Air Canada converting vouchers to miles at a poor rate


We recently reported that AIr Canada would soon offer the ability to take a refund for a flight in the form of Aeroplan miles. I believe that conversion was scheduled to go live on June 15th. Loyalty Lobby reports that this capability has apparently gone live already, but not at nearly as good a ratio as initially expected.

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While Air Canada had previously announced that refund vouchers would be convertible to miles, they had stated a value of 1.3c per mile, Loyalty Lobby reports a data point showing that the conversion is only currently happening at 1.54c (USD) per mile.  While that wouldn’t have necessarily been considered a bad deal if that’s how it was initially announced, tit doesn’t look like a good deal in comparison to what they promised.

And in fact the reason the rate is coming out at 1.54c is because, according to the comments they provided to Loyalty Lobby, Air Canada is claiming that the taxes on the ticket are nonrefundable. That doesn’t make any sense to me as I don’t think they would need to remit any tax to any government authority on a flight that you didn’t take. That said a Canadian commenter on the Loyalty Lobby post indicates that mileage purchases are taxed in Canada, so perhaps there is at the very least some confusion at play over how the conversion should work. My initial reaction was that no government authority would be collecting tax on a flight that didn’t happen, but it seems like

Based on the statement to Loyalty Lobby, it sounds like they are double-checking the IT on the conversion. It is at least possible that this wasn’t quite ready for prime time given the original expected timeline of June 15th. Hopefully it’s a glitch that they fix and not a move to change the ratio from what they previously announced. At this point, let’s hope that’s it. I’d recommend holding off on converting Air Canada vouchers for miles until this gets resolved.

H/T: Loyalty Lobby

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