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What happens to your loyalty points when you die?

To the point

This is a question that we avoid asking ourselves. However, loyalty points have a value! Here are the rules of the main programs.

What happens to your loyalty points when you die?

Last month, Finder.com conducted a study showing the credit cards spending habits of Canadians. Several points emerged:

  • 3 out of 4 Canadians (22.3 million) admitted using their credit cards to earn points.
  • With an average expenditure of $3,735 per person, this represents $83.2 billion!

In addition, there are also points earned through means other than credit card spending. For example, when:

  • you stay in a hotel
  • you’re traveling with an airline
  • you do your grocery shopping
  • you buy DIY materials

Each individual therefore holds a heritage of points that are worth something. Hence the question in today’s article: what happens to your loyalty points when you die? The rules vary depending on each rewards program.

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Aeroplan

On the Aeroplan side, you can transfer miles from the deceased member’s account. To do so, you will need to send various information by email to Aeroplan:

  • the deceased member’s Aeroplan account number (if known);
  • the member’s first and last name;
  • the member’s full address, including postal code;
  • the member’s telephone numbers (home and cell phone);
  • a scanned copy of the death certificate;
  • a scanned copy of the part of the will where the beneficiaries are named (only this section is required);
  • a certificate signed by each beneficiary who wishes to forfeit their share of miles, if applicable (the miles will be divided equally among all beneficiaries, unless some of them waive in writing, in which case the miles will be divided among the other beneficiaries).

There is no charge for this type of transfer.

AIR MILES

In the event of death, it is possible to merge two AIR MILES accounts into one as per the Terms and Conditions.

In case of divorce or relationship breakdown, death, emigration from Canada, duplication error, or with our authorization, you may with our prior consent and upon proper proof and payment of such fees as we may in our discretion impose from time to time, merge your Collector Number with the Collector Number of a family member or member of your household.

If not requested by the spouse, a notarized letter certifying the willingness to choose a beneficiary (accompanied by the death certificate) will be required.

There is no charge for this type of transaction.

WestJet Rewards

At WestJet Rewards, an estate claim form is available online.

This form allows you to cancel future bookings or transfer WestJet Dollars to the recipient’s account.

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American Express

For American Express Canada, you will first have to notify them of the death by calling 1-800-263-1616. Then the account will be cancelled and the beneficiary will be able to take possession of it and the available points.

Marriott Bonvoy

According to the terms and conditions of the Marriott Bonvoy program, it is possible to transfer points to the beneficiary’s account. However, other benefits such as Elite night credits or status are not transferable.

In the event of a Member’s death, the Company may, in its sole discretion, allow unredeemed Points from the deceased Member’s Account to be transferred to a family member or a friend who is an active Member upon the Company’s receipt and review of all requested documentation and communications. Awards, Elite Membership Status, Lifetime Membership Status, and the related benefits, including, without limitation, Elite Night Credit, will not transfer to the recipient of the Points.

There is no charge for this type of transfer.

PC Optimum

Under the terms of the PC Optimum program, points are forfeited upon the member’s death:

A Program Member’s Account will be closed upon death and any PC Optimum Points remaining in their Account will be forfeited.

Unless you manage to deal with a compassionate customer service member, as the program adds:

You may, if (PC Optimum) allows you to do so, transfer your PC Optimum points to another member of the Program.

Canadian Tire Triangle

Under the terms of the Triangle Rewards Program, points are forfeited upon the member’s death:

Membership may be terminated by Canadian Tire if any of the following events occur: (…) (B) the Member dies. Termination or cancellation of membership in the Program will result in the immediate closing of the Member’s Triangle Rewards Account and the cancellation of all eCTM in such Triangle Rewards Account without any compensation or other liability to the Member.

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Conclusion

As you can see, the terms and conditions differ from program to program.

Although popular and growing in Canada, PC Optimum and Canadian Tire Triangle are strangely the most restrictive programs in this area! The other programs are more compassionate!

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