How to redeem Aeroplan points for maximum value

Air Canada’s loyalty program, Aeroplan, is a favorite among award travelers for its easy earning and great redemption rates. Unlike some major U.S. loyalty programs, Aeroplan still has an award chart and a long list of airline redemption partners. Being part of the Star Alliance also adds to the program’s value. In this article, we will explore the best ways to maximize the value of Air Canada Aeroplan points.

One of the advantages of Aeroplan is the ability to redeem points for flights to over 1,300 destinations on more than 50 airline partners worldwide. This includes both Star Alliance carriers and non-alliance partners like Azul Brazilian Airlines, Bamboo Airways, and Etihad Airways. The flexibility to mix and match partners can be useful when award availability is limited.

Aeroplan’s award chart is particularly valuable for short-haul economy flights and international premium-cabin seats on partner airlines. For short-haul flights within North America, such as flights within the Northeast of the United States or to and from Toronto Pearson Airport, you can book awards for as little as 6,000 points. These flights are a great value considering that TPG values Aeroplan points at 1.5 cents each, making 6,000 points worth $90.

Longer economy flights within North America generally range from 10,000 to 12,500 points each way, which is around the industry average. Flights over 2,751 miles, like those from the East Coast to Hawaii, can cost between 17,500 and 25,000 points. The benefit of using Aeroplan is the flexible transfer options available for earning points.

When it comes to travel to Europe, Aeroplan offers great award rates for long-haul flights, especially now that fuel surcharges have been eliminated. Depending on the distance, you can expect to pay 35,000 to 40,000 points for economy, 60,000 to 70,000 points for business, and 90,000 to 100,000 points for first class when traveling from the continental U.S. to Europe on Air Canada’s partners. This is a better deal compared to using United Airlines MileagePlus miles following their recent devaluation.

For travel to Asia, Aeroplan also offers competitive award rates. Partner awards between North America and the Pacific can cost between 35,000 and 75,000 points in economy, 55,000 and 105,000 points in business, and 90,000 and 140,000 points in first class, depending on the distance. This means that you can book business class from the East Coast of the United States to most of Western Europe for just 60,000 points.

Aeroplan is also a great program for families due to its family points pooling feature and low fees for traveling with a lap infant. Infant awards are free for travel within Canada and between Canada and the United States, and they cost just 25 Canadian dollars ($19) or 2,500 Aeroplan points for all other itineraries. Additionally, Aeroplan’s reliable search engine for Star Alliance award availability and the ability to add stopovers make it a convenient option for family travel.

To earn Aeroplan points, one of the easiest ways is to get the right credit card. The current welcome bonus for the New Aeroplan Credit Card is 60,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first three months. TPG values Aeroplan points at 1.5 cents each, making this bonus worth $900. The annual fee for the Chase Aeroplan card is just $95, making it a valuable option, especially for Air Canada flyers.

In addition to the credit card, you can also transfer points from various credit card rewards programs to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio. Some of the transfer partners include American Express Membership Rewards, Capital One, and Marriott Bonvoy. This gives you even more options to earn and maximize your Aeroplan points.

In conclusion, Air Canada’s Aeroplan loyalty program is a favorite among award travelers for its easy earning, great redemption rates, and valuable partnerships. Whether you’re looking for short-haul flights within North America, long-haul flights to Europe or Asia, or family travel options, Aeroplan has plenty of options to maximize the value of your points. With the right credit card and transferable points, you can take full advantage of the program’s benefits and get excellent deals on award tickets.

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