Opinion – Aeroplan Points – Use ’em Up NOW

Karen Tankard is a former broadcaster, currently a  journalism instructor and a world traveler.

Karen writes a travel blog called Tank’s Travels/Tank Submerged. The blog can be found here.

I collect Aeroplan points on a credit card. I’ve used points for return flights to the Galapagos in Ecuador, Palau near the Philippines, Honduras and one way trips to Cancun, Mexico. Some were business class seats, which I’d never pay for.

There’s a lot still up in the air (!) about Aeroplan’s relationship with Air Canada after they part ways in 2020. Specifically, whether Aeroplan points will still allow access to Air Canada seats. There’s no guarantee.

I don’t want to get stuck with thousands of points I can’t redeem for travel.

So, I’ll be using my Aeroplan points as I accumulate enough for a ticket — 20,000 gets a one way ticket to Mexico. No more hoarding tens of thousands of points for a big trip. For the time being anyway. Until there’s more information.

I also have a credit card allowing me to accumulate Westjet dollars, which reduce the dollar amount paid on any tickets I buy. I’m using it as my primary card right now even though Westjet’s destinations are far more limited than Air Canada’s. Westjet can get me to Mexico and Cuba, two of my favourite places.

I returned to Westjet recently after using mostly US carriers for the past few years. I’d forgotten how good the service is. I was impressed with the legroom too — and I’m short. Travelling on Westjet won’t be a hardship.

Airline points keeps getting devalued (more points needed for a ticket), and going forward collecting them might not make sense. We’ll see.

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