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Amazing new welcome offer for the HSBC World Elite Mastercard - Up to 100,000 points with first year free! (Quebec gets 130,000 points with fee)

HSBC has just come out with their biggest and best offer yet for the HSBC World Elite Mastercard and in fact the bonus for Quebec resident...

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hainan Airlines offering 2 for 1 Business Class on Toronto-Beijing Route

On this relatively new route it appears Hainan is trying to generate some business for the upfront cabin during the summer season when more families tend to travel economy rather then people flying for work in business class. The offer states that if you buy a business class ticket you can get another one free, or if you buy two business class tickets you can still get one free(?). So if you have a family of four and you want to take advantage of this offer you may want to do two separate bookings to get two free business class tickets. Either way this is not a bad deal and may allow for some people to travel upfront who normally would not. The offer itself runs until August 31. For full details please see the promotional offer on Hainan's website

Friday, June 24, 2011

Diners Club continues to expand airport lounge access including 4 more Canadian cities

Back in March we had mentioned that Diners Club had expanded their lounge access program (this is the program where you use your Diners Club card not the Priority Pass that also comes with the card) and now they have expanded it even further. In March the total number of lounges you could access with your Diners Club card was just 350 and that has now grown to over 400. Of particular interest to us Canadians is the expansion of the program to include more lounges in Canada. After the first expansion only the KLM Crown Lounge in Toronto was participating but now there is access to lounges in Calgary (2),  Montreal, Quebec City and Winnipeg. A quick glance at the list of lounges shows a large increase in the  amount of lounges one can access south of the border.

This card keeps getting stronger after a bit of a lull when it was be pawned off by Citibank and we here at Rewards Canada can only anxiously await its return to the general public. Meanwhile us current cardholders can sit back and relax..... in one of the many more lounges now available.

Here are the specifics on the Canadian lounges that are participating, for a list of all the lounges please see here:

Calgary International Airport – Calgary, Canada
Lounge NameChinook Lounge
Lounge LocationConcourse D
Telephone403 221 1506
FaxN/A
Hours Open6:00 am - 9:00 pm daily
Closed : Dec 25, Jan 01 & 02
Languages SpokenEnglish
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their Diners Club card. Maximum 3 hour stay. Dress code applies (no shorts, baseball caps or football shirts allowed). Non-smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Disabled access, Flight monitor, Newspapers, Magazines, Conference facilities, Internet, Wi-Fi, Telephone, TV, Snacks, Soft Drinks and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Children under 2 years are admitted free. Guest fee - US $27.
Calgary International Airport – Calgary, Canada
Lounge NameRocky Mountain Lounge
Lounge LocationConcourse C
Telephone403 221 1534
FaxN/A
Hours Open6:00 am - 9:00 pm daily
Closed : Dec 25, Jan 01 & 02
Languages SpokenEnglish
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their Diners Club card. Maximum 3 hour stay. Dress code applies (no shorts, baseball caps or football shirts allowed). Non-smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Disabled access, Flight monitor, Newspapers, Magazines, Conference facilities, Internet, Wi-Fi, Telephone, TV, Snacks, Soft Drinks and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Children under 2 years are admitted free. Guest fee - US $27.
Trudeau International Airport – Montreal, Canada
Lounge NameTD First Class Lounge
Lounge LocationAirside - after Security Checks (Entrance B) the Lounge is located between Gates 52 and 53, next to the Duty Free Airport Shop
Telephone514 636 7638
FaxN/A
Hours Open5:00 am - 10:00 pm daily
Languages SpokenEnglish
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their Diners Club card. Maximum 3 hour stay. Non-smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Disabled access, Flight monitor, Newspapers, Magazines, Internet, Wi-Fi, Telephone, TV, Snacks, Soft Drinks and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Children under 2 years are admitted free. Guest fee - US $27.
Quebec International Airport – Quebec, Canada
Lounge NameSalon VIP Lounge
Lounge LocationAirside - after Security Checks on the 2nd Floor, the Lounge is located on the left hand side between two escalators
Telephone418 640 2700
Fax418 640 2656
Hours Open4:00 am - 10:00 pm daily
Languages SpokenEnglish
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their valid Diners Club card. Non smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Disabled access, Flight monitor, Newspapers, Magazines, Conference facilities, Internet, Wi-Fi, Telephone, TV, Snacks, Soft Drinks and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Children under 2 years are admitted free. Guest fee - US $27.
Toronto Pearson International – Toronto, Canada
Lounge NameKLM Crown Lounge
Lounge LocationTerminal 3:
Airside - Concourse C, above Gate C33, and after the Duty Free shops. The lounge is situated after the International Security Checks (accessible only to International passengers.)
TelephoneN/A
FaxN/A
Hours Open1:00 pm - 12:00 am daily. Hours are subject to seasonal changes
Languages SpokenN/A
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their valid Diners Club card. Non smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Fax facility, Internet access, Wi-Fi, Newspapers, Magazines, Telephone, Television, Snacks, Soft drinks, and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Guest fee - $25 USD.
Winnipeg International Airport – Wininipeg, Canada
Lounge NameTravel Lounge by Palliser
Lounge LocationAirside - after Security Checks and Passport Control, the Lounge is located on the 2nd Floor of the main departure lounge, adjacent to Gate H. Due to it's location, the lounge is not accessible to passengers traveling on transborder flights to the US.
Telephone204 987 9439
Fax204 987 2074
Hours Open7:00 am - 8:00 pm Monday - Friday
Closed Saturday and Sunday.
Languages SpokenEnglish
Entry ConditionsCardmembers must present their valid Diners Club card. Non smoking.
Amenities OfferedAir conditioning, Disabled access, Flight monitor, Newspapers, Magazines, Internet, Wi-Fi, Telephone, TV, Snacks, Soft Drinks and Alcoholic beverages.
FeesCardmembers please check with your issuer for terms and conditions of lounge access. Guest fee - US $27.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Air Canada Top Tier Summer Upgrade Offer

For the summer travel season Air Canada is offering its elite members greater access to upgrading from Tango Plus fares for travel within Canada and between Canada and the U.S.. Super Elite and Elite members are being offered reduced amounts of eUpgrade credits while Prestige members will be allowed to request upgrades from Tango Plus fares. The promo runs from Jun 24 to Aug 31.

For more information please visit AirCanada.com

Friday, June 17, 2011

Rewards Canada Blog now optimized for mobile browsing

Thanks to the latest enhancement from Blogger, the Rewards Canada  blog is now optimized for mobile browsing. There is nothing that you have to do on your end, just point your phone to http://blog.rewardscanada.ca and it will automatically switch to the mobile version.

I know that if any of you tried our blog before on your phone that our iFrame above with our route listings didn't size properly on some phones so you would see the entire route listing before you saw any blog posts. This is now corrected with the new mobile feature.

Etihad Guest launches new elite tier

Etihad Airways Guest Rewards program has added a new tier to their elite status levels called Gold Elite. Gold Elite is the now the highest status level you can reach with Etihad. Guest members who earn 125,000 tier miles or 60 tier segments within a 12 month rolling period will be awarded the new Gold Elite Status.

What does the Gold Elite status bring to table over and above the benefits in the lower tiers?
* All the benefits of Etihad Guest Gold plus:
* 50% extra Etihad Guest Miles on every flight
* An exclusive rewards section on the RewardShop
* A Guaranteed Coral Economy Seat if booked 12 hours in advance even if the flight is fully booked (must be booked in the highest economy fare class)
* Waitlist priority
* Diamond First Class Lounge access
* Bonus Etihad Guest Miles when you travel in the Pearl Business or Diamond First class
* 20kg Excess Baggage Allowance
* The chance to nominate one Etihad Silver Guest
* 3rd Party Nomination
* Exclusive offers with programme partners and many more

For complete details on this new tier please see here.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

News Round Up: Aeroplan, Xiamen Airlines, Delta, United and Malaysia Airlines

With quite a few new developments in the airline and travel rewards industry I thought it would be better to round up all the news snippets in one blog post rather then inundating you with multiple posts.

Aeroplan now providing status of 7 Year Old non-redeemed miles

Tying in to some of our earlier blog posts and interviews in the Canadian media about Aeroplan's 7 Year expiry, this new feature can be found when you log in to your Aeroplan account. Once logged, click on the 'Your Account' tab and about 1/3 of the way down there is a heading labeled "Account Expiry Status" and there you will find the link to inquire about when your non-redeemed miles are set to expire. The response is not automatic, you will receive an email within 3-4 business days with your mileage status or if they do not have an email address on file you can expect a letter to be sent to you within 20 business days.

Xiamen Airlines to join SkyTeam
The subsidiary of China Southern Airlines (already a member of SkyTeam) is planning on joining the SkyTeam alliance. The airline was approved for membership by the alliance and is slated to be a member by the end of 2012.

Delta and United Continental to raise bag fees again
This time the increase in bag fees is for International flights. The first checked bag still flies free but a second bag on United Continental has been increased to $70. Delta new charges are $60 for a second bag if checked online and $75 if checked at the airport. For Delta flights to Mexico and Central America the second bag no longer travels for free as they have now implemented a $30 fee.

Malaysia Airlines set to join OneWorld Alliance
Earlier this month MAS announced their plan to join the OneWorld Alliance and expects to have full membership within 12-18 months.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Great Reward Ticket Bonus Offers from Alitalia and Etihad

You may recall that not too long along we starting tracking discounted award/reward offers from all the various travel reward programs (see this FFB page for a summary) and in the past week two airlines have come out with some really great promotions on their reward tickets. Alitalia's applies right to your first booking while Etihad's requires you to redeem for 5 tickets, either way both offers are well worth taking advantage of:

Alitlia MilleMiglia
AZ's offer will provide MilleMiglia members with a 40% MilleMiglia bonus on each reward ticket that is redeemed for. That is, if you redeem for an economy class ticket between New York and Milan for 50,000 MilleMiglia miles, they will provide you with 20,000 bonus miles afterwards. This offer is good on all standard reward tickets in all booking classes, so the higher the redemption value the higher the bonus. This offer runs until June 30, 11. For complete details please see here.


Etihad Guest
Etihad's offer also provides members with bonus miles after redemption but in EY's case you have to complete 5 reward ticket redemptions. All five redemptions do not have to take place at the same time but all have to be booked by July 31. Once you have completed all 5 bookings, Etihad will award you with bonus miles equivalent to the lowest value booking out of your 5 redemptions. to make the most of this offer you will want to try to go for some bigger redemptions to ensure a bigger bonus is returned to you, nonetheless whatever route you go you will end up with enough miles for another redemption at that lowest level.

For Example: you redeem for 4 business class tickets between North America and Abu Dhabi at 140,000 miles each but then redeem your 5th one for economy class for 70,000 miles, your bonus would be 70,000 miles or enough for another economy class ticket from North America to Abu Dhabi.


Full details and registration for this promotion can be found here.

You may ask why offer bonus miles on redemptions? Why not just discount the reward ticket as that would be easier? The primary reason is that with a discount there is no guarantee you may come back to fly that airline and use their FFP again. By offering you bonus miles after the fact you are being encouraged to continue using that FFP and its partners to earn more miles within the program. In fact promos like these kill two birds with one stone, they promote redemption and lower mileage balances on the FFP's books while potentially keeping the member active in the program.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

British Airways Business Class Sale to London

British Airways is currently running a sale on Business Class fares from Canada to London for the summer season. Fares start at $2698r/t (+taxes &fees) for travel Jun 28 - Sep 3 and need to be booked by Jun 16.
Fares from
Montreal $2698 r/t
Toronto $2698 r/t
Vancouver $3298 r/t
Calgary $3298 r/t
You can book this fare at BritishAirways.com

Earn 5x the Aeroplan Miles at Home Hardware this weekend

This is offer has an extremely short duration, so rather then placing it on our regular Aeroplan bonus offer page we thought it would fit better here and it is pretty simple:

This weekend, from June 16-19 Aeroplan members can earn 5X the Aeroplan miles on all Home Hardware purchases. Simple as that.

Full details can be found on Aeroplan.com

Monday, June 13, 2011

Rack up tons of Aeroplan miles for Best Western stays this summer

Despite a possible looming strike by some of their front end workers, Air Canada states they will continue on with a full schedule but should the airline slow down operations you can still get a good Aeroplan mileage fix with Best Western this summer. Due to the possible strike these offers are great for those who may be planning a 'stay-cation' here in Canada as many small towns don't have the higher end Sheratons, Hyatts and Marriotts but do have BW's.

What are the offers? There are two currently running for Air Canada's Aeroplan members. The first (which should be your first step in racking up the miles this summer) is for buying Best Western gift cards or as they call them Travel Cards. You can earn 1,500 bonus Aeroplan miles for every $100 spent on a Best Western travel card. This offer runs until August 31, 2011.

The second offer is part of Best Western's summer system wide promotion whereby members will earn 750 bonus Aeroplan miles for every stay completed at a Best Western. This bonus is above the 250 base Aeroplan miles earned for each stay. The offer is valid for stays between June 19 and August 14, 2011. The offer requires membership in the Best Western Rewards Program (free to join) with your earning preference set to Aeroplan and registering for the offer itself.

Here a couple of examples of how many miles you could get with this promotion (assuming a nightly rate of $125).
$500 of Travel Cards = 7,500 Aeroplan Miles
Cards purchased on an Aeroplan earning card = 500 Aeroplan Miles (minimum, can be higher with the American Express AeroplanPlus or Gold Rewards cards)
4 Stays at $125 = 1,000 Aeroplan Miles
Stay bonuses = 3,000 Aeroplan Miles
Total for four stays: 12,000 Aeroplan Miles

$1,000 of Travel Cards = 15,000 Aeroplan Miles
Cards purchased on an Aeroplan earning card = 1,000 Aeroplan Miles (minimum, can be higher with the American Express AeroplanPlus or Gold Rewards cards)
8 Stays at $125 = 2,000 Aeroplan Miles
Stay bonuses = 6,000 Aeroplan Miles
Total for four stays: 24,000 Aeroplan Miles
This is enough mileage with lots to spare for a short haul flight with Air Canada (15,000 miles)

As you see both options can earn you a lot more Aeroplan miles then you normally would (4 stays at $125 would normally net 1,500 Aeroplan miles including credit card earning, 8 stays would net 3,000 miles)

Not a bad deal if you are planning some BW stays this summer and of course the stays don't have to be in Canada. In fact a lot of Best Western's in the U.S. can be had for under $100 per night which means you could stretch a $1000 in travel cards to 10 stays which would get you Gold Elite status in Best Western's Rewards program and put you over the 25,000 mile mark good enough for an Aeroplan reward flight within North America.

For more details on these offers please visit our Aeroplan Bonus Mile Opportunities page

Thursday, June 9, 2011

15% discount on Air France flights to France or Germany

15% discount on Air France flights to France or Germany
Book before June 15 and benefit from a 15% discount on your flight to France or Germany between July 8 and December 12, 2011. This offer is valid for departures from Canada in Voyageur or Premium Voyageur cabin. To take advantage of this offer simply enter the code "ETE144" when prompted while booking online at AirFrance.ca
Only the first 500 users will benefit from the 15% discount.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Air Canada reveals new sun destinations and routes

According to Airline Route Updates, Air Canada is further expanding its reach in the sun destination market with flight to three new cities and four new routes destinations previously served from other Canadian cities.

The three new destinations are Curacao, St. Kitts and St. Thomas. All three will be served with direct non-stop flights from Toronto.

The four new routes that Air Canada will operate this coming winter are
Edmonton – Cozumel
Halifax – Providenciales
Montreal – Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo
Ottawa – Holguin

The inter schedule has also seen adjustments to existing routes with some increase and decreases as well as the cancellation of the following routes:
Edmonton – Montego Bay
Montreal – Phoenix
Quebec City – Varadero
Vancouver – Montego Bay

For complete details please visit Airline Route Updates

Friday, June 3, 2011

SriLankan to serve Toronto?

I have not seen much news on this but according to this SriLankan newspaper, the national airline, SriLankan will begin to serve Toronto this October via London Heathrow. Apparently the service will be daily and would provide another option for those looking to go to the Indian Sub-continent or Southeast Asia.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Vote for Canada's Top Travel Rewards Credit Card

For the third year in a row Rewards Canada will be ranking Canada's Top Travel Rewards Credit Cards but this year we are also having Canada vote for their favourites. Canada's Rankings will be listed alongside of Rewards Canada's on July 18th.

To vote please visit
http://www.rewardscanada.ca/vote/