Air Miles backtracks on points expiry

Expiry policy due to be implemented Dec. 31, but LoyaltyOne now says it is walking away from that plan

TORONTO – Following an uproar from consumers, the company that runs the Air Miles loyalty points program says it is cancelling plans that would have seen collectors lose their miles after five years.

The expiry policy was supposed to be implemented beginning Dec. 31. But LoyaltyOne announced Thursday it was walking away from that plan, effective immediately.

“There is uncertainty with provincial governments proposing or considering legislation across Canada, so we have decided to cancel the expiry policy so that all collectors, regardless of location, can be confident that their balances will be protected,” LoyaltyOne CEO Bryan Pearson said in a statement.

“Our commitment is to create an environment where reward programs continue to deliver value to consumers and the companies that operate them.”

In Ontario, there was a private member’s bill before the provincial legislature that sought to make it illegal for companies to allow points to expire strictly due to the passage of time.

LoyaltyOne said it believes cancelling the expiry policy will lead to governments and industry members having more meaningful conversations that can help such loyalty programs remain viable across Canada.

The Air Miles reward program launched in 1992 and has more than 11 million active collector accounts.

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