Air Canada Doubles Requirement For U.S. Members To Earn Elite Status

Air Canada Aeroplan has a very easy and generous status match offer for U.S. frequent flyers. Match your status, and then a single roundtrip will let you keep the status through 2022.

For Americans – and anyone outside of Canada – the spend requirements for earning status are doubling. Aeroplan has allowed those whose primary address is outside of Canada to earn elite status with half the requirements that Canadians face. For 2022 they’re eliminating this easier path to status.

Air Canada says they are “working on new ways to help all of our members earn Elite Status more quickly and easily in the years to come – in part due to the fact that we realize that travel plans in the coming months remain uncertain.”

I’d posit that the soon-to-be revealed Air Canada Aeroplan credit card in the U.S. from Chase will have status-earning opportunities including earning credit for qualifying dollars. Increasing the requirements while making it possible to fill those requirements with card spend is smart if it leads to card uptake and spend.

What remains to be seen is what other concessions will be made for earning status in 2022, since business travel won’t come back all at once on January 1, and long haul international business class travel certainly won’t be back to Asia Pacific right away.

Aeroplan also announces,

  • eUpgrade will expire January 15 instead of December 31 to “members can more easily upgrade their travels over the holiday season.” This will apply both to upgrades earned in 2021 (the change will show in member accounts by end of November) and to eUpgrades going forward.

    This is in addition to already extending unused Priority Rewards through December 31, 2022, a program through which Air Canada Aeroplan elite members get significant discounts on award redemption.

  • They’re only sending out membership kits to those who achieved higher status in 2021. If you want a new luggage tag, go earn status.

Air Canada is the largest foreign carrier in the U.S. serving 60 U.S. cities pre-pandemic. Not only are they convenient for travel to Canada but for one-stop service across both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Don’t forget to match your status and use the offer to keep it through 2022.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. @ Gary — Super slimy move by AirCanada. Guess we won’t be spending a dime with them after getting that status match. Should’ve expected this from a dishonest company like AirCanada. Shame on me.

  2. Garbage airline anyway.
    48% on time performance. 4 hour call center times.
    Horrible Y and J product.

    Some unfortunate OPM who are stuck flying AC will be the only top tier left.

  3. Terrible move by AC. You get the status match and boom you have to spend the same as Canadians now.

  4. @ David: it’s a revenue roundtrip and has to originate from the US. I called the elite line and specifically demanded the T&C.

    However, once status has been secured through Dec 2022, we won’t have any more incentive to accrue miles with AC as observed by Gene, Frank and Bobby. In fact, this is an excellent method of getting AC to pay for our access to UA clubs 🙂

  5. @Gavin: The Ts&Cs for the status match only specifies a roundtrip flight. There is no mention of the flight having to originate from the US.

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