“Enhancement” – Aeroplan Change/Refund Fees (hint: it sucks)

For many years, Aeroplan charged $90+tax per person for any change or refund to an Aeroplan ticket. This fee applied without regard to the significance of the change – any change came with that fee. For refunds within 22 days before departure, the fee was $90+tax to change the booking to a trip outside 22 days, and an additional $90 to refund that ticket.

monsieurcumulus from Flyertalk reports that he or she received an email with updated Aeroplan change/refund fees, and guess what, they really suck. The new fee structure is confusing and extremely expensive. The following chart summarizes the new fee structure, which begins December 6, 2016:

Source: Aeroplan (Aimia)

Source: Aeroplan (Aimia)

So, if you’re not a dDiamond member, your change fee is $100+tax per person per direction. That’s crazy. So if you needed to change both directions, you’re looking at $200+tax per person for a change, which is more than double the current rate. For refunds, you’re looking at $150+tax per person, which is an additional $60 per person. If you cancel within 22 days, you’ll pay the $100 change fee and the $150 refund fee. This is CRAZY and extremely complicated.

If you’re a dDiamond member with Aeroplan’s already confusing loyalty scheme, the change fee is $75+tax per person per direction. So if you’re making a one-way change, it’s actually $15 cheaper, but if you’re changing both directions, you’re looking at a $60 increase.

The only real benefit is the refund fee for dDiamond members, which is $30+tax per person if done online, and $100+tax per person if completed via the call centre (note that it’s common for the cancel button to be broken online).

This is an awful enhancement. It’s unnecessarily confusing, and is a dramatic price increase for non-dDiamond members. I get that prices ought to increase occasionally, but the change to a per direction scheme is, to my understanding, unique in the industry, and extremely expensive. Again, say you’re a two person booking and you change both directions, you’ll be looking at $400+tax in change fees if you’re not a dDiamond member. In the same scenario, the current fee would be a total of $180+tax.

According to the email monsieurcumulus¬† received, any booking made prior to December 6 will still use the original $90+tax per person change/refund fee. If you’re a dDiamond member, and the new scheme is more favourable, the new fee will apply.

All in all, this “enhancement” is unexpected, expensive, and creates more confusion for consumers in an already confusing program.

Time to bring back errorplan?

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Comments

  1. All these loyalty programs continue their race to the bottom. It’s becoming less and less valuable, I am not sure if it is actually starting to lose its appeal for other companies such as CIBC, TD to keep associated themselves with Aeroplan? The banks market it like you are getting all these free trips, but in turn, you are paying Aeroplan for all these surcharges, booking fees, change fees, cancellation fees. The fees are endless! But again, maybe its the same for the banks, that’s how they treat their customers also.

  2. An attempt to nullify and devalue accumulation of points which, with respect, breaches intention and substance of existing contract with points-accumulators?. Not acceptable in view of one-sided and non-consultative approach to the matter……(?)

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