Air Canada to ditch Aeroplan, relaunch own frequent flyer scheme

By David Flynn, May 12 2017
Air Canada to ditch Aeroplan, relaunch own frequent flyer scheme

Air Canada will axe its Aeroplan frequent flyer program in favour of an all-new loyalty scheme to launch in 2020.

The move will see the Star Alliance member take back control of its rewards scheme, which was spun out and then sold off to become a fully independent scheme by 2008 in order to help Air Canada through difficult financial straits – a situation which echoed speculation in 2014 that Qantas might do the same thing during its own troubled times.

Aeroplan has evolved to become a nationwide rewards program, with Air Canada as but one partner: albeit the partner through which travellers also earn status in the airline's Altitude scheme.

However, when the current contract between Aeroplan's parent company Aimia and Air Canada expires in 2020, the airline will unveil a new frequent flyer scheme which it will once again fully own and operate.

"The new program, launching in 2020, will offer additional earning and redemption opportunities, more personalised service and a better digital experience for Air Canada customers," promises Benjamin Smith, president of Air Canada’s passenger airlines, said in a statement.

“Similar to all of Air Canada’s North American peers, by managing our own loyalty program, we will be able to take better care of our customers by making decisions in real time that address specific needs."

Air Canada hasn't indicated if Aeroplan points would post-2020 be transferrable to its new rewards currency, but says it intends to offer redemption of Aeroplan seats to members after the new loyalty program launches “with pricing competitive with other third-party rewards programs." 


David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1247

"Benjamin Smith, president of Air Canada’s passenger airlines"

What kind of title is that?


23 May 2014

Total posts 120

Maybe a warning to investors thinking of buying a frequent flyer program... the airline can ditch you a few years down the road and start again. Having said that, probably better for frequent flyers if the program is wholly owned by the airline, and now it will have to compete with aeroplan too so probably some good deals to be had.

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