The American Express Aeroplan Reserve Card is one of the premium credit cards partnered with Air Canada’s loyalty program. It’s a great choice for its large signup bonus, and a blend of premium perks from both Aeroplan and American Express.
Bonuses & Fees
As American Express’s high-end Aeroplan co-branded credit card, the American Express Aeroplan Reserve Card currently offers 90,000 Aeroplan points as its welcome bonus when you apply with a referral link.
The bonus is distributed as follows:
- 60,000 Aeroplan points upon spending $6,000 in the first six months
- 5,000 Aeroplan points for each of the first six months in which you spend $1,000, for a total of 30,000 Aeroplan points
The card has an annual fee of $599.
You can refer friends and family from the Aeroplan Reserve Card to Aeroplan Reserve Cards or Aeroplan Business 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 Aeroplan Reserve Card also allows you to add supplementary cardholders for $199 apiece; alternatively, you can also add the lower-tier Aeroplan Card for your authorized users for $50 apiece.
In terms of the returns on everyday spending, the American Express Aeroplan 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 dining and food delivery
- 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, earning 1.25 Aeroplan points per dollar spent on all other purchases is equal to the earning rates on TD’s and CIBC’s Visa Infinite Privilege cards in the same market, and represents a very strong overall return on your everyday purchases.
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 travel credit card, the American Express Aeroplan 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 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 $85,000, which can help you save on the insurance fees that the car rental company would otherwise charge.
It’s important to note that these benefits would also apply on Aeroplan reward tickets, as long as you charge the taxes and fees of your booking to your American Express Aeroplan Reserve Card.
Additionally, the card also offers Purchase Security and Extended Warranty Protection, covering most eligible items you’ve purchased with your card should they be stolen or damaged within 90 days of purchase, as well as an extended one-year warranty period compared to the manufacturer’s warranty.
If you spend 3000$ on travel in the first 3 months, do you get the 30 000 and the 20 000 points or does it have to be separate?
Thanks Ricky, applied on your page on behalf of my wife and got the approval within 60 seconds. Anything to keep AMEX and Aeroplan happy:)
Hey Ricky, applied for this card using your link and got instant approval within 60 seconds. Card should be arriving this week. How long should I wait until I refer my wife to get the referral bonus for player B?
Hey Ricky, if I sign up for this card am I still eligible for the sign up bonuses of the American Express Platinum Card?
At present I have the TD Aeroplan visa. If I sign up for the American Express Aeroplan Reserve card I’m assuming that I can collect Aeroplan points from both cards. Is that correct? Also I understand that the supplementary card ($199.00) will also have access to the MLL.
Yes you can collect points from both cards . I do been doing it for years. Yes your additional card get MLL accès you can also get priority pass which is good for lounges outside of North America
Does anyone know if the buddy pass has been posting right after the $3,000 spend as I’m trying to squeeze in a family referral before the Nov. buddy pass deadline?
I thought the Buddy Pass and the Companion Pass weren’t the same thing and thus the Companion Pass couldn’t be exchanged for the 30k points?
Have u noticed if the card still includes the world wide companion pass after spending $25K? I got the card in Jul with the 150k pts….and just noticed now this is another perk that was not mentioned previously. Sweet!!!!
Hey Ricky & Prince of Travel Team,
I think I got some bad news regarding the eats and drinks for the Aeroplan reserve, it did not include any of my grocery purchases towards the 10x bonus (from Freshco & Sobeys). I’m trying to find out more from the Amex Chat Customer Service but no details yet.
I’ve also been getting all the points for the grocery purchases as well. When did you get the card though? If you got the card during the summer 10x the points promo, then grocery purchases counted towards the food and dining category. However, if you missed that promotion and applied after that promotion, the regular 3x category for dining and food delivery does NOT include groceries. Other than that, I would suggest contacting AMEX for further comment.
Weird. I’ve been getting all the points for the grocery purchases.
Same thing has happened to me. I got this card thinking I could meet the $833.33 monthly requirement with grocery purchases but I checked my statement but it’s not giving me the bonus points on grocery purchases (Sobeys, Frescho, Instacart etc). It’s only giving on dining and food delivery purchases. Would be great if Ricky and team can comment.
When I got the card in July, the Mapple Leaf Access was for the primary card holder (or supplementary card holder) AND a guest.
I don’t see those conditions now.
Is there a screenshot somewhere with those conditions ?
Hey Raphael – I was concerned about this as well but I flew on Sunday out of YVR and checked with the lady at the front desk of the MLL and confirmed that aeroplan reserve card holders are good for primary card holder + guest. As a bonus, we are also apparently eligible for two guests for one visit once per year (i.e., once per year you are able to go to the lounge with two other travel companions).
Hope that helps!
Ricky – hopefully that’s good information for your team as well!
I hope this still applies! I just spoke to someone from air Canada and they mentioned that their maple leaf lounges aren’t even allowing guest passes right now… 🙁 I have the reserve card and 2 one time.passes.. but need to get 4 adults and 2 kiddies under 5 in… Hoping it all works out! If anyone else has had recent experience for the YVR maple lounge I would love to hear!
Where is the Annual Worldwide companion pass located after I qualify? I hit the 25K minimum within the first week of using the card, it has been 5 months since then, I cannot see the pass anywhere when I log onto my aeroplan account?
You’ll find it in the Benefits section of the card. However, the terms do say that it can show up within several weeks after your cardholder anniversary date, so you may need to wait a while longer to see it.
Does LCBO qualify as eat and drink category?
You can purchase an LCBO gift card at a grocery store that accepts Amex.
Do you know what the foreign exchange charge is for this card?
I know the platinum is 0
Is this one zero too?
No it does not unfortunatley.
Is there a mistake in the article or the YouTube video? The video says aeroplan reserve offers 1 pt for al other expenditures. This article says 1.25
This might be because the card launched with 1x points on all other purchases, but changed to 1.25x earlier this year: https://princeoftravel.com/blog/amex-aeroplan-reserve-a-higher-1-25x-base-earning-rate/
I’ve used your referral code and signed up for the Reserve AMEX card, do you know how long it takes for the 20k points to come into the account?
Under the Standard Earn methods it shows this…. “…and delivery of food in Canada as a primary business, but not including groceries..”
Does this mean things like Instacart will not earn the 2X dining/drinks point scale? Or ALL Grocery stores?
The wording isn’t clear to me. Does it mean that during the first 6 month mega promotion groceries count, but once the promotion has ended then groceries do NOT count?? or just grocery delivery?
Offer says Aeroplan points expire if card is not renewed. Is that true if another card, say CIBC Aeroplan, is still active? Are they actually tracking which card my points come from so some can be canceled?
Ricky, what are the chances this offer along with the business and personal platinum offers still exist past August 3rd?
Extremely low in my opinion. They’re very much designed to be “summer offers” that take advantage of the current early resurgence in people’s appetite to travel.
For the below – does one get the points only if the booking is made directly on Air Canada website or also can book through a travel agent for Air Canada flight and receive the same ?
>> 3 Aeroplan points per dollar spent on Air Canada and Air Canada Vacations <<
I’m curious about the buddy pass after spending 25k in first year…do I have to pay cash for the ticket before I can use the buddy pass? Or can I redeem AP points and the use buddy pass. Looking to go to Hawaii which is $299 on the buddy pass
Would I receive the 20,000 pt referral bonus for referring a P2 and her selecting the Amex Aeroplan card? Or is it only for referral to the Amex Aeroplan reserve?
What’s the current thoughts on self-referring oneself to other cards – avoid it or risk being amexiled ?
The Aeroplan Reserve can’t refer to the Aeroplan Card. It’d have to be an Aeroplan Reserve or an Aeroplan Business Reserve.
Btw, Looking forward to use your referral to apply very soon!! U deserve the prize!! 😉
Do u get the 70,000 AND 30,000 points if u spend just 1000$ each month for 6 months? ie does the 1000$ satisfy both requirements?
And I would need to spend an extra 833.33$/ month for 6 months to reach 5000$ spent x 10 = 50,000 Aeroplan miles? Thks so much for your enlightening reads and videos!!!
Yes, it does! You could spend $833.33/month on eats and drinks as well as $166.67/month on other stuff and meet all three requirements in one go.
Thanks Ricky, Used your link referral and got approved instantly!!!
I guess I will be going to safeway buying mastercard GC every month! lol
Well I’m mildly annoyed. I applied to the card by using their french page and on there it said this about Priority Pass:
”Avant votre vol, rattrapez du retard au travail ou détendez-vous en profitant de boissons et de rafraîchissements légers sans supplément18.”
Which translate to: Before your flight, catch up on business or relax with complimentary drinks and light refreshments –At no additional charge–.
That last bit led me to think I would have access to priority pass lounge without any additional charge…Now that I’ve received my package went back and looked it over in english and they skipped that last part on their english page.
Does supplementary cardholder even the no fee can have the same benefits as primary such as priority check-in, lounge access?
Only the $199 supplementary cards come with the additional benefits – the $0 supplementary cards are for spending only.
How does the Referral Bonus work?
You mentioned grocery store purchases, including gift cards. Does Walmart qualify as a grocery store?
Typically no, almost all Walmart’s are consider General Goods Retailers. There are a few exceptions to this.
Do I have to fly w/ Air Canada in order to get access to Maple Leaf Lounge?
@Ricky isn’t it possible to avail this benefit if travelling on any star alliance member airline? I think I read these terms somewhere.
I do a lot of my grocery shopping at Costco and it would be so much easier to get the 50k points from the 10x for grocery and dining but since you can’t really use Amex at Costco.ca and the multiplier wouldn’t work there anyway, I was wondering if a way around this would be to purchase a Visa gift card at a grocery store that’s eligible for the multiplier and just use the gift card to buy from whatever stores that aren’t eligible for the 10x? Would that actually work since you are getting the gift card at an eligible grocery store?
Definitely works. I use that for amazon all the time
Thanks so much for your reply! I had no idea people actually do this and I looked into it and I guess it’s insanely common but frowned upon by Amex? I’ll give it a try but now I’m slightly concerned. I’m assuming if you don’t go crazy with the Visa and Mastercard GC purchases it won’t be a problem?
Aeroplane Preferred Pricing. Is this a worthwhile benefit? How much of a potential discount would you expect?
I read on a ‘deals’ forum that the Reserve now allows you to bring a guest into the MLL at no additional charge. Can you confirm?
Would like to know this as well
Yes, this does seem to be the case.
I currently have the Cobalt card. Is there any reason to keep it if I decide to apply for and keep the Amex Platinum card?
With the new 150k MR offer, are there any bonuses from applying with referral links on top of that?
Nope, it’s the same offer via referral, so the bonus would only be to the referrer.
Does gift cards bought from restaurants and grocery stores count towards the 10x bonus category? Thanks!
Does the Amex Aeroplan Reserve or Aeroplan allow you to bring across the existing Aeroplan miles you have (that are currently moved from the old Aeroplan card to the new integrated account with Air Canada?) would that also apply for a second cardholder or would you need a separate Amex card in their (spouse’s) name?
Your existing Aeroplan points won’t move or be affected at all – they stay in your Aeroplan account. Points from your new Aeroplan credit card(s) will be sent to your same Aeroplan account. Points earned by a secondary cardholder get sent to the primary cardholder’s linked Aeroplan account.
Just wondering how long it takes for the 35K points to hit the account? I spent 10K plus already on the card within the first 3 days but have not seen the points yet after a week- thanks!
Points post with your monthly statement.
Where do you see that the card is 1.25 aeroplan points for all other purchases? I checked their website it says 1 only- thanks! Also it says 65K welcome bonus only not 75K
See this article: https://princeoftravel.com/blog/amex-aeroplan-reserve-a-higher-1-25x-base-earning-rate/
The 75K offer is available via a referral link, not via the public offer.
Amex just upped the everyday spend to 1.25 points to match CIBC and TD VIP cards. It just popped up as a message on my AMEX dashboard.
Thanks for the referral link Ricky.
Question re: spending… Want to clarify to ensure I get the maximum bonus.
Card activated today (March 21st).
Is it $1,000 / mo starting today or per statement period?
ie) Do I need to spend $1,000 by Apr 21st then $1,000 from Apr 22nd – May 21st, then May 22nd – June 21st etc?
My understanding is that it’s based on the statement period. By chance, some cardholders might end up with a very short statement period for their first statement, so many cardholders have reported American Express giving them an extra 5,000 Aeroplan points on the first statement as a kind of protection against that. If you can spend $1,000+ within the first few days and ensure that it’s posted within your first statement, you’ll even get to keep those 5,000 bonus points and end up with 10,000 points on your first statement in total.
What’s AMEX statement period?
I’m not sure if they start the clock when I receive and activate the card, or now since they gave me the card details digitally when I was immediately approved.
Did you find out this answer? I just qualified today for the card, and like you, I received the digital info. I can’t find anything regarding the statement period anywhere.
Will you qualify for the 75,000 points if you spend $6k in the first couple of months, or does the spend have to be over a six month period?
It has to be over the 6 months.
I noticed that Priority Pass is now included in the advertised benefits for this card, in addition to the Maple Leaf Lounge access. A Priority Pass Prestige membership to be specific. I got approved right away and immediately received 5,000 AP points before making a single purchase. I met the MS requirements in the first couple of weeks (just under $5k spending) and have over 65,000 total points posted to this card, so it seems that the 5,000 points per $1k for first six months posts immediately as you spend each $1k segment.
Can anyone else confirm this DP, that we don’t need to wait every month to spend $1,000 per month? We can just spend the $6k right away??
^correction – It’s a Basic Prestige Priority Pass, so you have to pay for each visit. Will continue to use Biz Platinum card for lounge visits. Given that so many of the Maple Leaf lounges are closed or offering limited services you would think a higher level of Priority Pass would be included with this card, especially with it launching during a time with such restrictions in place. Maybe this explains why they added the $100 statement credit.
My Amex Platinum automatically changed to AMEX reserve card this November. I haven’t travelled since but I am about to in a few weeks. Do you have any idea if the Reserve card still allows you to have access to airport lounges other than Maple Leaf Lounges for a fee? ( Such as the Plaza Premium Lounges and other Star alliance affiliated ones?)
Must the full cost of the flight be charged on the reserve card for one to be eligible for flight delay insurance? Say $200 taxes and fees for aeroplan rewards redemption is paid by a $25 AC gift card and the rest of the $175 is charged on the reserve card, would you still be entitled to the coverage?
When does this offer expire?
There’s no published expiry date on the public 75K offer. The waitlist offer expires on December 31, 2020.
Isnt the Maple Leaf lounge access just for international flights? So this is worse than the amex plat PP access which you can use for international and domestic itineraries? (I’m likely still going to sign up as i just churned my amex plat last month)
“A Basic Cardmember and Supplementary Cardmember(s) are each entitled to complimentary access to any Maple Leaf Lounge located in Canada and the United States, including International Maple Leaf Lounges in Canada and the United States when travelling on an international itinerary. Access excludes Air Canada Signature Suites and lounges operated by third parties, such as Star Alliance member airlines. Guests of Basic Cardmembers or Supplementary Cardmembers may enter upon paying an applicable fee. Access will be granted in conjunction with a same-day, confirmed ticket on a flight marketed or operated by Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge, under the Air Canada Express brand, or any Star Alliance member airline. Anyone under the age of majority entering a Maple Leaf Lounge must be accompanied by an adult with access to the lounge. Age of majority is determined by the jurisdiction in which the Maple Leaf Lounge is located. Benefit may only be used as described, and otherwise cannot be transferred. Access is subject to space availability. See aircanada.com/lounges-termsandconditions for applicable Maple Leaf Lounges Terms and Conditions”
I think they’ve just worded it poorly. They’re saying along with domestic and trans-border lounges, you get access to the international lounges within N.A. when travelling internationally.
Hi Ricky, thanks for all your hard work on running this website! Just wondering would you recommend someone who has amex platinum and Aeroplan elite status to apply the reserve card just to get the 75k welcome bonus? If so, should the card holder keep both after a year or cancel the reserve card afterwards as platinum have stronger earning ratios? Thanks.
I’d say the 75K is a very strong bonus, yes. However, it’s probably not necessary to keep both the Platinum and the Aeroplan Reserve in the long run. Between the two cards, the Platinum does seem stronger for its earning rates and travel benefits; the only reason to keep the Reserve instead would be if you really value the Air Canada priority/lounge benefits on the card.
Hello, in the same line of thought, if one gets the Amex platinum, but travels mostly on Air canada, then I imagine it would make sense to get another core or premium Aeroplan branded card when booking on Air canada. That would give the extra benefits on those flights linked to the card. Otherwise, we have to go through travelamex, correct?
Thanks Ricky for your reply, absolutely, since platinum have lounge benefits and my Aeroplan elite status offers priority, so I guess I’ll apply this card just to get the welcome bonus then.
Has anyone got an automatic approval with Aeroplan reserve card? I got a generic response that my application will be reviewed. Then about 2 days after, I got a call from Amex saying that they still need 24-48hrs more to review my application.
Yes I was approved instantly and was given a copy of the card right away for use. I also received 5000 Aeroplan points right away
I did, automatically approved and was given the option of showing card number right away for use. Physical metal card received TWO days after, fastest application ever.
Hey guys. Just wanted to know what’s the waitlist email looks like. I have joined the waitlist back in September but I have not received the email as of yet.
Got my email on Nov 8 or 9. Don’t bother, just go to Air Canada and apply. The WB is the same.
Thank you for your reply. Does that mean I will still get the 10,000 pts bonus without getting the RSVP code? Will they just capture the email and compare to the waitlist when I submit the application?
Not sure. I received 2 waitlist emails in the last few days. I applied through the email link.
Amex is offering 75K pts for waitlist. Only 65K pts on the Amex of Air Canada site.
For what it’s worth there’s also a direct link for 75K points on the Air Canada website: https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/home/aeroplan/credit-cards/amex/offer.html
How come on the amex website says that the core card is a charge card whereas the reserve card is a credit card? is that a mistake on the amex website or it is actually a credit card?
That’s correct. The Aeroplan Card is a charge card, whereas the Aeroplan Reserve Card is a credit card.
Hello! Do you guys plan on cancelling this card when the 2nd year annual fee comes up or keeping it? I’ve heard that cancelling amex cards before the 12 month annual fee comes up can have bad consequences, but I’m not sure if that is strictly with american amex or if that applies to Canadian amex too.
That’s mostly with American Amex cards but it’s getting more and more true with Canadian Amex cards these days. I’d definitely recommend against cancelling before the second year’s annual fee comes up; if you must cancel, do so after that fee posts and ask for a refund within 30 days.
Great reviews and a resource for all new Cards. Thkx! How does this compared to Amex Biz personal or platinum? If all other benefits are redundant, can this card replace Amex Plat?
I still think the personal and business Platinum Card’s perks are stronger, due to the superior lounge access benefits and hotel statuses. The Aeroplan Reserve could be stronger for a frequent Air Canada flyer who values the benefits there, but that’s about it.
Here are some much more detailed comparisons:
I literally just got the email from Amex at 5:34PM EST
Nevermind, just got it!
Hello. Has anyone received their Waitlist emails from Amex yet with promo code?