Ever since the acquisition of Air Miles earlier this year, BMO has been making efforts to get more consumers excited about the program again.
This week, there have been some major updates to the Air Miles Travel Portal, including how you can earn and redeem Air Miles. We’ve also seen an opt-in deal to earn more Air Miles on your next travel booking to drum up excitement for the revamp, which can be quite lucrative.
Air Miles Launches New Travel Portal
This week, Air Miles launched a revamped travel portal, which allows you to book flights, accommodations, car rentals, vacation packages, cruises, and extras.
Notably, park passes that were previously offered elsewhere are now available through the portal, making it even easier to redeem Air Miles.
However, the biggest updates are on how you can earn and redeem Air Miles through the travel portal.
First, you may now pay for flights with a sliding amount of Dream Miles, whereas previously, you needed to have the entire amount of Dream Miles available to use the Cash + Miles feature. The minimum Dream Miles required depends on your Air Miles tier, and is structured as follows:
- Blue: minimum 50% Dream Miles to use Cash + Miles
- Gold: minimum 25% Dream Miles to use Cash + Miles
- Onyx: no minimum to use Cash + Miles
For example, a Porter Airlines flight from Toronto to Vancouver costs $148 (all values in CAD), or 898 Dream Miles plus $59 in taxes and fees. As a Blue member, you may now use as few as 449 Dream Miles to cover half the fare.
However, you’re slightly getting worse value than you would for Cash Miles, which allows for redemptions of 95 Air Miles = $10 in value, or 10.5 cents per Air Mile.
With the example above, you’re offsetting $89 of the fare with 898 Dream Miles, giving you a slightly lower value of 9.9 cents per Air Mile.
Still, lowering the minimum threshold for Dream Miles redemptions on airfares is a positive development. If you have a balance of Dream Miles that you wouldn’t have been able to use with the previous limitations, you may now consider using them for flights.
Air Miles has indicated that you’ll soon be able to transfer Dream Miles into Cash Miles, and vice versa. It’s expected that this will roll out in the coming weeks, and then in 2024, your miles will be combined into a single account.
Indeed, this will be a wholesale improvement to the program.