Best Aeroplan Credit Card for 2020 award seal

Love to travel? How about trotting around the globe at a discount?

With Aeroplan miles, it's possible to fly for free, or at least almost for free.

There are some hoops you may have to jump through when booking with Aeroplan, like:

  • limited availability,
  • occasional bad connections,
  • fuel surcharges, and
  • taxes and fees.

But even with all that, savvy budget world-travellers know that collecting Aeroplan miles has always been a game worth playing. They didn’t become the most popular airline rewards program in Canada for nothing.

And even though we’re not travelling as much as we used to right now, Aeroplan rewards are still worth collecting. You can bank them to use for future flights, or you can redeem them for:

  • Air Canada gift cards,
  • vacation packages,
  • hotels,
  • car rentals,
  • merchandise, or
  • gift cards.

Best Aeroplan credit cards for 2020

If Aeroplan Miles are the rewards for you, check out these top Aeroplan credit cards and get your miles at record speed:

Category Aeroplan Credit Card Current Welcome Bonus Offer
Best Aeroplan credit card American Express® Gold Rewards Card 25,000 points
Best Aeroplan-branded credit card TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card 15,000 miles, annual fee rebate in the first year (terms)
Best no fee Aeroplan card Best Western Mastercard® credit card 20,000 Best Western Rewards points (terms)

Review all top 10 Aeroplan credit cards here.

Best Aeroplan credit card

If you're looking for the absolute best Aeroplan credit card, the is tops. And while it doesn't directly earn Aeroplan miles, it allows you to transfer your points at a 1:1 ratio.

It also has the best earn rates of any Aeroplan card:

  • 3 points per $1 spent at American Express Travel on car rentals and hotels,
  • 2 points per $1 spent on gas, groceries, drugstores, and travel, and
  • 1 point per $1 spent everywhere else.

Earning 2 points per dollar spent on 4 basic categories is something no other Aeroplan card can do. Plus, when it comes time to redeem, you aren't just restricted to Aeroplan's offerings. You can redeem your points for any travel you like with Amex Membership Rewards.

Plenty of points and flexible rewards? American Express has you covered for an annual fee of $150 and no minimum income requirements.

Best Aeroplan-branded credit card

If you want a true Aeroplan-branded credit card, the is your best alternative.

Earn Aeroplan miles at these rates:

  • 1.5 miles per $1 spent on eligible gas, groceries, drugstores, and aircanada.com, and
  • 1 mile per $1 spent everywhere else.

This card also comes with Air Canada benefits when flying on an Aeroplan Rewards ticket:

  • first free checked bag,
  • priority check-in,
  • priority boarding, and
  • Maple Leaf Lounge access (once per year only).

Perks like these are a great way to make your travels more enjoyable.

It's for an annual fee of $120 for the primary cardholder and minimum income requirements of either $60,000 personal or $100,000 household.

Best no fee Aeroplan credit card

This one may seem like an odd choice because you’re not earning Aeroplan miles directly, but it really is the best no fee Aeroplan credit card available in Canada.

Let me explain.

While the doesn’t earn Aeroplan miles directly, you can transfer your Best Western Rewards to Aeroplan at a 5:1 rate.

So, for every 5,000 Best Western Rewards points you transfer, you will get 1,000 Aeroplan miles.

With an Aeroplan mile valued at 2.5 cents each, this makes Best Western Rewards worth 0.5 cents per point when transferred.

Sometimes you can even boost that value by watching for Aeroplan promotions that give you bonus points for transferring rewards.

And with this card you earn 5 Best Western Rewards points for every $1 spent at Best Western, and 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.

Compare The Best Aeroplan Credit Cards

Calculating the value of an Aeroplan mile

To determine the value of an Aeroplan mile, we looked at 31 flights departing from Canada to various places all over the world. And we looked at an Aeroplan flight booked 3 ways:

  • Fixed Mileage economy,
  • Market Fare economy, and
  • Fixed Mileage business.

We get the cost for the same (or similar) flights from Air Canada, using standard economy flights with seats selected (as Aeroplan provides free seat selection). To get a value of 1 mile, we subtract the taxes and fees Aeroplan charges from the Air Canada cost for the actual savings, divided by the total number of miles used.

To get our cents per mile average, we simply take an average mile value weighting all 3 values equally. Without a doubt, the best value for flights is within Canada and to the U.S.

These calculations give us our Aeroplan mile value, which is currently 2.5 cents per mile.

You can use miles for flights all over the world, but the value is always less, unless you intend to strictly fly business class. Fly business class, and you're looking at a value of at least 3 cents per mile.

There are other ways to use Aeroplan miles as well. To learn more about them, read our full guide to the Aeroplan rewards program here.

How many Aeroplan miles you need for flights

So how many miles do you need for flights?

There are actually 2 types of flight rewards:

  • Fixed Mileage, and
  • Market Fare.

Fixed Mileage flights are as the name suggests – you need a fixed amount of miles to fly between certain zones. And, you can use your miles to fly on any Star Alliance carrier. However, only a limited number of seats can be booked at Fixed Mileage reward levels.

Here's a snippet of the chart, for flights departing from Canada and the Continental U.S.:

Aeroplan Fixed Mileage rewards chart

 

You can view the full chart here for flights departing from other regions.

Can't find any good flights? Then consider Market Fare flights. These reward flights are only available on flights operated by Air Canada.

But, you can book any available seat as well. There's no set chart of these flights, the number of miles you need varies with the actual prices of flights. To see how many miles you'll need for a flight, you'll have to do some test bookings through Aeroplan to see what's available.

For more information, Aeroplan has this page that explains all the details between these 2 types of flight rewards.

Aeroplan program changes

It's also worth noting that Air Canada will be taking full control of the program in July of 2020.

And while there are no full details on what the program will look like after that date, based on announcements they have made to date (like this and this), we shouldn't see drastic changes in how the program works.

But nothing is set in stone, including possible changes to Aeroplan credit cards. So stay tuned, we'll be providing updated information when the official announcement is made.

How we get our rankings

How do we decide what the best Aeroplan credit cards are? We take into account over 126 features of each card, broken down into 7 main categories:

Aeroplan page genius rating scoring

We then take those features and put them through our algorithm, which calculates a score out of 5. And since we're talking about Aeroplan credit cards, we give extra weight to the rewards category, as it's the primary feature we're after for cards on this page.

Learn more about our Genius Rating methodology.

Best Aeroplan credit cards in Canada: FAQ

What’s the best Aeroplan credit card currently available in Canada?

Using our unbiased math-based algorithm, we have analyzed over 126 features of the majority of credit cards available in Canada. Based on this research, our top ranked Aeroplan credit card in Canada is the American Express® Gold Rewards Card. While it doesn’t earn Aeroplan miles directly, you can transfer its rewards to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio.

Are there any no fee Aeroplan credit cards available?

There is, in a roundabout sort of way. The Best Western Mastercard® credit card is a no fee Mastercard which earns Best Western Rewards. These rewards can be transferred to Aeroplan at a 5:1 ratio, giving any transferred Best Western Rewards a value of 0.5 cents per point. It’s a great way to collect Aeroplan points without having to pay an annual fee for the privilege.

What’s the value of an Aeroplan mile, and how is that calculated?

Based on our extensive research, we currently give Aeroplan miles a value of 2.5 cents per mile. We have determined this by looking at 31 flights departing from Canada to various parts of the world and boiling those figures down into a final cents per mile value. You can read more details about this here. We’ve also written a guide to help you maximize your Aeroplan rewards.

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