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What to choose: Aeroplan Points or Air Canada Buddy Pass?

To the point With the ability to convert the Air Canada Buddy Pass into 30,000 Aeroplan points, you have a choice.

Update: December 1, 2021

If you had an Aeroplan credit card offer that included an Air Canada Buddy Pass, the airline allowed you to convert it to 30,000 Aeroplan Points until November 30, 2021.

This offer is no longer available. The article below is therefore for information purposes only.

Air Canada Buddy Pass

I wrote a comprehensive article on the Air Canada Buddy Pass and how it works.

In my opinion, the Air Canada Buddy Pass is ideal for couples planning to travel within 12-18 months on Air Canada in North America.

After various simulations, it is easy to get a value of about $350 from the Air Canada Buddy Pass (this is the average value I have used for credit cards offering the Buddy Pass).

Here is an example of a direct round-trip flight between Montreal and San Francisco for 2 people using an Air Canada Buddy Pass. Here the Buddy Pass saves $513.

Buddy Pass Yul Sfo Price Without Pass Fr
Without the Companion Pass
Buddy Pass Yul Sfo Price With Pass Fr
With the Companion Pass

This Air Canada Buddy Pass can also be useful for families with 2 children.

In this case, each spouse will need to apply for an Aeroplan credit card with the Air Canada Buddy Pass to offer this Buddy Pass to one child.

Disney California Family
Disneyland California Family

But if you are not in these situations (solo traveller, large family, etc.), the Buddy Pass is not really a benefit for you. In this case, it’s best to convert your Buddy Pass to 30,000 Aeroplan Points.

Aeroplan Points

By my estimate, 1 Aeroplan point = 2 cents.

So 30,000 Aeroplan points have a $600 value.

And there’s a reason Air Canada is offering 30,000 Aeroplan points to convert a Buddy Pass. They must have done their calculations too 😉

Converting a Buddy Pass to Aeroplan Points is primarily for :

  • those who have mastered the mechanics of the Aeroplan program
  • travellers who are targeting some specific cabins (Premium, Business, First Class)
  • Aeroplan members who wish to travel on other carriers than Air Canada (Star Alliance partners, Aeroplan partners such as Etihad, etc.)
ORG DSC04138
Etihad - First Class

That’s why this conversion offer is not posted anywhere on the Air Canada website: it’s not for the “general public” but rather for “insiders,” readers of sites like milesopedia.com and members of the points community.

It’s for those who can take advantage of Aeroplan Family Sharing to access the same Aeroplan point balance by combining points from different accounts.

Above all, it is an option offered (with no deadline) to change tack if the Buddy Pass is not useful.

Let’s use the same example for the Montreal-San Francisco flight for 2 people. This one is available for 44,800 Aeroplan points and $161.84.

Points Aeroplan Yul Sfo En
Points Aeroplan Yul Sfo En
  • Option 1: you buy 2 tickets for $1,200
  • Option 2: you use the Buddy Pass and pay $687
  • Option 3: You use 44,800 Aeroplan points and pay $162
Option 1 Option 2 Option 3
Buy 2 tickets Buddy Pass Aeroplan Points
Cash cost $1,200 $687 $162
Cost in points 30 000 + 14 800
Savings $0 $513 $1,038
Savings (30,000 points) $695

Of course, converting the Companion Pass to Aeroplan Points would have only earned you 30,000 Aeroplan Points, not 44,800 Aeroplan Points (but with an old TD® Aeroplan® Visa Infinite* Card offer, you would get 25,000 Aeroplan Points in addition to the Companion Pass).

Transposed on a per point basis: ($1,200 – $168) / 44,800 = 2.31 cents per point x 30,000 = $695

So, by converting your Buddy Pass into Aeroplan points, you save $695 (option 3) instead of $513 by using your Buddy Pass (option 2).

Conclusion

As always, it’s up to you to make YOUR calculations based on YOUR planned itinerary. Here I wanted to show you the possibility offered by this conversion.

Come to discuss that topic in our Facebook Group!

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