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Ontario man loses 370,000 Aeroplan miles saved for retirement

Ontario man loses 370,000 Aeroplan miles saved for retirement

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Old May 9, 19, 8:04 pm
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Ontario man loses 370,000 Aeroplan miles saved for retirement

Looks like CTV is jumping on the CBC train

https://beta.ctvnews.ca/local/toront...1_4416256.html
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Old May 9, 19, 8:07 pm
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From the link
<snip>
French booked a trip earlier this year, but when he checked his Aeroplan account, the miles were gone. He had missed the company’s deadline to use the miles by two weeks.

“I was fuming,” he said. “I just thought that I spent all my time accumulating these miles for my retirement and now they are gone.”

A spokesperson for Aeroplan told CTV News Toronto that their 12-month policy has been in effect for more than 10 years and those members must earn or use their miles in some way within that period, or risk losing them all.

“Members must have at least one qualifying activity by either earning or using their miles (redemption, donation, sharing or transferring) within a 12-month period to ensure their account stays active,” the spokesperson said.

The company also said that there are safeguards to help members claim their miles. Notifications are sent after six months of account inactivity and 10 to 12 weeks before miles are set to expire
<snip>
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Old May 9, 19, 8:08 pm
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TLDR: Man has 370K AE miles. Forgets about 12-month earn/burn policy and complains when he loses miles.
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Old May 9, 19, 8:11 pm
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I find it difficult to have sympathy for him. How can somebody who has flown over a million miles with Air Canada, who was actively saving miles in the program for retirement use, not know about the rule to have account activity each year.
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Old May 9, 19, 8:13 pm
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Originally Posted by CanadaDH View Post
I find it difficult to have sympathy for him. How can somebody who has flown over a million miles with Air Canada, who was actively saving miles in the program for retirement use, not know about the rule to have account activity each year.
I am sure he did know, forgot, called AE, they told him no. He wanted an exception, they told him no. He went to the media hoping for an exception, they said no.
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Old May 9, 19, 8:17 pm
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I’ve been pretty vocal about my disdain for victim-blaming on this board, but Mr. French has no one to blame but himself. It’s our responsibility as users of any service or product to understand the ins and outs of that service or product. And while companies are experts are burying and obfuscating some of the finer points of their programs, Aeroplan’s points expiry policy has been as clear as day for a decade.

Sorry... if Mr. French believes he could put those miles to use, he should bite the bullet and pay the $3700 fee.
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Old May 9, 19, 8:24 pm
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Originally Posted by CanadaDH View Post
I find it difficult to have sympathy for him. How can somebody who has flown over a million miles with Air Canada, who was actively saving miles in the program for retirement use, not know about the rule to have account activity each year.
I would say many people just add there FFN in the reservation (or had the corporate TA do that) and yet have zero understanding of how the programs works. I used to work with people like that. At times they wondered why they were getting a new shiny card (top status) and what it could for them. One well travelled manager did not know that he could get domestic lounge access (QF) with a QF gold/plat card.
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Old May 9, 19, 8:31 pm
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I don't understand the article describing "French booked a trip earlier this year, but when he checked his Aeroplan account, the miles were gone. He had missed the company’s deadline to use the miles by two weeks."

How did he book a trip before using the miles? Don't you have to have miles in order to book? It's not something you do after the fact.
And if he had booked a different trip earlier this year, then his miles should not have expired due to recent activity.
I'm confused...
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Old May 9, 19, 9:57 pm
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Originally Posted by SteadyAT View Post
I don't understand the article describing "French booked a trip earlier this year, but when he checked his Aeroplan account, the miles were gone. He had missed the company’s deadline to use the miles by two weeks."

How did he book a trip before using the miles? Don't you have to have miles in order to book? It's not something you do after the fact.
And if he had booked a different trip earlier this year, then his miles should not have expired due to recent activity.
I'm confused...
He probably did not book the air portion of the trip and was going to use his Aeroplan points to do so.
Paying $3,700 to reclaim those points is still a good deal because he can get 2 roundtrip business class tickets to Asia at 150,000 points each which will cost well over $10,000 to buy, that is assuming that he can find seats.
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Old May 9, 19, 10:26 pm
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article reminded me I have been meaning to login and check 10yroldsuperelite's Aeroplan expiration.

Edit: Phew. Still good for......a while.

1yr expiration is for amateurs.
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Old May 9, 19, 10:29 pm
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Do AE email people when the deadline looms? Just curious.
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Old May 10, 19, 2:40 am
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Hard-expiring the points after 1 year, especially large accounts, is illogical. AP got paid for the points, and they presumably got to invest the funds. A modest re-instatement fee, sure, charge $100, but to charge thousands of dollars to have an account reinstated is just abusive, IMHO. The amount of negative goodwill created by cancelling points just doesn't make cancelling points 'worth' it.

Having said that, there's probably an Aeroplan partner out there who would be willing to push through a retroactively dated transaction.
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Old May 10, 19, 5:27 am
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I have no sympathy for him too but he may have some recourse. The story is from CTV Toronto so assuming he is in Ontario there are protections from expiring points. It would depend whether AC closed his account entirely or just wiped out the points.

https://www.ontario.ca/page/reward-points#section-2

New rules: Some points can’t expire
On January 1, 2018, new rules came into effect that stops the expiration of reward points based only on the amount of time that has passed since they were earned. The rules are not an all-out ban on expiring points.

In some cases your reward points may still expire, including, if:
  • the reward program closes accounts when a member is inactive (does not earn or redeem any points) for a long period of time and this is stated in the membership agreement.
  • the program issues a voucher as a reward (for example a discount on a purchase), that is considered a gift card and cannot expire
  • the reward points can’t be redeemed for any single item over $50.
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Old May 10, 19, 5:40 am
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One year is a very short time period and as we can see people are caught by it. Most programs have 18 month or longer periods and also have much kinder reinstatement policies. While rules are rules....this circumstance is especially unfortunate.
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Old May 10, 19, 5:53 am
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Maybe it would be better if the expiration were at 18 or 24 months. But, it is not. It is 12 months. None of us can account for why this particular individual let the deadline pass and why he ignored what AE says would have been two warnings. But, he apparently did. The result seems fair as does the recovery method which still gets the consumer tickets at what seems to be a decent price, if not more than he had planned.
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