Air Canada’s Aeroplan program underwent a serious revamp in late 2020. Along with a new award chart and the removal of fuel surcharges, Aeroplan made some interesting changes to its elite recognition. (although perhaps they could have simplified the number of different levels!)
Aeroplan is at the forefront of letting its elite members choose the benefits that they most desire. Here’s the chart outlining the options for “Select Benefits”.
Realistically, most Aeroplan elite members are going to choose the bonus miles and either the additional eUpgrade credits or the reduced targets for status re-qualification.
But Aeroplan is also pioneering the concept of sharing your elite benefits with friends or family, with the “Status Pass”. Here’s what you are giving when you send a Status Pass to a friend or family member:
- Up to three complimentary checked bags, weighing up to 70 pounds each
- Priority check-in
- Priority baggage handling
- Priority security clearance at select airports
- Maple Leaf Lounge access
- Priority airport standby
- Priority boarding with Zone 2
The most important restriction to note is that these shared benefits only apply to flights operated by Air Canada or a subsidiary. (paid or reward) Up to 9 passengers can benefit, as long as they are all included on the same booking reference.
The Aeroplan elite member can apply the Status Pass directly on aircanada.com (or via the App) All you need is the booking reference code and the surname of one of the passengers…
The Bottom Line
It is really easy for Canadians to complain about Air Canada and its lack of serious competition in the Canadian market. But its Aeroplan program is certainly making a big effort to reward Air Canada’s frequent flyers and perhaps even to become the frequent flyer program of choice for those who are unsatisfied with United Mileage Plus and other Star Alliance programs.
Will other frequent flyer programs follow along the path of allowing their elite members to share their benefits with friends and family? Let’s hope so…