As Canada’s largest air carrier prepares to migrate the newly acquired Aeroplan to a new loyalty program come 2020, Air Canada is making changes to offer customers ‘greater flexibility’ on reward flights.
According to the airline, among the changes include the ability to receive a full refund within 24 hours of booking, the option to refund your flight reward up to two hours before departure, a reduction of the aeroplan.com refund fee and complimentary changes and refunds for Air Canada Altitude Super Elite 100K members.
In a statement, Mark Nasr, Vice President, Loyalty and eCommerce, Air Canada, said “choice and flexibility are at the core of our loyalty plans, so we’re excited to introduce the first of many changes for Aeroplan Members as we work to create the best travel loyalty program.”
He added, “the changes we are announcing today will provide members with more flexibility and peace of mind while still delivering the same unbeatable value so they can reach their travel goals.”
Complimentary, full refunds within 24 hours of booking: Aeroplan Members will be able to cancel and refund Flight Rewards for free within 24 hours of booking.Air Canada/Aeroplan
Option to refund your Flight Reward up to two hours before departure: Previously, Aeroplan Flight Reward bookings could not be refunded within 21 days of departure. With these changes, Aeroplan Members will be able to cancel and refund their Flight Reward booking for a fee up until two hours prior to the departure time of the first flight in the reservation. This will apply to all bookings, including those made prior to the new policy coming into effect. Rather than keeping cancelled tickets open for future travel, Aeroplan Miles, taxes and fees will be refunded, and members may book new tickets anytime in the future, delivering greater convenience than before.
Reduction of the aeroplan.com Refund Fee: Aeroplan will lower the Refund Fee from $150 to $125 for refunds completed via aeroplan.com. The new, lower fee will apply to all bookings, including those made prior to the new policy coming into effect. Aeroplan diamond status members will continue to enjoy lower fee amounts, and Air Canada Altitude Super Elite 100K members will not be charged the fee.
New for Air Canada Altitude Super Elite 100K members, complimentary changes and refunds: Air Canada Altitude Super Elite 100K members will now receive complimentary changes to their Flight Reward bookings and refunds when they request a change or refund to their Flight Reward booking. These fee waivers will apply to all bookings, including those made prior to the new policy coming into effect.
As part of the changes, however, around-the-world flight rewards are being discontinued, and beginning Sept. 1, members will be limited to a maximum of one stopover or one open jaw, in addition to the point-of-turnaround.
The new loyalty program is expected to launch in the summer of next year and more information is expected to be announced in the months to come.
Air Canada says this moves positions “Aeroplan [as] the most flexible flight reward policies of any Canadian loyalty program.”