Details: Aeroplan Tweaking Some Award Costs

Details: Aeroplan Tweaking Some Award Costs

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Some mild changes are coming to Air Canada Aeroplan’s award pricing as of September 2022. Don’t panic, as the tweaks are a mixed bag, and are fairly minor.

Aeroplan award chart changes September 2022

In late 2020, the new Aeroplan program launched. Aeroplan completely changed the way it goes about pricing awards, and introduced a new award chart that’s both distance and zone based. For the first time since the program launched, we’re seeing some changes to award pricing.

These changes kick in for bookings as of September 1, 2022 (tickets reissued as of then would also be subject to the new pricing). Let’s go over the details of the changes.

Between North America and Atlantic

We’re seeing mild changes to awards between the North America and Atlantic regions:

  • Awards covering a distance of 6,001-8,000 miles are increasing from 85,000 to 90,000 points in business class, and from 120,000 to 130,000 points in first class
  • Awards covering a distance of 8,001+ miles are increasing from 100,000 to 110,000 points in business class, and from 130,000 to 140,000 points in first class

Between North America and Pacific

We’re seeing mild changes to awards between the North America and Pacific regions:

  • Awards covering a distance of 7,501-11,000 miles are increasing from 85,000 to 87,500 points in business class
  • Awards covering a distance of 11,001+ miles are increasing from 105,000 to 115,000 points in business class, and from 140,000 to 150,000 points in first class

Between North America and South America

We’re seeing the introduction of a new distance band for flights between the North America and South America regions. There will be a new 0-2,500 mile distance band with reduced pricing, while previously all travel of 0-4,500 miles had the same pricing. Economy awards will cost 20,000 points, business class awards will cost 40,000 points, and first class awards will cost 60,000 points.

Between Atlantic and Pacific

We’re seeing the introduction of a new distance band for flights between the Atlantic and Pacific regions. There will be a new 0-2,500 mile distance band with reduced pricing, while previously all travel of 0-4,500 miles had the same pricing. Economy awards will cost 25,000 points, business class awards will cost 40,000 points, and first class awards will cost 50,000 points.

For awards between these regions of 7,001+ miles, economy is increasing from 60,000 to 65,000 points, business class is increasing from 100,000 to 110,000 points, and first class is increasing from 130,000 to 140,000 points.

Within South America

We’re seeing the introduction of a new distance band for flights within the South America region. There will be a new 0-1,600 mile distance band with reduced pricing, while previously all awards within South America had the same pricing. In this band economy awards will cost 10,000 points, business class awards will cost 20,000 points, and first class awards will cost 30,000 points.

For awards within South America of 1,601+ miles, economy is increasing from 15,000 to 20,000 points, and business class is increasing from 30,000 to 35,000 points.

Aeroplan is adjusting some award costs

My take on Aeroplan’s award chart changes

I tend to think that Air Canada Aeroplan is one of the most useful frequent flyer programs nowadays, thanks to its variety of airline partners, award stopover policy, and more. What’s my take on these changes?

  • They’re obviously a mixed bag, with some price increases, and some regions getting lower priced awards
  • I don’t consider these increases to be a big deal at all; the increases are mild, and presumably reflect the redemption patterns Aeroplan has seen since launch
  • I am grateful that Aeroplan even publishes an award chart (unlike so many other programs), and also provides advance notice of award pricing changes

So yeah, if this is the worst we have to deal with nearly two years into the new Aeroplan program, I’ll take it!

I appreciate how many airline partners Aeroplan has

Bottom line

Aeroplan is adjusting some award costs as of September 1, 2022. We’re seeing some awards go up in price, while others go down in price. In the grand scheme of things we’re seeing fairly few changes, and those regions with new pricing are seeing minor adjustments.

What do you make of these Aeroplan award chart changes?

Conversations (19)
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  1. TProphet Guest

    "Tweaking?" This is a devaluation, full stop. I realize that you like the folks who run the program, but they have objectively pushed through two devaluations (one major) since they started running it.

  2. Donny Guest

    Suggesting that things could be worse is a rather naive way of looking at things. Things can ALWAYS be worse, that doesn't detract from how bad the situation currently is.

    This is the second devaluation in a 3 year period? Or was it 2 years? Either way, the program isn't even fully flushed out yet, as we are still unable to piece together a multi-award booking online, yet they've already begun gutting things. Shortly after...

    Suggesting that things could be worse is a rather naive way of looking at things. Things can ALWAYS be worse, that doesn't detract from how bad the situation currently is.

    This is the second devaluation in a 3 year period? Or was it 2 years? Either way, the program isn't even fully flushed out yet, as we are still unable to piece together a multi-award booking online, yet they've already begun gutting things. Shortly after a points sale promotion and the heavy marketing that went along with it.

    Aeroplan gives slightly with one hand, while they fleece you clean with the other

  3. JTF Guest

    As a Canadian resident and thus long-time Aeroplan member now well into their million mile club, I add my vote to those who consider Aeroplan's alleged benefits that you champion to be much less than meets the eye. Over the recent past, it has become clear that Star Alliance partner airlines have severely restricted award seat availability to AC (and maybe AC is doing the same in return), and AC award seats are tilted towards...

    As a Canadian resident and thus long-time Aeroplan member now well into their million mile club, I add my vote to those who consider Aeroplan's alleged benefits that you champion to be much less than meets the eye. Over the recent past, it has become clear that Star Alliance partner airlines have severely restricted award seat availability to AC (and maybe AC is doing the same in return), and AC award seats are tilted towards unpopular times and bad/lengthy connections. In my experience over the last year or two, having attempted several award bookings within North America, to Europe, or to Asia, it has been consistently impossible to put together an itinerary on preferred dates (within some flexible windows) and decent routings at any reasonable mileage cost. Like PTO, I agree that it is time to shelve your one-sided endorsement of the program.

  4. JohnG Guest

    I'm not sure how useful their award charts are at this point, as they seem to be using dynamic pricing, at least for AC flights. I just did a search for YVR to CPH for a date next June and economy one-way award tickets start at 40,000 miles on LH and 70,000 on AC. Business class on AC starts at 236,000 miles! Reminds me of trying to find Aer Lingus business class seat using AS...

    I'm not sure how useful their award charts are at this point, as they seem to be using dynamic pricing, at least for AC flights. I just did a search for YVR to CPH for a date next June and economy one-way award tickets start at 40,000 miles on LH and 70,000 on AC. Business class on AC starts at 236,000 miles! Reminds me of trying to find Aer Lingus business class seat using AS miles. For me, the best use of Aeroplan miles continues to be short domestic trips in Canada.

  5. Andrew Guest

    Death by a thousand cut... Glad I just booked F 11,000+ from Atlantic to Pacific with a stopover for 145k on Etihad. It would be 155k now. I'm probably done with the Aeroplan credit card too since I spent the 110k point sign up bonus. It was already a stretch to get value since you basically have to have a stopover on your way to the pacific region to get the best deal.

  6. Tim Guest

    Trying to get an award seat at the points in the award chart for business class is next to impossible.

    It would be helpful if you could use a filter to see when you can get a seat at the base rate without having to go through each day one at a time until you find it. There may be one flight in a three or four week period, but it is very hard to find it.

  7. PTO Guest

    This is a material devaluation.

    In my case, a >11,000 mile partner award will cost an additional 10% if booked after Sept 1, or if it has to be cancelled and rebooked (Covid risk), as has already occurred (twice).

    In some ways it is understandable because the program is only sustainable while partner awards are bookable, therefore it is the largess of those partners that keeps it going. Why should Etihad or ANA be...

    This is a material devaluation.

    In my case, a >11,000 mile partner award will cost an additional 10% if booked after Sept 1, or if it has to be cancelled and rebooked (Covid risk), as has already occurred (twice).

    In some ways it is understandable because the program is only sustainable while partner awards are bookable, therefore it is the largess of those partners that keeps it going. Why should Etihad or ANA be worth only 105k points for a one way business class seat from say Canada to Australia when an Air Canada seat requires between 300k and 500k points?

    Partners are clearly restricting seats released to Aeroplan. ANA would often release 2 business class seats but now 1 seat (if any) is common, which complicates travel plans of couples.

    Ben, I think it’s time to shelve your love affair with Aeroplan and identify the redemption risk inherent in the partner award structure. This devaluation might appease partners in the near term but everybody is truly shafted once they leave and only Air Canada seats are bookable. Do we really want to use those stranded points to buy iPads?

  8. Eskimo Guest

    Devaluation.
    Can't really think of many 0-2500 pairs for the 2 cross zone travel will affect many readers here.
    Maybe JFK-BOG and India to South East Asia?

  9. Adam Guest

    Hey there, It is so sad to see new devaluation by aeroplan. I dont know why you sugarcoating the situation.Neither Aeroplan current charts nor upcoming ones doesnt reflect the real points redemptions at all.For example since the beginning of this year one way lowest business class reward redemption to europe costs 120.000 points! Which same redemption cost maximum 70.000 points for one way just last year.So lets not fool ourself that Aeroplan program is becoming...

    Hey there, It is so sad to see new devaluation by aeroplan. I dont know why you sugarcoating the situation.Neither Aeroplan current charts nor upcoming ones doesnt reflect the real points redemptions at all.For example since the beginning of this year one way lowest business class reward redemption to europe costs 120.000 points! Which same redemption cost maximum 70.000 points for one way just last year.So lets not fool ourself that Aeroplan program is becoming one of the worst each passing year and i dont see any brighter future soon.

  10. Rob Durward Guest

    Brutal …. The customer is screwed again!

    How is this advantageous to the loyal customers?

  11. LOA Member

    Really wish AP increased the North America to Atlantic band from 6000mi to 7000mi. It would hell west coast flyers a bit!

  12. Chesterwilson Guest

    Why are you scared of calling it a devaluation? They were just selling points and two weeks later are raising rates.

    1. ann Guest

      Calling it a devaluation doesnt help sell Aeroplan credit cards!

  13. Luis Guest

    Ben why are you such an apologist of Aeroplan? It wasn't long ago that US to Europe awards cost 55k miles. Now it's up to 90k for a vast majority of flights. Call it for what it is.

    1. nomilk Guest

      gotta promote those credit cards by any means necessary!

  14. Stuart Guest

    Devaluation. Nothing more. I love Aeroplan and agree with you. But let's call it what it is.

  15. echino Gold

    Nothing "tweaking" about it. It's a moderate devaluation.

  16. Dick Bupkiss Guest

    "Tweaking". Creative use of that word. I think you mean "Devaluing."

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Tim Guest

Trying to get an award seat at the points in the award chart for business class is next to impossible. It would be helpful if you could use a filter to see when you can get a seat at the base rate without having to go through each day one at a time until you find it. There may be one flight in a three or four week period, but it is very hard to find it.

3
PTO Guest

This is a material devaluation. In my case, a >11,000 mile partner award will cost an additional 10% if booked after Sept 1, or if it has to be cancelled and rebooked (Covid risk), as has already occurred (twice). In some ways it is understandable because the program is only sustainable while partner awards are bookable, therefore it is the largess of those partners that keeps it going. Why should Etihad or ANA be worth only 105k points for a one way business class seat from say Canada to Australia when an Air Canada seat requires between 300k and 500k points? Partners are clearly restricting seats released to Aeroplan. ANA would often release 2 business class seats but now 1 seat (if any) is common, which complicates travel plans of couples. Ben, I think it’s time to shelve your love affair with Aeroplan and identify the redemption risk inherent in the partner award structure. This devaluation might appease partners in the near term but everybody is truly shafted once they leave and only Air Canada seats are bookable. Do we really want to use those stranded points to buy iPads?

3
JohnG Guest

I'm not sure how useful their award charts are at this point, as they seem to be using dynamic pricing, at least for AC flights. I just did a search for YVR to CPH for a date next June and economy one-way award tickets start at 40,000 miles on LH and 70,000 on AC. Business class on AC starts at 236,000 miles! Reminds me of trying to find Aer Lingus business class seat using AS miles. For me, the best use of Aeroplan miles continues to be short domestic trips in Canada.

2
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