Air Canada Will Bring Its Mileage Program Back In-House In 2020

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In 2002 Air Canada decided to spin off its mileage program, Aeroplan, into its own entity.

Air Canada started selling it off in 2005 and completely divested of it by 2008. Aimia currently runs the program and has the contract to do so until June 29, 2020.

Experts thought that Air Canada would start a new trend, with airlines realizing big up-front bucks by spinning off their mileage programs.

But the opposite happened. The main value proposition of mileage programs is when they are integrated. That way the airlines can collect the big bucks that banks are shelling out, while offering award tickets that won’t hurt their bottom line. Over time banks have been paying higher and higher fees for miles in order to support their lucrative credit card departments.

Air Canada just announced that they will not renew Aeroplan’s contract and effective 6/30/20 they will bring their mileage program back in house. After that point you will earn Air Canada miles for flights and you’ll likely need Air Canada miles to redeem awards on Star Alliance airlines. Until then you will continue to earn Aeroplan miles.

If you have Aeroplan miles you will probably want to use them by 6/29/20. The Aeroplan program will continue to exist, but it won’t have access to the type of award flights that it enjoys now as Air Canada’s mileage program. It is nice that we’re getting a 3 years heads-up for that purpose.

Aeroplan has gone through a plethora of devaluations, even worse than the US programs. The best outcome of this announcement is that it will pretty much kill the voices that want other airlines to outsource their mileage programs. People are unlikely to invest in outsourced programs when airlines can just refuse to renew the contract and effectively kill the program.

HT: AJK

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22 Comments On "Air Canada Will Bring Its Mileage Program Back In-House In 2020"

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High end hobo

Thank God.

Aeroplan was terrible in terms of IRROPS, they couldn’t open space on AC metal, can’t be reached on the phone during the night, and regular AC reps can’t change their tickets, along with lots of other problems.

AJK

One can hope, given the need for AC to build a completely their program from the ground up, that the new program will be more competitive than the Aeroplan. Maybe they’ll even get rid of fuel surcharges!

OK, I kid on the last point.

Sol

Will Amex continue to transfer to Aeroplan, and will Air Canada new program be transferable from Amex at the same 1:1 ratio?

hvaces42

@AJK:
Keeping YQ with fuel prices where they are must have made up for the loss of revenue from selling miles to banks.

Ikey

Aeroplan does not react in real time. I’ve had them issue 2 tickets (one after the other) on United,when United only showed one available. The first issued immediately and the other issues after pending for a few days. Sometimes incompetence is good 👍.

Zalmy

will this devalue there points worth?

Sol

Will the new AC program be transferable from Amex at 1:1 ratio?

iahphx

Is aeroplan a public company? If it is, I assume their stock price just crashed!

It is funny how “Wall Street” sometimes values these spin-offs. Logically, it makes no sense to have your frequent flyer program be a separate entity. But if that’s the only way Wall Street will value your company properly, I can see why management might try it. Just the other day, somebody asked Doug Parker at AA if he’d spin off AAdvantage because, objectively, AA’s stock is undervalued. BTW, he said no, it made no logical sense, and Wall Street would have to eventually understand this.

Reminds me of, about a decade ago, when some airlines spun off their regional carriers because there was a mania on Wall Street for regional airlines. Of course, regional airlines are pretty much nothing without the contracts from the majors. The investors who went for that mania didn’t do so well.

Peteco

Stock is down 57%. How can someone buy a stock of a Company that depends completely on one customer? I guess this will be the last spin off

Shimon

Any news about Avios? It seems that you can’t combine Avios to Your British Airways account any more, now it’s working only One Way, from BA to Iberia.
Please advise

chaim

Aimia shares were down about 61 per cent from their Wednesday closing price on Thursday afternoon. Air Canada shares had gained about 8.5 per cent.

Canadian

So, to understand correctly, on 6/30/20 Air Canada will not transfer a customers Aeroplan miles into their equivalent ‘Air Canada Miles’?

Shimon

I tried both BA and Iberia websites, both has only one option to combine BA to Iberia and both had a same language, that if you send it “One Way” BA to Iberia, you can’t have it back.

Al

@iahphx,

Aimia Inc.(AIM-T) closed at $3.33CAD down $5.80 or 62.71% on the day.

Shimon

I opened it on my iPhone and on “Explorer” Windows 10 laptop both showed same thing:
Which way do you want to transfer Avios?
You can only move Avios from British Airways to Iberia Plus – you cannot move your Avios back again. How many Avios do you want to transfer?
• British Airways to Iberia Plus

I transferred 1 mile just to update it ( last transaction was 12/7/15 Amex to Iberia with a glitch)
Please advise

Asc

Have 100k aeroplan will they expire in 2020?

Shimon

I tried Chrome on Iberia.com just now.
I’m getting the same message, You can only move Avios from British Airways to Iberia Plus – you cannot move your Avios back again.
Please advise, should I call someone?

Shimon

Update:
I called Iberia, the problem with combining Avios from Iberia to British Airways was because I have a household account, so as soon as I closed the household I was able to transfer Iberia Avios to British Airways Avios

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