Air Miles expiry challenged in Ontario, what this means for Manitobans
Lots of us collect Air Miles reward points with visions of a dream vacation just over the horizon.
However, soon points for many collectors will disappear, along with those free vacations. On Dec. 31, any miles older than 5-years will start to expire.
At least they will in places like Manitoba.
Ontario Liberal MPP Arthur Potts is challenging this so that residents in that province will get to keep their points forever.
Potts has put forward a bill that would make it illegal for companies to expire points just because a certain amount of time has passed.
"We're making loyalty reward miles just like gift cards," Potts said. "They can't expire."
The bill has passed second reading in Ontario – it only covers Air Miles collectors in that province.
The Manitoba government tells CTV News that it has not heard concerns about the issue.
However, the province said they are open to a discussion with Manitobans and consumer groups.
Patrick Sojka from Rewards Canada said Manitoba might not need to act at all.
"I think if Ontario passes this law then we'll see it go nationwide," Sojka said
Sojka said it would be a logistical nightmare for a travel reward program like air miles to have different rules in different provinces.
"People could go online and change their address," Sojka added.
The Ontario Bill has been fast tracked and will be up for the third and final reading on Monday.
Air Miles is not in favor of the bill. They said in a statement to CTV News that “due to the negative impact it would have on this program and all customer-focused rewards programs across the globe who are operating in Ontario. If enacted, it will trigger negative implications such as immediate and long-term additional loyalty program costs, which will ultimately affect consumers who use those loyalty points."