Personal Finance

Aeroplan or Airmiles ?

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  • Jun 23rd, 2005 9:58 am
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[OP]
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Jun 22, 2004
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Aeroplan or Airmiles ?

Which is better for the average person who spends about $1500/month on credit, say working toward a holiday?
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Deal Addict
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Mar 25, 2002
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really depends on where and when you are going?

for me, AP works better than AM since I like to redeem for business/first class awards (something I would never buy with my own cash).
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Feb 14, 2002
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It may be better to take a look at one of those travel award credit cards (like TD Travel VISA or something). Both AM and AP systems give you a piddly amount of points, imo.

According to RFD's Credit Card article at http://www.redflagdeals.com/deals/main. ... es/credit6 , the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card might be worth looking at. Starwood points are good for the Sheraton and Westin.

But it all comes down to what you buy. If you buy from The Bay/Zellers, Yourshops.ca (Amazon, [rfdlink=http://forums.redflagdeals.com/autolink ... ?linkid=32]Chapters[/rfdlink], etc. online), then Air Miles may be better. If you shop at Future Shop, and have a Bell One Bill account, you may be better off with Aeroplan.

Of course, there is nothing to stop you from collecting BOTH!
Deal Fanatic
Oct 25, 2002
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Maple Ridge, BC
[OP]
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Jun 22, 2004
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Several people I know have Aeroplan and they have been able to use it to go to Europe.

I generally will use the points for airfare to LA, Miami, or the Caribbean in the spring, summer, or fall. However, Europe is also an option too. I wouldnt need any hotel perks since I usually buy package deals.

Since I don't have a US bank account and I am not a US resident, I don't quality for the Alaska Visa Card.
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Jun 14, 2003
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Pavel wrote: Since I don't have a US bank account and I am not a US resident, I don't quality for the Alaska Visa Card.
It is a Canadian Card. You don't have to be an existing Bank of America customer.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 25, 2002
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Maple Ridge, BC
Pavel wrote:Several people I know have Aeroplan and they have been able to use it to go to Europe.

I generally will use the points for airfare to LA, Miami, or the Caribbean in the spring, summer, or fall. However, Europe is also an option too. I wouldnt need any hotel perks since I usually buy package deals.

Since I don't have a US bank account and I am not a US resident, I don't quality for the Alaska Visa Card.
That Visa is for Canadians. It's the best airline rewards option for Canadians. We have used Canadian Plus, then Aeroplan, points for quite a few years. We do the Vanouver to Orlando trip quite often and are going again this year. For 3 tickets via Aeroplan it cost us $345 and 75,000 points. If we would have had enough Alaskan Airline points it would have only cost us $95 USD and 60,000 points for the same 3 tickets. If we chose one of their partners, American Airlines, it would have been the same 75,000 as Aeroplan, but still over $200 less in cash.

In addition, our CIBC AeroGold costs us $170 a year for two cards. An AA Platinum Visa would only cost us $79 a year for two cards. Once our CIBC card comes up for annual renewal we will be switching.
Sr. Member
Dec 26, 2003
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Scarborough, ON
That Visa is for Canadians. It's the best airline rewards option for Canadians. We have used Canadian Plus, then Aeroplan, points for quite a few years. We do the Vanouver to Orlando trip quite often and are going again this year. For 3 tickets via Aeroplan it cost us $345 and 75,000 points. If we would have had enough Alaskan Airline points it would have only cost us $95 USD and 60,000 points for the same 3 tickets. If we chose one of their partners, American Airlines, it would have been the same 75,000 as Aeroplan, but still over $200 less in cash.


don't you need a US chequing account to pay the visa bill? how would I pay my bills?
Deal Fanatic
Oct 25, 2002
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Primetyme wrote:don't you need a US chequing account to pay the visa bill? how would I pay my bills?
Paid in Canadian dollars.
[OP]
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Jun 22, 2004
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Mark099 wrote:That Visa is for Canadians. It's the best airline rewards option for Canadians.
Really? I'll look more into it. How many points to you get for each $ you spend?

I hope there is no fee involved.

With my Mastercard Airmiles I paid an annual fee and over the years I had about X amount of airmiles. I couldnt go anywhere but I used it to buy some little things. I calculated it out and I basically paid via annual fee over the many years what I got for "free" which in fact wasn't free afterall. It's not like the Save-On Foods card.

Edit: The fee is $45 or $75. $1 for 1 Mile

I also was not able to locate further particulars on the redemption of the points and how many points one needs for a particular destination. Perhaps someone has a link. TIA.
Jr. Member
Dec 20, 2003
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from my experience, aeroplan is much better if you're looking to collect points to FLY. air miles is much better if you're looking to collect points to buy random stuff (ie. movie tickets, jays tickets, a new blender).

but value dollar for dollar wise, aeroplan is better. it's much easier to reach a flight plateau compared to the air miles.

case in point:
New York Short-Haul Flight from Toronto

Aeroplan required points: 15000
Air Miles required points: 900-1150 (depends on when you go)

Rate of Aeroplan accumulation: 1 point per $1 spent
Rate of Air Miles accumulation: 1 point per $20 spent

Doing the math...how much you'd need to spend to get that New York flight:
Aeroplan: $15000 ($1 * 15000)
Air Miles: $18000-23000 ($20 * 900-1150)

Mind you, you'd likely need to pay an annual fee for the Aeroplan card, roughly $70 a year. However, you'd also get around 5000 bonus points for signing up the first time, meaning you'd need to spend even less for the flight - only $10070.

there's your answer.
[OP]
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Jun 22, 2004
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I appreciate the examples bubbleteaboy. Regardless, looks like I will have to wait 2 years or so before I can accumulate enough points to go with Aeroplan to Florida. Me gots some thinking to do.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 25, 2002
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Maple Ridge, BC
Pavel wrote:Really? I'll look more into it. How many points to you get for each $ you spend?

I hope there is no fee involved.

With my Mastercard Airmiles I paid an annual fee and over the years I had about X amount of airmiles. I couldnt go anywhere but I used it to buy some little things. I calculated it out and I basically paid via annual fee over the many years what I got for "free" which in fact wasn't free afterall. It's not like the Save-On Foods card.

Edit: The fee is $45 or $75. $1 for 1 Mile

I also was not able to locate further particulars on the redemption of the points and how many points one needs for a particular destination. Perhaps someone has a link. TIA.
http://www.alaskaair.com/mileageplan/awards.asp
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Mar 25, 2002
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Pavel wrote:I appreciate the examples bubbleteaboy. Regardless, looks like I will have to wait 2 years or so before I can accumulate enough points to go with Aeroplan to Florida. Me gots some thinking to do.
If you want to go to Florida, particularly during the peak season, forget Aeroplan in terms of reward availability. Even if you book 356 days in advance, the seats are difficult to get.

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