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Aeroplan / no longer good value

1 Canada Review updated:

I've been a satisfied Aeroplan member since 1990 up until now. Aeroplan no longer provides a reasonable selection of flights at the "Best Value Flight Rewards" level regardless how far in advance a booking is made. I always plan my vacations a year in advance and I have NEVER had an issue with booking reasonable "Best Value" level flights through Aeroplan in the past. Now the only reasonable flights available will cost you two to three times the points under the "Extra Access Flight Rewards". This issue is particularly noticeable when flying to the U.S. In fact, good luck to anyone trying to find an Air Canada flight to Florida for 25, 000 points. What you will find instead are flights on U.S. carriers with multiple connections. Bye bye Aeroplan. Bye bye Aerogold credit card. I have switched to the Capital One World Mastercard which offers much more flexibility and value.

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  • St
      16th of Mar, 2011
    +1 Votes

    BEWARE _ AEROPLAN IS A SCAM! I have accumulated 80, 000 Aeroplan points over the last few years and have been trying, unsuccessfully, to redeem them for travel over the last year. I tried to book a flight from Calgary to Las Vegas 3 months in advance and was told there was no availability. I tried to book a flight to Maui 4 months in advance and was quoted 180, 000 miles round trip for a terrible flight that was 20 hours due to connections. I would not ever purchase a flight with that type of terrible connection. This week I tried to book a flight to St. Loius in May, off season, leaving on a Wednesday and was asked if I could leave on the Tuesday as there was no availability for my requested dates! I can't fathom this type of mediocre program with such a limited availability. The manager at Aeroplan said their hands were tied because they share seats with other partner programs such as United, and that the airlines decide how many seats they alolocate to points flyers. He suggested I book even further in advance so I just attempted to book a holiday in DECEMBER and guess what? NO AVAILIBILITY for my dates, and the alternate dates were horrible 20 hour flights again, and the points cost was 180, 000!
    When I tried to complain to CIBC VIsa and to Aeroplan, there was no formal complaint process and I was told to use my points on gift cards. I honestly feel like Aeroplan is now a SCAM.

  • Ja
      26th of Jul, 2011
    0 Votes

    I agree; the thing is, it is impossible to redeem the points on gift cards! I tried to redeem in December 2010 for movie passes and a store card, and neither of the cards ever came. They told me to be patient, They had me fill in forms in April and said they would investigate, it is July and they still do not answer my emails and still no gift cards. Five years ago I was able to get the gift cards, but now that Aeroplan has outsourced itself to "carlson marketing" it is impossible to actually get any gift cards, and a real scam. In February on one missing gift card they admitted that "there were changes in the system and some requests were lost but the miles were reinstated, for some reason yours seems to have been overlooked" but months passed and still no miles reinstated or gift card. I have spent too much time on emails and phone calls and filling out investigation forms and there is no response whatsoever. Aeroplan and Air Canada seem to act as if there is no regulation or reason not to ignore and rip off customers.

  • Go
      13th of Aug, 2012
    0 Votes

    I've been an Aeroplan member since the inception of the program some thirty years ago or more. It's only been in the past few years that I've become more and more dissatisfied. Just six years ago two of us could travel business class to Europe for 160, 000 miles and about $300 in taxes and fees, three years ago we could get there using the same number of miles but with about $1000 in taxes and fees, today it takes 180, 000 miles and nearly $2300 in taxes and fees. How is this possible? I have a theory. I believe in an effort to show low, low one way seat prices the airlines have broken out things like fuel and other incremental costs showing only the cost of servicing of the actual seat in their pricing and moved everything else to the 'fees' section of the ticket price. This has resulted in a false economy in price advertising and means the frequent traveller/purchaser pays the penalty. Aeroplan charges every partner (premium credit card co's, hotels, car rental, grocery stores, etc.) for the 'privilege' of having their customers earn reward miles and then the airlines rip off the Members by charging what I consider to be exhorbitant fees. Now, is $2300 plus 180, 000 miles still a bargain? At the standard four cents per mile plus the fees it amounts to the equivalent of $9000. I can book the same flights for $9700 so, I guess it's still a deal. But, wait! The taxes and fees on two purchased tickets only amounts to $1740 of the $9700 total. So, in fact, we're still being ripped off an addiitonal $500 for using reward miles. Over the past few years we've managed to accumulate nearly 900, 000 miles, used or given away 400, 000, and will try to use the remaining 500, 000 before leaving the plan forever. Not what I want to do but, I can no longer find a way to justify the ever increasing cost of using reward miles for 'free' travel.

  • Go
      10th of Jun, 2013
    0 Votes

    I have been reading that CIBC is considering severing the connection with Aeroplan (and Aimia). If there is any way customers can give feedback, I would like to be at the front of the line. Our son is getting married in Toronto in July, and I thought it would be a good way to unload some of our useless 375, 000+ Aeroplan miles. Well, of course when I checked on getting reward flights for them to come from LA to TO and return, they were only available as “Classic Plus” – 112, 500 miles vs 100, 000 regularly. Oh, and add an extra $206.25 plus HST for the privilege. Still OK, let’s do it. Not so fast, cowboy. In order to transfer miles from one aeroplan account to another, there is a small administrative cost of $.02/mi. (plus HST), which doesn’t sound like much, but in the case of 112, 500 it comes out to $2, 542.50. Add that to the other $206.25 and the grand total is an additional $2, 775.56 (not counting the $112, 500 spent using the Aerogold card.) So I gave up that idea and he booked on his own. The same return flights for the two of them, total price? $1, 117.32. A savings of $1, 658.24 and the 112, 500 miles stay in the tank! So I like all of our friends seem to have done already, are looking to Avion, which according to those who have it, has none of this nonsense. (Yet). If there is any way you can pass these comments along to CIBC to help in their decision making on dumping the Aeroplan connection, please do so. We have been Aerogold card holders almost since the beginning of the program, when it actually was worthwhile as a travel card. Unfortunately, over the years, it became a bloated bureaucracy, and to mitigate the liability of the mushrooming miles in the account, they made it prohibitive to do what the project had initially intended.

  • Sh
      27th of Sep, 2018
    0 Votes

    I agree with ALL the above complaints. I fly Air Canada direct from Sydney, Australia to Vancouver, BC at least 3 times every year - to visit my family. I have thousand of useless Aeroplan points which I have NEVER been able to use to upgrade any flight. What is the point of accumulating all these points only to be told that there is NO availability? And there is NEVER any availability - no matter when you fly OR how far in advance you try to redeem points for a business or premium economy ticket. I am dropping Aeroplan - cannot stand their shoddy customer service anymore.

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