Air Canada offering up to 40% off award tickets, 150% bonus miles on paid travel

Jul 21, 2020

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Air Canada’s Aeroplan loyalty program has been on a roll these past few months. It was one of the first airlines to extend elite status in response to the coronavirus outbreak and has since offered lucrative buy miles deals and other promotions. Today, the airline is back with two new promotions: double points and discounts on award travel. Plus, the airline also announced changes to its mileage expiration policy.

Let’s take a closer look.

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Earn up to 150% bonus miles on summer travel

An Air Canada Boeing 777 (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)
(Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

On the earning side, the airline is offering up to 150% bonus Aeroplan miles on Air Canada flights departing on or before Sept. 30, 2020. You can register for this promotion on Air Canada’s website and book your travel by Aug. 4 to be eligible for the bonus. Unfortunately, flights booked before July 21 are not eligible for the bonus.

Air Canada Bonus Mile Earning Promotion Screenshot
(Image courtesy of Aeroplan)

The bonus you’ll receive depends on the fare class you book. Economy Standard, Flex, Comfort, and Latitude fares earn a 100% bonus, effectively giving you double miles on economy flights.

On the other hand, Premium Economy Lowest, Premium Economy Flexible, Premium Rouge, Business Class Lowest and Business Class Flexible fares earn a 150% bonus.

According to the promotion, all Air Canada, Air Canada Express and Air Canada Rougeroutes are eligible for the bonus. The only exclusion are Economy Basic fares, which do not earn bonus miles with this promotion.

Unfortunately, this has limited use cases for U.S. travelers. The U.S.-Canada border is still closed for nonessential travel, so you can only use this for connecting flights to countries that are accepting American travelers. Regardless, it’s worth registering for the promotion if you foresee any international travel in your future and still need to book airfare.

Related: The best credit cards for airfare purchases

40% mileage rebate on Business class award tickets

Things are more interesting on the redemption side. Air Canada is offering up to a 40% rebate on Aeroplan award tickets that are booked by Aug. 4 for travel through Sept. 30. This rebate is offered on all Air Canada, Air Canada Express and Air Canada Rouge routes and you must register before you book. Unfortunately, flights operated by partner carriers are not eligible for this rebate.

Aeroplan Discount Promotion Screenshot
(Image courtesy of Aeroplan)

Like earning, the discount you’ll get on an award ticket depends on the class you book:

  • Business class – 40% rebate
  • Premium economy – 35% rebate
  • Economy class – 30% rebate.

This means that a one-way business class ticket from North America to Europe would cost just 33,000 Aeroplan miles after the rebate. That’s an incredible deal if you’re able to travel.

Do note that you must have the miles required to book at a standard rate in your account. You’ll pay the full mileage amount when you book and the rebate will be credited to your account four weeks after you travel. Again, the usefulness of this promotion is limited, but it’s worthwhile if you’re traveling to a destination that’s welcoming Americans.

Related: Why I’m more excited than ever about Air Canada’s new loyalty program

How to get Aeroplan miles fast

If you’re looking to take advantage of Aeroplan’s award rebate, you can transfer Amex Membership Rewards to Aeroplan instantly. The 1:1 transfer ratio makes this a solid option for maximizing your Membership Rewards points. If you need to give your account a boost, you can do so by applying for one of the following American Express cards:

Aeroplan permanently extends mileage validity

Finally, Aeroplan announced that it’s permanently extending mileage validity to 18 months. That’s six months longer than the previous 12-month validity. Aeroplan will also reinstate expired miles for travelers who had a flight booked in 2020 but had to cancel due to the coronavirus outbreak. Other members can reinstate expired miles the next time they take a flight with Air Canada or open an Aeroplan cobranded credit card.

Related: How to keep your points and miles from expiring

Bottom line

Given we’re in the middle of a global pandemic, the usefulness of this promotion is limited for most. However, it’s still great to see Aeroplan continue to offer great deals to their members that do choose to travel. It makes us excited to see what other airlines do in the future to drum up air travel demand over the coming months.

Extending mileage validity is a nice touch too. While we would’ve liked to see Aeroplan remove mileage expiration all together, this is a good start and will help Air Canada members keep their miles valid for longer.

Feature image by The Points Guy

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