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Where to credit your flights? Knowing the right program to earn points

To the point How well do you know your rewards programs? Did you know that you can earn points by flying with an airline other than Air Canada?

If you browse the Air Canada website, you may come across this page which lists Aeroplan partner carriers. For example, why does Milesopedia talk aboutOman Air being an Aeroplan partner? Simply because you can earn points by flying with an airline other than Air Canada.

Earning miles with partners

This list of partner companies is long but the principle is always the same. Your class of service (Economy, Business/Signature or First) and fare determine the accumulation of points for the distance traveled. This number may be subject to a bonus– class, for example, of 150% – or a malus if it is a promotion (50% or even 25% for discounted tickets)

Example with United

When you select the section dedicated to United, a table appears with the “Eligible Flights”:

United eligible flights

Aeroplan points and Status Qualifying Miles (SQM) are earned based on miles flown on United and United Express flights. Thus, depending on the class of service, a ticket:

  • in Basic Economy (N) results in a 25% accumulation
  • in Economy or Premium Economy class gives between 25% and 125%.
  • in Business class gives an accumulation between 150 and 200%.

What do I need to do to earn my miles?

It’s very simple: put in your Aeroplan number when making your reservation. Let’s try an example with United. During the purchase process, when entering passenger information, you are defaulted to the United program number:

united fp

Which you can change to Aeroplan:

aeroplan fp

How do I know where to credit my miles?

There is a site, wheretocredit.com, that allows you to find out the rate of miles that will be credited based on the travel class with the carrier.

For example, for a flight purchased with Air China in Premium Economy and booked with a “G” class fare, you can earn 110% in Aeroplan points for the distance between the two cities.

miles air china

The trap here is to earn miles on too many programs!

As a general rule, this should be avoided as you may not have enough miles in a program to book an award ticket. And you should know that it is virtually impossible to transfer miles from one program to another.

In an ideal world, for people who travel on an ad hoc basis, you should focus on one program. We prefer Aeroplan in our case because it offers good value for its points.

Therefore, whenever possible, look at Star Alliance flights when shopping for a ticket. But sometimes the destination is not served, or is poorly served by its partners, or the price is significantly higher. So it’s better to accumulate points in one program per alliance (Star Alliance, OneWorld and SkyTeam) rather than spread yourself thin. You can also use a program like Alaska Airlines that crosses alliances.

Impact on your Air Canada status

As you can see, you don’t need to fly on Air Canada to earn Aeroplan points. Also, flying with Star Alliance members can earn Aeroplan Elite status with Air Canada (25K, 35K, 50K, 75K and Super Elite).

To achieve these statuses, you must fly a certain number of Status Qualifying Miles (SQM), Status Qualifying Segments (SQM) on Air Canada or its partners. But, also having spent a minimum amount (SQD) of dollars on operated flights.

Aeroplan Elite Status Chart

Conclusion

What you need to remember is simple: always give your Aeroplan number when making a reservation with one of its partner airlines.

You don’t have to memorize the list, just visit the Aeroplan website!

Then, once you’ve earned enough Aeroplan points, check out our article on the best time to book your flight with points!

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