Ouch! Aeroplan increases fees to change or cancel award tickets

Not the news we like to start off with on a Monday but several of our readers alerted us to this latest change from Aeroplan over the weekend. In some ways it isn’t surprising to see this. We can almost come to expect annual changes or devaluations to programs, we see it with airlines and hotels alike. Aeroplan likes to make their changes in fall and since last fall saw changes in mileage requirements for many premium class tickets it would have been detrimental for Aeroplan to adjust their charts again only one year later. So what is the next best thing to help the bottom line? Why not change the change fees associated with Aeroplan award tickets. And change them they did. It doesn’t look good and for some they may now just let Aeroplan tickets lapse instead of changing or cancelling them. If you book a short haul round trip flight for 15,000 miles and want to change the dates of both flights it will cost you $200+taxes. Want to cancel the flight and get a refund, it will cost you $150. These are pretty high fees for a ticket that may only be worth $150-$200 before taxes and fees. So the increase in fees works two fold, it increases revenues on those tickets that are changed or cancelled and it also ‘breaks’ some miles for those who won’t pay the fees and allow the ticket to go unused.

These are the new fees that take effect on December 6th:

What was the old fee? A flat $90+ taxes which means refunds up to 22 days prior have gone up by $60 and changes on a round trip ticket have gone up by $110. That’s huge! The only little shimmer of light in these changes are for Aeroplan Diamond status members when they cancel flights and get a refund as it will only cost $30+taxes if done online. They also save $15 if only changing one direction of an Aeroplan award ticket. Change both directions and that Diamond member is paying $60 more than is currently charged.

Tickets booked prior to December 6th will still follow the old fee rules so you may want to try and get your Aeroplan bookings in place before them if you are someone who changes them up after booking.

What does this mean for members with flight rewards booked prior to December 6, 2016?

For any flight reward bookings made prior to December 6, 2016, the
previous non-refundable fee of C$90 plus taxes applies. For members with
Aeroplan diamond status, in the event that the new fee structure is
more favourable, the lowest fee will be applied if the change or refund
is made after December 6, 2016.

Thoughts everyone? (I know they won’t be favourable 🙂 )