**Note that this American Express Aeroplan Card review has been prewritten in anticipation of its official release on November 8th. Some details are still unknown at this time including the welcome bonus. I’ll update this post when the information becomes available on the 8th.
Aeroplan has revamped its loyalty program and with it came major changes. While the credit cards didn’t get a complete overhaul, they have been updated and it’s fair to say that all of them are now better. This is obviously great for consumers, but there are three co-branded credit card providers in American Express, TD, and CIBC, so choosing just one may be difficult.
Although the American Express Aeroplan Card is the entry-level Aeroplan card for Amex, it’s actually a premium travel credit card. While some people may complain that Amex isn’t accepted everywhere, Amex also doesn’t have a formal minimum income requirement which might be appealing to some people. Read my American Express Aeroplan Card review now and find out why this is a great choice if you want to earn Aeroplan points fast
American Express Aeroplan Card
- $120 annual fee
- 9,000 Aeroplan points + Air Canada buddy pass when you spend $1,500 in the first 3 months
- 1,000 Aeroplan points, per month, when you spend $500 monthly for the first 6 months
- Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Air Canada and Air Canada Vacations purchases
- Earn 1.5 points per $1 spent on dining and food delivery in Canada
- Earn 1 point per $1 spent on everything else
- Air Canada Travel Benefits: including eligible Free First Checked Bag (up to 8 people), Status Qualification Boost and Preferred Pricing on flight rewards
- Some travel insurance
- Purchase security
- Extended warranty
- Access to Amex Invites
The American Express Aeroplan Card is Amex’s entry-level card, but it’s quite impressive with a generous welcome bonus which includes an Air Canada Buddy Pass.
The earn rate is 2 points per $1 spent on Air Canada purchases including Air Canada Vacation. 1.5 points per $1 spent on dining and food delivery in Canada. And, 1 point per $1 spent on everything else. Overall this is a decent earn rate especially for people who eat out a lot.
Getting your first checked bag free for up to 8 people travelling on the same reservation with Air Canada is clearly a great benefit. Since checked bags start at $25 each way per person, a family of 4 could save $200 on checked bags for a single flight (assuming everyone checks their bags).
The included purchase security covers your purchases from loss, theft or damage for 90 days. You also get double the extended warranty for up to one additional year. You would obviously have to make these purchases with your American Express Aeroplan Card for the benefits to be valid.
American Express Aeroplan Card travel insurance
- Flight/trip delay – up to $500 / 4 hours
- Delayed and lost baggage – up to $500 total
- Hotel/motel burglary – $500
- Auto rental collision / loss damage – 48 consecutive days / $85,000
- Common carrier travel accident – $500,000
The American Express Aeroplan Card travel insurance is surprisingly weak for a premium travel credit card. You get no travel medical, trip cancellation, or trip interruption insurance at all. This is honestly a bit shocking.
The auto rental insurance is better than other comparable cards, but that shouldn’t be a deciding factor. If you’re going to get this card, make sure you have your own travel insurance policy. Having travel medical insurance whenever you leave Canada is a must in my opinion.
What is the Air Canada Buddy Pass?
The Air Canada Buddy Pass is a new benefit that comes as part of the welcome bonus for many Aeroplan credits cards. Basically, when the first passenger pays full fare, they can purchase a second ticket for the same itinerary where you would only have to pay the taxes and third-party fees. There is a base fare of $0. It’s valid for travel anywhere within North American including Hawaii and Mexico with no blackout dates. The Air Canada Buddy Pass can easily save you hundreds of dollars. You can read more about the Air Canada Buddy Pass here.
How does the American Express Aeroplan Card compare to others?
The closest competition the American Express Aeroplan Card has is the TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card. The annual fee with TD is a touch higher at $139, but the earn rate will likely appeal to more people.
With TD, you’ll earn 2 points per $1 spent on Air Canada purchases including Air Canada Vacation. 1.5 points per $1 spent on gas and groceries. And, 1 point per $1 spent on everything else. The difference here is the 1.5X multiplier. As a reminder, Amex gives you 1.5 points per $1 spent on dining and food delivery in Canada.
The TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Card also gives you a full suite of travel insurance which includes travel medical, trip cancellation, and trip interruption. TD even pays you out more for all the included insurance compared to American Express with the exception of auto rental insurance.
Although there are arguably better Aeroplan credit cards, my American Express Aeroplan Card review is still positive. The welcome bonus is a quick way to earn Aeroplan points, you get a decent earn rate, and free checked bags can be valuable.