Aeroplan’s Amazing Suite Of Airline Partners

Aeroplan’s Amazing Suite Of Airline Partners

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I’ve written in the past about how Air Canada Aeroplan is my single favorite frequent flyer program for redeeming points. Aeroplan is a program you should care about even if you never fly with Air Canada.

My single favorite thing about Aeroplan is the number of airline partners that the program has, and that list only continues to grow. I wanted to take a look at that in a bit more detail in this post — what airlines does Aeroplan partner with, and why does it matter so much?

Aeroplan has more airline partners than any other program

The Aeroplan program allows you to redeem points on over 45 different airlines, and counting. There’s not a single airline frequent flyer program in the world that has this many redemption partners, so that’s truly remarkable.

The major global airline alliances generally allow reciprocal award redemptions as one of the main perks of the concept. With Air Canada being part of the Star Alliance, of course you have access to the over two dozen Star Alliance member airlines. But what’s most impressive is the number of non-alliance partners that Aeroplan has.

Why should you care so much about this?

  • Aeroplan points are extremely easy to come by, including with transferable points currencies, as I’ll explain below
  • Aeroplan allows stopovers on awards for an extra 5,000 points, which is a rare feature nowadays
  • Aeroplan allows awards on all partners to be booked online, and there are no fuel surcharges on any awards
  • Aeroplan has some unique airline partners that are otherwise tough to redeem on, ranging from Air Mauritius, to Gulf Air, to Oman Air, to Vistara
  • Being able to mix & match airline partners on a single award is awesome, especially for getting to more remote destinations

There’s simply not another airline program that has anywhere close to this depth of partnerships. This could be useful whether you want to travel to the Canadian Arctic in Canadian North economy…

Canadian North award through Aeroplan

Or want to travel to Madagascar in Air Mauritius business class…

Air Mauritius award through Aeroplan

Or want to travel to Oman in Oman Air first class…

Oman Air award through Aeroplan

Full list of Aeroplan airline partners

Here is the current list of Air Canada Aeroplan’s 46 airline redemption partners:

  • Aegean Airlines
  • Aeromar
  • Air Canada
  • Air China
  • Air Creebec
  • Air Dolomiti
  • Air India
  • Air Mauritius
  • Air New Zealand
  • Air Serbia
  • All Nippon Airways (ANA)
  • Asiana
  • Austrian Airlines
  • Avianca
  • Azul
  • Bamboo Airways
  • Brussels Airlines
  • Calm Air
  • Canadian North
  • Copa Airlines
  • Croatia Airlines
  • EgyptAir
  • Ethiopian Airlines
  • Etihad Airways
  • Eurowings
  • Eurowings Discover
  • EVA Air
  • GOL
  • Gulf Air
  • Juneyao Airlines
  • LOT Polish Airlines
  • Lufthansa
  • Olympic Air
  • Oman Air
  • Scandinavian Airlines (SAS)
  • Shenzhen Airlines
  • Singapore Airlines
  • South African Airways
  • SunExpress
  • SWISS
  • TAP Air Portugal
  • Thai Airways
  • Turkish Airlines
  • United Airlines
  • Virgin Australia
  • Vistara
Redeem Aeroplan points for Oman Air first class

Why is Aeroplan seemingly alone in adding partners?

Aeroplan is in a league of its own when it comes to adding airline partners for the purposes of award redemptions. That’s not because folks behind the program have some secret recipe that other programs don’t have. It’s simply because the people behind the program see value in this for members and put a lot of effort into it, and other programs seemingly don’t.

I remember having a conversation with the head of a certain airline loyalty program some time back, and I brought up the topic of how the program had lost several airline partners over the years, and it would be nice to see a focus on adding more partners for members to redeem their points. The answer? “That’s not really a priority for us.”

I find that logic puzzling, but then again, I find a lot of the changes we’ve seen at major frequent flyer programs in recent years to be questionable at best. So, why is Aeroplan countering the industry trend by adding a never-ending list of new partners?

  • First and foremost, Aeroplan is truly run by avgeeks who are obsessed with airlines and flying, and I imagine on some level they’re adding partners that they’d love to be able to redeem their own points on
  • The reality is that there’s a business case for what Aeroplan is doing — award reimbursement rates are typically quite low, so Aeroplan will typically make money when you transfer your points to Aeroplan, and then redeem them on a partner; that’s not only a great business model independently, but also a great way to drive up engagement in Aeroplan, and awareness of Air Canada
  • Air Canada has clearly given Aeroplan leadership latitude to add partnerships that are good for the program, rather than just adding a very limited number of partnerships that are driven by revenue management and other commercial agreements; compare this to Delta, which nowadays only seems to want to work with airlines it has equity stakes in

I do have to say, I’d love to be a fly on the wall for Aeroplan’s pitches and negotiations when adding new partners. Aeroplan has managed to add some airline partners that are redemption-only, meaning Aeroplan leadership has convinced people at these airlines to allow Aeroplan members to redeem, without any sort of commercial agreement otherwise. That must take some skill!

If the whole Aeroplan thing doesn’t work out, these people could probably fly to the Canadian Arctic and be fridge salespeople (and they could fly there on Canadian North using Aeroplan points, natch!).

Redeem Aeroplan points for travel on Etihad

How to earn Aeroplan points

As mentioned above, one of the great things about Aeroplan is that the points are pretty easy to come by. Air Canada Aeroplan is 1:1 transfer partners with Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One, and Chase Ultimate Rewards.

This means you can transfer over points earned with cards like the American Express® Gold Card (review), Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card (review), and Chase Sapphire Reserve® Card (review).

Transfers from all of these partners are generally instant, which matters because often there might be award availability but then you find that a transfer takes multiple days, which can quickly ruin your plans.

On top of that, there’s the Aeroplan® Credit Card (review) in the United States, which offers a great bonus and some unique perks. Lastly, Aeroplan often sells points at a reasonable cost.

Aeroplan points are easy to come by

Bottom line

Aeroplan has more airline partners than any other frequent flyer program in the world, and that’s something I really appreciate. The program now has over 45 airline partners and counting. I love the consistency offered by these redemptions, from being able to mix partners on a single award, to there not being any fuel surcharges, to being able to have stopovers on one-way awards.

The best thing is that Aeroplan is only getting started when it comes to adding partners, and we’re told to expect even more interesting partners in the future. I can’t wait to see what airlines are next.

Anyone else appreciate Aeroplan’s breadth of airline partners as much as I do?

Conversations (43)
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  1. Srs Guest

    I called aeroplan to get my miles when I travelled air india and got nowhere. I called air india and they asked me to call aeroplan directly

  2. John SAT Guest

    Do Aeroplan's points expire?

    1. Richard Clough Guest

      They will expire if the account is dormant for 18 months. As long as there is at least 1 transaction then they stay active or get a co branded credit card and they won’t expire.

  3. glenn t Diamond

    "That's not really a priority for us."
    If there is a prize (or not) for guessing which FFP airline exec. said that my guess is Alaska MileagePlan.

  4. Dennis Guest

    Yes, Aeroplan can be a pain to find partner award space in but I’ve used it successfully over the years for J redemptions on Swiss and LOT for a family of 3 from JFK to Europe. And in UA back to the U.S.

    Pre-pandemic I found 3 seats in J from JFK to IST on Turkish. And this last March I booked 2 seats in J from SFO to IST for a trip we...

    Yes, Aeroplan can be a pain to find partner award space in but I’ve used it successfully over the years for J redemptions on Swiss and LOT for a family of 3 from JFK to Europe. And in UA back to the U.S.

    Pre-pandemic I found 3 seats in J from JFK to IST on Turkish. And this last March I booked 2 seats in J from SFO to IST for a trip we took on Oct. 21st of this year. And while the redemption rates are higher than in years past, at least it’s not like Delta and their outrageous award flights. My last great redemption on DL metal using Skypesos was JFK to ICN on Korean Airlines for 80 or 85K in 2018.

    1. Azamaraal Diamond

      On the old Aeroplan you could find individual partner flights and stitch them together while talking to an agent. Now the individual flights are almost impossible to find so the best awards are invisible.

  5. MundoExperience Guest

    "There’s not a single airline frequent flyer program in the world that has this many redemption partners"....well Gol's loyalty program Smiles has 53 airline partners -including AC.

    1. carl Guest

      not true, most airlines are just sold as commercial airfare, basically they act as a travel agency, award tickets they work with it's less than a dozen airlines

  6. Azamaraal Guest

    Ben

    You keep extolling the virtues of Aeroplan but I am unable to ever see a partner award. Is this perhaps because I am accessing the site from a Canadian location and should use a VPN and pretend to be American? Or is there a secret handshake to log in and see partner awards.

    Try YVR-IST for example. Never an award on TK from YVR. Sometimes an economy from SEA but never ever a YVR...

    Ben

    You keep extolling the virtues of Aeroplan but I am unable to ever see a partner award. Is this perhaps because I am accessing the site from a Canadian location and should use a VPN and pretend to be American? Or is there a secret handshake to log in and see partner awards.

    Try YVR-IST for example. Never an award on TK from YVR. Sometimes an economy from SEA but never ever a YVR Business. Before the new Aeroplan the TK was front and centre.

    Until such time as their search engine delivers I would advise everyone to stay away.

    1. Mark Cohen Guest

      That has nothing to do with AC but with TK. This article has nothing to do with amount of seats *alliance releases. It has to do with the numerous options available.

    2. Azamaraal Diamond

      Is 50 partners with no awards available better than 10 partners with availability?

      More is definitely not better in this situation.

    3. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Azamaraal -- I'm curious, which program do you think has 10 useful partners with award availability?

    4. Azamaraal Diamond

      Limited travel in the last 2 years but have had great success with AS, AA and have been able to create an award from EZE-YLW on AC only because they bungled up the original awards with computer generated changes that misconnected (departure before arrival etc). Unfortunately they still have two months to bungle/cancel it again. The 10 was hypothetical so two would be a safe number.

  7. Isaac Guest

    I was a SE 100k back when they didn’t require spend on AC so heavily. I loved aeroplan. AC was questionable at times. Hence why I dropped them entirely. AC policies are just draconian given the pandemic. It’s ironic that aeroplan has been given the latitude(pun intended) for engaging partners.

    Being a very happy AS 100k member. When will westjet come to thier senses with DL and join oneworld. They so much more potential...

    I was a SE 100k back when they didn’t require spend on AC so heavily. I loved aeroplan. AC was questionable at times. Hence why I dropped them entirely. AC policies are just draconian given the pandemic. It’s ironic that aeroplan has been given the latitude(pun intended) for engaging partners.

    Being a very happy AS 100k member. When will westjet come to thier senses with DL and join oneworld. They so much more potential in connectivity with BA (Canada is a British colony), AA and AS. It provides some good NA competition to the star alliance and dominance of AC in Canada.

  8. Dave Guest

    I ve accumulated 600k points. In 2018, I was able to book a First class round trip to Asia with a stopover for
    210k. Now, I can’t even book a one trip to Asia in Business class for 500k. Yeah, nope. Aeroplan is a true waste of time.

  9. Derek Guest

    I feel that this post misses the elephant in the room; that is, Aeroplan's terrible redemption availability. Partner airlines are releasing fewer, and fewer seats, while the remaining redemption possibilities are limited to flying Air Canada for 200,000-300,000+ J (one way!) points whereas other programs would allow that same flight for 1/3rd the points quantity, respectively.

    So sure, Aeroplan looks great on the surface, but it's only when you dig into the program and...

    I feel that this post misses the elephant in the room; that is, Aeroplan's terrible redemption availability. Partner airlines are releasing fewer, and fewer seats, while the remaining redemption possibilities are limited to flying Air Canada for 200,000-300,000+ J (one way!) points whereas other programs would allow that same flight for 1/3rd the points quantity, respectively.

    So sure, Aeroplan looks great on the surface, but it's only when you dig into the program and actually attempt to use it for a redemption that you see the absolutely large and gaping holes. Unless, of course, you're completely fine flying Air Canada metal, Y, for an exorbitant amount of points where you wonder if it just makes more sense to not bother with this program, and pay cash instead.

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Derek -- This is broadly an issue, no doubt, though this applies to all programs, no? Is there a program where you find there to be less of an issue with securing partner award availability?

    2. HMa Guest

      This is true. As a Canadian, I only find flights on AC, and business class is always in mixed cabins, for the exorbitant points spends. I tried looking for flights out of US airports, but they just send me back to Canada and AC. I was lucky in 2018 to find a seat from PER-YYZ in business on Singapore and Eva (so no crazy surcharges), and it was fantastic.

  10. MaroonOtter New Member

    I booked an award ticket with LH/LO but only received one booking reference that works on LH. I have since been trying to get the LO booking code. I spent an hour on the phone with AC and they found nothing. I thought this should be a routine enough procedure at any airline. Does anyone have experience with AC issuing award tickets on LO/multiple SA partners?

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ MaroonOtter -- The LH and LO record locators should be the same.

    2. MaroonOtter New Member

      Thanks! I still can't find the itinerary at LOT, and LH won’t let me select seat on the LO flight. Maybe I’ll call LH at some point to figure out.

  11. Lisa Guest

    Aeroplan redemptions are best when you don’t live in Canada.

  12. Eskimo Guest

    “That’s not really a priority for us.”
    I find that logic puzzling.

    @Lucky
    Nothing puzzling at all.
    The same reason that you misunderstood AA has given up on selling miles.
    They are not there to award your loyalty, but to motivate your spending.
    The success of these programs will result in fanatics like @DCS who will defend and throw money at all cost.

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Eskimo -- It's not about awarding loyalty, it's about selling miles for partner redemptions being a profitable business in and of itself. How do you think LifeMiles is in business? ;) Transferring Amex points to Aeroplan doesn't make one "loyal," even if it's a win-win for the consumer and Aeroplan.

    2. fod Member

      10/10 on the @DCS point, fanaticism beyond logic or reason is what programmes aim for to part fools with their money.

      “Here’s a 27 page essay with HTML formatting why $15 breakfast credit against $21 muffin-or-nothing 3-day old ambient snacks is really better than Hyatt’s lifetime status; and my diamond status gets me presidential suite upgrades 90% of the time so you *MUST* be wrong.

  13. PJTO Guest

    Ben: What you fail to mention in these worshipping Aeroplan posts is that it is only while Partners keep providing seats that the program remains viable. Partners use a distance based Award Chart which caps miles required (i.e. Biz > 11,000 miles = 105,000 points and no surcharges) whereas Air Canada Awards are market price based and typically multiples of more points required. Why should Etihad release seats in biz for YYZ-AUH-BKK for 87,500 points...

    Ben: What you fail to mention in these worshipping Aeroplan posts is that it is only while Partners keep providing seats that the program remains viable. Partners use a distance based Award Chart which caps miles required (i.e. Biz > 11,000 miles = 105,000 points and no surcharges) whereas Air Canada Awards are market price based and typically multiples of more points required. Why should Etihad release seats in biz for YYZ-AUH-BKK for 87,500 points when AC wants between 208,000 and 303,000 points via TYO - if you can find them? (Example was one way Sep 20, 2023 - no mixed cabin).

    It’s a distraction because if partners realize it’s a bad deal and pull out, or only release economy seats, Aeroplan is really poor choice if all you can get is exorbitantly priced AC seats.

    Some perspective is warranted and at least mention that once partner seats are gone Air Canada pricing is appalling.

    1. Derek Guest

      100% agree with the above. Aeroplan looks great on the surface, but it's an absolute mess hanging on by a thread and at the mercy of partner airlines. Partner airlines are the program's lifeblood, and without them, the program is literally next to useless.

      Logic stands that you avoid booking anything on Air Canada due to the horrid dynamic pricing, but instead simply use the program for partner availability, exclusively

    2. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ PJTO -- I hear you, at the moment award availability isn't very good across the board. The value of the program is largely based on partner programs making award seats available, and we see less of that than in the past. That's true for virtually any frequent flyer program that offers good value.

      However, what's the alternative? Aeroplan still gets you access to a lot more partner awards than any other program, so it's...

      @ PJTO -- I hear you, at the moment award availability isn't very good across the board. The value of the program is largely based on partner programs making award seats available, and we see less of that than in the past. That's true for virtually any frequent flyer program that offers good value.

      However, what's the alternative? Aeroplan still gets you access to a lot more partner awards than any other program, so it's all about seeking out those opportunities. The more partners a program has, the more potential saver award space you have access to.

    3. PJTO Guest

      Ben
      So let’s see some realistic perspective in the posts.
      Basically once the seats released by partners are snapped up (and the competition grows ever larger with all those credit card point transfers done only to grab a seat) all that is left for the mugs who fly AC or accrue from Aeroplan credit cards is extortionate AC pricing or merchandise. How many iPads do I get for 200,000 points, as that might...

      Ben
      So let’s see some realistic perspective in the posts.
      Basically once the seats released by partners are snapped up (and the competition grows ever larger with all those credit card point transfers done only to grab a seat) all that is left for the mugs who fly AC or accrue from Aeroplan credit cards is extortionate AC pricing or merchandise. How many iPads do I get for 200,000 points, as that might be the only realistic option for many members?

      My advice to friends is redeem soon if you can on a partner then get a cash-back credit card and fly whoever has the best fares and forget the Aeroplan account.

      I’ve been a member since inception in the early 80’s and it has been very good but signs now are its future value is suspect when all that holds it together are third party airlines who seem to be getting a raw deal.

      You could at least point out that absent partner seats redemptions will be out of reach for many members, which us why partners are now the lifeblood of the program.

    4. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ PJTO -- I often advocate for cash back cards, and think that's the right option for many consumers, especially for those without flexibility, and those who don't want to put the effort in to learn how to use miles (which can be time consuming).

      I've also written about how tough award space is to come by at the moment across programs.

      But I also don't think award space is anywhere close to impossible to...

      @ PJTO -- I often advocate for cash back cards, and think that's the right option for many consumers, especially for those without flexibility, and those who don't want to put the effort in to learn how to use miles (which can be time consuming).

      I've also written about how tough award space is to come by at the moment across programs.

      But I also don't think award space is anywhere close to impossible to find. Sure, some space is released when the schedule first opens, and then we also see a lot of space as the departure date approaches.

      Furthermore, some airlines, and in particular many of Aeroplan's partners, do have very good award space. For example, airlines like Air Mauritius and Oman Air often have a lot more availability than you'll find on alliance airlines.

  14. Mark S Guest

    @Lucky, you have a photo of Oman Air First class saying you can redeem Aeroplan points for it. At one point yes but appears that redemption is no longer possible. Checked the schedule for the next year MCT-LHR and not one F award available.

    Agreed Aeroplan is a great program, but they really need to get the phone situation resolved. It's at least an hour hold. And now appears they have a new phone system,...

    @Lucky, you have a photo of Oman Air First class saying you can redeem Aeroplan points for it. At one point yes but appears that redemption is no longer possible. Checked the schedule for the next year MCT-LHR and not one F award available.

    Agreed Aeroplan is a great program, but they really need to get the phone situation resolved. It's at least an hour hold. And now appears they have a new phone system, if it determines your call is not in need of immediate attention and they are busy it hangs up on you.

    1. Mark S Guest

      At least on the LHR route F doesn't seem to be available anymore.

    2. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Mark S -- Yeah, see the same thing at the moment for the LHR route, hopefully that's not permanent. I do see some first class availability on other routes, though.

    3. Azamaraal Diamond

      At least Aeroplan's phone system has a very workable call back - recently improved - that has called back reliably within the stated wait time.

  15. Sean M. Diamond

    And yet they can't get their act together regarding booking Ethiopian Airlines awards for months on end, rendering travel within Africa pretty much off limits.

  16. Pmv Guest

    Also crappy lock finding rewards especially in J or F. Kinda like BA avios

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Pmv -- Admittedly award availability isn't very good across the board at the moment, but Aeroplan does give you access to availability on 45 airlines, which you won't find through British Airways Executive Club or any other program.

  17. Mantis Guest

    Did you figure out #46 yet?

  18. Leo Guam Guest

    One of the only programs that have gotten better with time. Niche redemptions were devalued, but the overall program has improved. I’ve redeemed 0 miles on Aeroplan before the revamp, and now it’s becoming my primary redemption for Star Alliance AND non-alliance partners. Credit(ing) where credit is due. Nice to see a truly innovating program focus on redemption for a change when so much of the focus has been on accumulation.

  19. Saurabh Guest

    How are you finding reasonable redemptions? For whatever reason, even on partner flights Aeroplan consistently shows me 250-300k point business class tickets - one way!! Should I not be looking at their online portal and give them a call?

    1. Lisa Guest

      I’d love to know too. Living in Canada, I never see the type of deals out of Canada that Americans have for redeeming on flights out of the US.

    2. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Saurabh -- The high redemption rates you're seeing are all for travel on Air Canada metal. Admittedly availability on Air Canada at saver rates isn't very good. I still use Air Canada's site to search partner award availability. It can take some effort, but there's also potentially lots of value.

  20. iv Guest

    I'm also very impressed with the variety Aeroplan partner airlines. It makes me more engaged with the program. Normally I would need to piece together awards using two different programs. I'm finding that's no longer the case as much as before, thanks to Aeroplan.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

MundoExperience Guest

"There’s not a single airline frequent flyer program in the world that has this many redemption partners"....well Gol's loyalty program Smiles has 53 airline partners -including AC.

1
Lisa Guest

Aeroplan redemptions are best when you don’t live in Canada.

1
Eskimo Guest

“That’s not really a priority for us.” I find that logic puzzling. @Lucky Nothing puzzling at all. The same reason that you misunderstood AA has given up on selling miles. They are not there to award your loyalty, but to motivate your spending. The success of these programs will result in fanatics like @DCS who will defend and throw money at all cost.

1
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