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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Aeroplan provides details of transition period to the new program - temporary system outages, removal of Star Alliance Upgrade Awards until 2021 & more

 

In a little over two weeks the Aeroplan we know now will be gone and the new Aeroplan will be here. There's a lot of anticipation in the air for the new Aeroplan program and as can be expected with any such migration there is a need to pause certain aspects of the program. Aeroplan let us know this morning what we can expect to happen from now until November 8th and beyond:

Generally speaking, between the evening of Nov. 6, 2020, and the afternoon of Nov. 8, 2020, Aeroplan will be temporarily unavailable. However, some features will be put on hold ahead of Nov. 6, to make the transition more seamless.

Detailed information can be found at aircanada.com/aeroplanupdate, but here are some notable highlights:

· Flight Rewards - Flight rewards will be temporarily unavailable for new reservations, changes and cancellations from the evening of Nov. 6, through the afternoon of Nov. 8. If a member is traveling during that time and needs immediate support for a previously booked flight reward reservation, they can contact the Aeroplan Contact Centre at 1-800-361-5373.

· Non-Air Rewards – Members will be unable to redeem points for merchandise (including gift cards) and other travel rewards starting from the evening of Nov. 6, through the afternoon of Nov. 8.

· Crediting points – For points earned with partners between Oct. 30 and Nov. 9, there will be a delay in points crediting. They will automatically be credited beginning Nov. 10.

· Altitude members – As in previous years, Altitude status members must choose their Select Privileges no later than Oct. 31. All status benefits, including eUpgrades, will remain available throughout the transition period.

· Star Alliance Upgrade Awards (SAUA) - Star Alliance Upgrade Awards will be paused for Aeroplan members starting Oct. 31. Members will be able to request these upgrades again later in 2021.

(We made the difficult choice to temporarily pause Star Alliance Upgrade Awards to allow for more focus on the implementation of new program features. This decision was reinforced by lower international travel demand as a result of COVID-19, and a related drop in demand for SAUA. We’re eager to reintroduce this product later in 2021. In the meantime, take note that Star Alliance Upgrade Awards will continue to be available on Air Canada flights for members of partner frequent flyer programs.)

When you visit Aeroplan's migration update page there are two more notable disruptions to be aware of:

· Between October 17 and the afternoon of November 8, 2020, it will not be possible to request missing Aeroplan points for flight activities.

· Between the evening of November 6 and the afternoon of November 8, 2020, the option to convert partner points to Aeroplan points will be unavailable.

Many of these disruptions to the Aeroplan are to be expected and given that most of them will take place over the weekend of November 6 to 8 it should hopefully not affect a lot of members. When you think about it this is the perfect time for Aeroplan to make the transition - November tends to be quiet for travel regardless of the year but now with the travel being so much lower due to COVID-19 it is the perfect time for the switch and it provides Aeroplan time to also work out the kinks before they see an uptick in travel again.

Some of you may be disheartened about the pause of Star Alliance Upgrade Awards until 2021 and it is unfortunate if you had this award in your sights over the next few months but at least Aeroplan has made the promise to reintroduce them in 2021. In all likelihood the SAUA makes up a very small percentage of awards redeemed for by members so it shouldn't affect too many members.

You can learn more about the Aeroplan migration here.

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