25 comments

Redeem Air Miles Points for Gas!

Canadian Deals & Coupons, Other / Canada, Tips & Tricks

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It’s still a few years away from the December 31st, 2016 deadline before Air Miles will be no longer, but if like me, you don’t have enough points to even consider packing your bags, why not redeem existing points at the pumps? If you have at least 175 Air Miles, you can get $20 Shell gas certificate.

After going to the Air Miles website, it seems as though they are also starting another promo in March!

Click on the above link for more info & to check your balance.

25 comments

  1. operabob

    This is a rip, a terrible deal.

    The current exchange rate on Shell Gas Certificates is $.1143/AM.

    The new rate is $0.105.

    That’s over a 10% difference.

    To make matters worse less than a year ago the average exchange rate on all gift cards was $0.139/AM.

    In less than a year AirMiles is now charging people 32% more to exchange.

    Read the Forums on the AirMiles website. People are very, very, very angry and now SmartCanucks is helping to promote this abuse of consumer members.

    To those of you that argue it’s free. It’s not free. You pay for the AirMiles when you buy products and now AirMiles is saying we’re only honouring 68% of the value. To make matters worse AirMiles now expire over a 5 year period. Even AeroPlan gives 7 years.

    AirMiles is quickly going from the best loyalty program in the country to the most hated.

    Reply
  2. operabob

    Apologies for misreading your post. Thought you were promoting their new cash back program which is a rip. Yes, get your Shell certificates now before the “New and Improved” Airmiles takes effect which is an abuse of consumers IMO.

    Reply
  3. joline

    We haven’t collected AirMiles in a while. We just don’t shop at any of the places that offer points, and we also don’t bank (and will never bank) with BMO. However, we did have some miles just sitting on the account that we haven’t used in eons that I was able to exchange for $80 in Shell GCs. Works for me. Thanks for the reminder!

    Reply
  4. coupon girl

    yes for sure -i just redemmed for 80.00 worth of free gas too-hey anthing helps out in these times-anthing to make our buck last longer is great

    Reply
  5. bhlombardy

    OK, this post is EXTREMELY full of misleading info:

    Stephania says: “It’s still a few years away from the December 31st, 2016 deadline before Air Miles will be no longer”

    OK, first up, the Air Miles program isnt going anywhere. Dec.31st 2016 is the expiry date of any Air miles points that you collected up until Dec.31.2011 as that is when they initiated a 5-year expiration date on collected points.

    If you collect points today (January 16, 2012) they will expire on the same date in 2017 (5 years from today).

    Secondly… OperaBob has COMPLETELY misinterprted the “Air Miles Cash” program. The Certificates (by mail) will STILL be available at the current rate (175pts for $20) even after March.

    However if you want INSTANT redemption at the register, instead of waiting 2-3 weeks for the mail to arrive, then you can use the Air Miles Cash system.

    In fact, they’re implementing this system as the most popular request among Air Miles members was an “instant redemption” system.

    Agreed, you pay a few extra points for this service, but again, that’s because it’s instant redemption instead of waiting 2-3 weeks. No one is twisting your arm saying you MUST use Air Miles Cash. If you want to continue to order the certificates, go right ahead.

    Reply
  6. Anna Michele

    The cashredemption program is in addition to the way the program currently runs, you can chose to continue saving the way you have been or allocate your points from now on as you wish 50% to cash reward and 50% to points or 25%:75% its up to you.

    Reply
  7. Nettie

    I just about had a heart attack about Airmiles being no more! Phew! What a relief.

    I buy my gas and groceries from places that have airmiles. There isn’t another grocery store in town, so airmiles IS worthwhile to me. If I didn’t use my airmiles card, I would still be “paying” for these miles in the price of my groceries, but not getting anything out of it. Therefore, I collect airmiles, and enjoy doing so.

    Reply
  8. JP

    I’m in Newfoundland and can’t even figure out a place to get certificates for my Airmiles. I don’t have Shell and many others on the list. And then the new program sounds like there are two different buckets. So if I am trying to earn an airline ticket and realize it won’t happen before miles start to expire I can’t use those miles in the cash system. Also wondering if the availability of traditional certificates will be reduced with the new system.

    Reply
  9. BIJAL

    Everybody is so confused and misleaded here. I just decided between airmiles cash and airmiles dream (the old redemption system) today on my airmiles account. And i was able to choose 100% on just airmiles dream the old system. You do not have to use the cash program if you don’t want to. Therefore just log into your airmiles account and if you do not want the airmiles cash than just slide the slider to 100% airmiles dream rewards side and submit and you are all set.
    The airmiles program is not closing down as per this post, whoever posted this is totally ignorant and not reading the policies correctly and misinterpreting it. As per airmiles whatever miles you collected until December 31, 2011 should be redeemed by December 3, 2016. I think five years a lot of time for someone to decide what they want to use their aimiles for. And whatever airmiles you accumulate from january 2012 will expire in next five years and so on and so forth. I hope people understand this and do not post wrong things here and get everyone scared.

    Reply
  10. Marnie

    There used to be a lot more choice in gift cards when using Air Miles. What I do now, is redeem Air Miles for Metro certificates because Metro sells a variety of gift cards. It is an extra step but at least I get my coffee and restaurant gift cards courtesy of Air Miles.

    Reply
  11. NewfBC

    JP – you can redeem for Lawtons and Sobeys certificates. Those are currently in stock.

    Ron.

    Reply
  12. operabob

    bhlombardy has completely misrepresented my post. No where in my post did I say gas certificates would no longer available.

    What I did point out is that the cash back option equals a 10%+ increase in redemption rate over the certificates and the overall program, when referencing “ALL” gift cards (and certificates) a 32% increase in less than a year. Yet Canadians will sit back and accept this with nary a whimper.

    As to whether these gift cards/certificates will be available in the future note that in the last year AirMiles has dropped many popular ones including the following cards: Starbucks, The Keg, CARA (Swiss Chalet, Harveys, Montanas, Kelseys, Milestones), Chapters. Read the writing on the wall. (Marnie, the only restaurant/coffee GCs left now is Boston Pizza).

    My post regarding the 5 year redemption was correct although your explanation provided a clearer explanation: Points accumulated in any year will expire after 5 years unless redeemed. If you earn 5,000 Miles in year 1 then you must use up 5,000 of your total within 5 years. Whatever you earn in year 2 must be redeemed by the 6th year and so on. This, of course, means people in low earning areas will have difficulty earning larger ticket items, flights/trips, etc.) if that is what they are after.

    The simple fact is that the cash back feature represents a 32% increase in the redemption rate in less than a year while AirMiles has severely reduced your options for redemption.

    So far there are only two options for redeeming through Cash Back: Shell and Rona.

    Where else but in Canada would people accept a 32% increase in costs without a complaint.

    Reply
  13. marpauly

    I completely agree with Operabob.The new and improved airmiles cash option is NOT an improvement.It cost more when in reality it should cost less.They don’t have to process your order and mail it.All things that cost money and manpower.Why is it more miles and don’t be fooled,this is just the first step.In 6 months we might just have 3 years to redeem and the price of the goods and services will continue to go up.Also,now you have the option to still have the gift cards,but i’m sure they will make it almost impossible to have them.OUT OF STOCK is easy for them to say to allure you in the cash option that costs you more.Doesn’t make sense!!!!

    Reply
  14. operabob

    Thanks Mar,

    Let’s have a look at how good this option is.

    1. Used to be Shell offered 1 AM on the first $20 and 1 AM on every $10 after.

    Not that long ago it switched to 1 AM on the first $20 and 1 AM on every $30 after.

    On a $50 fill previously you got 4 AMs. Now it’s 2 AMs or 50% less (this is in addition to AirMiles 10% increased redemption rate if you opt for Cash Back.

    2. On occassion Shell runs a 10Xs AMs on Premium fuel and 3Xs on regular. This doesn’t happen all the time and currently they have a 10Xs AMs on Premium fuel and 5Xs on regular.

    With a $50 fill you’d get 20 AMs on Premium and 10 AMs on Regular.

    That works out to $2.10 on Premium and $1.05 on regular with Cash Back ($2.29/1.14 with certificates).

    NOTE: There’s a bit of misleading advertising on this offer that says you must purchase $40 of fuel but it doesn’t bother to point out you need to buy $50 to get the added AirMile).

    3. Regular fuel where I live right now is about $1.15/liter. $50 buys 43.48 liters.

    Many gas bars at grocery stores offer 3.5 cent or greater cash backs on groceries (I’ve seen as high as 7 cents but for calculations I’ll use the lower amount).

    On regular the savings equals $0.035 x 43.48 = $1.52 vs. Shell’s $1.05

    Premium gas will buy fewer liters of gas and while the promo is on you’ll do OK as long as you buy exactly $50 worth because you won’t get the 3rd AirMile until you spend $80 while every liter between $50-$80 earns 3.5 cents.

    However, remember, the promo isn’t on all the time. The usual $50 offer would earn only 21 cents on Premium and Regular.

    My point here is don’t become addicted to AirMiles. Do what’s best for you.

    Reply
  15. emax

    Marnie, I like your idea of redeeming your airmiles for Metro cards, and then using those cards to purchase restaurant/coffee cards from Metro. In a way that brings back the variety of gift cards that airmiles USED to offer directly. Will add that to my list of tips at http://forum.smartcanucks.ca/266628-airmiles-best-practices-canada/

    Unfortunately that only works for people who have a Metro nearby. Here on the west coast Safeway is the big gorilla, and while they are great for earning airmiles, you can’t currently redeem airmiles for a Safeway gift card.

    Reply
  16. cyan1234

    Emax and Marnie,

    Unfortunatly it states specifically on the gift certificate it is not to be used for gift cards. Marnie, you got lucky! Now if anyone reads this post from your Metro store they will know they are not applicable.
    I tried and my Metro refused.
    Please don’t inform others to practice this, as it may or will be disappointing.

    Reply
  17. lotekgirl

    To cyan1234: That may be true re Metro not letting you use gift cards to buy gift cards but if you shop at Metro anyway, you can use the card towards your groceries and buy the gift cards you want with the money you saved on your groceries. Same net result!

    Reply
  18. No longer Loyal

    190 airmiles now. Bloody gouging. Loyalty my ass it’s one way street. We’ve certainly been loyal to there sponsors but they have not been loyal to us. They put the screws on us over the years so screw them. No more decisions based on air miles an no more points cards it’s cash back all the way. So long to an unfaithful partner

    Reply
  19. Genie

    I can’t use my AMs to buy gas at my local Shell – “they’re not members” – they have never even heard of this – can someone please tell me where I can find the nearest Shell that will honour this? I live in N. Surrey – thanks

    Reply
  20. frieda

    can no longer redeem for Best Western Hotels, all that I use, so will cancel my BMO mastercard & transfer balance to Line of Credit which is almost half the interest & same with my AMX so airmiles you screwed yourself
    l

    Reply
  21. frieda

    I am 70 yrs old & cannot even find a catalogue to spend my points, so glad to shut you out of mylife

    Reply

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