January 26, 2009 05:00 ET

Aeroplan Turns 25; Kicks off Yearlong Celebration with a 25 Day 250,000 Miles Giveaway

    MONTREAL, Jan. 26  - In just twenty-five years, Aeroplan
Members have accumulated approximately 821 billion miles and have redeemed
Aeroplan Miles for more than 16 million rewards. Aeroplan has come a long way
since it was established by Air Canada in 1984 as an incentive program for its
frequent flyer customers. Today, Aeroplan's more than four million members can
earn Aeroplan Miles with over 70 partners, representing more than 150 brands
in the financial, retail, and travel sectors.
    In 2008 alone, over 2 million rewards were issued to members including
more than 1.5 million round-trip flights on Air Canada and Star Alliance
carriers which offer travel to approximately 912 destinations worldwide. In
fact, an Aeroplan member or their guest takes off on Aeroplan Miles every 7
seconds. Members also have access to over 600 specialty, merchandise, hotel,
car rental and experiential rewards.
    "This is a proud moment for Aeroplan as we come together with employees,
members and partners to celebrate our 25th anniversary - a significant
milestone that couldn't have been achieved without their ongoing support,"
said Vince Timpano, President, Aeroplan. "We are looking forward to the next
25 years and beyond, as we focus on solidifying our position as the leading
coalition loyalty program in Canada, continuing to offer our members more ways
to earn and redeem their miles every day."
    Aeroplan and Air Canada will be kicking off the yearlong celebration with
members on February 1st, with the launch of the 25 Day 250,000 Miles Giveaway
contest where members can win 250,000 Aeroplan Miles for 25 days. Eligible
Aeroplan Members will automatically be entered into the contest for one chance
to win every time they fly on a purchased or reward ticket operated by Air
Canada between February 1 - February 25.
    "We are thrilled to be celebrating this important achievement with
Aeroplan, Air Canada's frequent flyer program. We are pleased to have watched
it evolve to where it is today - into one of the most popular multi-partner
loyalty programs in the world," said Charles McKee, Vice President, Marketing
at Air Canada. "We want to thank our loyal customers for supporting this
program throughout the years with an exciting contest that will see more than
six million miles given away in the month of February."
    In addition to the contest, there will be other activities introduced in
the coming months, such as special gifts for long-time members and exclusive
rewards.25 Milestones in 25 years

    2009: Aeroplan, Canada's premier loyalty program, is celebrating its
          25th anniversary in July 2009.

    2008: Over 2 million rewards were issued to members including more than
          1.5 million round-trip flights on Air Canada and Star Alliance
          carriers which offer travel to approximately 912 destinations

    2008: Vince Timpano was appointed President of Aeroplan Canada and
          Executive Vice President, Groupe Aeroplan Inc.

    2008: Aeroplan launched the Aeroplan eStore featuring more than
          12 product categories and over 100 retailers:

    2008: Aeroplan Income Fund converted into a growth oriented, dividend
          paying global loyalty management public corporation named "Groupe
          Aeroplan Inc".

    2008: Aeroplan launched Aeroplan Arrival, an exclusive branded content
          magazine that encompasses travel, lifestyle, culture and popular
          Aeroplan reward merchandise.

    2007: Aeroplan Income Fund acquired Loyalty Management Group (LMG), a
          loyalty marketing and customer-driven insight and analysis business
          that owns and operates Nectar, the United Kingdom's leading
          coalition loyalty program.

    2007: Launched the loyalty industry's first Carbon Offset Program as part
          of Aeroplan's Green It Up initiative that allows members to offset
          their flight rewards or their everyday carbon emissions using
          Aeroplan Miles. As of January 1, 2009, 17 million Aeroplan Miles
          have been redeemed for carbon credits:

    2007: Launched Aeroplan Music Store, the loyalty industry's first online
          store where members can redeem miles for music:

    2007: Aeroplan and the AGO launched the Grange Prize, an annual award
          recognizing the work of Canadian and international contemporary

    2006: Launched an innovative member charitable donation program - Beyond
          Miles. The program enables Aeroplan Members to donate miles to
          seven charitable organizations. As of January 2009, the following
          organizations are part of the program: Air Canada's Kids' Horizons,
          Engineers Without Borders-Canada, Médecins Sans Frontières-Canada,
          Schools Without Borders, the Stephen Lewis Foundation,
          Veterinarians Without Borders-Canada and War Child Canada:

    2006: Introduced ClassicPlus Flight(TM) Rewards, providing unrestricted
          access to 100% of available seats on Air Canada and Air Canada

    2005: Aeroplan began expansion of its partner roster into the retail
          sector. Today, partners include: Audiotronic, Dumoulin, Esso, Home
          Hardware, Primus, Sobeys and Uniprix, among others.

    2005: Completed Initial Public Offering for world's first publicly-traded
          loyalty program, Aeroplan Income Fund.

    2004: Introduced a series of co-branded charge cards with American
          Express that offer swift accumulation of Aeroplan Miles.

    2004: Launched a comprehensive suite of non-air rewards (merchandise,
          experiential and specialty). Today, members have access to over
          600 exciting specialty, merchandise, hotel, car rental and
          experiential rewards:

    2004: Aeroplan increased access to reward seats by 50% on Air Canada and
          Air Canada Jazz.

    2004: Launched new Aeroplan brand identity that positioned Aeroplan as
          its own entity outside of Air Canada and as the premier loyalty
          program in Canada.

    2002: Aeroplan was spun-off as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Air Canada.

    2001: Completed the integration of Canadian Plus members into Aeroplan.

    2000: Rupert Duchesne became President and Chief Executive Officer of

    1998: CIBC Aeromortgage launched - This mortgage product helps turn
          mortgage payments into travel rewards (for every $1 of regular
          mortgage paid, Aeromortgage holders earn one Aeroplan Mile).

    1991: Launched the CIBC Aerogold VISA card, now one of the most popular
          gold credit cards in its category in Canada.

    1985: More than 100,000 frequent flyers enrolled in the program.

    1984: Aeroplan began as a promotional tool for Air Canada's business
          travellers.For more information about Aeroplan, please visit

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