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Update: This card now has a new improved signup offer and the post has been updated below!
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If you signup for the Chase Air Canada Aeroplan Card you will earn 75,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 in 3 months and another 25,000 bonus points after spending another $16,000 in 12 months from card opening.
With Pay Yourself Back, those are worth at least $1,250 towards all travel expenses, but they can be worth much more as Aeroplan miles.
For most people, that’s a much stronger and simpler offer than the previous offers of a 50K reward certificate and 10 miles per dollar on select spending, or 70k miles after $3k spending, or 60K miles after $4K spend plus 40K after $20K spend.
Welcome bonus terms
- You can earn the bonus if you are not a current Chase Aeroplan Cardholders and if you haven’t received a new Chase Aeroplan card in the past 24 months.
Typically, all Chase cards are subject to 5/24 restrictions, meaning that you are not likely to be approved if you have been approved for 5 or more consumer credit cards in the past 24 months.
However Chase doesn’t always enforce 5/24 rules, especially when new offers come onto the market, though there’s no way to know without trying.
Note that the Chase system automatically counts cards like authorized user cards and store cards as cards that count towards 5/24, but if you explain to Chase that those cards are merely authorized user cards or store cards they can manually approve you for a new card.
You can check your credit report for free at the federally authorized annualcreditreport.com to check how many accounts are shows as being open in the past 24 months.
- 3 miles per dollar on Air Canada flights
- 3 miles per dollar on groceries
- 3 miles per dollar on dining
- 1 mile per dollar elsewhere.
- There are no foreign transaction fees.
Additionally, you’ll earn 500 bonus miles for every $2,000 spend in a calendar month, up to 1,500 bonus miles on $6,000 of monthly spending.
Pay Yourself Back
Chase Aeroplan Cardmembers can now redeem their Aeroplan miles to pay yourself back for travel purchases on any airline, including hotels, car rentals, cruises, trains, travel agencies, parking, tolls, and much more, at a rate of 1.25 cents per point. Miles can be worth more than that, but that’s a nice feature to have as an option.
As a special promotion for 2023, there is no limit for this redemption option. Starting in 2024, this will be limited to 50,000 miles per calendar year, to pay yourself back for up to $625 of travel per calendar year.
You have 90 days after a charge is made to select to pay yourself back with miles.
Note that this feature is only intended to be used for purchases on this card and transfers from Chase and you may have your card closed for abuse for transfers from other sources.
Free Checked Baggage
This card allows the primary cardholder and up to 8 additional passengers on the same itinerary to get a free checked bag when flying Air Canada.
Nexus/Global Entry/PreCheck Fee Refund:
It costs $78 to apply for a 5 year TSA PreCheck membership which makes flying pleasant again. Shorter lines, no need to remove your shoes, belt, jacket, or hat. You can keep your laptop and small liquids inside your carry-on. And you go through a good old fashioned metal detector instead of assuming the position in the body scanner. If you charge it on your card the fee will be refunded.
It costs $100 to apply for a 5 year Global Entry membership which lets you bypass the customs line. If you have Global Entry you also get TSA Pre-Check for free.
NEXUS costs just $50 and includes access to shorter lines when traveling between the US and Canada and air, land, and marine ports. Even though it’s cheaper than Global Entry and PreCheck, it includes those benefits for free. Most cards don’t refund NEXUS, but this card will.
If you charge any of these on your card the fee will be refunded. You can get refunded for this charge once every 4 years.
My whole family has Global Entry and it sure makes traveling a whole lot easier!
Aeroplan 25K Elite Status
- You will get Aeroplan 25K elite status for the remainder of the calendar year after you apply, plus the following calendar year.
- You will get Aeroplan 25K elite status when you spend $15,000 in a calendar year. The status applies for the remainder of the calendar year after you finish the spending, plus the following calendar year.
Elite benefits include priority call center, waitlisting, seat selection, airport checking, standby, and boarding. 25K elites get 2 free checked bags, free sports equipment handling, 2 lounge passes, 20 eUpgrade credits, 25% bonus miles, parental leave of absence for status extensions, and more.
Level up your Elite Status and more
If you spend $50,000 in a calendar year you will gain a level in elite status for the next calendar year, for example from 25K to 35K, 35K to 50K, 50K to 75K, or 75K to Super Elite. If you are Super Elite you will be able to gift 50K status to another member.
Spend threshold milestones and companion pass
As an unadvertised card benefit, upon spending $100,000, $250,000, $500,000 and $750,000 in a calendar year you’ll earn a 50% off Priority Rewards redemption certificate.
The value of the Priority Rewards will be based on your Air Canada status.
- 25K/35K elites get 50% off US/Canada awards in coach.
- 50K elites get 50% off North America awards in coach or premium economy.
- 75K elites get 50% off systemwide awards in coach or premium economy.
- Super elites get 50% off systemwide awards in coach, premium economy, or business class.
If you spend a whopping $1,000,000 in a year you’ll get a companion pass that allows unlimited free companion award travel systemwide in any class of service. That pass will be valid for the rest of the calendar year in which you spend the million bucks and for the following calendar year.
That’s an awesome perk, but putting a million dollars on a card isn’t for the masses. And even if it is for you, you need to consider the opportunity cost versus spending on a card like Citi Double Cash that earns 2 or more miles per dollar everywhere. However if you can do all your spending in bonus categories on this card that will be different that just earning 1 mile per dollar and playing catchup to a card that earns 2 miles per dollar.
10% Ultimate Rewards Transfer Bonus
This offer applies to new and existing cardholders!
- If a Chase Aeroplan cardmember transfers 50,000 or more Chase Ultimate Rewards points in one transaction to Aeroplan, they will receive a 10% bonus. Maximum of 25,000 bonus points per calendar year.
- The 10% point bonus will post separately. In most cases the 10% bonus points will post within 72 hours of the original transfer, but in some cases, it may take up to seven days for the bonus points to post to the cardmember’s Aeroplan account.
- The bonus is not cumulative, meaning if you were to transfer 30,000 points and then later transfer 20,000 points, the 10% bonus will not apply.
- Offer is available until December 31, 2023.
If you, a member in your household, or an authorized user has one of the following Chase cards, you can transfer points into miles:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred has 60K signup bonus, earns 2.1 points per dollar on travel, 3.1 points per dollar on dining, streaming, and online groceries, has a $50 hotel credit, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.3 cents each for paid travel or pay yourself back categories ($95 annual fee). Read more here.
- Chase Sapphire Reserve has a 60K signup bonus, earns 3 points per dollar on dining/travel, has a $300 travel credit, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.5 cents each for paid travel or pay yourself back categories ($550 annual fee with $300 travel credit). Read more here.
- Chase Ink Preferred has a 100K signup bonus and earns 3 points per dollar on shipping, advertising, and travel, can transfer all Chase points into miles, and points are worth at least 1.25 cents each for paid travel or pay yourself back categories ($95 annual fee). Read more here.
Chase no-annual fee cards that are fantastic for earning points, but require one of the cards above for points transfers include:
- Chase Ink Cash has a 75K signup bonus and earns 5 points per dollar on cable, TV, telecom, cellular, office supply stores, and gift cards from office supply stores, plus 2 points per dollar on dining and gas ($0 annual fee). Read more here.
- Chase Ink Unlimited has a 75K signup bonus and earns 1.5 points per dollar everywhere ($0 annual fee). Read more here.
- Chase Freedom Flex has a 20K signup bonus, plus 5 points on rotating categories, 5 points per dollar on travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, and 3 points per dollar on dining and drugstores ($0 annual fee). Read more here.
- Chase Freedom Unlimited has a signup bonus offering 3 points per dollar on up to $20K of spending in your first 12 month, afterwards earn at least 1.5 points per dollar everywhere, 5 points per dollar on travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, and 3 points per dollar on dining and drugstores ($0 annual fee). Read more here.
The new Aeroplan
There are plenty of bargains and they are committed to keeping an award chart, which is more than US airlines can say!
Aeroplan allows up to 8 members to pool their miles together.
Short-haul awards on partner airlines like United start at just 6,000 miles.
Unfortunately, Air Canada tacks on a C$39 booking fee on all partner awards.
Infant awards in the US/Canada are free and are just C$25 outside the US/Canada.
There are no fuel surcharges for any airline.
You’ll need to spend $4,000 on this card within 3 months for the 75K bonus and an additional $16,000 for an extra 25,000 miles.
You can pay your federal taxes for a 1.85% fee. If you overpay your taxes you can request a refund or apply it to your next year’s taxes.
My local natural gas company allows me to prepay up to $1,000 on a credit card for a $1.65 flat fee. That’s a great way to earn miles and help meet a spend threshold. My electricity supplier allows me to pay with a credit card for free as long as I am enrolled in autopay.
- Cardholders get discounted Preferred pricing on Air Canada award flights
- Aeroplan will purchase carbon offsets to reduce the impact of greenhouse gas emissions associated with cardmember travel when they fly Air Canada using an Aeroplan flight reward. This applies to Chase Aeroplan primary cardmembers and travel companions on the same reservation for flight segments with Air Canada, Air Canada Express and Air Canada Rouge.
- Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance
- Baggage Delay Insurance
- Trip Delay Reimbursement
- Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver
- Roadside Assistance
Dan’s Quick Thoughts
Clearly, a lot of thought went into making this card appealing for Americans. Even if you want Air Canada miles, they had to create a value proposition to spend on the card instead of earning 1.5-5 miles per dollar spend with the Chase Quinfecta.
Did Air Canada do enough?
I’m not sure.
I’m happy to see Air Canada ditch the award certificate signup bonus.
The Pay Yourself Back benefit is certainly innovative and valuable and now the whole signup bonus is eligible for that.
The elite status earning and level up is innovative, but in a world where you can now spend your way to American elite status, it’s an open question if it will resonate with Americans that don’t travel often on Air Canada.
If you do travel on Air Canada often, then it can be worth keeping the card just for the free checked baggage.
The transfer bonus from Ultimate Rewards is great, though ironically it pushes you to spend more on the Chase Quinfecta. But I sure would love to see Hyatt or United offer something similar! Hopefully it also gets extended past 2023.
The uncapped spending benefits such as triple points on groceries is certainly a nice perk. But is it enough to make it worth opening and using the card for someone who doesn’t typically fly on Air Canada? I’m still on the fence about that, but I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Will you signup for a Chase Air Canada Aeroplan Mastercard?