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Aeroplan may have bought themselves a new lease on life following the fall-out from their announcement of the looming "divorce" from Air Canada some time in 2020.  That's if their promises for the future program actually come to fruition.

Up until now, Aeroplan's future, post Air Canada, looked bleak.  Their hints about what the program would look like suggested that it would be just like every other loyalty program where you can cash in points (at 1 to 2 cents a point) towards retail airline tickets; but their recent update (in July, 2018) is quite encouraging....

Posted on Friday, July 20, 2018

Ever get to the airport only to learn that your flight has been delayed 12 hours?  And you ask yourself, why couldn't the airline have phoned me?

In fact, there was an era, not that long ago - okay, it was VERY long ago! - when airlines dutifully recorded phone numbers and actually had their employees contact passengers when a flight was delayed or cancelled.  Those were the days!  (They also served free food and gave allowed  you to check two free bags up to 70 lbs each!)

The downside of the Internet where everyone can comparison-shop in seconds is that...

Posted on Thursday, July 5, 2018

Fairmont President's Club and Accor's Le Club officially merge into Le Club on July 2, 2018.

Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) and Marriott Rewards will merge sometime in August, 2018.  And even though the program will be unified (presumably under the less desirable Marriott Rewards structure), the individual names of the programs will stay in place until sometime in 2019.  [Note: the same thing is true for Ritz Carlton Rewards, which has been part of the Marriott family for quite some time.]

In both cases, the consensus is these mergers will be a downgrade for the...

Posted on Thursday, June 21, 2018

 With one exception, all airline points programs have a nasty policy which could be summed up as "use 'em or lose 'em!"  Delta Skymiles is the one exception: in theory Delta points never expire.

Perhaps the most draconian program of all is Aeroplan, which only gives you 12 months to show "activity" or your points will be allowed to expire.  To give them credit, they normally will send you a warning email before this happens. 

"Activity" is defined in our industry as "earning or burning."  I think that's self-...

Posted on Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Since Air Canada announced that it was going to abandon Aeroplan and bring its frequent-flyer program back in-house, there's been lots of concern from its customers, especially those who have chalked up a lot of points.  Some of our clients boast over a million Aeroplan points (think 10 business class tickets to Europe!)

Here's what is supposed to happen:

Some time in 2020, Air Canada will launch its own frequent-flyer program.  It already has the platform for such a program thanks to its status program, Altitude, which it has managed since Day One.  Right now,...

Posted on Wednesday, May 16, 2018

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Posted on Friday, January 6, 2017

As most frequent-flyers in Canada know, Air Canada operates a loyalty program within a loyalty program, which is known a "Altitude."  Based on actual mileage flown during the calendar year (or, alternatively, number of flights), you may be awarded Prestige 25K, Elite 35K, Elite 50K, Elite 75K, or Super Elite 100K status for the following year.  With each higher status level comes additional benefits.  For example, 35K members get access to Air Canada's Maple Leaf lounges, while members with 50K status or better are given "Gold Status" with all...

Posted on Thursday, November 24, 2016