The American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card consistently offers the highest signup bonus of all Aeroplan co-branded credit cards, with an annual fee and spending requirements to match. However, for those who can reach the monthly spend requirement, the points offered easily outweighs the annual fee.
Bonuses & Fees
As American Express’s high-end Aeroplan co-branded credit card for small businesses, the American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card currently offers 90,000 Aeroplan points as part of its signup offer via a referral link. The public offer is 5,000 points less than the referral offer.
The bonus is distributed as follows:
- 30,000 Aeroplan points upon spending $3,000 in the first three months
- 5,000 Aeroplan points for each of the first 12 months in which you spend $2,000, for a total of 60,000 Aeroplan points
You can refer friends and family from the Aeroplan Business Reserve Card to Aeroplan Business Reserve Cards or Aeroplan Reserve Cards of their own, earning a referral bonus of 10,000 Aeroplan points each time, up to a maximum of 150,000 Aeroplan points in a calendar year.
The card has an annual fee of $599, and you can add supplementary cardholders for $199 apiece.
In terms of the returns on everyday spending, the American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card has a very unique structure, offering cardholders:
- 3 Aeroplan points per dollar spent on Air Canada and Air Canada Vacations
- 2 Aeroplan points per dollar spent on hotels and car rentals
- 1.25 Aeroplan points per dollar spent on everything else
Whether or not you find value in the earning rates will depend on your spending patterns and how well they fit with the bonus categories.
The 3x earn rate on Air Canada makes this the ideal card when purchasing cash fares on Air Canada or any of its codeshare partners, and the 2x earn rate on dining and food delivery is also the highest among all the Aeroplan-branded cards.
Meanwhile, the 1.25x Aeroplan points per dollar spent on all other purchases is fairly competitive against the 1.25x MR points (which can be transferred to Aeroplan at a 1:1 ratio) that you’d get on the Business Platinum Card, too.
Aeroplan remains the program of choice for the vast majority of Canadians aiming to redeem their points for high-value international business and First Class redemptions.
Redeeming Aeroplan points follows the Aeroplan Flight Reward Chart, and can cost as little as 55,000 points one-way from Vancouver to Tokyo in business class.
From the East Coast, 60,000 Aeroplan points (or often fewer, thanks to Air Canada’s preferred pricing if you hold Elite Status or a credit card) would unlock a transatlantic flight to most parts of Western Europe.
Closer to home: short-haul flights within North America that are under 500 miles only cost 6,000 Aeroplan points one-way.
Perks & Benefits
As Air Canada’s premium small business travel credit card, the American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card leans in heavily on the Air Canada travel benefits:
- Priority boarding, priority check-in, and a free first checked bag on all Air Canada flights, for the primary and supplementary cardholders
- Complimentary visits to Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounges within North America, for the primary and supplementary cardholders
- Preferred pricing when redeeming Aeroplan points for Air Canada flights
- The ability to earn 1,000 Status Qualifying Miles (SQM) and 1 Status Qualifying Segment (SQS) for every $5,000 you spend on the card
- The ability to rollover up to 200,000 SQMs and 50 eUpgrades per year
- The ability to earn an Annual Worldwide Companion Pass after spending $25,000 on the card per year
- Your Aeroplan points won’t expire for as long as you’re a cardholder
In addition to the Air Canada benefits, the card also offers some travel benefits via American Express, such as priority benefits (valet parking, fast track security, etc.) at Toronto Pearson International Airport.
As a high-end product, the American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card excels in the insurance department. Some examples of its strong coverage include:
- Emergency medical insurance: Up to $5 million of coverage for the first 15 days of your out-of-province trip, for travellers aged under 65.
- Delayed and lost baggage insurance: For delayed baggage, up to $1,000 of coverage per insured person if delayed more than 4 hours. For lost or stolen baggage, up to $1,000 of coverage total.
- Flight delay insurance: Up to $1,000 in coverage if your flight/trip is delayed more than 4 hours
- Trip cancellation / trip interruption insurance: for Trip Cancellation, up to $1,500 of coverage per insured person, with a maximum of $3,000 for all insured persons, and for Trip Interruption, up to $1,500 of coverage per insured person, with a maximum of $6,000 for all insured persons on the same covered trip.
- Auto rental collision/loss damage insurance: Comprehensive coverage for up to 48 consecutive days for cars with an MSRP of up to $85,000, which can help you save on the insurance fees that the car rental company would otherwise charge.
It’s important to note that these benefits would also apply on Aeroplan reward tickets, as long as you charge the taxes and fees of your booking to your American Express Aeroplan Business Reserve Card.
Additionally, the card also offers Purchase Security and Extended Warranty Protection, covering most eligible items you’ve purchased with your card should they be stolen or damaged within 90 days of purchase, as well as an extended one-year warranty period compared to the manufacturer’s warranty.