you are able to do with the brand new Aeroplan rewards program. Take into consideration your personal journey plans and run some take a look at searches to see if utilizing Aeroplan miles will get you the perfect deal.
You’ll get the most affordable charges on shorter flights. When you’re flying an extended route, see should you can maximize your journey by constructing in an additional cease for five,000 extra factors utilizing Aeroplan stopover guidelines.
The way to Maximize Your Rewards
You desire a journey bank card that prioritizes what’s essential to you. Listed below are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2020, together with these greatest for: