WestJet is the second-largest airline in Canada, with a focus on Western Canada and a hub at Calgary International Airport. Today, the airline flies to more than 110 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia.
WestJet’s loyalty program is called WestJet Rewards. Unlike programs that yield miles or points, WestJet Rewards is a revenue-based program, which earns WestJet Dollars depending on how much you spend on your fare.
In this guide, we’ll cover everything there is to know about WestJet Rewards, including how to optimize your earning and redeeming within the program.
Earning WestJet Dollars
Similar to other airline loyalty programs, there are a number of ways you can earn WestJet Dollars. However, the most common ways to earn WestJet Dollars are by signing up for the WestJet RBC co-branded credit cards, by transferring points from RBC Avion, and by flying with WestJet and its partner airlines.
WestJet RBC Credit Cards
Both cards come with a welcome bonus, and both earn WestJet Dollars directly from spending. As an added perk, you can get an annual round-trip companion voucher with either card.
The entry-level WestJet RBC Mastercard requires a low annual fee of $39. The card’s signup bonus is usually 100 WestJet Dollars upon spending $1,000 in the first three months.
With the WestJet RBC Mastercard, you’ll earn 1.5% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent on WestJet flights and vacations, and 1% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent on all other purchases.
On the other hand, the upper-tier WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard commands a higher annual fee of $139. However, it also comes with a much larger welcome bonus of usually 450 WestJet Dollars.
Another valuable benefit of the card is a free checked bag on WestJet flights for the primary cardholder and up to eight companions on the same booking.
Likewise, the earning rate of the WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard is marginally higher than that of the base WestJet RBC Mastercard. The card earns 2% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent on WestJet flights and vacations, and 1.5% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent on all other purchases.
Transferring from RBC Avion
Earned from RBC Avion credit cards, Avion points can be converted to WestJet Dollars at a rate of 1 Avion point = 0.01 WestJet Dollars. This means that transferring 10,000 Avion points will yield 100 WestJet Dollars.
55,000 RBC Avion points†
55,000 RBC Avion points†
55,000 RBC Avion points†
25,000 RBC Avion points
20,000 RBC Avion points
You’ll need a minimum of 1,000 Avion points (10 WestJet Dollars) to initiate a transfer; then, you can transfer in increments of 100 Avion points (1 WestJet Dollars), up to a maximum of 1,000,000 Avion points (10,000 WestJet Dollars).
Flying with WestJet
WestJet Dollars are earned on all eligible WestJet flights. However, as a revenue-based frequent flyer program, how much you earn depends on how much you spend on your fare, and also your membership tier.
As a new WestJet Rewards member, you start at the Teal level. You can then progressively elevate your status to Silver, Gold, and Platinum.
You’ll earn under the following rates depending on your tier:
- Teal: 0.5% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent
- Silver: 3% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent
- Gold: 5% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent
- Platinum: 8% in WestJet Dollars per dollar spent
Hence, if you spent $1,000 in base fare on WestJet flights, you’ll earn 5 WestJet Dollars as a Teal member and 80 WestJet Dollars as a Platinum member.
Note that you won’t earn WestJet Dollars on the taxes and fees that make up the cost of the ticket. You also won’t earn any WestJet Dollars on any part of the ticket that was paid for with WestJet Dollars, on Member Exclusive fares, or on basic economy fares.
Flying with Partner Airlines
You can also earn WestJet Dollars when you fly with the following partner airlines:
- Air France
To earn WestJet Dollars, you must provide your WestJet Rewards number at the time of booking or during check-in.
The amount of WestJet Dollars you earn varies depending on the airline, cabin class, and your WestJet Rewards tier. Unlike with WestJet’s own flights, however, it doesn’t matter how much you spend on partner flights; rather, you’ll earn a set amount of WestJet Dollars based on the distance flown.
In addition, if you have a higher WestJet Rewards tier status than Teal, you’ll earn bonus WestJet Dollars. Across all partners, Silver members earn 50% more, Gold members earn 75% more, and Platinum members earn 100% more.
Earning Through WestJet Vacations
You can also earn WestJet Dollars by booking packages through WestJet Vacations. Similar to flying, you’ll earn WestJet Dollars based on your individual portion of the total eligible spend and your tier status at time of travel.
With vacation packages, Teal members earn 0.5% in WestJet Dollars, Silver members earn 1% in WestJet Dollars, Gold members earn 1.5% in WestJet Dollars, and Platinum members earn 2% in WestJet Dollars.
Other travel products booked through WestJet, including car rentals, hotel stays, meal plans, and other attractions, earn 1% in WestJet Dollars regardless of WestJet Rewards tier.
Buying WestJet Dollars
Lastly, you can buy WestJet Dollars to supplement your balance. However, 1 WestJet Dollar costs $2 (CAD), so it doesn’t make sense for you to do so.
That being said, WestJet’s Member Exclusive fares can only be booked with WestJet Dollars. Thus, buying may make sense if you find yourself short of a few WestJet Dollars.
Nonetheless, you should still compare the cost of Member Exclusive fares with regular fares to see if they’re worth it. After all, the new iteration of Member Exclusive fares involves dynamic pricing, making the offers hardly enticing.
Redeeming WestJet Dollars
Frankly, there aren’t many ways to redeem WestJet Dollars, and there aren’t any apparent “sweet spots” that you can take advantage of. Still, if you have a stash of WestJet Dollars, here are ways for you to use them.
Redeeming WestJet Dollars for WestJet flights is quite simple. WestJet Dollars are worth $1 (CAD) apiece, and WestJet Dollars can be used on a portion or the entire base fare of your WestJet flights. Note that you’ll need a minimum of 15 WestJet Dollars per guest and per direction of travel to redeem.
With the at-par value of WestJet Dollars, you’ll be hard-pressed to find outsized value with WestJet Rewards compared to other programs.
Worse, WestJet Dollars cannot be used for anything beyond the base fare. WestJet Dollars may not be used to cover taxes and fees – not even other air transportation charges (“Other ATC”) that may sometimes end up costing more than the base fare.
Codeshare Partner Flights
You can also redeem WestJet Dollars for flights on partner airlines. However, you’re limited to codeshare flights, and they must be booked in conjunction with WestJet-operated flights.
You can redeem WestJet Dollars on the following codeshare flights:
- Air France: codeshare flights to Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and other European destinations
- Delta: codeshare flights within North America
- Qantas: codeshare flights to Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane
You can search for codeshare partner flights on the same search engine as WestJet flights, and you can use WestJet Dollars to pay for codeshare partner flights as if you were paying for WestJet-only flights.
Lastly, you can redeem your WestJet Dollars for packages through WestJet Vacations. You can use WestJet Dollars on the majority of the package cost plus vacation “extras”, such as Disney tickets and airport transfers.
Note, however, that you must still pay for the flight portion’s taxes and fees in cash.
WestJet Rewards Tiers
There are four WestJet Rewards tiers: Teal, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. To advance to the next tier, you must meet tier-qualifying spend.
If you hold a WestJet RBC World Elite Mastercard, you may take advantage of the Status Lift feature. With Status Lift, you’ll receive $500 in tier-qualifying spend per $15,000 in total charges to your card.
You can earn up to three Status Lifts per calendar year, corresponding to $1,500 in tier-qualifying spend. Per the chart above, $1,500 is only half the progress from Teal to Silver, so you must still earn tier-qualifying spend through flying or other means to progress.
If you fly with WestJet often, flight benefits are a good reason for you to seek higher WestJet Rewards tiers. As a low-cost carrier, WestJet doesn’t provide benefits by default, unless paid for or included with a flexible or premium fare.
Beginning at the Silver tier, flight benefits are applicable as follows:
In addition, Silver members and above receive priority check-in, while Gold and Platinum members also get priority baggage, security screening, and hotline support.
What’s more, Silver members and up may receive complimentary upgrades at check-in and at the gate, except for flights to Europe and Asia. Naturally, odds for an upgrade are higher with higher status.
WestJet is the second largest airline in Canada, with WestJet Rewards serving as its in-house loyalty program. WestJet Rewards’s currency, WestJet Dollars, can be earned by transferring RBC Avion points, acquiring RBC co-branded credit cards, and flying with WestJet and its partner airlines.
WestJet Dollars can be redeemed at a rate of 1 WestJet Dollar = $1 (CAD), and your balance may only be applied towards the base fare of WestJet flights and codeshare partner flights. Alternatively, you can redeem WestJet Dollars towards vacation packages and add-ons booked directly with WestJet.
With the at-par value of WestJet Dollars, it’s difficult to find outsized value from WestJet Rewards. However, the program’s elite benefits, including complimentary upgrades and priority services, may be compelling enough for WestJet’s frequent flyers to gun for higher status.