You’ve probably spent years building up your Air Miles for that big dream trip or other reward. But if you’re not careful–poof!–your points could vanish into thin air.
You might not remember by now, but back at the end of 2011, Air Miles introduced a five year expiry date on its rewards miles. Which means as soon as we enter Jan. 1, 2017, all the points you’ve collected before 2012 will instantly become worthless.
We know, it sucks. And unfortunately, that’s not the end of the bad news.
Air Miles points earned before 2012 were once redeemable for cash rewards, like gift cards, but that may not be the case anymore. That’s because the company announced in 2012 that it was funneling everyone’s points earned before that year into something called a “Dream” rewards section. In this section, rewards are mostly limited to high-value items like travel plans and merchandise. Cash rewards, meanwhile, were pushed into a separate area.
At the time, collectors were given the option to opt-out of this change. So if you were one of the people who did, you should still be able to use your points for gift cards. As for everyone else? Your miles were likely pushed out of the cash rewards section and into the Dream rewards section, unless you tweaked your account preferences. And if you think you can just transfer the miles, think again: Air Miles told a customer on its Facebook page that the “Cash Program feature was designed to be separate from our traditional Program so our system does not have the capability to transfer Miles between the Accounts.”
There is one small piece of good news though (emphasis on “small”): Air Miles does have items in its Dream category that you can throw your unused miles at. There are some contests you can enter on the company’s website for as little as 25 miles. So make sure to have a look before giving up all hope.
If you’re feeling frustrated reading all this, you’re definitely not alone:
— Sean Cooke (@SeanCookeCR) July 24, 2016
— Larry McCaw (@Raceguy1st) July 21, 2016
if my air miles expire, i’ll just ditch the card. nobody gives them anymore except LCBO and I don’t drink that much https://t.co/i3E5FDQTQK
— Cow (@criacow) July 25, 2016
TLDR: make sure to use up all your miles earned before 2012 by Jan. 1, 2017.