Aeroplan will confiscate your points.
Aeroplan confiscated my 67,906 Aeroplan miles. Ninety-eight percent of them were accumulated on my CIBC Aerogold Visa prior to Aeroplan’s announcement that they would be changing their policy on expiring miles (points). Now customers lose all their points if they do not have a transaction in any one year period; prior to this they had three years.
The obvious reason for this change is that Aeroplan wants customers to lose their points so Aeroplan can make more money. The more points its customers lose as a result of this policy the more money Aeroplan makes – it’s a cash grab. This is partially the reason why the Credit CARD Act in Canada makes it illegal for gift cards to expire within five years of their issue date.
What is even more aggravating about this ridiculous policy is that it was applied retroactively to points accumulated and paid for prior to this change.
When you signed up for Aeroplan, there was an agreement that if you spend money with them or their partners you get some tiny bit of value in return that was available for use for 3 years. It is very similar to receiving money back for purchases made on some credit cards offered over the years by Capital One, MasterCard and American Express. Can you imagine the uproar in the U.S. if these credit card issuers all of a sudden announced that although they were giving you 2% cash back, they’re now going to only give you 1% cash back…oh, and by the way, it’s going to apply to any purchases made in the past. Sorry – we’re changing our agreement with you now that you’re locked in.
Up until the class action lawsuit against them was launched, Aeroplan did almost everything in their power to ensure customers lost their points. The only pro-active step they took to bring it to the attention of their customers that they were about to lose their points was to send ONE single email. They had no way of knowing whether the email was received or read. I know that I did not read this email. With all the mail they send, chances are most people didn’t read it.
Aeroplan also claims that customers could see in their online account. But until the class action was launched it was near impossible to find it online. Contrary to what you see now when you log in, customers did not see a notification on the home page. Customers saw flashing ads and promotions, but in order to see a notification that your points were going to expire you had to first go to the “Your Account” section – which most people don’t do since there is no need to go there. Most people go straight into a search for flights, where there was no such notification. I logged into my account many times prior to my points expiring and I never saw any notification. I did see lots of flashing ads though.
It is fundamentally unfair & possibly illegal to confiscate points that had been accumulated prior to the policy change. I hope the court’s decision will bring an end to Aeroplan’s unsavory business practices.
Rupert Duchesne – Group Chief Executive, Aimia (the new name of the company that owns Aeroplan
Vince Timpano – President and CEO, Aeroplan Canada and Executive Vice President, Groupe Aeroplan Inc.
Liz Graham – Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Groupe Aeroplan Inc.
Susan Doniz – Senior Vice President, Global Chief Information Officer
Caroline Hagan – Vice President, Customer Service and Labour Relations
Frank DiLena – manager, member experience