Great news? Chase adds Air Canada as transfer partner


On this week’s episode of Frequent Miler on the Air, Nick and I discussed Southwest Airline’s crazy thing: they’ve been randomly dropping segments off of itineraries without informing customers!  And in our main event, we debated Chase’s new transfer partner (Air Canada).  It’s certainly good news, but is this addition great news?  I thought so until I did some investigation and I landed more on “good news.”  Nick strongly disagreed (he’s firmly in the “great news” camp).

  • 00:00:25 Giant mailbag (Airlines set award rates just above saver level)
  • 00:04:55 Mattress Running the Numbers: Hilton Amex Offer (20% rebate) + Triple points promo + Aspire card $250 rebate
  • 00:13:22 What Crazy Thing Did Southwest Airlines Do This Week? Southwest drops segments w/out notice. Many readers “enjoyed” the same treatment.
  • 00:20:09 Main Event: Is the addition of Aeroplan to Chase Ultimate Rewards really great news? Greg and Nick debate.
  • 00:45:44 New Chase Aeroplan credit cards expected in November 2021. Are we excited? What kind of welcome bonuses can we expect?
  • 00:49:25 Post roast. Nick takes Greg to task for failing to discuss how to manage points and credit card cancellations when in “two player mode” (e.g. when managing cards and points for a significant other.)
  • 00:55:55 Question of the week. A reader overpaid taxes (using a credit card, of course), but the IRS hasn’t yet refunded the overpayment 6 months later. This is more of a caution than a question.

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Read on in this week in review for those topics and also Hyatt expanding award options, how to know if you’ll get free checked bags, improvements to Delta’s change policies, and more.

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This week at Frequent Miler

Warning: Southwest Making Crazy, Nonsensical Changes To Existing Bookings

ConfusedNick offered up a crazy story about how Southwest had alerted him to minor flight changes via email, but when he logged into his account he found that the emails were completely wrong: Southwest had dropped entire segments from his reservations.  Stephen took Nick’s story and wrote up this warning: log in and check your reservations. They may be completely messed up.  Based on many comments on that post, the problem didn’t just affect Nick, it affected lots of people.  If this happened to you, you’ll have to call and they should be able to fix your reservation easily enough.  But what about those who didn’t see this warning?  This was bad Southwest… really bad.

United vs. Air Canada: Which is the better Chase transfer partner?

In the post announcing that Chase has added Air Canada Aeroplan as a new transfer partner, I wrote “Often you’ll find Air Canada’s award pricing to be much cheaper than United’s, especially for long distance premium cabin awards.”  But in this post, I checked that assumption.  Is Air Canada’s pricing really cheaper “often”?  It turns out that “sometimes” is a better word.

Hyatt’s Destination Residences bookable with points! (and a new award type: Premium Room)

Look out Wyndham with your Vacasa Vacation Rentals.  There’s a new way to book vacation homes with points.  Hyatt has opened up their Destination by Hyatt Residences to be booked with points.  And it’s not only the small one bedroom units that can be booked this way.  Hyatt shoehorned these vacation rentals into their existing award room types: standard room, club room (now referred to as premium room for this purpose), standard suite, and premium suite.  There are some amazing looking properties now available to be booked with points.  So far, the participating properties are mostly in Colorado and Hawaii, but I expect that more will be coming soon.

Player 2: Pursuing over 500,000 Points

My wife signed up for a handful of credit cards recently.  In this post I detailed what she signed up for and why.  In the end she’ll likely earn over 500,000 points!

Free Checked Bags via Credit Card Complete Guide

Many airline credit cards offer free checked bags to cardholders.  However, the details vary a lot by airline.  Are international flights included?  How about the bags of companions on the same reservation?  Do you have to pay for the flight with the airline credit card?  This post answers those questions and more.

Airline Change Fee Quick Reference Chart [New positive Delta changes]

Delta recently made a few positive changes to their change fee policies and so I updated this post.  In the past year, each of the domestic U.S. airlines has announced that they are eliminating change fees.  That’s awesome.  But the details can be hard to remember.  Which fare classes apply?  Are standby fees eliminated too?  What’s happening with award change fees?  The answer to each of these questions differs by airline.  This post offers a few quick reference tables to answer those questions.

Hyatt Regency Seattle: Bottom Line Review (King Room & Regency Suite)

Hyatt Regency Seattle - Club lounge patio
Club lounge patio

Stephen had a chance to try out this Hyatt in Seattle.  Bottom line: he liked it!  It’s a category 4 property, so it looks like a good use for your Hyatt category 1-4 free night certificates.  I’ll have to add it to this post: Best Hyatt Category 1-4 Hotels & Resorts!

Deal of the Week: Delta to Europe for 34K Round Trip

Delta is offering round trip awards to Europe for as low as 34,000 miles.  That’s a steal especially considering that Delta is now offering elite earnings on award travel.  Plus, for travel this year, you’ll earn a 50% bonus in elite earnings.  If you’re not interested in becoming elite, it’s still a great deal.  Awards are freely cancelable (you’ll get back your miles and fees), so there’s no risk in booking!

That’s it for this week at Frequent Miler. Don’t forget to also check out this week’s last chance deals.

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To answer a question from this week’s podcast: I did cancel an Amex platinum after making an FHR booking and everything was fine. They did not ask to see the card at check in. I also did get Hilton points (including 3x promo) for the reservation.

Follow-up question:
If I make an FHR booking under Player Two, do I have to use their loyalty number to receive points and credit? As you know, the loyalty number is not verified on the Amex website.



Thanks. Will try and report back. My trip is at Hyatt in December.

Charles R

You were too generous in terms of Aeroplan review..I see you guys didn’t mention how terrible Air Canada Aeroplan search engine is compared to the previous Aeroplan engine…it is purposefully more difficult requiring much more effort during search. Also awards are theoretically freely redeposit-able for United and it will cost > 10% more miles for a flexible Business class ticket at Aeroplan.

Larry K

They mentioned that Aeroplan has said changes to search are coming soon.

Last edited 1 year ago by Larry K

I agree with Charles, current search is horrible! I hope new & improved search engine is coming soon!

Larry K

If Turkish won’t work for United day of bookings Singapore might and I think is pretty decent.


Regarding Steven and the IRS at the end of the show:

Since he says “the IRS doesn’t view this as a refund” and wheresmyrefund doesn’t work, I assume he made the tax payments after 1/15/21. That means it could not be claimed as a 2020 payment on the 2020 tax return. I did this once and the check was automatically mailed to me in August. That’s before covid so with normal processing times. He just has to wait. ALSO, the IRS paid me interest due to the delay and it was something high like 8% apy. I was pretty happy with that.