Airlines around the world have been furiously inking partnerships with each other in recent years, which allow travelers to book itineraries more seamlessly — and they tend to create some pretty solid redemption options for those with points and miles to spend.
The most recent tie-up in the industry is between Air Canada and Emirates, who announced today, July 12, 2022, that their new partnership will go into effect later this year.
Let’s take a look at what this new partnership means for you.
Air Canada and Emirates Partnership
Most airlines are a part of the 3 major airline alliances: Star Alliance, SkyTeam, and Oneworld. Air Canada is currently a member of the Star Alliance, though Emirates has thus far opted to remain independent, instead creating a slate of individual partnerships with a wide variety of airlines including Japan Airlines, JetBlue, TAP Air Portugal, and Qantas.
Air Canada joining the fray is a good thing — for multiple reasons:
- Customers will be able to book a single itinerary that encompasses both Air Canada and Emirates flights
- Checked baggage will be automatically transferred between the two airlines
- The possibility of earning and redeeming miles on either airline
It’s always great when you don’t have to pull out your baggage and schlep it to the counter to be re-checked, but the most interesting point here is that customers may soon be able to earn and redeem miles on flights with either airline. Although this wasn’t specifically included in the announcement, odds are good that this is going to happen.
What Will Redeeming Miles Look Like?
Since Emirates isn’t part of an airline alliance, redeeming miles for its flights has always been somewhat of a challenge. This is due in part to Emirates restricting award inventory, but also because it’s very unpredictable when it comes to fuel surcharges. In fact, just in the last year alone, the airline has changed these fees 3 times, and it also increased the price of award flights.
Air Canada’s Aeroplan program did some good things in 2019 when it gave itself a thorough revamp, including adding the ability to add a stopover for just 5,000 points. While we don’t know the rates that Aeroplan will be charging for Emirates flights, we can hope that it will make Emirates awards easier to redeem.
Aeroplan points are also very easy to earn, thanks to their partnerships with 3 different transferable point currencies: American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Capital One Miles. All of these currencies transfer to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio.
Note that Emirates heavily restricts its first class rewards for partners, so we don’t know if this inventory is something to which Aeroplan will have access, but at the very least you should expect to be able to book business and economy class tickets.
Hot Tip: While we wait for the ability to book Emirates flights with Aeroplan points, read up on the current best ways to book an Emirates business class ticket with your points and miles.
Air Canada and Emirates launching a partnership is good news for passengers. Along with the ability to book codeshare flights and create single-ticket itineraries, the ability to earn and redeem your miles on these airlines represents a potentially valuable use of miles further down the road.
Featured Image Credit: