We’re seeing a very creative promotion coming out of the Aeroplan and Chase ecosystem in the US: if you hold the Chase Aeroplan Card, you’ll also be entitled to a 10% transfer bonus when converting Chase Ultimate Rewards points over to Aeroplan through December 31, 2023.
10% Transfer Bonus for Chase Aeroplan Cardholders
Chase Ultimate Rewards points can typically be converted to Aeroplan points at a 1:1 ratio, now with potentially a 10% transfer bonus on top.
This is a very innovative transfer bonus that we haven’t seen offered by many loyalty programs and co-branded card issuers before.
Typically, transferable points currencies may offer a 10% or higher conversion bonus for a limited time to certain loyalty program partners, but Aeroplan and Chase’s new move adds many new layers into the mix:
- Only Chase Ultimate Rewards points collectors who are also Chase Aeroplan Card holders are eligible for the transfer bonus.
- If a cardholder transfers at least 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points in a single transaction, they’ll get a 10% bonus. There is no bonus if you transfer fewer than 50,000 points in one transaction.
- There is a maximum of 25,000 bonus points per calendar year, which corresponds to transferring 250,000 Ultimate Rewards points (whether in one transaction or up to five separate transactions).
The requirement to be a Chase Aeroplan cardholder to take advantage of this transfer bonus serves a threefold purpose: first, it rewards existing Aeroplan Card holders who also happen to use Chase Ultimate Rewards conversions as part of their points-earning strategy.
Then, it also incentivizes Ultimate Rewards points collectors who haven’t yet picked up the Aeroplan Card to do so if they were considering transferring points to Aeroplan.
Even if they were to convert only 50,000 points and earn a 10% bonus of 5,000 Aeroplan points, that would already come close to earning back the US$95 first-year annual fee on the card.
Finally, the minimum threshold of 50,000 Aeroplan points to unlock the 10% transfer bonus incentivizes Ultimate Rewards points collectors to commit more points to Aeroplan, leading them down the path of taking advantage of Aeroplan’s sweet spots and engaging deeper with the program.
The transfer bonus runs through December 31, 2023, so even though it’s described as “limited-time”, it can indeed be thought of as part of the status quo for the next year and a half.
You’ll be eligible for the transfer bonus even if you sign up as a new Chase Aeroplan Card holder going forward, with the card offering very strong public and in-path signup offers at the moment.
Since the transfer bonus is operated on the Aeroplan side, the 10% bonus will post as a separate transaction on your Aeroplan activity list. The 10% bonus should post within 72 hours of the original transfer (which should take place instantly), but in some cases it can take up to seven days’ time.
Should You Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards Points to Aeroplan with a 10% Bonus?
If you’re a US-based Aeroplan member for whom the Aeroplan and Chase ecosystem is rapidly shaping up to be one of the best ways to earn Aeroplan points, then the 10% transfer bonus for Chase Aeroplan Card holders is certainly great news.
You’ll earn a nice extra chunk whenever you convert points from Chase simply by holding both a Chase Aeroplan Card and an Ultimate Rewards product.
Meanwhile, if you’re a Canadian Aeroplan member who has gotten into the US credit card game, the 10% transfer bonus isn’t all too much to get excited about.
That’s because transferring Ultimate Rewards points to Aeroplan is generally a bad idea when we already have so many easy ways to earn Aeroplan points in Canada, and Ultimate Rewards points can be used to access more “scarce” loyalty programs like World of Hyatt instead.
Unless you’re someone who prefers to concentrate all your points holdings in a small handful of programs, I’d say that Canadians who’ve gotten into Chase credit cards are likely to be interested in other redemption avenues besides Aeroplan, and the 10% transfer bonus won’t move the needle too much on that analysis.
Could We See Something Like This in Canada?
What’s more interesting to consider from a Canadian perspective is whether we might see something similar like this in Canada.
In particular, the Aeroplan executives recently mentioned on a livestream by my friend Anshul from Points, Miles & Bling that they intend to test-drive certain features and promotions on the US side before bringing them to Canada, and vice versa.
What if, say, American Express co-branded cardholders in Canada were eligible for a 10% transfer bonus from American Express Membership Rewards?
That would certainly go a long way towards driving interest in the Amex Aeroplan Card, Amex Aeroplan Reserve Card, and Amex Aeroplan Business Reserve Card; making existing cardholders feel rewarded and incentivized to keep the card long-term; and bringing the American Express and Aeroplan relationship closer together with more points pooled towards the same ecosystem.
(Speaking of which, wouldn’t it be lovely if TD Rewards and CIBC Aventura points were transferrable to Aeroplan as well, perhaps with TD and CIBC co-branded transfer bonuses too? Given the Aeroplan team’s proven smooth-talking skills in building relationships all over the world, I’d love to see this type of integrated partnership with the banks become a reality.)
Aeroplan is providing the concept of these deeper banking partnerships with Chase in the US, where they have a lot more freedom in the market to test-drive their creative ideas. If it’s a success for all parties involved, I could certainly see them pioneering the concept to Canada, where it’d surely be very well-received.
Aeroplan and Chase are bringing an all-new spin to the idea of a transfer bonus. From now until December 31, 2023, Chase Aeroplan Card holders will receive a 10% bonus when they convert at least 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points to Aeroplan in a single transaction, up to 25,000 bonus points per year.
This promotion adds meaningful value to existing and prospective Chase Aeroplan Card holders in the US, where Aeroplan is executing on a rapid-fire strategy to gain market share.
Given Aeroplan’s stated intention to cross-pollinate their creativity across the 49th parallel, I’d love to see a similar concept make its way to Canada in the future too.