Tuesday, October 1, 2013

CIBC updates the Aventura program - better redemption rates, limited time increased card sign up bonus and more!

As we all know there has been a lot of talk of the whole CIBC-Aeroplan-TD dealings around the Aeroplan credit card portfolio. And as we know CIBC's Aeroplan portfolio will be split between them and TD but of course since CIBC cannot market to new Aeroplan cardholders they needed another strong product offering. In comes the CIBC Aventura program which has been around for a few years now but with little changes over those years (much like its Aerogold counterpart). In that period of time have come new competitors which provided a better offering than the Aventura program and CIBC obviously saw this and coupled with their loss of the primary Aeroplan portfolio they knew they had to revamp the Aventura program. There had been news that CIBC was planning on developing a new program and earmarking $50MM towards it which we assume is for the revamped Aventura program. (I sure hope these changes to Aventura didn't cost that much because if they did the consultants on this job got really rich for almost nothing, but I assume much of that $50MM will go towards marketing the product)

Well hallelujah, today they announced the new program that will take effect on January 1st of 2014. The changes aren't overly huge but they do make the Aventura branded cards much stronger. Here are highlights of the changes:
- New Reward Flight Chart which allows for up to a 2.28% return (on long haul Canada/US flights) on your Aventura card spending (not including category bonuses)
- More airlines available via that reward chart. Previously it was around 100 airlines but now it is being market as any airline, any flight, any seat etc.
- The addition of trip cancellation insurance on the Visa branded cards (the World Elite MasterCard version already provided this)
- The addition of purchase protection on the Visa branded cards (the World Elite MasterCard version already provided this)
- A new limited time sign up bonus of 30,000 Aventura Points when you complete three transactions on your new card. Apply by Dec 31 and complete the purchases by Jan 31, 14

Other than that the Aventura card pretty much remains the same. The best news in the changes is the reward chart. Here is the new chart that comes in affect on Jan 1, 2014:

and here is the current chart that is valid until Dec 31, 2013:

As you can see the new chart is much more rewarding on the lower end (short haul and long haul flights in Canada and the U.S.) with the Long Haul portion maxing out at 35,000 points for tickets up to $800 before taxes and fees. This is the redemption that offers the 2.28% rate of return. Of course if availability can be met you can get a 4% return on your short haul redemptions but that is a big if.

Taxes and fees can also be paid for with points and exactly like the RBC Avion reward chart will cost you 100 points per dollar so only a 1% return. This is where cards like the American Express Gold Rewards Card, BMO Rewards World Elite, TD Visas and Diners Club Club Rewards cards are stronger as the rate of return is not diminished on the taxes and fees portion.

That's about it for the new Aventura program! The changes are definitely positive and chances are it will help keep some customers with CIBC instead of them moving to TD.

We'd love to hear your thoughts on the changes! Leave us a comment below.


  1. I assume the Aventura card is losing the 1:1 transfer to Aeroplan as of Dec 31?

    1. There is no mention of it in the new marketing materials so I as well would have to assume that is the case.

  2. The 10,000 point level for short haul flights could make this card very attractive.

    1. Yes it sure could! Of course it is all dependent on how many tickets they actually have available at that level.

  3. If the 1:1 transfer to Aeroplan is not available in the future, then people will choose the Amex AeroplanPlus Gold card instead of this one, especially Amex is offering 30k bonus miles and first year free now. Here is the link to get 30k instead of 20k miles:


  4. the aeroplanPlus gold card is a great card, you can get 30000 bonus aeroplan miles by the link below.