Beginning tomorrow, June 20, and lasting through June 26, Aeroplan will be offering a 35% bonus when members convert their Marriott Bonvoy points into Aeroplan miles. You can initiate a transfer by logging into your Marriott account and linking it with your Aeroplan account. More information is available on Aeroplan’s website.
Don’t forget you continue to receive 5,000 bonus Aeroplan miles per Marriott’s standard rules when you transfer a block of 60,000 Bonvoy points. Aeroplan will give you a 35% bonus on that, too. If you transfer 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points you would receive a total of 33,750 Aeroplan miles.
I have a pretty healthy stash of Marriott Bonvoy points, but like you I’ve also heard about being “Bonvoyed” — the term for customer service failures at various Marriott hotels. I personally have not faced any of the issues. It doesn’t mean they don’t exist, but it also might mean it’s worth considering some alternate ways to redeem points besides Marriott award nights.
Aeroplan miles are worth about 1.4 to 1.5 cents each in my book, while Marriott points are worth about 0.7 to 0.8 cents each. This means 60,000 Marriott points are worth about $480 while the 33,750 Aeroplan miles you’d get in exchange are worth about $506.
It’s a slight arbitrage in Aeroplan’s favor, and fortunately the Aeroplan program is one of my favorites. I like the Star Alliance a lot and find they have good connections everywhere I want to go. Unlike Delta and SkyTeam, there aren’t bans against booking first class award travel. And I’d really rather avoid American and its frequent delays for any domestic travel. Aeroplan can be used to book travel on Star Alliance carriers including United Airlines, Air Canada, Lufthansa, ANA, and Singapore Airlines with either one-way or round-trip travel.
Aeroplan also allows stopovers and open jaws, which allow you to book more flexible trips to see more than one city on the same award. For example, you’ll be able to fly from A to B to C and back to A. More details about how to search for and book award travel can be found on my complete guide to Aeroplan.