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AC Lounge Access - physical locations and rules (2022 onwards)

AC Lounge Access - physical locations and rules (2022 onwards)

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Old Sep 19, 22, 7:40 am   -   Wikipost
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Last edit by: canadiancow
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This wiki will attempt to cover the ability to access various lounges operated by AC. Since many travellers are not familiar with the layout of Canadian airports, we will detail both physical access as well as rules.


Overview of lounges

AC has three types of lounges:
  • Maple Leaf Lounges (MLLs): essentially, regular lounges
  • Caf: caf-style lounge with limited access and grab-and-go
  • Signature Suites: essentially, only for long-haul international business class passengers

Locations & Physical Access

Lounges are in the following locations:



Note that most of the Canadian airports used by AC have separate areas for domestic, transborder ("TB", i.e. to the US), and international flights. MLLs are often referred to based on which area of the terminal theyre in, e.g. YYZ Dom is the domestic lounge in YYZ, YUL Intl is the international lounge at YUL. Except when connecting from a domestic flight to a TB/international one, you can only use a lounge in the area from which your flight departs. For instance, a passenger flying from YYZ to LGA cannot use the YYZ Dom MLL as CATSA will not allow them to access the domestic wing; a passenger flying YXE-YYZ-LGA could use the YYZ Dom MLL as they will already be in the domestic area on arrival.

YYZ, YVR, and YUL have segregated international departures areas. The international MLLs cannot be accessed before domestic flights. In other locations, a "domestic" MLL can also be accessed before international flights.

Please note that while the US is a separate country, it is NOT an "international" destination in the way most Canadian airports and AC are set up. You can NEVER access the international lounges when departing on a flight to the US.

Lounges in transborder areas are after US customs pre-clearance, and can only be accessed by customers travelling to the US.


Access Rules

MLLs - https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/...f-lounges.html

Can be accessed for customers holding a SAME DAY DEPARTING boarding pass (for a flight operated by AC or another *A member) based on:
  • Status
    • Aeroplan 35K (domestic and transborder only; no guests)
    • Aeroplan 50K and up (spouse, dependent children, and one guest)
    • Star Alliance Gold (one guest)
    • VA Velocity Platinum or Gold (one guest)
  • Class of service:
    • Business class (on AC or another *A carrier)
    • Premium rouge
  • Passes (passes may only be valid for certain locations, e.g. domestic/TB)
    • Given out to those with AC status
    • Given out to certain credit card holders
    • Purchased directly from AC as an add-on to the flight, either in advance or at the lounge
  • Credit cards (no passes required):
    • TD VIP
    • CIBC VIP
    • Amex Aeroplan Reserve cards

Domestic Lounges can also be accessed by those ARRIVING on an Air Canada Mainline, Rouge or Express flight, for those holding 50K status and higher.


Signature Suites

Signature Suites require both (a) an eligible fare and (b) an eligible destination. Your flight must be a flight operated by Air Canada that is departing internationally from Toronto or Vancouver. It doesnt matter whether you bought the ticket through AC or if youre on an AC codeshare, or if your itinerary has other international connections. Unless your flight is operated by Air Canada, and is departing internationally from Toronto or Vancouver, youre not eligible.

Eligible fares:
  • Paid business class (originally booked in J, C, D, Z, or P classes)
  • Business Class (Flexible) Aeroplan tickets

Eligible destinations
  • South America (Colombia and south)
  • Europe
  • Asia
  • Australia

NOT accessible to:
  • Passengers in business class on any type of upgrades (eUpgrades, Last-Minute Upgrades, bid upgrades, Star Alliance Upgrade Awards)
  • Anyone booked in Business Class (Lowest) reward tickets - this includes any rewards ticketed by an Aeroplan partner, e.g. United MileagePlus, Miles & More, etc)
  • Passengers flying internationally with Air Canada, but who are not departing on an International Air Canada flight from Toronto or Vancouver. Example, if you are arriving on an International flight, but connecting to a US or domestic flight - you will NOT have access to the suite.

Cafe

Can be accessed by those with a departing domestic boarding pass (no arrivals benefit for the Cafe) based on:
  • Status
    • Aeroplan 50K and up (one guest)
    • Star Alliance Gold (one guest)
  • Class of service:
    • Business class
    • Premium rouge
  • Credit cards:
    • TD VIP
    • CIBC VIP
    • Amex Aeroplan Reserve cards
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Old Apr 19, 22, 12:57 pm
  #16  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Toronto, ON
Programs: AC 75K
Posts: 5,819
Originally Posted by Onwardandupwards View Post
The rules seem to indicate I may only have access flying out of Toronto back to Dublin - is that correct?
Correct. Flying DUB-YYZ-PIT, you'll have access to the Transborder MLL.
ChrisA330 is offline  
Old Apr 19, 22, 1:02 pm
  #17  
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: YYZ
Programs: AC S100K, SPG G, Hilton G,Nexus/GE, Amex MR Plat, Hyatt Plat,IHG Plat E
Posts: 4,153
I see the AC site says access to the VIP lounge with Aeroplan Flexible reward in business. Also says I class is permitted. I have a Aeroplan biz reward booked in 'Business I' according to the ticket so I guess I have access ? It was booked as lowest J so not sure about the 'business class flexible award'.
vernonc is offline  
Old Apr 19, 22, 1:07 pm
  #18  
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Join Date: Sep 2012
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Originally Posted by vernonc View Post
I see the AC site says access to the VIP lounge with Aeroplan Flexible reward in business. Also says I class is permitted. I have a Aeroplan biz reward booked in 'Business I' according to the ticket so I guess I have access ? It was booked as lowest J so not sure about the 'business class flexible award'.
No, because, as you noted, you did not book flexible.
canadiancow is offline  
Old Apr 20, 22, 10:51 pm
  #19  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Programs: AC E35K. RAM GOLD/ OWS
Posts: 36
Is it possible to upgrade my confirmed e-upgraded business (from Latitude) ticket to a flexible business ticket to get access to the SS before my international flight?
PAULO77 is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 12:02 am
  #20  
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: YVR
Programs: AC SE 2MM; UA MP Premier Silver; Marriott Bonvoy LT Titanium Elite; Radisson
Posts: 34,741
Originally Posted by PAULO77 View Post
Is it possible to upgrade my confirmed e-upgraded business (from Latitude) ticket to a flexible business ticket to get access to the SS before my international flight?
I won't question your motives, if there are any, but you'd have to successfully cancel your confirmed eUp (there needs to be the original fare class space available) and then you can then upfare to the full J ticket, if full J is available. (why not just do low J instead of full J?)
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Old Apr 21, 22, 12:35 am
  #21  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: YYJ
Programs: AC SE, Bonvoy Tit/LT Plat, HH Gold, National EE, Sixt Plat, Enterprise Gold, UA*S, Accor Gold, Hz 5*
Posts: 2,170
Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post
I won't question your motives, if there are any, but you'd have to successfully cancel your confirmed eUp (there needs to be the original fare class space available) and then you can then upfare to the full J ticket, if full J is available. (why not just do low J instead of full J?)
That depends on if it's an Aeroplan ticket or a paid ticket.
Nitehawk is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 9:04 am
  #22  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Programs: AC E35K. RAM GOLD/ OWS
Posts: 36
Originally Posted by yyznomad View Post
I won't question your motives, if there are any, but you'd have to successfully cancel your confirmed eUp (there needs to be the original fare class space available) and then you can then upfare to the full J ticket, if full J is available. (why not just do low J instead of full J?)
I am on an Aeroplan Latitude ticket with my son which was instantly e-upgraded after booking. My wife if on a low J Aeroplan reward with our infant daughter. A nice meal in SS before we board the plane is easier than dealing with kids meals in pods (life can be so cruel!!).
PAULO77 is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 9:04 am
  #23  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Programs: AC E35K. RAM GOLD/ OWS
Posts: 36
Originally Posted by Nitehawk View Post
That depends on if it's an Aeroplan ticket or a paid ticket.
Aeroplan ticket.
PAULO77 is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 9:14 am
  #24  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Toronto, ON
Programs: AC 75K
Posts: 5,819
Originally Posted by PAULO77 View Post
Aeroplan ticket.
As clearly noted in the wiki at the top of the thread, the only way you're getting into the SS on an Aeroplan ticket is by booking Business Flexible.
ChrisA330 is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 9:22 am
  #25  
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: District of Columbia
Programs: AA Plat Pro, AC 50K, AT Gold, Hilton Diamond, National
Posts: 2,207
Originally Posted by ChrisA330 View Post
As clearly noted in the wiki at the top of the thread, the only way you're getting into the SS on an Aeroplan ticket is by booking Business Flexible.
Yeah - that is why he asked his question:
Originally Posted by PAULO77
Is it possible to upgrade my confirmed e-upgraded business (from Latitude) ticket to a flexible business ticket to get access to the SS before my international flight?
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Old Apr 21, 22, 9:25 am
  #26  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Programs: AC E35K. RAM GOLD/ OWS
Posts: 36
Originally Posted by ChrisA330 View Post
As clearly noted in the wiki at the top of the thread, the only way you're getting into the SS on an Aeroplan ticket is by booking Business Flexible.
That was read and understood before I asked the question. Maybe my question should have been posted in the E-upgrade thread but I thought it required the attention of a SS specialist!

I am hoping to change my booking from an e-upgraded Latitude ticket to a Flexible Business reward ticket, which, based on the replies, is not possible.

My question was valid but maybe in the wrong thread.
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Old Apr 21, 22, 9:45 am
  #27  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Toronto, ON
Programs: AC 75K
Posts: 5,819
Originally Posted by PAULO77 View Post
That was read and understood before I asked the question. Maybe my question should have been posted in the E-upgrade thread but I thought it required the attention of a SS specialist!

I am hoping to change my booking from an e-upgraded Latitude ticket to a Flexible Business reward ticket, which, based on the replies, is not possible.

My question was valid but maybe in the wrong thread.
I missed the original question up thread.

Yes, you can change your ticket to Business-Flexible, which will be priced at the current aeroplan rates.
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Old Apr 21, 22, 10:00 am
  #28  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Programs: AC E35K. RAM GOLD/ OWS
Posts: 36
Originally Posted by ChrisA330 View Post
I missed the original question up thread.

Yes, you can change your ticket to Business-Flexible, which will be priced at the current aeroplan rates.
No worries. I am trying to sneak in by paying the (minimal) points difference between Business and Business Flexible! I'll give them a call to be 100% certain that it wont work.

I am asking for my ticket to be changed from an upgraded latitude to a business flexible and only pay the price difference between business and business flexible, which, at best, is cheeky!

I'll report back if a miracle occurs! I will not get in the way of the fabulous food photos any longer!

Thanks to all for the input!
PAULO77 is offline  
Old Apr 21, 22, 10:07 am
  #29  
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Toronto, ON
Programs: AC 75K
Posts: 5,819
Originally Posted by PAULO77 View Post
No worries. I am trying to sneak in by paying the (minimal) points difference between Business and Business Flexible! I'll give them a call to be 100% certain that it wont work.

I am asking for my ticket to be changed from an upgraded latitude to a business flexible and only pay the price difference between business and business flexible, which, at best, is cheeky!

I'll report back if a miracle occurs! I will not get in the way of the fabulous food photos any longer!

Thanks to all for the input!
That's not cheeky, that's a waste of an Aeroplan agent's time. You have an economy ticket, not a business ticket. Regardless, you'll be paying the difference between what you paid originally and the new award cost now.

If you want into the lounge, you pay accordingly for it.
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Old Apr 21, 22, 10:17 am
  #30  
 
Join Date: Nov 2020
Location: YVR
Programs: AC50K, *A Gold, Marriott Titanium, Hilton Gold
Posts: 214
Originally Posted by PAULO77 View Post
No worries. I am trying to sneak in by paying the (minimal) points difference between Business and Business Flexible! I'll give them a call to be 100% certain that it wont work.

I am asking for my ticket to be changed from an upgraded latitude to a business flexible and only pay the price difference between business and business flexible, which, at best, is cheeky!

I'll report back if a miracle occurs! I will not get in the way of the fabulous food photos any longer!

Thanks to all for the input!
That's not how it works - you will pay the difference between latitude and current price of Business flex - again, you're not on a business fare. You're in economy, just in a nicer seat
loganre17 is offline  

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