Our top picks of timely offers from our partners

More details
UFB Secure Savings
Learn More
Terms Apply
Up to 5.25% APY on one of our top picks for best savings accounts plus, no monthly fee
Accredited Debt Relief
Learn More
Terms Apply
Accredited Debt Relief helps consumers with over $30,000 of debt
LendingClub High-Yield Savings
Learn More
Terms Apply
Our top pick for best savings accounts for its strong APY and an ATM card with no ATM fees
Choice Home Warranty
Learn More
Terms Apply
Protects 25+ systems & appliances. Free quote + $50 off + 1 month free
Freedom Debt Relief
Learn More
Terms Apply
Freedom Debt Relief can help clients get started without fees up front
Select independently determines what we cover and recommend. We earn a commission from affiliate partners on many offers and links. This commission may impact how and where certain products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Read more about Select on CNBC and on NBC News, and click here to read our full advertiser disclosure.
Credit Cards

Aeroplan Credit Card review: Valuable travel rewards with a modest annual fee

Chase's newer Aeroplan Credit Card is a great option for those who enjoy international travel.

Share
Source: Getty Images

Information about the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card has been collected independently by Select and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of the card prior to publication.

Chase's Aeroplan® Credit Card offers flyers a great opportunity to earn valuable Aeroplan points and elite benefits, making it a solid choice for those who enjoy international travel.

While Aeroplan is the official loyalty program of Air Canada, you don't necessarily need to be a frequent customer of the carrier to redeem this card's rewards. In fact, you can use Aeroplan points to book domestic flights on United Airlines, among several other Star Alliance partners such as Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines.

With a modest $95 annual fee, valuable spending categories, travel insurance coverage and no foreign transaction fees, it's a decent choice if you're in the market for a new travel rewards card.

Below, Select details the Aeroplan Credit Card's benefits, as well as how to maximize the rewards points you'll earn by using it.

Subscribe to the Select Newsletter!

Our best selections in your inbox. Shopping recommendations that help upgrade your life, delivered weekly. Sign-up here.

Aeroplan Credit Card review

Aeroplan® Credit Card

On Chase's secure site
  • Rewards

    Earn 3X points for each dollar spent at grocery stores, on dining at restaurants and Air Canada directly; 1X points for each dollar spent on all other purchases; 500 bonus points for every $2,000 you spend in a calendar month (up to 1,500 points per month).

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn 60,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.

  • Annual fee

    $95

  • Intro APR

    None

  • Regular APR

    21.74% - 28.74% Variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater

  • Foreign transaction fee

    None

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

Terms apply. Member FDIC.

Pros

  • Cardmembers and travel companions (up to eight) traveling on the same reservation will all enjoy free first checked bags on Air Canada.
  • Global Entry/TSA PreCheck/NEXUS credit of up to $100 every four years
  • No fees on purchases made outside the U.S.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • No introductory 0% APR

Welcome bonus

The Aeroplan Credit Card's welcome bonus lets new cardholders earn up to 60,000 bonus points.

Earn 60,000 points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Plus, 500 bonus points for every $2,000 you spend in a calendar month - up to 1,500 points per month.

Keep in mind that this card falls under Chase's 5/24 restriction, so if you've been approved for more than five credit cards within the last 24 months, you'll automatically be rejected when you apply for any new Chase cards.

Benefits and perks

The Aeroplan Credit Card comes with several perks aimed at helping avid travelers score an easier journey. Cardholders have access to the following benefits:

  • Instant Aeroplan 25K Status for the rest of the calendar year and the following calendar year, giving you access to more perks including priority check-in, security and boarding; two one-time passes to Air Canada's Maple Leaf Lounges and premium-cabin upgrades. You can also maintain the same status level by spending $15,000 during a calendar year.
  • The ability to elevate your Aeroplan status level to 35K Status or higher when you spend $50,000 during a calendar year.
  • A $100 statement credit every four years to put toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® membership.
  • You and up to eight travel companions (as long as you're all on the same reservation) can enjoy a complimentary checked bag, up to 50 lbs, when traveling with Air Canada.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Access to 24/7 concierge services.
  • Travel insurance coverage, including trip cancellation and interruption insurance, reimbursement for trip delays, baggage delay insurance, roadside assistance and an auto rental collision damage waiver, among other purchase protections.

How to earn and redeem Aeroplan points

Earning Aeroplan points

As you spend with the Aeroplan Credit Card, you'll earn:

  • 3X points per dollar at grocery stores and restaurants (takeout and certain delivery services count, too), as well as purchases made with Air Canada directly.
  • 1X points per dollar for all other purchases.
  • 500 bonus points for every $2,000 spent each calendar month, up to 1,500 bonus points per month.

Redeeming Aeroplan points

The more you use your card, the more you'll accumulate Aeroplan points, which can then be redeemed for flights operated by Air Canada and its many Star Alliance airline partners, including United Airlines, Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines and Air New Zealand, as well as a number of non-alliance partners such as Brazil-based Azul and United Arab Emirates-based Etihad Airways. Regardless of whether you prefer to travel domestically or internationally, you'll have many options when it's time to redeem your Aeroplan points.

Here are a few examples of some economy and premium cabin flights you can book with Aeroplan points (note that all pricing is based on a one-way flight and does not include taxes or fees):

  • Within the United States: Economy redemptions start at 6,000 points, while business class redemptions start at 25,000 points on United Airlines.
  • U.S. to Asia: Economy flights to Seoul are available from 50,000 points in economy or from 75,000 points in business class on either United Airlines or Asiana Airlines.
  • U.S. to Europe: Economy flight redemptions to Frankfurt start at 35,000 points, while business class redemptions start at 60,000 points on Lufthansa.

To get a better idea of how many points you'll need for your next trip, refer to Aeroplan's award chart.

Rates and fees

The card has a modest $95 annual fee, along with a 21.74% - 28.74% variable APR on purchases and balance transfers.

There are no foreign transaction fees, so you can travel and spend outside the U.S. without incurring any additional fees.

Card comparison

Aeroplan Credit Card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

On Chase's secure site
  • Rewards

    Enjoy benefits such as 5x on travel purchased through Chase Travel℠, 3x on dining, select streaming services and online groceries, 2x on all other travel purchases, 1x on all other purchases, and $50 annual Chase Travel Hotel Credit, plus more.

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠.

  • Annual fee

    $95

  • Intro APR

    None

  • Regular APR

    21.49% - 28.49% variable on purchases and balance transfers

  • Balance transfer fee

    Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater

  • Foreign transaction fee

    None

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

  • Terms apply.

 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a top travel rewards credit card that lets you earn Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, which can be transferred to a number of airline and hotel partners, including Aeroplan. The welcome bonus currently offers new cardholders 60,000 points after spending $4,000 within the first three months of card membership.

Cardholders can earn:

  • 5X points for travel purchased via Chase Travel℠ (minus hotel stays that qualify for the included $50 annual hotel credit you'll earn when booking hotels through the portal).
  • 5X points for eligible Lyft rides through March 31, 2025.
  • 3X points for dining purchases, including takeout and select delivery services.
  • 3X points for using certain streaming and online grocery shopping services, not counting Target, Walmart or other wholesale stores.
  • 2X points for all other travel-related purchases.
  • 1X points for all other purchases.
  • Complimentary DashPass membership from DoorDash and Caviar for one year — as long as you activate the perk by Dec. 31, 2024.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card also includes many of the same benefits as the Aeroplan Card, including comprehensive travel insurance protections, no foreign transaction fees and the ability to transfer points to additional airline partner loyalty programs, all for the same $95 annual fee.

For those deciding between these two cards, it really comes down to your personal travel habits and goals. If you solely enjoy flying with Air Canada, the Aeroplan Card is the clear winner as you will score automatic elite status.

If you prefer to fly with other airlines as well, it might be worth having both cards, especially since you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio. Signing up for both cards (and reaching both minimum spending requirements) would end up netting you more than 130,000 points, which could then be redeemed through Aeroplan — all for a combined $190 in annual fees, providing a solid value for any traveler.

Aeroplan Credit Card vs. Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

  • Rewards

    Earn 3X points on Southwest® purchases, 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare; 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming. 1X points on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • Annual fee

    $99

  • Intro APR

    None

  • Regular APR

    21.49% - 28.49% variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    5%, minimum $5

  • Foreign transaction fees

    None

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

Terms apply.

The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card is a great addition, especially for flyers who are loyal to the budget airline.

To get started, you can earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

  • 6,000 bonus points to celebrate each account anniversary.
  • Two EarlyBird check-ins per year.
  • 1,500 tier qualifying points toward A-List and A-List Preferred status for every $10,000 you spend, with no limit as to how many you can earn.
  • 25% back for in-flight purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees when you use the card abroad.
  • Southwest Airlines perks such as two free checked bags per person, no change fees and Rapid Rewards points that never expire.

You'll earn 3X points per dollar for purchases made with Southwest Airlines; 2X points per dollar spent through Rapid Rewards car and hotel partners and 1X points per dollar for all other purchases. Cardholders can also earn 2X points per dollar on transit, including ride-share services and commuting, as well as select streaming, phone, internet and cable services.

Best of all, the points you earn by using the Southwest Premier Credit Card count toward the Companion Pass®, which allows your chosen friend or family member to fly with you for free for up to a year (not counting taxes and fees from $5.60 each way).

If you're deciding between the two cards, consider which airline you tend to fly with the most. If you travel primarily within the U.S. and aren't looking for premium cabin flights, the Southwest Premier Credit Card is likely a solid fit. If, on the other hand, you prefer to have a variety of carriers to redeem your rewards with, as well as the opportunity to redeem points toward business or first class flights, the Aeroplan Credit Card would be the better option.

Bottom line

The Aeroplan Credit Card is a solid pick for anyone looking to earn valuable travel rewards points that can be redeemed for flights without the high annual fee price tag. Keep in mind, however, that this card requires a good to excellent credit score in order to get approved.

Catch up on Select's in-depth coverage of personal financetech and toolswellness and more, and follow us on FacebookInstagram and Twitter to stay up to date.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.
Chime
Learn More
Terms Apply
Chime offers online-only accounts that minimize fees plus, get paid up to 2 days early with direct deposits
Find the right savings account for you
Learn More
Terms Apply
Help your money grow by finding the savings account that offers the best rates and features for you