Sunday Reader Question: Are The Amex Membership Rewards Free Flight & Companion Pass Vouchers Worth It?

December 18, 2011

TPG reader Chris writes: “I was recently on the Membership Rewards website looking to transfer some miles and noticed the various e-certificates the airlines where offering for either free flights for a fixed amount or companion pass certificates. Do you rate any of these as a good deal or are generally mileage transfers (% bonuses) better?” In my opinion, […]

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Aeroplan Award Sale and Transfer Partner Bonus Reminder

December 6, 2011

Yesterday I wrote about Aeroplan (Air Canada’s frequent flyer program) running a pretty generous temporary sale on awards. You can get business class for the price of coach and first class for the price of business class on many of their awards – including Star Alliance partners. You can check out their award charts here. Aeroplan […]

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Amazing Deal Alert: Reduced Price Aeroplan Awards

December 5, 2011

It was recently reported by Matthew at UPGRD, that Aeroplan awards were pricing at incorrect levels. And this time around, the error was in favor of the passenger – basically you can get business class for the price of coach and First class awards for the price of business class. Aeroplan is an instant transfer […]

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Aeroplan Fuel Surcharge Update and Partner Transfer Promotion

November 22, 2011

Devaluation A couple weeks ago I wrote about Air Canada Aeroplan’s plans to institute huge fuel surcharges on many of their Star Alliance partner awards. After a lot of negative customer feedback, they began to backpedal on those changes and I thought they may have scrapped those plans. However, that was just a temporary stay […]

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Sunday Reader Question: Which Frequent Flyer Program is Best for International Upgrades?

November 20, 2011

TPG reader Ulysses writes: “Which airline’s elite status program offers the best chance of being upgraded on a flight?  I fly several times a year, but not enough to earn elite status on more than one airline.  I am particularly interested in long-haul, international flights since these are the sweetest upgrades to be had.”  Upgrades […]

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Aeroplan Backpedals on Fuel Surcharges … Sort Of

November 11, 2011

Yesterday I wrote about Aeroplan (the independent frequent flyer program of Air Canada) imposing huge surcharges on Star Alliance partner flights. Many of us complained to Aeroplan and they recently released a short press release in response: “Effective November 9th 2011 at 7pm, Aeroplan began applying, at Air Canada’s request, fuel surcharges to flight rewards on Lufthansa. Members […]

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Air Canada Aeroplan Institutes Huge Fuel Surcharges

November 10, 2011

Aeroplan used to be known as one of the top frequent flyer programs. They have generous routing rules and as a 1:1 transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest, they have been a solid option for Star Alliance awards (especially for mini-round the world trips).The key was to always avoid flying […]

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My Ranking of Airline Frequent Flyer Programs

October 24, 2011

All airline miles were not created equal. And while some programs are clearly better than others, the only thing that matters is how much value you get from your frequent flyer program. For example, if your preferred airport is only serviced by American – you may value your AAdvantage miles much more than any others. […]

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Friendly Reminder: 6 Deals are Expiring on Sept 30th, 2011

September 29, 2011

Maybe it’s because September 30 is the last day of the fiscal year, but a lot of great promotions, deals and transfer opportunities will be coming to an end on Friday, so now’s your last chance to take advantage of them. 1. Transfer Amex points to Continental Airlines. For information check out my recent post and video on […]

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500 Free Aeroplan Miles with Fairmont Email Sign-up

September 21, 2011

If you don’t currently have an Air Canada Aeroplan account, you should get one right now (link). They are a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards and after Continental leaves the program starting October 1, 2011, they will most likely become the premier partner when redeeming Star Alliance awards. They are also transfer partners […]

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Up to 5,000 Bonus Points for Hotel Transfers to Aeroplan

August 24, 2011

Airlines often add incentives to transfer hotel points to them, because the hotel chains actually pay the airlines for the miles you get. From August 22 – Sept 18 Air Canada’s frequent flyer program Aeroplan is now offering up to 5,000 extra Aeroplan miles when you transfer the equivalent of 25,000 miles or hotel points […]

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Reminder: Aeroplan Increases Most Award Levels Tomorrow

July 14, 2011

Just a friendly reminder that Aeroplan increases their award chart redemption levels tomorrow. I wrote about the subject here, so you may want to book an award today if you have Star Alliance award travel in your plans. Remember, American Express Membership Rewards points transfer instantly to Aeroplan, so you have time to act. If […]

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2,500 Aeroplan Miles Per Hyatt Stay

July 4, 2011

I earned 20,000 bonus Hyatt points during their recent Possibilities promotion, which isn’t too bad for 9 nights/4 stays – it’s basically a free night at any Park Hyatt in the world. Since that promo ended June 30, 2011 and another hasn’t been announced, it may make sense to bank your Hyatt stays to Aeroplan […]

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100 Free Aeroplan Miles for Free Sign-up

June 17, 2011

You can get 100 free Aeroplan miles for simply signing up for free account. You need to enter a Canadian zip code, so thanks to TPG reader JD for providing R3L 1B7. One bonus per Aeroplan member. This is a great way to keep your Aeroplan account active since points expire after a relatively short period […]

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Maximizing Amex Post 7: Star Alliance Transfer Partners

May 9, 2011

This is another installment in my Maximizing Amex series where I examine the benefits of American Express cards and Amex’s Membership Rewards Program. The articles include; Post 1: Understanding the Card Offering. Post 2: Understanding Membership Rewards. Post 3: Understanding Transfer Bonuses. Post 4: Platinum Card Review. Post 5: SkyTeam Transfer Partners. Post 6: Oneworld Transfer Partners. Post 7: Star Alliance Transfer […]

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Canadian American Express Aeroplan Platinum 50,000 Mile Bonus is Back

April 20, 2011

I get emails all the time from my friendly northern neighbors about how much they wish they could get in on the super-lucrative US credit card bonuses. I would feel the same way!  Lately the 50,000 and 100,000 bonuses have been mind-blowing and it must be such a tease to be so close, yet so […]

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Air Canada Aeroplan Increases Most Award Levels

April 19, 2011

In February I wrote a post about my twenty favorite airline awards and Air Canada Aeroplan showed up on that list four times. I’ve always liked most awards on their Star Alliance Award chart, but unfortunately all of them are going up in price on July 15, 2011. The four I had highlighted were: 1) 100,000 miles […]

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Up to 5,000 Bonus Air Canada Aeroplan Miles for Hotel Transfers

March 21, 2011

Air Canada Aeroplan is running a promotion which entices people to transfer their hotel points to Aeroplan. Aeroplan does this because the hotel companies actually pay Aeroplan for the miles if you decide to transfer your hard earned hotel points for airline miles. Register here. Details: Transfer by April 30, 2011. 1,000 Bonus Aeroplan Miles for […]

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Donating Points and Miles to Charity

March 14, 2011

With the terrible tragedy in Japan, I’ve received a bunch of emails asking about the best ways to donate miles to charity. In general, I’d recommend donating cash, because it’s the quickest and cleanest way from a tax perspective. However, if you are low on cash, but still want to help, you can also donate your miles […]

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Twenty of My Favorite Airline Awards

February 21, 2011

I book millions of miles a month in awards for clients and I’m always trying to think about what award option works the best, since most people have multiple mileage balances and flexible credit card points. Whether its wrangling a Delta award to the “low” level or helping someone maximize an American Express transfer bonus […]

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Use Points and Miles to Escape the Wrath of Winter

February 2, 2011

I hate winter. There, I said it. I’ve lived in the Northeast my entire life and I’ve been putting up with cold, dark winters because I haven’t known any better. However, I’m starting to think that living in a warmer climate during the winter months is something I will need to do at some point […]

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American Express Platinum Card 50,000 Point Sign Up Bonus

January 12, 2011

UPDATE: This bonus is no longer available. I’ve written about this card before, but I’ll write about it again since I think it’s so great: 50,000 American Express Membership Rewards points: for opening up a $450 annual fee Amex Platinum – incredible deal in my opinion. I conservatively estimate the value of  50,000 Amex points at […]

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Flying in Extreme Comfort Article in The Globe and Mail

January 12, 2011

Check out this piece I helped with about flying in premium cabins. It’s a three part series, so keep your eyes peeled 8) If you are a reporter and would like to use me as an expert for an upcoming piece, email me at [email protected]

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Air Canada Aeroplan: ‘Round the World’ in Business Class For 100,000 Miles and 120,000 in First

January 11, 2011

Update: Aeroplan increased their award charts July 15, 2011 Air Canada is known for having a pretty flexible frequent flyer program, Aeroplan (which is actually a separately operating company). Some of the things I love about Aeroplan are: 1) 80,000 mile business class awards from North America to most of Western Europe 2) 100,000 mile […]

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