Through May 25, 2014, Air Canada’s Aeroplan frequent flyer program is offering up to a 25% transfer bonus from many of their partners.
The bonus it tiered, with the following thresholds:
So basically if you convert enough points to generate up to 50,000 Aeroplan miles you can get up to a 20% transfer bonus, while if you convert enough points to generate 100,000 Aeroplan miles, you get a 25% bonus.
The eligible partners include all of Aeroplan’s hotel partners, some rental car partners, and points.com. American Express Membership Rewards transfers are not eligible.
The bonus you earn is based on the cumulative miles generated, so not all the miles have to come from a single transfer partner. Registration is not required, and the bonus miles should post 7-10 days after eligible transactions are complete.
There are a couple of circumstances under which this could potentially make sense. Starpoints convert to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio, and for every 20,000 points transferred you get 5,000 bonus miles. So if you transferred 80,000 Starpoints you’d get 100,000 Aeroplan miles, plus the 25,000 mile bonus, for a total of 125,000 Aeroplan miles. That’s a conversion rate of ~1.56 Aeroplan miles per Starpoint, which isn’t bad at all.
Another good option are Marriott’s Flight and Hotel Packages, whereby you can redeem points for a set number of nights and a set number number of miles with an airline partner. Aeroplan is one of the airline partners, so in some cases they may be the best option.
Aeroplan certainly isn’t as rewarding of a loyalty program as it used to be. They used to be my single favorite airline frequent flyer program before they devalued their award chart and added fuel surcharges to most partners a couple of years back. But there are still some great redemption values, like 90,000 miles for business class between the US and Europe with two stopovers in addition to your destination. They don’t impose fuel surcharges on many of their transatlantic partner airlines, like LOT, Swiss, and United.
So while I wouldn’t make a speculative transfer to take advantage of this promotion, if you have a specific use in mind it could be worthwhile. For a bit of historical context, this promotion is identical to the one they offered last November.